One great habit that I’ve picked up in recent years, is to read/listen to self-help books. I truly enjoy reading, and adding self-help books to my reading list, has contributed more to my life than I asked for. Bit by bit, they’ve kept me motivated, opened my mind to new horizons, and left me with snippets that I think of, and apply in real life, from time to time.
Here are ten things that I’ve learned from various self-help books I’ve read. Some of these I’ve implemented in my life, some I’m trying to, and some I can’t wait to implement soon.
1. When the student is ready, the teacher appears – Change begins with the decision to make a change. When you decide and prepare yourself, you will find the inspiration, motivation, and resources to help you get ahead.
2. Appearance matters – Despite how unfair it may sound, appearance matters. When you dress up well, and present yourself in the best manner, you convey the message that you respect yourself and take yourself seriously. The people you come across, will also treat you with the same respect. First impression matters.
3. Journaling will change your life – Robin Sharma often advocates journaling, and has convincing reasons to do so. Journaling gives you a clearer picture, better perspective, lightens the load off your mind, gives direction to your dreams and aspirations, awakens your creativity, and also helps you plan better.
4. Your mind is trying to protect you, but that makes it your biggest enemy – Ever had a big idea, a big goal, a change in mind, but even before you could take the first step, a voice inside you told you to step back, for it may not really be your cup of tea, or too big a dream for you to achieve? That’s your mind trying to push you back to your comfort zone. The mind is designed to keep you away from danger, and any new scenario or possibility that is out of the usual is out of your comfort zone, which the mind perceives as a threat. Consciously realize this mind game, refuse to listen to yourself, and push yourself into the uncomfortable zone.
5. Things that annoy you about others, are often a reflection of your own insecurities – When something about someone’s personality annoys you constantly, it usually is a reflection of your own insecurity that you see in them. When you find yourself judging someone, ask yourself ‘which insecurity in me, is this person bringing out?’ Look at it carefully, understand and accept your own insecurity, and try looking at it in a different light, and you’ll find that you won’t be easily annoyed anymore.
6. It only takes 5 seconds to change your life – In her book ‘The 5 Second Rule’ Mel Robbins suggests that all you need to make a change, is five seconds! When your mind has a thought that needs to be acted on, countdown 5..4..3..2..1..and move! This system activates the prefrontal cortex of the brain, and pushes you to act on a desire, before your mind convinces you not to, and influences you to get back to the comfort zone. Every time you find yourself making an excuse to stop yourself from taking action, start the countdown.
7. You cannot pour into a cup that is already full – Keep your mind open for new learnings. If you’re too full of your own ideas and perspectives, you’ll never be able to accept new learnings. Keep your cup empty, to be able to receive. Have an open mind.
8. Organize your workspace for better productivity – An organized workspace, will motivate you to work better, than a cluttered one would. It helps you focus better, and minimizes any distraction that would divert your attention. It also helps to maintain a planner, and list your priorities and tasks.
9. Consistency is the key – No matter how motivated you are to work towards your dream or goal, you won’t be able to see results unless you put in efforts consistently. A few disciplines steps every day, is much better than big leaps once in a while.
10. Your subconscious beliefs shape your life – We hold different subconscious beliefs based on experiences and conditioning. These subconscious beliefs play a major role in the choices we make, realities we shape, future we decide and the people we associate or disassociate with. Take a look at any subconscious beliefs that may be limiting you, and make conscious, continued efforts to change them, to change your reality.