Are you at a point in life where you are in a funk? You just can’t seem to catch a break or take that next step to greater success and jumpstart your life? We’ve all been in a rut at one point or another in our lives.
For me it came after college. The economy was in a recession and looking for jobs in the financial services world wasn’t easy.
As each month passed and I still had zero job prospects, I began to get into a rut that was tough to overcome. I wasn’t happy with how things were going. In just a few short months, I went from complete excitement from graduating to depression when I couldn’t land a job and a mountain of credit card debt.
Then I began to read some books and they helped me to take an introspective look at my life. I began to question things. This lead me to come up with some key questions to ask myself that when looked at together, helped me to see where I was falling short in life and where I was excelling.
Below I outline the questions I asked myself to help me improve my life. I encourage you to ask yourself these questions and then honestly answer them. By doing this exercise, you can get a sense of where you are, why you are where you are, and what you can do differently (or in some cases, keep doing) to make sure you get out of your rut and start down the path to greater success in order to jumpstart your life.
10 Questions To Jumpstart Your Life
Before you answer the questions to jumpstart your life, I want to help you make this exercise beneficial. You should answer them each in two ways. First, answer them on a scale of 1-10, where 1 is unsatisfied and 10 being completely satisfied. From there, you want to write down notes and give examples so you can better assess where you fall for each one.
After each question, I provide some more details to help you better assess and answer the questions.
#1. How Is My Life Working Out?
Look at your life overall, your job, your relationships, finances, health, etc. and think about how you feel about each one. It might be best to leave this one to the end so that you can assess smaller areas of your life in the other nine questions and then answer this question, which encompasses your entire life.
Are you content with where your life is currently and where it is headed? Do you want more out of any part of your life?
- Related: See how your choices shape your life
#2. What Is My Daily Attitude?
Are you always grumpy or look at the negative side whenever something happens? Or are you an optimist who sees the bright side no matter how dark and gloomy the news looks?
Having a positive attitude will go a long way to jumpstart your life. Learn to look on the bright side of everything and your world will change.
Below is a powerful infographic showing how thinking more positively can impact your life.
#3. How Happy Am I?
This one is similar to the first question, but a little different. The first question asking about your life working out is an all-encompassing question. This one on the other hand, is here to just look at how happy you are.
We all have times in our lives when things don’t work out or we struggle with one thing or another. But even with all of these hurdles, how would you rate your overall happiness with your life?
#4. How Is My Health?
Aside from just saying you have no illnesses or diseases, you want to take this one step further. How well do you eat? Do you exercise? How do you sleep? Are you tired or sluggish all of the time? These are the sub-questions you should be thinking about when you are answering this question.
#5. How Are My Relationships?
Look at all of your relationships in order to answer this question. Think about family, extended family, friends, colleagues, etc. All of these relationships matter so you need to asses all of them.
Which relationships add value to your life? And which ones take away from your life?
For example, do you come away from an encounter feeling excited and energized, or tired and stressed? It’s important to note how each relationship you have affects you personally.
#6. How Happy Am I With My Lifestyle?
What does your free time consist of? Are you doing any hobbies you love? Or are you stuck in a rut, doing things that don’t bring you pleasure?
Take into account all of the things you do and how and if they bring you joy. Be sure to look at the things you think bring you joy. You want to make sure they really are things you enjoy doing.
#7. How Are My Finances Compared To Where I Want To Be?
We all have an idea in our head where we want to be financially. The catch here though is to be realistic with our number. We can’t have a net worth of $5 million dollars if we are making minimum wage. Likewise, try not to fall for the trap of comparing yourself to others. Doing this will sabotage your attempts to jumpstart your life.
By this I mean don’t think that you should have the cars, house or vacations as someone else. You have no idea what their finances really look like, so don’t aim to be like them. Come up with a number that will provide for you and your family and will take away some of the stress surrounding money.
#8. How Well Do I Set Goals?
Are you a good goal setter or a poor one? How do you know? Ideally when you set goals you are specific. If your goals are more general, you don’t set goals very well.
For example, wanting to lose weight is a poor goal. Wanting to lose 20 pounds so you have more energy to play with your children is more specific and a good goal. Be very specific when setting goals and you will begin to see you accomplish many of the goals you set for yourself.
#9. How Well Do I Achieve My Goals?
Even if you set the best goals possible, not achieving them makes the goals a waste. When you start achieving goals on a regular basis, you jumpstart your life and get excited to tackle new goals.
In order to achieve your goals, make sure you are writing them down to start. Next, make sure you actually achieve them and are not just accomplishing them. Then practice the art of visualization.
Finally, use friends to keep you accountable and motivated to reach your goals.
#10. Am I Growing Personally?
You can set great goals and achieve them, but still not be improving your life. This happens when you focus on setting goals that don’t help you grow personally.
In order to be our best, we have to stretch from our comfort zones and try new things. It will be scary and stressful at times, but you will grow from doing this. And when you do stretch, don’t worry about failing.
In order to assess if you are growing personally, look at how often you are trying new things. This includes new routines, trying new foods, doing things that scare you, etc.
Understand that when you step outside your comfort zone, you will fail and make many mistakes. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be trying new things. Rather it means you are growing as a person.
As a person who is growing, you are becoming better at being you and living your best life every single day.
After performing this exercise, you should have a better idea of where you are lacking in life and where you can improve your life. Maybe you aren’t great with your daily attitude or you aren’t where you want to be financially. Seeing these things on paper will make the issues more real to you.
Writing them down will also allow for you to take action on them. If you aren’t great with your daily attitude, you can make it a point to say some positive affirmations first thing in the morning and making sure you acknowledge the small wins you experience everyday that you have been overlooking.
You can also see all of the great things you have going on in your life as well. Seeing this as well as having an action plan in place to improve on the ones where you fall short is how you will succeed in terms of jumpstarting your life.
After 6 months, you will want to review these questions and answer them again. Then compare your results to see where you have improved and which areas still need some more work.
My final piece of advice is to not try to change overnight. If you find you have a couple of areas that need work, don’t go “all in” with everything. This is a sure path to disaster. It is like the person looking to lose weight as their New Year resolution. They try to completely change their lifestyle by exercising daily and reinventing their diet.
They fail after a few weeks because it was just too much change all at once.
Take things slow. Pick one area and work on that. After a few weeks, incorporate another area and so on. By taking things slowly, you increase your odds of success.
Remember, you didn’t get into your funk overnight. As such, it will take some time to jumpstart your life. And when you do, you will see that all of the work was well worth it.