Dreams out of reach? Here’s how to be content with your life and still reach for your dreams.
How to be Content with Your Life and Still Reach for Your Dreams
Disappointment is part of life. (If I could give God advice about this, I’d tell Him that we should skip this part- but He seems to think otherwise.) We can have dreams, we can feel like we’re on the right track and then everything stops…falls apart…whatever. Then it seems like our dreams are ripped away from us.
Disappointment. It’s real. But life goes on. How do we allow life to be good even when it has been “wrong”?
Practice contentment. (Notice I said, “practice”? It takes a LOT of practice. It is a life-long, ongoing PROCESS.) BUT don’t give up on your dreams. Here’s how to be content with your life and still reach for your dreams.
How to be content with the life you have now.
*Keep daily gratitude lists. This isn’t cheesy, really. We know that Scripture tells us to give thanks and to have a grateful spirit (Psalms 100, 138, 139 and more). Now there’s research about the power of gratitude. University of California has done great work on gratefulness. They’ve found that written gratitude lists help
*Practice mindfulness. Mindfulness is the practice of “calm, non-judgmental awareness”. The American Psychological Association shares some benefits of mindfulness:
- stress reduction
- improved working memory
- better focus
- more stable moods
- enhanced relationships
There are many mindfulness practices. Download the freebie instructions for two of my favorites mindfulness practices: Progressive Relaxation and Ignatian Examen.
*Notice the good stuff that is here now. No matter how much “stuff” we have, we need something else- but that kind of thinking makes us sick. When you notice what you DO have (and are grateful for it), the pressure to accumulate things reduces.
*Notice the good people that are here now. Your friends and family are what they are- none are perfect but hopefully most are good. Concentrate on the good people and the good things they do. If you need to download some toxic people, go for it.
*Notice the good events that are here now. Every day, something good happens. What is it?
*Self-care. You can’t be content and then respect your body and soul. It works the other way around. Treat your body and soul well and you will more easily find contentment.
*Find 5 good friends. I always tell my clients, “You become like the 5 people you hang around with, so get 5 good friends.”
How to be content with your life and still reach for your dreams:
Don’t forget your dreams. They are gifts from God.
*Remember that there is always something ahead and that you already have a dream about it inside you. It’s there, trust me.
*If you’ve forgotten about your dreams, start over.
*Rediscover yourself. Who are you? If you’ve forgotten, some Career Exploration (which is simply self-knowledge development) helps. Have some fun:
- Remember who you are and rewrite your Personal Mission Statement
- Redefine your dreams
- Work with a coach to help you remember the dreams, keep you on track and prepared for your dreams
*Create a vision board
*Set aside a few minutes each week to develop a skill that will help you in your dream
You can have both: contentment with the present and dreams about the future. Hold onto both! Contact me when you are ready to recalibrate your life through coaching.