For those of us who are ready to get serious about living an intentional life, creating a happiness map is the first place to start. Identifying goals, personal values and the things that bring us true joy will help you to unlock your potential and become aligned to your true purpose.
As a Fertility and Life Coach, I have helped numerous women build and live the life they want. Here is a list of insights I have gathered over the years:
Start with a blank sheet of paper, and identify the activities that bring you energy
Sit down, relax, put down all social media, switch off and allow yourself some space and time to write down everything you can think of that makes you feel happy, alive and energised. You can use a freewriting technique, or simply list everything you can think of. Really look inside yourself: do you love to travel? Do you feel energised by the little moments such as a walk by the beach or a coffee with a friend? Once you identify activities that bring you joy and happiness, it will become easier when those decisions are truly aligned with what you believe in.
Identify Your 1, 3 and 5 year goals
If you aren’t sure what your goals are, ask yourself, ‘what do I want to be bragging about this time next year?’ Whatever you come up with, that is your new mission. Your goals will most likely be related to the energy-related activities that you have just identified. Use the back of the same sheet of paper, divided into three sections, to categorise at least 2 goals for next year, three years and five years away.
Try and schedule at least one activity that brings you energy into each week. Take responsibility for your own actions, behaviours, words, goals etc. While it might seem truly impossible to get out of the house for even an hour, it is worth the effort as scheduling in happiness will bring positive consequences to every aspect of your life. Keep in mind, we always have a choice about how our time is spent. Even if you ‘choose’ to stay at home to clean the house/do the washing/watch the kiddos, it is always a choice. At the end of the day, making the choice to prioritise your own health and wellness is one you will not regret.
For the bigger goals (1, 3, and 5 year targets), break each one into a timeline. Then schedule those too. Goals without action plans simply remain dreams and fantasies. It’s important to work on a plan to get you to where you want to be. If you need some help with this, it is a great stage to engage a life coach who can help you put some strategies in place to map out some step by step ways to achieve everything your heart desires.
Many life coaches offer complimentary life-coaching sessions. By establishing what your goals are, checking in with where you are currently at in your world, identifying the obstacles that may present themselves, and brainstorming some real achievable actions that can get you to where you want to be, you can build your own happiness plan and bring it to fruition. Having someone to keep you accountable on that journey is one of the keys to success.
Life will not always go to plan. Our goal timelines will usually move around. Sometimes, less than favourable things happen in life. It’s a fact! Bearing grudges, becoming bitter and holding tight to negative energy is not good for anyone. It affects how you feel and the relationships you engage in around you. Find some way to process any issues that are weighing you down and occupying your mind. Talk to a friend, engage a coach, counsellor or psychologist to talk things over with. Try a mindfulness practice such as meditation, yoga or tai chi to find more peace in your days and don’t stay stuck in the past – the future holds endless possibilities if you are open to them.
Move Your Body Everyday
It’s no secret that physically getting out and being active is good for us. Exercise releases endorphins to make us feel happier and help us sleep better at nights, and if we have endorphins and more energy, we can reach our goals faster.
Fresh air in our lungs is not only good for boosting immunity but also combats stress. Vitamin D is good for our minds and therapeutic for our mood, so consider taking your exercise outside when the sun is out. A change of scenery, whether you choose indoors or out, can be good for the soul and we don’t all have to be elite athletes for movement to have any benefits. Choose what’s right for you – it could be yoga, pilates, swimming, aquarobics…whatever takes your fancy.