Life doesn’t have to be full of riches, exotic holidays, and amazing adventures for it to be completely satisfying. Losing your way isn’t about failing to reach some standard set by other people – it’s only what you feel here that matters. If you have gone off-track, it means you are not living the life that deep down you know you should be living.
“Time is all you have and you may find one day that you have less than you think”Randy Pausch
The usual reason for why people end up off-track is they exchange their dreams for an easier life. There are usually plenty of justifications for making this sacrifice, such as job security, social commitments, and family demands, but the reality is most individuals could still make some time for their dreams if they were desperate enough. Anyone who is able to watch a couple of hours of TV each night, or go out drinking with friends, doesn’t have lack of time as an excuse.
People lose their way in life because at the time it can feel like the path of least resistance. It’s not that anyone sets out to end up off-track. It just sort of happens over time. The only symptom of anything being amiss can be a nagging sense of dissatisfaction with things. People may put up with this mental discomfort for years because they just don’t realize the cause of it. They fail to understand that taking the path of least resistance actually involves the most pain.
Have you lost your way in life, or are you just going through a bad patch at the moment? We are all going to have our fair share of tough days, but if you are off-track, the dark times are going to appear more regularly. Here are just seven signs you have lost your way.
7 Getting Out Of Bed Is A Struggle Most Mornings
You do need sufficient rest to stay healthy, but if you struggle to get out of bed each morning, it can indicate some significant dissatisfaction in your life. It can also be a symptom of depression. Maybe you use the excuse ‘I’m not a morning person’, but if you have exciting stuff to look forward to, and you have things you feel passionate about, you are not going to prefer sleeping over being awake.
6 It Feels Like Your Life Lacks A Purpose
“True happiness... is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.”Helen Keller
If your life lacks a purpose, you may not feel like there is much point in doing anything. It can mean you just go through the motions and do the bare minimum needed to get by. Having a purpose gives you a direction and it makes things feel more meaningful – there is even research suggesting that having a purpose is going to mean you live longer.
The only person who can discover your purpose is you. It doesn’t have to be anything too elaborate or fancy. Some people find a sense of purpose in building a business or by mastering an art – other individuals discover their purpose is to serve. You need to find something that makes you feel excited and provides you with a sense of fulfillment.
5 You Never Leave Your Comfort Zone
“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”Neale Donald Walsch
If you no longer stretch yourself to the point of discomfort, it is unlikely that you are going to get much more than what you have already. This is because most worthwhile accomplishment require sacrifice and effort, and personal development also requires at least a little pain. It’s like when you start going to the gym, you need to push your body enough to break a sweat because this is when you get the most benefits from these exercises. If your priority at the gym is to stay comfortable, you’d probably be better off staying at home.
When was the last time you really felt challenged? If it has been months since you were last outside of your comfort zone, this is another sign that you have lost your way in life. You are never going to know what you are capable of achieving unless you keep pushing yourself – this discomfort is the only way you can reach your potential.
4 You Don’t Feel Like You Have Accomplished Anything Important
How would you feel about your accomplishments if you were told you only had a few hours to live? Are there lots of things you feel proud about? Will you leave this world thinking ‘what a fantastic ride’?
Talking about your death isn’t about being gloomy – it’s all about motivating yourself to make the most of the time you have left. There is even a story of a Roman general who insisted a slave follow him everywhere holding a sign saying “momento mori” which translated means ‘remember you are going to die’.
If you feel like you haven’t achieved anything important, it means you are not being satisfied by your current way of living. This sense of accomplishment isn’t about doing specific things like coming up with a cure for cancer or climbing Mount Everest – it just means you achieve goals that are important to you.
3 You Have No Specific Goals
Lack of goals can mean your life feels a bit aimless. It isn’t so much that the goals themselves are that important, they just give you something to aim for. Being on track is all about enjoying the journey to the next goal, because if you don’t know where you are going, how do you hope to ever get there?
It is always best to have specific goals. For example, “I will lose 20 pounds” is better than “I will lose some weight”. This clarity means you know exactly what you have to do, and it also makes it easier to measure your progress.
2 You Don’t Feel Passionate About What You Do
If you don’t feel passionate about what you do, it is going to make getting stuff done so much harder. Passion can take all the effort out of work, and it is likely to mean you are going to experience the state of flow. Remember the saying – if you love your job, you are never going to have to work a day in your life.
Wasting your precious time on Earth doing a job you hate is a real shame. If you want to get back on-track, you either need to find a better job, or find a way to become passionate about your current one.
1 You Are Satisfied With Being Good Enough
If you are ‘good at your job’, it means you are doing the bare minimum to stay employed – if you weren’t good at your job, why would anyone want to pay you? The problem with being good is you are unlikely to stand out from the crowd – there are too many people out there who are great at what they do, and they may have their sights on your job.
If you are serious about getting back on track, you probably want to stop settling for ‘good enough’. You are capable of far more than this minimal level of functioning, and you deserve the rewards available when you put in a bit of extra effort into what you do.