How to Turn Your Life Around


 Coming from a person who led a very negative lifestyle, here is an imperfect guide to turning your life in a more positive direction. I say imperfect because I am always working to better myself, as everyone should. Of course, these are just suggestions as to how to live your life and by no means a force.

     Starting with the first and most important rule: Always stop and smell the flowers. As cliché as it sounds, it is so important to take time from the everyday hustle of your life and just relax. Just seconds of each day, to sit back, rewind, and reflect. More often than not, people stress over minuscule things in their lives. I promise, that whatever you are so worried about, will be there in five minutes after you’ve meditated and after you’ve counted to ten. In the grand scheme of things, ask yourself, “Why am I really stressed?”.

      A simple thing to do that could move mountains in your day to day life is to start a gratitude jar, or write in a journal. Studies show that people who reflect on their lives and write three things that they are grateful for each day, lead more positive and happy lives. Even just little things, like you left your bed when you thought you wouldn’t, or you learned something new about yourself. Every thought counts and all small victories mean something.

     Removing the negativity from your life is crucial for progression. People, things, jobs, anything that brings you negativity must be gone. Life is too short to waste it on things that don’t make you happy. People are easy to remove, jobs and school obviously a bit harder. However, it’s never impossible to just find a new job, even if it may seem like it. And if you can’t get rid of your job then pick up a hobby or activity that you enjoy on the side to maximize positivity in your life.

     Taking a positive spin on your everyday headaches will also help you lead a more optimistic life. The assignment you left at home that you turned back for may have prevented you from getting into an accident on the way to school. With this mentality, it is almost impossible to get worked up over anything. It really helps change your whole outlook to see life with the glass half full.

     Always take any chance you can to embrace the child in you. The songs you listened to as a kid or the games you used to play. These are easy places to retreat to for stress relief. There is nothing more comforting than eating the meals you used to have on Sundays at grandma’s, or watching your favorite childhood movies. These times are humbling, and important for growth.

     Be confident. Look at yourself and love yourself, I don’t care how hard it is. Look at the extra skin on your stomach and stare at it until it’s your favorite part of your body. Stare down the huge scar on your leg from tripping when you were nine, and embrace it. These are parts of you now, they are your story, they are not you. There is so much more to you than the outer shell that carries you around this Earth.

     Last but not least, don’t apologize. Live life freely, without regrets, and stop feeling the urge to apologize for speaking. There is no reason to hold back your opinion or feel like your voice doesn’t matter. The only important rule to speaking is to encourage rather than dishearten. Nothing can go wrong when you spread love instead of hate. Don’t apologize for being you, and don’t apologize for being a voice.

     Though I make these tasks sound easy, they aren’t. You have to put in a real, conscious effort to turn your life around and enjoy it. It will be hard at first, but I promise that it will all be worth it in the end. Remember to always reflect and that if you don’t love something it is not worth it, no matter how bound to it you feel. Don’t forget to enjoy life’s little moments.