This article was last updated on September 5, 2017
Do you recognize this scenario? You find yourself reacting or handling changes in a way that feels less than graceful. You begin feeling down and wondering why you can’t seem to do better. Most of us have been there. Don’t worry; there’s always a way to improve. If you want to be a better person the phrase is “out with the old and in with the new.”
To help you get started, here’s a list of 11 things that will help you on your road to self-improvement.
Review Your Strengths.
Don’t cop out and say you don’t have any strengths. Of course you do! You can use the strong points in your personality to support you as you make yourself into a better person. Make a list of the things you like about yourself and post it somewhere you can see it. It isn’t arrogant or narcissistic; it’s actually a great tool to use whenever you’re feeling down on yourself. If you’re reading this then the odds are that you’re already a pretty decent person. Sometimes you just need a little reminder!
Know What Needs Improvement
Aren’t lists grand? It’s time for you to write down the things you don’t like about yourself. Evermore, it’s important to recognize where you can use improvement so that you can take the necessary steps to change yourself. It’s important to remember, however, as you start your list, that this isn’t meant to make you more self critical. In fact, it’s meant to empower you! You’ll find that the negative things in life tend to have more control over you when they’re hidden than when they’re recognized!
Work on One Thing at a Time
Try not to work on too much at once; if you get overwhelmed you may find yourself giving up. Choosing the thing on your list that bothers you the most is a great idea! It will make you feel like you’re on top of the world and will also make the rest of your list seem easy!
This is something you can do in the morning upon waking up and in the evening before going to bed. Choose something you’d like to accomplish in the coming day such as “I will be more patient at work.” or “I will be calm under stress.” It’s important to use positive words such as “I will,” instead of negatives like “I won’t.” You’ll find that when it comes to affirmations, word choice is always important.
When you hear the word “meditation” silent monks sitting cross-legged on the floor of a Buddhist temple may come to mind. However, meditation is actually extremely diverse and you’ll find that you can tailor it to your individual needs. For example, some people meditate while taking a nice easy walk while others sit in a garden and contemplate something beautiful. Some people even use doodling or coloring to calm their mind. There really is no wrong way to do it, so long as it’s working for you, don’t worry about what everyone else is doing. Take it and make it your own. You’ll find that any meditating you can do is a great way to become a more balanced person and to solidify the lessons you’ve learned during the day.
Find a Physical Activity That You Enjoy
Wait, how can exercise make me a better person? Well, part of becoming a better person is about feeling better in general, and exercise is one of the best tools for improving your energy levels and your mental health. It’s also a great way to get ready for meditation. You may try something like yoga or you may just go for a jog or swim. It doesn’t matter so much what type you choose, so long as you enjoy it enough to keep doing it.
Don’t be Afraid of Change
To be a better person, you’re going to need to learn to accept change. Change is what makes us better and it’s what makes life interesting, so learn to embrace it and go with the flow. You don’t want to be like that old man down the street who does nothing but complain about how much things have changed since “his day.” Why shouldn’t today be his day? Why shouldn’t it be your day too? Why don’t you read some of these awesome quotes about change to get you started?
Honor Your Friends and Family
Remember this. You DON’T exist in a vacuum. You coexist with friends, family, coworkers, and millions of other people. How you act and what you do affects the people around you, so be aware of how you’re treating them. Remember, most of them are trying just as you are and they also face daily trials and hardships. If you feel up to it you can even ask a friend or a family member for help. One of the best ways to stay on track after deciding to make changes is to have someone other than yourself to hold you accountable.
Listen to Your Parents and Grandparents
Why learn all your life lessons the hard way? Do you realize that there are people much older than yourself who have already learned them and who are likely more than happy to share? There is also a ton of advice written on the internet that may be inspiring or motivating to you. Don’t feel you have to figure everything out yourself. That’s just your ego talking.
Believe in Yourself
Yes, it may seemed over-said to the point of cliche, but there’s a reason for that. You’ll never make the changes that you want to make in life unless you learn to believe in yourself. Remember that you’re amazing just for being willing to improve yourself and that there has never been an individual quite like you to walk this earth. You’re up to the task, and if you want to be a better person, then you will succeed.
Try Writing in Journal
Want to really see how the changes you make are affecting you positively? Write each day about how you feel your day went, the challenges you faced, what you were proud of, and how you could have done better. Then you can look back and see just how far you’ve come.
Are you ready to take these steps to improve yourself and your life? It may not always be easy to change long-ingrained habits, but it’s probably not as difficult as you think either. None of us are perfect. We are all on a never ending journey of self improvement and self-realization. If you make an honest effort each day to change the things that you don’t like about yourself and strengthen your positive traits, you will start to realize that you are more wonderful than you could have ever imagined. You can enrich not only your own life, but also all of the lives you touch around you.