If you find yourself in a less-than-ideal period of your life and the only thing that seems to come into your head is the question: “What am I doing with my life?!”, then I think this article might be able to help you cope.
We’ve all been there. No one is immune to rough patches in life.
Sometimes we fall into a rut and this question seems to arise, and sometimes things happen and create a huge hole in our minds and hearts, leaving us vulnerable and questioning everything we’ve done so far as well as our future.
First of all, let me tell you, IT IS GOING TO BE OKAY.
Now, let’s try and help you come out of this situation stronger than ever.
Questioning what you’re doing with your life isn’t easy, but it’s the most important question you’ll ever ask yourself.
Step one: Figure out the things you dislike about your life
It is often said that the first step to solving a problem is admitting you have a problem.
Well, it really is. It might not be easy to sit down and think deeply about what you’re doing with your life, but it is necessary.
If there wasn’t at least something a tiny bit wrong you wouldn’t have been asking yourself this in the first place.
Even though it’s a true challenge to pinpoint the exact thing that is wrong, you must do it!
Think about every area of your life. How are things going in your relationship?
Are you stuck in the past? Do you feel like you could be doing more for other people in your life?
There are so many reasons to feel lost, and not all of them are obvious.
Your personal development depends on doing some soul searching so you better find the strength to do it.
Try talking to friends or family as they might be able to help you. Your stressed brain won’t give you the answers you need though.
If you can’t seem to find a reason for feeling the way you do, try getting away for a while.
Perhaps visit a peaceful place in the countryside, try meditation, or maybe some kind of sport to let your mind relax.
Step two: Once you know what’s wrong, DO NOT PANIC!
Now you’ve figured out all the issues in your life, your first reaction might be to panic.
Don’t! Honestly, it’s perfectly normal to feel overwhelmed by everything going through your mind.
No one said taking steps to change your life would be easy, but it will most definitely be worth it!
Make a decision to simply accept everything you now realize is wrong with the way you’ve been living your life so far.
It might be something huge or something tiny, but be willing to accept it in order to be able to change it and move on.
Don’t judge yourself and don’t rush to conclusions. Tell yourself that no matter what, you will always love yourself.
Everybody goes through different stages in their life and some of them aren’t as pretty as others. It will be alright.
Step three: You are ready to make a plan
What do you want to change? What can you change? What are your options? These are some of the questions you’ll need to ask yourself in this step.
Then sit down and make a plan. Like, literally take a piece of paper and a pen and start writing. Write down all the things you need to do to get where you want.
If your goal is to start being more supportive towards your friends and family, write down how you want to achieve it (remember their birthdays, help them out when they’re sick etc.)
Think about your true self. Do you want to become a doctor (any career path applies)? Make a plan.
Do you want to be more socially active? Make a plan.
Do you want to start spending more time in nature? Make a plan.
It’s hard to stick to a new path if you don’t force yourself to do it in the beginning. You know the saying ‘fake it until you make it’? Well, it sure makes sense.
For the first few days or weeks you’ll struggle to keep on the right track, but making a plan and sticking to it is crucial for the personal growth you’re trying to achieve.
Step four: Move in the right direction
That brings us to step four. Making progress is important no matter how big or small.
Living the life you want is rewarding, and any little step you take will make a huge difference to you personally.
Don’t be disappointed if some of the things you do aren’t in direct correlation in your success in changing your life, that’s okay.
Also, don’t beat yourself up about moving slowly. It honestly doesn’t matter how fast you move, as long as you’re moving in the right direction.
The life decisions that you made in step three are crucial: stick to them and follow them.
Be aware that you’re allowed to change your goals, but make certain that you’re not changing them because some other life plan seems easier to follow.
The first period is always hard, but stick to it for a few weeks and your life will begin to change.
Step five: Get a new perspective – travel!
“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.” Marcel Proust said this and damn was he right!
If you’re stuck in a rut and can’t seem to get pleasure from anything you do, you need to spice things up a bit.
Figuring out your life purpose isn’t an easy task and you might need a new set of eyes to do it.
That’s the beauty of travel! It makes you leave your usual, everyday life. Living a certain kind of life, in a certain kind of country with a certain kind of culture makes a man think in a very specific way.
This way of thinking affects your life and the way you see yourself as well as the people around you. Everything you think goes through the filter of these inherited ideas about what life should be.
Go someplace else and see how other people live. It might give you a different perspective and teach you some new ways of thinking and doing things that will help you to move forward.
Honestly, sometimes reading a good book is enough of an escape.
