One – Live in the moment. I’m sure you’ve heard it said before and believe me I know it’s easier said than done. Seeing as over-thinking is in my anxious nature and planning ahead is all that normally keeps me sane, I always brushed living day by day off as impossible. HOWEVER, my rota changes every week now and life’s so much simpler. I have to live life week to week, I simply can’t plan ahead and I’m actually happier because of it. Believe me, it’s the best way to live. If you’ve gotta pencil stuff in your diary, do so, but don’t think on it anymore than that. Taking life as it comes, I’m making better use of my free time too because I don’t know when my next day off will be or when I’ll next have time to get stuff done.
Two – Never put off to tomorrow, that which you can do today. I’ve been so busy recently, procrastination hasn’t been an option and that’s a good thing. Yep, I know you’ve heard this before too, but procrastination really is your worst enemy. It’s making life hard for you, but disguising itself as a way out. Don’t be fooled. Watch a motivational video, get a friend to bug you, do what you have to do to get stuff done as soon as you have the chance.
Three – Give yourself chill time when you need it and make sure you’re properly relaxed. If you’re working hard, chill time is a necessity. There’s a difference between being lazy and relaxing. The difference for me is that if I’m just being lazy I automatically feel melancholy and a little guilty. Know that meh feeling? Relaxation is well deserved rest: Guilt-free time to chill after working hard and getting stuff done. You’ll only relax good and proper knowing you’ve got stuff done first. (Extra word of advice: If you don’t finish what needs to be done, write a list. Get everything written down so your relaxation time isn’t spent worrying about forgetting what work you have to go back to.)
Lastly, don’t expect to or aim to always be happy. Often when you get a moment to yourself and take time to chill, when you’d expect to feel happy, you’re going to feel sad. That’s just human nature. Hard as it is, don’t overthink it. Make the most of time spent doing nothing and after relaxing, come back fighting.
Four – Don’t compare yourself to others. Know your limits, push yourself to them and when you reach them take time for yourself. Remember that everyone has their own limits too. Be proud if you’ve challenged yourself and don’t worry if what was a challenge for you would have been easy for someone else. If you had to push yourself, you did good.
Five – Take advice from others, but make decisions for yourself. This might seem obvious to many of you, but for me, this is a real revelation. I can think of numerous times when I’ve gone to someone for advice, then just let them make the decision for me. When I decided to take the waitressing job, I took a lot of different people’s advice on board and then made a decision for myself. It’s hard because some people feel rejected if they offer you advice and you appear to ignore it all together. At the end of the day, it’s not about them, it’s about you. By all means, let people share their views with you, but make up your own mind. You’ve just gotta be doing exactly what you wanna be doing.
Six – Do what you love and have confidence in yourself. If you are putting your heart into what you’re doing, 9 times out of 10 you’re going to do it well.
It’s like with the school. I spent two weeks on edge, really not enjoying myself and when I finally found my confidence everything got easier. I spent the whole first half of a shift at the restaurant the other day feeling like I was walking on thin ice. I had no reason to think so. I was second guessing everything I was doing and just waiting for someone to call me out on a mistake I was probably never going to make. Finally, about half way through lunch time a couple of lovely ladies came in for food and when they were paying the bill, one of them said I’d done really well and told me there’d be a job waiting for me at her restaurant if ever I wanted it. Then and there I finally realised I was doing okay, I stopped worrying and I started enjoying myself. The afternoon flew by and I’m certain my service got better too. Self-confidence is probably one of the hardest things to develop, but it is key. Don’t stress, you’re amazing, start believing it.
Seven – Don’t try to guess what other people are thinking because you are not a mind reader and 9 times out of 10 you’ll be wrong. Getting caught up in what other people are thinking is something I still do on a regular basis but I’m working on it. It makes life harder and it’s silly too. Just don’t do it.
Eight – Your real friends are the ones that are still there even when your life’s crazy. You’ll find that somehow in the craziness you find time for each other and you’ll find that even if them times aren’t very often, when you catch up it’s like you’ve never been apart.