No matter how much we believe we have it together, life carries many harsh truths, and no matter how much we may wish to run away from them, it is only through accepting them that we can take full responsibility for our lives.
You may be aware of some of these already, but for the rest, I’m willing to be the blunt bastard that tells them to you. You may hate me today, but you’ll thank me tomorrow.
For the record, this isn’t meant to be a pessimistic rant about how tough life is. It’s meant to motivate you to take action armed with this knowledge.
Here are 8 brutally honest truths you need to hear if you want to get it together:
1. You’re Going to Regret How Much Time You Spend on Social Media
Social media is amazing, and I’m as addicted to it as you are. But social media is also making us all more disconnected than we’ve ever been before through the illusion of increased connection. Yes, we are able to communicate with thousands of people with ease, but with what depth?
Social media is robbing way too many of us of real connection and real life experiences. Rather than looking at the world as we walk somewhere or ride public transit, we regress to what the digital world has to offer. If our addiction level stays the same, things could become really scary, and this doesn’t even take into account the potential repercussions of so much exposure to technology.
2. Your Reactions Are the Problem
Yes, shit happens. And quite often that shit really sucks to have to go through or deal with. But regardless of how challenging something is, it’s always our reaction to it that will dictate how much it is going to impact our lives.
You decide how much, and for how long, getting cut off on the highway is going to piss you off, and you decide how much someone’s poor opinion of you is going to make you shell up in insecurity. Let your natural reactions happen, but then consciously choose how long you want to let them impact everything else.
3. The Riskiest Thing You Can Do Is Avoid Risks
Whether or not you consider yourself a risk-seeker, there is nothing more risky than complacency. I’m not suggesting that you cannot get to a point where you are truly happy with your life and therefore simply want to sustain that lifestyle, but I’m suggesting that never taking any risks is about as dangerous as it gets.
Stop playing small if you know you want to play big, and stop telling yourself “this is good enough” if you know deep down you would love to do, create, and have so much more. The cost of taking that risk is your long-term happiness.
4. You Should Always Have Enough Money for What Matters
“I would love to attend that seminar or buy that course that can change my life, but money is too tight right now.” As true as that may be, you should always have more than enough to do the things that really matter.
The biggest obstacle is the way we instead spend it on the things that don’t. We don’t process buying a $7 premium coffee daily as an investment in nothing, but we do overthink and see spending a couple hundred dollars on something life-changing as too much. I’m not suggesting we start spending recklessly, or never treat ourselves, but rather that we do reassess how we currently spend our money.
5. People Are Going to Hate You No Matter What You Do
You can try and people please your entire life, but no matter what, some people are always going to dislike you. So rather than wasting your time trying to match what you think is the most acceptable, spend that time accepting exactly who you are.
6. Blaming Only Makes You Weaker
In the moment, to unjustly direct blame towards a circumstance or other person may seem relieving, but in the long term it really takes its toll. The less you take responsibility for your actions and decision making, the weaker you become mentally.
Taking responsibility may come with some immediate repercussions, but over time, it builds a life founded on honesty, and it strengthens your ability to tackle challenges when they do arise.
7. People Don’t Think of You as Much as You Think They Do
From our perspective, the whole world revolves around us, but there are 7 billion people who see it the same way. While we are not all inherently selfish or self-obsessed, we are all far more concerned with how we are perceived by others than how we perceive them.
So once again, embrace your true self and find peace in knowing that people are too concerned with themselves to give you as much as attention as you think they are.
8. Not Even the Perfect Relationship Is Going to Complete You
I have close friends whose long-term romantic relationships I not only admire, but also hope to one day experience. But even they, who seem to have found “the one,” recognize that true happiness comes from within and can never be filled in by another.
Relationships are an extension of our happiness and not the basis of it, so focus on strengthening the one with yourself and all of the others will follow accordingly.