Books, just like travel, give you new eyes and help you think about life on a more objective level, and help you become more in touch with your soul than ever before.
Step six: Experiment
Think hard about what you dislike about your life.
In most cases, you will realize that the things you would like to change are the things you choose to do because the other, better options are out of your comfort zone.
That’s probably the reason you did them wrong in the first place – you wanted to feel protected and safe.
Think about the things you daydream about. Being someone – or something – it seems impossible for you to be in your everyday life.
That’s the direction you should try taking.
Tell yourself: This is my passion, that’s what I do with my life from now on!
Our society has a way of making us all sheep. We do the things we think society expects us to do.
Our parents want us to go to certain kinds of schools, they want us to do well-appreciated jobs…
It goes like this: school, career, marriage, kids, quarter-life crisis, mid-life crisis, grandkids…. DEATH. Oh no!
You have a way to change this – even if you don’t think you have enough strength to do absolutely everything you dream of.
It doesn’t have to be a complete change, a new career, or something equally big. Make a wish list and try to do as many things on it as you can.
Step seven: Try getting off social media
Social media can be TOXIC. So much judgment in one place can’t be good for anybody. It can make you feel awful about your life seeing all those photoshopped people posting pictures of their perfect lives.
The truth is, it’s all fake. Everyone chooses what they post on social media, and no one ever chooses the mess. No one takes a picture of their burnt lunch, broken car, or unpaid bills or…. You get the point.
Stop believing social media and better yet, leave it. Don’t be a part of it at all. It can be hard, because there’s always a part of every human being that yearns to be a part of a group.
There’s also a huge part of every human being that needs to see how others are doing in their lives in order to define how well their own life’s going.
Don’t be that human! Please! That brings us to step number eight.
Step eight: Learn to stop comparing yourself to others
Nothing good comes from this. You cannot stay mentally sane if you constantly do this.
It will affect your well-being; it will break your bond with yourself; it will destroy every bit of self-respect and self-esteem that you have.
NOBODY IS PERFECT!
It doesn’t matter what you think. The things you see from where you’re standing are never the whole picture.
There’s so much more about every human being, and most of it is stuff they never let others see.
Your life decisions and the way you see yourself should never correlate to comparing yourself with other people.
It can be very upsetting to see someone else doing good. You might believe they are absolutely perfect and then turn on yourself for not becoming who you think that person is.
The biggest thing is – it isn’t true.
And even if it was true, there would only be one thing you could do about it – change!
If there really is somebody out there who you admire and think could serve as a certain kind of role model to make you improve your ways – be my guest, follow them.
Some people really are great and you should find inspiration in them, but let it be just that – inspiration. Not a heartbreaking attack on your own personality.
Step nine: Remind yourself of every good thing you’ve done
Pat yourself on the back. You’re doing a good job.
Take time to reflect and think about everything nice you can remember doing. Don’t just focus on the negatives.
It’s important to praise yourself from time to time too.
It would be amazing if you could make it a habit to say or think a few good things about yourself every morning or every night.
Remind yourself of your successes even when things are going badly. It will help you see that not everything is bleak.
Life cannot be perfect all the time. We’re only humans and we all make mistakes.
Thinking positively about different aspects of your life will surely benefit you greatly.
And don’t just think about those things for a second and then move back to being negative.
No, take a good hard look at everything you’re doing that’s brave, strong, beautiful, empathetic, humane, emotional, and amazing.
You deserve to be aware of how good of a person you actually are.
Step ten: Stay humble and grateful
Not everything in your life might be the way you’d like it to be. That’s okay. Be grateful for everything good that you have.
The whole soul-searching process in order to help your personal growth and improve the way you’re living your life shouldn’t be about focusing on negativity.
On the contrary, it should only serve as a platform to help you reach new heights, while still being grateful for everything you already have.
Think about people who have so much less. I know it’s a cliche, but honestly, it makes all the difference.
Be grateful for your problems as well, because, as you will surely see, they are sometimes the biggest triggers for
Being able to find gratitude in the most difficult times in your life will make you stronger and show you what you’re made of.
Stay humble and don’t think that anyone gets to have it all. Accept life with everything it brings. There are many ups but there are also many downs and that’s perfectly alright.
Everyone has a ”What am I doing with my life?” phase at least once in their life.
I hope that these suggestions have helped you to feel better and make an effort to get out of your comfort zone, turn the things you daydream about into your reality and become your true self.
What you’re going through is difficult, but it will pass.
Finding the strength now to endure it all and take steps to become even stronger and fiercer in the process is what you should focus on right now.
I honestly hope you find the path to the best version of your life!