What’s your Life Blueprint?

You can imagine my disbelief when my friend, who is embarking her motivational speaking career, told our friend group that she had never heard of Tony Robbins. Excuse me. What?!

When I was in high school, I discovered Pinterest. This was the beginning of my obsession with motivational quotes which translated into watching motivational videos on YouTube. I remember one of the first motivational speeches I watched on youtube; it was given by Tony Robbins. I remember watching this video and then watching all of his videos and thinking to myself that he truly had life figured out.

Fast-forward a few years and I’m listening to a podcast, called Earn Your Happy, where the hostess, Lori Harder, interviewed someone who was once one of Tony’s interns. Omg I thought. Tony Robbins!

So, the other day I was browsing YouTube jumping around between different TED Talks, and one of the suggested videos was one by Tony Robins that was titled change your life blueprint.

I swear I had seen this video before, but it still resonated with me so much. In Tony’s speech, he explains that the reason why we are unhappy with ourselves is because our vision of what our life should look like doesn’t match what it really is.

We have these ideas of what the perfect relationship is in our minds or the perfect job or our perfect body and we compare this mental vision to our reality. This disconnect makes us feel depressed, unsatisfied, and can cause great amounts of anxiety.

Is this true for you? I know in my life I create ideals of where I should be in my career, what kinds of relationships are in my life, how much money I should have, and what I should look like.

Tony’s resolution? Either change you mental blueprint of what your life should look like or change your life to meet the blueprint. Realize what blueprints in your life are unrealistic and create new ones or alter them so they can match your life.

One person Tony talked about in the speech was an athlete who wasn’t able to play anymore due to physical injuries. This athlete became depressed and hopeless. He said he would never be happy again unless he was able to play the sport again. In his blueprint, the only way he would make his family proud and support them was through playing this sport. It wasn’t until he realized that he could create a new path for himself that he was able to find happiness again. This wasn’t the one and only way he could find success in his life. It was time to create a new blueprint for himself.

Even when we try not to, we are constantly comparing ourselves whether it’s to that vision of what our life should be like or to others. In the end, this comparison rarely does anything for us unless we reflect when we catch ourselves doing it.

I want to end this post with a quote I saw this morning posted by Jhene Aiko:

So, what is your current “life blueprint” what adjustments will need to be made?

Thanks for reading.

XO,

YOUNGCOCO

Why Being Kind Can Mean Being Vulnerable

Does everyone suffer from some kind of social anxiety?

Or am I the only one who feels awkward when I am alone in a hallway with someone walking the opposite direction and can’t decide where to look and when it’s okay to make eye contact and basically over-think everything?I know in my heart the kind thing to do is look at the person and smile or even say hi, but sometimes I just decide to look down and keep walking.

Being kind can actually be kind of scary sometimes. It can take us out of our comfort zones.

So, story time: A few months ago, I took a trip to California. I checked into my flight before I left- window seat. Score! I got on the plane and the person sitting in my row was a guy in his early 20’s. He had red hair and looked like a slightly bigger version of Ed Sheran. I sat down next to him and immediately put in my headphones; it was a 6am flight and I was tired. Five minutes into the flight, he tapped on my shoulder, “you can just punch me if I’m asleep and you need to use the bathroom.” We both chuckled and then I put in my headphones again. We both fell asleep shortly after.

I woke back up and saw him jamming out. He was head nodding and aggressively playing the air guitar with his iPhone. It was hilarious. Clearly, he did not care if anyone was watching.

I didn’t mention this earlier, but for some reason I was feeling extremely anxious on this flight which is rare because I love flying. I stared out the window and took deep breaths in attempts to rid myself of the nervous feelings. I shut my eyes briefly and then he tapped on my shoulder again, “hey can I share some music with you?”

Is this guy trying to sell me his music? I thought to myself, but I didn’t question him. I put in one ear bud and he had the other one in. Before he started to play it, he told me that he had been listening to this song when he was jamming out earlier and he wanted to share the experience with me. The music started playing and it turned out to not be his music, but religious music.

So this guy went out of his way just to share a feeling he received from this song with me- pure joy. For the first time during this flight I felt some peace. 

Moral of the story?

Go out of your way to be kind. You really do not know what other people are going through. One small gesture can make that difference for them. Your actions affect people more than you think. Be vulnerable and be kind. It matters.

