11 Practices for a Better Life
Most of us want to improve our lives—laugh more, stress less, follow our bliss—but the *how* of transformation can feel overwhelming. Here are 11 practices you can start doing *now* to live a deeper, happier, and more meaningful life.
1. Let your imagination run wild
Close your eyes and imagine your dream life. What does it look like? Where are you? What does it feel like?
You can’t live your dream if you haven’t given yourself the space to create it. You have this one life and you get to choose how to live it. Dream big.
2. Practice gratitude
We’re so busy talking about what we want, we forget to feel grateful for what we already have. What are you thankful for?
3. Pay attention
There’s a chance you’re driving through life on cruise control. Start paying more attention to your daily routine. Listen to the birds chirping, enjoy the smell of your freshly brewed coffee, and feel the cozy, softness of your pajamas. Relish the sights, smells, sounds, and feelings of your daily life.
4. Be real
We all wear masks—pretending and posturing our way through dinner parties and interviews and cocktail hours. But releasing all that phoniness and asserting your authentic self will feel like a breath of fresh air. And watch out, it’s infectious: when you’re real, you’ll notice those around you get real, too.
5. Surround yourself with positive people
You may have heard that you’re a product of the people with which you spend the most time. So pick the right crowd. Stick with the upbeat, optimistic people in your life; their company will nourish you. Avoid those that drain your energy, leaving you exhausted and unhappy.
6. Embrace change
Change is the only constant, so it’s time to start welcoming it. Stop dreading it, avoiding it, denying it, or fearing
it. Start seeing change for the possibility, fun, inspiration, and growth it can bring.
7. Trust your gut
Your intuition knows what’s best for you and it will encourage you to live your right life. Your job is to honor that inner voice—you’ll be happier for it.
8. Enjoy joy
What do you love to do? What makes you laugh? What makes your heart swell with happiness? Give yourself permission to do that, often.
9. Be gentle
No one’s perfect, we all make mistakes. Go easy on yourself.
10. Get enough sleep
In a culture that seems to celebrate those that pull all nighters and work until they drop, it’s sometimes hard to value rest. Sleep isn’t a luxury—it’s a necessity.
11. Find your own success
Contrary to popular belief, success isn’t a corner office or a fat paycheck. Real success won’t just look good, it’ll feel good too. Chase your own success.
This article was written by Alexis Sclamberg, a self-help expert for Millennials. She’s the author of the upcoming book, Borrowed Wisdom, and contributes to publications including Forbes.com, The Huffington Post, and Cosmopolitan magazine. For more inspiration, follow her on Twitter, friend her on Facebook or check out her website.