Nowadays, thanks to social media, it’s easy to fall in “love” with perfectly curated lives. Next thing you know you’re pursuing a business or career opportunity based on someone else’s definition of success. But the reality is, you’ll never reach your full potential if you continue to play it safe.
Creating a life on your own terms simply means sharing the most authentic version of yourself with the world every single day. It means you’re prepared to be uncertain yet unapologetic about the choices you make in your life. And it also means that you can do what you love to do without the need for applause.
Whether it’s choosing to work in agriculture and raise your family on a farm or dedicating your life to missionary work around the world. If you’re ready to carve your own path to success, you’ll have to give up the “unwritten” rule that your idea of happiness has to look like everyone else’s life. Here are few ways to get started:
1. Take a social media sabbatical. Seriously, step away from your computer, remove social apps from your cell phone and unplug from e-mail, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter—whatever your social media drug of choice is, take a break from it. Of course, you may not figure out your life’s purpose overnight, but you’d be surprised at how a digital detox can help you gain some clarity on what you really want in life.
2. Say ‘no’ without explaining yourself. Learning to say ‘no’ is like building a muscle in confidence. It will feel uncomfortable at first, but when you exercise your right to say “no” regularly, you’ll build more confidence and focus on turning your vision into reality.
3. Explore and try something new regularly. Routine is the enemy of creativity. From driving a new way to work and trying new food to attending events outside of your industry and traveling solo, stepping outside of your comfort zone can awaken your independent spirit.
4. Make decisions without the approval of your family or friends. As an adult, it’s hard to break free from the approval-seeking habits we lived by as a child. But it’s one of the things that will certainly set you free to forge your own path.
5. Question everything. Most of us are born into “rules for success,” passed down from generation to generation. For instance, “Go to college, so you can get a good job and be successful.” Ask yourself: Does college really guarantee success? “What does success look like for me? Seriously, question everything from your culture to career.
6. Recognize self-sabotaging behavior. Most of us kill the chance of our dreams ever happening simply because we believe we’re not good enough. Kill the voice in your head that says “you’re faking it and you don’t deserve success.” Awesomely Luvvie, an author and digital strategist, recently published an article: “How I Fight Imposter Syndrome”—it’s a must read.