Now What? 5 Steps to Take After You Have Changed Your Life

Article by Make The Days Count Contributor Judy Mosley

 

Life is full of challenges.  All of us have, at one point or another, decided how we are going to live our lives.  Itʼs the journey that everyone makes.  But, it can be difficult to do when there arenʼt many people around us to model our lives after.  

 

Still, we push forward.  We lose 50 lbs., learn to organize our home, develop healthy relationships, or we find our dream job.  Weʼve conquered the various mountains that have stood in our path.  Yet, after the fact, we might feel reaching our goal is anticlimactic or even feel at a loss.  

 

What now?  Whatʼs next, now that weʼve achieved what weʼve set out to do?  Wasnʼt mastering the challenge the point?  Or, is there life afterwards that we hadnʼt thought of?

 

We can miss a lot if we believe that overcoming the challenge is the actual goal.  If I lose 50 lbs., it will prove quite difficult to keep on track unless I start living a life that supports and springs from the weight loss.  And what if I do get the job of my dreams?  Is the goal simply to keep working and doing what I love?  Or, do I reach out and help others what I have learned, now that I have the opportunity to use my gifts and talents?

 

Our new life is actually the starting place for what will come after our goals and dreams have been met.  So, now what?  How do we keep moving forward into the life that is available to us? How do we keep walking in a new way?

 

1. Let go of the fear of living a new life.

 

Many people are simply afraid of – or fear they don’t deserve – living better because they know their life will change.  It might mean that they will have to live in a way that their friends or co-workers are not.  They will have to think or act in new ways and make daily choices that seem “different” to those around them.  Fear of being the only one to change can be daunting.  Or, change, itself, can frighten them.  Of course, transformation is rarely easy, but it is always worth it if it makes us better.  Our challenge is to release the fears that keep us from a better life.

 

2. Immerse yourself in a community that will move you forward, not backward.

 

Itʼs extremely difficult to remain healthy when everyone around us eats the garbage that we use to enjoy.  Likewise, if I am trying to keep my marriage healthy, hanging around those that belittle their spouses won’t encourage me at all.  From breaking life-threatening addictions to learning how to dress better, having a community of like-minded people is the key to transforming our lives.  We must find people who will celebrate with us and educate us as we discover new ways to live.

 

3. Let go of activities that might keep you from doing what you were meant to do, once the goals have been met.

 

Many times, in starting a new life, we might take on activities that seem new but are actually old habits in disguise.

 

I face the challenge of keeping my house clean on a day-to-day basis.  I grew up being messy and continued the trend well into adulthood.  I couldnʼt see the effects of it, until I had children and wanted to be more available to them.  Living in a messy house was a constant barrier.  After learning and applying a few tricks, staying organized became easier.  But, what surprised me is that instead of being available for my kids, I would find other things to “do” now that I had more free time.  Being on the internet is a personal temptation of mine.  It still kept me from being the mommy that I needed to be.

 

4. Make conscious choices that support your new life and take action to ensure you follow through with your decisions.

 

In living a new life, we need to identify what will replace the old habits and keep us living the life we were meant to.  It also follows that sometimes, we must take action against the things that might keep us from our new life.

 

Being available for my children, often means getting down on the floor and playing with them.  No, “activity” required.  For me, that can feel uncomfortable.  It also requires me to turn off and unplug the computer entirely because I know that I will wander over to the desk and decide that I “need” to check my email, when I really donʼt.

 

5. Be willing to light the way for someone else.

 

Living a better life shouldnʼt end with us.  That’s just the beginning!  Just as making a fresh trail in a forest leaves a new path for the person coming behind us, making the choice to live better, clears a pathway for someone else.  Whatʼs the point of our journey if we do not share what weʼve learned?

 

Role models are scarce and even the celebrities that choose to live authentically can seem unreachable.  We need real, flesh and blood people who are near to us that we can follow and learn from.  Your transformation is so important because others will look to you for inspiration and know-how.  The gift that you provide for others is almost always more meaningful than the individual goal your set – and accomplished.

 

Choosing to live a life full of purpose can be difficult if we are the only ones deciding to do so. But the more we look beyond our immediate goals to the longer-term impact reaching our goals have, the more we leave behind lasting, positive change in ourselves and others.  The bottom line?  We can inspire each other!

 

“We must have a theme, a goal, a purpose in our lives. If you don’t know where you’re aiming, you don’t have a goal. My goal is to live my life in such a way that when I die, someone can say, she cared.” 

- Mary Kay Ash

 

“One of the most exciting and encouraging truths in life is that we can always become someone new. We never have to settle for who we are.

- Scott Sorrell

 

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Posted on 20 November, 2008 in Balance, Fitness & Health, Goals, Happiness, Helping Others
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2 Responses so far | Have Your Say!

  1. Kevin
    November 20th, 2008 at 2:10 pm #

    This has always been my challenge. Reaching goals has usually been fairly easy for me (and perhas they should have been more difficult), but maintain the goals and not sliding backwards or undermining myself afeter reaching goals has been difficult. This article really put a lot of things in perspective in terms of where the REAL goals are… Thanks.

  2. Christian Nanz
    December 9th, 2008 at 2:44 pm #

    I know what you mean, Kevin. It’s like making a New Years resolution to “lose weight.” Well, perhaps we would be more successful at losing it and keeping in shape if we took to time to ask ourselves why “losing weight” is important to us. Personally, I don’t think there are any right or wrong answers, it’s just that understanding why a certain goal is important to us is important itself.

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