To Do:

Go above and beyond

Give the love you wish to receive

Create things you wished you had in a time when you felt stuck.

Give someone the confidence to live their dreams.

Life is better when we strive for greatness.

Wake up in the morning on a mission. How will I impact others today? And most importantly how will I impact my own life?

Learn something new.

Take time to just be.

Take time to enjoy your morning coffee.

Make time to be silly and laugh about stupid stuff.

You create your day and your life.

If you were to replay scenes from your life, what do you want them to look like? What will your life be full of?

What’s the Greatest Thing You Can Do for Others?

woods

What’s the greatest thing you can do for others?

Become genuinely happy.

Here’s the secret though: becoming genuinely happy takes work. Are you willing to do it?

What habits are preventing you from becoming genuinely happy?

Here are some common habits I am familiar with and have noticed affect others’ happiness as well:

1. Being a pushover

2. Making decisions that don’t align with your goals

3. Not being true to yourself

4. Doing things only for instant gratification

5. Being selfish

Why do these habits affect us negatively? They prevent us from having genuine connections with ourselves which in turn makes it hard for us to connect with others. 

Think of a time when you truly felt good about yourself. Not just in a superficial way, but in a way that went deeper. You were excited to wake up and felt like you were in great alignment. Your conversations were not only great internally, but this alignment allowed for you to have great interactions with others. Every action and moment felt like it served a greater purpose. You felt connected to source. 

So, if you aren’t new to my blog, you know that I love to ask questions. I think asking yourself questions often is so important in understanding ourselves and why we behave in certain ways.

Here are some questions I want you to consider in figuring out how you will become genuinely happy:

How will I spend my mornings?

For me, mornings are sacred. I need time to wake up. If I don’t get this time, it affects my day and mood. The days I’m happiest are when I wake up and meditate. Don’t check my phone. Take time to pick out my outfit and plan my day. 

What will I do everyday to work toward my goals?

No matter who you are, working toward a goal is crucial in finding meaning in your everyday life. My goal is to lead a healthy lifestyle. I walk every single day. Walks are a good way for me to reflect and get in fresh air while getting steps in. I enjoy them too! What thing can you implement that will work with your schedule? Pick something you will enjoy doing and stick with it. Make it essential in your daily routine.

 What is/ will be my creative outlet?

We all need one. Is it music? Writing? Painting? Whatever it is, make sure you have a bit of it at least once a week. Do something simply for the fun of it. 

What will I do to stop myself from going back to old habits that prevent my happiness?

Figure out your triggers and check-in with yourself often. Why are you doing what you’re doing? I used to go out when I was sad or disappointed- not because I wanted to celebrate or have fun. In an attempt to escape reality, this habit only made me sadder. Now before I go out, I ask myself: why am I going out? And if it’s because I’m sad, I will decide to stay in and pamper myself. This has quick reflecting time has changed my life. Realize your own destructive behaviors, why you do them, and what you can do to change them for a healthier way of coping. 

What do you think? What makes you genuinely happy?

Thanks for reading!

XO,

YOUNGCOCO

Finding Deeper Meaning

Like many who come into college, I started my academic career by taking “generals”. These are classes like sociology 1001, biology 1000, and intro to psychology.

In these courses, we skim the various topics that pertain to the overall subjects- like in biology we briefly went over definitions of evolution, genetics, and cell functions. Each topic covered spanned about two weeks long. We took an exam, forgot about what we learned, and then moved onto the next subject.

While these classes gave us a chance to explore the wide range of studies available to us, they lacked an in-depth understanding of why the lessons were meaningful and didn’t give us the ability to have long conversations about what we had learned.

It’s not until 3000-level subjects when we are able to completely unpack and learn deeply a certain aspect of an overarching subject. We take more time focusing on each lesson and usually have one big project that we work on the entire semester.

What does this have to do with deeper meaning?

Have you ever gone to a social gathering and realized you are engaging in surface level conversations with people?

These conversations sound like tape recordings “how are you?” “how’s work?” “what’s new?”

After a while, these conversations drain our energy. Why is that?

We crave connection and meaning!

Social gatherings honestly suck until you get into those unique conversations that you don’t engage with in your everyday life. They excite us and make us feel like we are really getting to know the person we are talking with.

