Being a master of your own life (and increasing that all important happiness quotient) is about being prepared. You just can’t wing it anymore.
I’ve spent the last few year’s exploring this, and I think i’ve gotten it pretty much set. Although there will always be new bumps in the road and more to learn!
I say this all the time – ‘everyone’s journey is different’ – which is true, it is. And if we stop comparing our lives to everyone elses, we’ll probably put a little less pressure on ourselves. BUT we’re all more similar than we think. So if you’re feeling a bit ‘stuck’ – why not try these 5 little (but big) life hacks to keep things interesting…
1. Put some money aside each month for a f*ck it fund.
By this I mean, should you have the urge one weekend to rent a car and drive to the coast, then you can. Should you decide you want to jump out a plane for an adrenaline rush, then the money is there, waiting to be set free! A weekend away on a Ryanair flight? Done. A good friend who can’t afford to join you? This fund covers everyone!
How to build your fund: put aside £50 a month every month (or £20, or £75, it doesn’t really matter) into a savings account, and let it mature for a few months. Impatient? No problem! Pop in £100 straight off the bat the minute you get paid. When you get that urge to splurge then your f*ck it fund shall provide. A colleague told me they did this a few years ago when I was bored and felt trapped in the 9-5 (or 8-8 rather) as all I was doing was sleeping, eating, working and shuffling through Tesco buying discounted wine.
So now I try to always have around £100-£200 in the bank for whenever life needs a bit of an interruption. The trick is having the balls to frivolously spend it.
Go have fun!
2. Makes some new friends.
Sometimes our friends (as much as we love em) know too much of our quirks, our stresses and daily strains. And it can put a strain on the relationship! Or when talk of marriage and babies gets too much, we can sometimes need a fresh voice in our life, a new conversation over a tequila drenched beer. It’s a bit like going travelling right? You head off alone into the unknown with a backpack of hope, and even though its scary and lonely at times (and you can meet a tonne of people who ‘aren’t quite your type’), you are still able to credit yourself with a pat on the back for trying. And then occasionally, invariably, you will meet an incredible gem.
How does one do this back at home? One word: Tinder.
Set it to search for both boys and girls, et voila! You’re not only presumed bi-curious (aka interesting) (should this be point #6?!), but you’ll also open yourself up to a whole new world of interesting and adventurous friends. Wherever you are.
And does it really work? Try for yourself! It sure as hell requires a little gentle navigation. But I’m about to get a Portuguese lesson off a 31 year old guy called Cisco on Thursday. And he said he’s going to bring music and fun. Oi!
3. Go to a networking event or a ‘Talk’ about something inspiring.
There is nothing quite like the realisation that there is some good going on in the world. Plus you never know what chain of events it could set in motion for you.
Just under two years ago I was back in touch with a friend of a friend through facebook, whom I met at a new year’s eve dinner party around three years before then. We decided it would be a laugh to meet up one day, and on bit of a random one (and a quest for new meaning in life), he took me to a talk by Escape The City which was on launching a social enterprise overseas.
A pipe dream and strange coincidence all rolled into one lovely evening with an (almost) stranger. Did I know what it meant back then? No. But I left feeling inspired and ready to make a change in my life, and the next day signed up to this Escape the City. Within a year I was volunteering in Kenya for a social enterprise. Three months later i’d launched my own.
4. Indulge in a childhood passion.
We are all drawn as children, to the things we’re most passionate about (and probably most capable of, although not in all cases hah).
Did you ever pick up an instrument and teach yourself to play? Was your head stuck in a novel, or did you love writing stories? I did all these things. Only as I grew up, I lost touch with these childhood instincts and natural desires. By connecting with our past, I think its possible we can reconnect in some way with our true selves. It’s nourishing. So put that laptop or smart phone down! And get out and play.
5. Think about what it is you want in life.
Sounds simple doesn’t it?
But do you ever sit down, and allow yourself to dream? What would your perfect life look like? What car would you drive, what house do you live in? And what sort of job would you do? Try to imagine this life that you daren’t dream of. Then work out how to get there. What experience do you need to nudge you in the right direction? And surround yourself by the types of people who inspire you to want more.
If you’ve read all this, and you’re unsure where to begin then hack and reverse it!