If you’ve been dreaming of living a happier and more fulfilling life, you’re not alone. Many of us enter a point in our lives when we dream of something else … something better … a life that sets our souls on fire and where we go to sleep each night incredibly fulfilled with how our lives are going. We dream of being happy; deeply, richly happy.
Yet, that dream feels out of reach. We feel stuck, perhaps even miserable in our lives. We wonder if happiness is even real … we doubt that fulfillment is possible. We get lost.
I think one of the most common ways we give up our power in life is by thinking that we have no power to change our lives. Here’s a secret: you have the power to change your life and create a life you love, but you must go from wishing things could be better to taking steps to make your life better.
The Way You Live Your Life Is Always a Choice
There will be circumstances and difficult times in your life; no one escapes these. Yet, it’s the attitude you bring and responses you choose in these difficult times that make all the difference.
When there’s something wrong in your life, something that’s causing you to feel unhappy, unfulfilled, or downright miserable, you have some tough choices to make. You can choose to do nothing and marinate in pain and emptiness, or you can choose to do something about whatever is keeping you from living your very best life. You’re only trapped if you think you’re trapped.
I Used to Make Terrible Choices, So I Feel Your Pain
Looking back, there were many times when I was miserable in my life and I made horrible choices that kept me stuck in misery.
- When I was lonely, I chose to ruminate in sadness rather than pursuing ways to make new friends.
- When I was depressed, I chose to give in to the depression instead of proactively working to minimize its impact in my life.
- When I was stressed to the max at my job, I chose to keep job instead of seeking a different, better job.
- When I was unemployed, I chose to worry and fret and allow anxiety to overwhelm me. It made the periods of unemployment so much worse for me.
- When I faced health problems due to my weight, I did not make the healthy changes my body was craving. (Cards on the table: I still struggle with this today.)
- When I had trouble in relationships, I chose to endure the pain rather than do something to change my situation.
While we don’t always realize it, many of us choose to live a “less than” life A life that’s less happy than we want. Less fulfilling than we want. Less amazing than we hope for.
We don’t make changes in our lives because we don’t know how to change or we don’t think we’re the one who is supposed to change (as if waiting for someone else to change ever works … nope … it doesn’t). We remain frozen like a deer in the headlights; not certain which way to move, so we stay stuck.
What you and I and everyone else need to understand, though, is how we address the less-than-favorable conditions we find ourselves in is ALWAYS a choice! Life sometimes hands out some crummy stuff, but whenever you feel a deep lack of happiness and fulfillment in your life, that’s a queue to make a change. It’s your wake up call, so wake up now or watch more years go by wishing things could be different instead of proactively making your life better.
9 Ways to Turn Your Life Around if You’re Feeling Unhappy or Unfulfilled
If you’re ready to stop living in misery, and you’re determined to turn your life around, here are 9 great choices that are guaranteed to change your life for the better!
1. Read a Book
But not just any book; fill your mind with smart ideas from smart people who’ve been in your shoes and/or who know how to move from a place of misery to a place of peace and contentment. B&C has a couple of book collections you might want to check out, including The 21 Best Books to Read When Life Feels Too Hard and 32 Inspirational Books.
2. Work on Your Mindset
You’ve developed bad thinking habits. How do I know that? Because you’re living in misery, and anyone who is choosing to live in misery has accumulated some lousy habits.
Take comfort in the fact that you’re not alone. Most of us develop unhelpful habits over the years, but in times of misery, it’s vital that you work on creating a more positive mindset. I recommend you check out our posts 9 Ways to Keep Your Mindset Positive When Facing Negative Situations and 5 Mindset Shifts You Need to Make to Create a Life You Love. Both of these posts offer gems that’ll help you.
If you’re a constant worrier, then I also recommend you consider grabbing my ebook (for a nominal $2.99) on Amazon: How to Kick Your Worry Habit and Just Be Happier. It contains a 21-day program for kicking your worry habit … which for many is the prime reason they’re living in misery.
3. Move Your Body More
4. No More Isolating Yourself
You may need some alone, time; that’s fine. But take great care not to get too much alone time.
When you’re miserable, you may prefer to isolate yourself from others. I get that; it’s hard to be among others when life’s pressures are bearing down on you, yet that is the time you need companionship and connection the most. Find ways to be around people who don’t drive you crazy. It’s a game changer!
5. Fire Your Inner Critic and Hire an Inner Encourager
There’s a mean girl or mean boy within you who revels in telling you all the things that are wrong with you and wrong with your life. Stop listening to that mean person inside your head, and instead hire an inner encourager (it’s free … it’s all in your head after all).
Every time you hear your inner critic speak to you, turn your attention to your inner encourager that you’ve been neglecting. Your inner encourager is far more wise and helpful than your inner critic will ever be.
A great book on defeating your inner critic is Playing Big by Tara Mohr. Get it. Read it and take its messages to heart, and you’ll find you’ll move from misery to a place of empowered living in no time at all!
6. Ditch the Habit of Comparing Yourself with Others
Your comparison habit is doing more damage than you realize, yet so many of us are deeply committed to this misery-provoking habit. If you want to stop living in misery, then stop comparing your life with others’ lives. It’s worse than unhelpful; it’s flat-out detrimental
7. You Must, Must, Must Start Believing in Yourself More
One of the main reasons that people give in to living in misery is because they don’t believe they have the power to change their lives. They don’t believe in themselves.
Having self-confidence and a high sense of self-worth is absolutely imperative for transitioning from miserable to happy. Thankfully, you can plant the seeds for higher confidence in just five days.
Our short online course, How to Believe in Yourself More Fully, delivers 5 days of self-discovery where you walk through the essentials of building your confidence and self-esteem. It normally costs $79, but right now you can enroll for free (hurry, though, because the free offer expires soon)
8. Get Crystal-Clear About What You Want Your Life to Look Like
So many of us are miserable and yet we don’t take the time to figure out what we truly want our lives to look like. We want pain relief, we know that. But, we don’t know what else would move us out of misery and into the happy, fulfilling lives we crave.
If you’re living in misery, it’s time to get clear on what you do want in your life. If you need a little help coming up with that happy vision for your life, we have a self-discovery guide that will help you. It’s called How to Create a Compelling Vision for Your Life. Grab your free copy now.
9. Master the Real Rules of Happiness
It’s funny how many times I thought something would make me happy only to get it and find myself living in misery once again. Well, it’s not such much “funny” as truly sad, when I think about it now.
If you want to be happier, you need to understand what the true drivers of happiness really are. To get started, check out our post Be Happier! A Science-Backed Approach to Increasing Happiness.
If You Want to be Happier & Fufilled, It's Up to You to Make that Happen
If you believe you can give up the habits and thoughts that make you unhappy and unfilled, you can. I’ve offered you nine practical ways to start the process of claiming a happier and more fulfilling way to live your life, where you experience all the beauty that life has to offer.
Choose happiness. Choose peace. Choose to live in confidence and be proactive about creating the life you truly want to live. Those choices will make all the difference from today and for the rest of your life