These conversations usually occur once we get more comfortable and situated in an environment.

If you are like me, you want to give everyone attention at an event. You want to say hi to everyone, but sometimes engaging with just a few people allows for more memorable conversations plus once you have a really good conversation it makes it easier to engage in more.

Not only do I enjoy depth in social settings, but I find when I work on just one or two projects during the day, I feel much more satisfied. Focusing on finishing a book or an art project instead of doing small bits of everything is much more rewarding. Trying to pack too much in our day makes for a chaotic life.

So what I’m really trying to say is that engaging with more in-depth content is so much more interesting and fulfilling. When my day has at least one deep interaction or lesson, I feel peaceful and whole. When my days are full of lots of superficial content, I feel like something is missing. In some ways, this deeper meaning is achieved by simplicity. Less can be more.

What do you think?

Why Do We Fear Rejection?

How many times has the fear of rejection stopped you from doing something?

Why? Rejection really sucks!

Sorry, you didn’t get the job. I think we should just be friends. I don’t like your outfit/project/etc.

Ouch!

Here’s the thing- every single human has experienced some form of rejection.

Who experiences the most rejection? The people who put themselves out there the most.

Being curious about the effects of rejection and recommendations for recovering from it, I did some scholarly research.. on wikihow. Sorry professors who are reading!!

The wikihow article talks about how typically rejection causes people to take less risks. People who get rejected and don’t know how to cope properly end up making choices that are very risk adverse. They don’t want to feel that horrible feeling of rejection again! It makes total sense.

Sadly, the things we want the most cause us to take the greatest risks, so while we feel like we are protecting ourselves by not taking any, we are just preventing ourselves from living out our best lives. The result? A life of settling. Uninspiring and boring.

Think of playing poker. The greater of a risk you take the greater the reward you can potentially receive. If you play small, you will only get a small return. The same with taking risks. The bigger the risk, the bigger the reward. You can’t win a race that you don’t enter. Yes it’s scary, but that’s why not everyone gets there.

The people who I’ve talked to who are the most successful against my standards have all experienced amounts of rejection that are greater than the average person. The difference? They continue to bounce back and don’t dwell on it too much. They keep focused on the goal. They have a different perspective on why they were rejected and continue to work hard for what they want. 

So while we can blame our rejection on not being good enough or on our flaws, this is actually the most counterproductive reaction we can have. 

Instead, we can look at rejection as a room for growth or realize that something wasn’t meant for us, but this doesn’t mean that we are any less worthy. It’s either not the right timing or not the right thing for us and that’s okay!

I want you to replace “I didn’t get ___ because I’m not smart enough” with “I did not get this because I didn’t have enough experience in ___ or knowledge in ___ so I will work hard on developing these skills.” This replaces hopeless feelings with actionable ones.

And sometimes something really is just not meant for us. In time, you will realize why. 

Please don’t let the fear of rejection stop you from chasing your dreams.

Here are some tips I found for coping with rejection:

  1. Talk to someone
  2. Be active- go for a walk, go to the gym, or clean
  3. Think about your successes
  4. Write it out
  5. Pamper yourself
  6. Take some time to recover (it’s normal to be sad)
  7. Don’t take it personally!
  8. Remember it’s not all about you (there are other factors as to why something didn’t work out)
  9. Be grateful
  10. Find the good in the situation

Thanks for reading. I hope this piece was helpful for anyone dealing with rejection.

XO,

YOUNGCOCO


Life Without Headphones

Before I leave the house, I always make sure I have my… headphones. 

Was there a time when I didn’t do this? Not one that I remember.

Walking around a college campus, I notice I am not the only one. We walk around with cords connecting our ears to our pockets and our eyes glued to our phones. 

What happens in the rare case that I don’t have my headphones?

I experience a different world.

I meet an amazing woman from Jordan who suggests I try the local Middle-Eastern store. 

I make a lifelong friend at the airport who has traveled the world to help  children who come from broken families.

I meet two friends who have the same fascination with interior design as I do and we chat during the entire commute.

I meet a woman in her 50s, who also forgot her headphones, and we talk about life, relationships, and spirituality. I feel like we have met in another life. 

I notice the conversations and love that surrounds me. 

I make deeper connections. 

Life has more meaning.