30-Minutes To A Brighter Future (Guaranteed)
Carve out about 30-minutes.
I know, I know, you’ve got shit to do and that’s a long time, but stop whining and do it anyway because research conducted by clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson suggests it will be well worth your while.
I’d prefer you to use a pen and paper for this, but if you’re not sure what a pen and paper are, then it’s fine to use a word document on your computer.
You’re going to be writing two distinct stories. In one you are the hero and in the other, the villain.
Let’s start with the villain so we can then end on an up note.
In this rather depressing kafkaesque tale, you get pretty much everything in your life wrong.
Life Goes Wrong – Very Wrong
You’re life is driven by fear and the need for immediate gratification.
Every tiny negative element of your personality is magnified.
Your diet goes south along with your fitness and your relationships.
One poor choice and/or mistake is followed by another and then another as you look to recover.
Maybe you get behind the wheel of a car having had one too many drinks and you kill somebody resulting in you losing your job, most of your friends and your liberty.
Or, it could be that you make poor health choices and you get seriously, life-threateningly ill – and it’s directly related to those choices.
Or, perhaps you start your own business thinking you’re on to a sure fire winner, but it struggles from the get go.
The more it struggles, the more money you pour into it, desperate to make it work.
First you mortgage your house.
And then you turn to the friends to loan you money. A couple even dig into their personal savings after you promised a high return on their investment.
Finally, in an act of sheer desperation and against all advice from those close to you, you look to borrow money from less legitimate sources with crazy interest rates.
Nothing works and the business just soaks up the cash and spirals downward along with your relationships and self esteem.
Don’t think something like this can’t happen to you because it absolutely can.
All of us are one or two poor decisions away from starting a domino effect that ends up with us sliding into the abyss.
If this is making you uncomfortable, good, because it’s meant to.
In fact if it doesn’t make you feel bad, then you probably haven’t taken things far enough.
The more real you make it and the worse it makes you feel, the better it can serve you.
When you have finished writing, read it through one time and absorb the negative motions.
Then take a few minutes to clear your head and remind yourself that was just a story and there’s no need to dwell on it any longer.
Life Goes Right – Very Right
Now to the good stuff.
I want you to think about how your life is going to look in the future if you do everything you say you will do, want to do, and know you should do to ensure a life worth living.
It could be that you are super fit and healthy because you’re following through on every promise you have made to yourself and others.
Maybe you’re really enjoying and succeeding in your job? Or even that you’re running your own successful business? It doesn’t matter which because you’re crushing it.
Or perhaps you’re in the kind of nourishing and loving relationship that you yearn for. One that other people look at with respect, admiration and maybe a little bit of envy.
You could be taking part in some form of giving back and helping others less fortunate than yourself because that gives you a deep sense of meaning.
It doesn’t have to be just one thing.
In fact it shouldn’t be just one thing. It should be a combination of many things, as long as those things are aligned with your core values and just writing them down makes you feel good.
The only criteria is that what you’re writing motivates and inspires you and that if you were on lying your death bed a great many years from now you would look back with pride, satisfied that you made the most of your life.
Add as much detail as you can and make it as real as you can.
This isn’t a 60-second exercise where you jot down a few notes and move on, this is designing your life.
Well done for completing this because very few people will have.
There’s no need to be constantly reminding yourself of the dark outcome, except maybe when you think any poor decision making traits or bad habits are likely to raise their ugly head – then offer yourself a gentle reminder.
However, when your motivation is flagging you could take out the desired outcome, the future that you know deep down is possible, and absorb all those possibilities.