Life's not perfect, deal with it.
Most of us have heard this at least once in our lives. But if we can't achieve the perfect life we have dreamed of our whole life, then what's the point? How can we expect ourselves to be happy?
Well, I believe that each of us has a different definition of success. Trying to achieve the society's definition of success won't bring all of us happiness. To better understand the reason behind our constant dissatisfaction with our achievements and status in life I spoke with Dawn Zivanovich, an experienced clinical social worker and life coach.
What is a healthy definition of success?
Success is how the individual describes it. It's about what makes you satisfied through fulfilment and satisfaction.
If you want to be a successful leader or achieve success in your personal life it's important to know your strengths and limitations.
How do we find those limitations?
Through reflecting and asking ourselves questions. Challenging our thoughts and the things that scare us. Finding out more about ourselves and then designing experiments to test out their limits.
This part of the conversation about our self-identified limitations is one of my personal fascinations. The notion that the sky is the limit and that dreams come true are only limited by our personal capacity to define the limit of the sky and the size of the dream. It's easier said than done. I agree but the small experiments that she is pointing to are how we can learn more about ourselves and our capabilities. To me, it's so important to know our weaknesses in addition to our strengths because it's our weaknesses that limit us.
We get our dream job, a career path that we've worked hard for but something is not right. Where does this lack of motivation come from?
A good way to look at it is that it might be the specific job that is not challenging or satisfying, not the career path you've chosen. change to a more challenging job in the direction of your goals. Ask yourself what is the right thing for me to do. Do I need more education? Do I need to try a new job?
Be specific about your desires and your goals. Evaluate your goals, are they realistic? Can you find a middle ground? There is a concept in positive psychology that talks about being happy with good enough instead of always fighting for more. Adjusting your thinking and coping if things are not the way you want them to be, life is not perfect. But this does not mean giving up! It's managing our expectations as we work towards our goals.
What if you're stuck and don't know what to do?
Get a coach, speak with family and friends because it's only by speaking to others that we will reflect back what they hear from us.
Ask yourself "what excites me?" "what's gonna help me stay satisfied?" "does------ excite me?" if the answer is no try to talk to different people.
It's important to remember that what you value when you're a teenager isn't the same thing you value as an adult. Your values change and it's important to constantly questions and re-evaluate your goals. But always keep an eye on your goals as a guide for moving in the right direction as you find your path to success.
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Also on HuffPost:
"Work makes you happier. It provides routine, structure and self-worth. Make sure you are in a job you enjoy. If you are not, make finding one that you do a priority for this year."
"Personal control in work makes you happier; there is better life satisfaction for those earning less but in control of their working practice than those who are richer but have less control."
"Those with close relationships are happiest – try to see friends and family more in the New Year. Research shows the closer people live to their friends, the happier they are – make new friends close to where you live. Get to know your neighbours better, try joining sports groups or taking up a hobby close to your home."
"Identifying your strengths and focus on developing these, either in work or a hobby. This will encourage you to become immersed in what you do and find life more gratifying."
"Altruism is proven to help focus beyond ourselves and enable us to be more connected with the world around us. In 2015, find local charities, sports clubs or community organisations where you can donate your time - you might even start new friendships with local people."
"Set yourself a weekly target for acts of kindness for friends, family, colleagues and strangers on the street. This will further increase your connection to the outside world."
"Improving happiness levels can depend on how we focus our attention – being attentive and focusing on one positive task helps us to enjoy the moment."
"Those who are happier remember bad events in a more positive light – it is possible to focus on particular aspects of a memory to notice the positives more than negatives."
"You can retrain your mind to focus on the good things that happen rather than the bad. Stop taking your blessings for granted by keeping a gratitude diary. Every day for 6 weeks jot down 5 things that happened that day for which you are grateful."
"Regular meditation can help with positive mental health."
"Expressing your gratitude for someone’s actions is the single most effective exercise in positive psychology. Saying thank you to even small acts and gestures will help improve gratitude levels."
"The less time you spend on using technology, the more you can carry out activities that help you engage with the world around you.”
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