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10 sure-fire ways to positively challenge yourself

by Bo Kitty, business coach

Life can be a challenge at the best of times. With work, relationships and the stresses that come with life, we can sometimes burn the candle too low.

If you’re in need of a “reality check” of sorts or need to challenge yourself to make a positive change, here are top ways to motivate and challenge your perception of self and get hungry for more purpose and direction in life.

1 // Sometimes you need to get lost to find yourself

When was the last time you went on an adventure? It can be as simple as walking in a nearby forest on an unknown path or booking those plane tickets to your dream destination. When we are challenged in environments we aren’t used to, different versions of ourselves emerge, and clarity about what-needs-to-happen-next in the real world is often the result. Break the routine. Go on missions. Plan trips. Seek sunsets. Make a plan to get lost somewhere, and go there!

2 // The most important work to do is on yourself

Often we get stuck in “working” to live, or even worse, living to work, but the time you spend on your own emotional, physical and mental wellbeing is just as important. You can’t make great moves in your career if you aren’t feeling good, so book a massage, write some goals down, remind yourself how capable you are (out loud) or whatever it takes. If you can’t do it alone, ask for help from someone, seek a counsellor, a good friend, a medical professional. Make a plan right now to do something in the next week just for you. Write it down, block out the time, and just do it.

3 // If it’s not scary it’s not worth doing

Write something down that you have always wanted to do but have never done. Now make two columns, Fears and Benefits to doing “THE THING” and list points for each side. Are the fears more probable and horrifying than the benefits? What could you do to change the situation if those bad things did happen? Wouldn’t you rather a life of “oh wells” rather than a life of “what ifs”? Try the scary idea, if it fails, try again harder.  If it succeeds, it could be the start of the rest of your life.

4 // Often your success in life is measured by how many uncomfortable conversations you are willing to have

Is there something you really want to say to someone but aren’t saying it? Drawing this card is asking you to find the bravery necessary to have positive confrontations that activate change for the better. Use diplomacy, but be direct and honest. Pick up the phone, or schedule the meeting. Turn to your partner and say the thing that’s been niggling. In life and in business, speak the truth, even if your voice shakes.

5 // You are majestic AF

You, yes YOU – ARE MAJESTIC AS FUCK! Everything you are doing and the way you are doing it is perfect for right here and now on your journey. Nothing is a mistake. You are not a mistake. You are all the stars and universe contained in a little meat bag with feelings and hopes and dreams and you are not any less special than the most famous and powerful people on the planet. YOU are just as good. In fact, perhaps YOU are better because here you are, doing work on yourself! Whenever there is doubt or you wake up and have forgotten this, go find the nearest mirror and say to your reflection “I AM MAJESTIC AS FUCK. I AM PERFECT RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW, AND I AM DOING ALL THAT I AM SUPPOSED TO BE DOING.” Now repeat it till you believe it. Then go about your day.

6 // Life isn’t about how rich you are, it’s about how rich you feel

We spend a lot of time in pursuit of more things, but we can lose sight of how lucky we really are and how abundant our lives are with exactly what we have right now. Gratitude is an important skill to hone, and participating in society in a grateful and humble way means you enrich your community with appreciation. Also directing your energy to philanthropic areas can be incredibly personally rewarding. This card is asking you to be aware of how rich you already are, for the next month list one thing per day that you are GRATEFUL for. 30 things. Please and thank you.

7 // Letting go is easy, it’s holding on that’s hard 

This one is a doozy. Often we hold on to relationships that aren’t serving us, business ideas that aren’t worthy of our time and perceptions of ourselves that become obsolete. It’s time to let go. Take a deep breath in and think of all the things holding you back. Now, breathe out slowly and imagine them all leaving you. It’s that easy to let go. Sometimes a good soak in the shower or bath has the same effect. Imagine the draining water taking all the crap away from you. Reprogram yourself to let go, it’s much easier in the long run than holding on.

8 // You are stronger than you think

Ever been chased by a bull? I have, and I ran faster than I ever thought possible. We often doubt our strength, and our capability to undertake many things. Then life throws us a curveball (or a bull) and we suddenly tap into a well of strength that we didn’t know existed. All those things you have overcome to be where you are right now, that is your strength. Need to feel this right now? Let’s do the POWER STANCE. Stand with feet firmly planted hip width apart. Raise your fists to the air, or your open palms if you are more of a spirit fingers person. Tilt your head up and say “YES” with conviction. Stand like this, thinking or yelling or saying YESSS, for 30 seconds. Studies have proven that you’ll get more jobs from interviews if you do this before going in. You will feel better and stronger, instantly. You have the strength, you are not here right now by accident. Do the power stance and get on with your amazing day.

9 // Whatever makes your heart soar, do that. You wont regret it

We often question our wonky creative paths and wonder if there is something else we should be doing. Every business has its quiet times, don’t despair! But you probably don’t need a new “career”. You need to realise what you are good at and then work out how to make money from it. That stuff you keep googling after midnight, researching over the years. Just do that stuff. List three possible careers or income streams that are possible from doing things you LOVE. How does it feel looking at them and thinking of supporting yourself just doing that?

10 // Life is too short to give energy to those who don’t return it

In healthy business and relationships, there is an ebb and flow, there is an exchange. Is a current person or situation making you feel used or unappreciated? Create a list of all the people who support and nurture you, and make a point to call these people in. Look at your employers, clients and friends… are there situations that leave you feeling depleted, drained or unsatisfied? Recognise who is providing value and offering a mutual exchange with you, and distance yourself from the others.

You might also like: 6 easy (non-beauty) ways to indulge in self-care5 inspiring mamas to help you kickstart the week, and We’re throwing in the 9-to-5 for life on the road with a 1-year-old.