This is Shailna Patidar writing on lifitudes.com
I believe none of you reading this post is at either of the extremes of a default life or a designer life. I am sure you have must have taken many decisions in your life based on some logic that you think is yours or because someone has managed to convince you that it is all for the best.
Let us first understand what these two extremes, ‘Default’ and ‘Designer’ life ideally means. Then you need to rate yourself on what percent of your life is designer and what percent is default.
The Default Life
A default life is one on which we have no control. Life just goes on and things just happen to us.
A default life can either be a good one or a bad one depending on what we call luck and destiny. It also depends on one’s perception towards life.
Defaulters do what their five senses ask them to. They become slaves of their feelings and emotions. They hire others to take their decisions.
Sometimes they even get attracted towards negative things which give them temporary pleasure. They don’t use their intelligence to differentiate between the right and the wrong.
Defaulters are bad chasers. They might have dreams and desires but due to some reasons they don’t take action to pursue them.
Mostly, the defaulters end up sick, depressed, unsatisfied and unhappy.
The Designer life
A designer life might also have a good outcome or a bad outcome, but the satisfaction of living your life on your own term is beyond good and bad. Also, all the stages, whether good or bad, are temporary; but as a designer you always have chance to trigger your life or it to take to another level. And this is the best thing about a designer lifestyle. It is dynamic, exciting and mysterious, just like a game where you sometimes win and sometimes loose.
Where do you stand?
To rate yourself on where do you stand on the scale of defaulter to designer let us understand these three types of decisions:
- Decisions that are yours
These are the decision you are 100% sure you want to make and you do it. Sometimes it is easy and sometimes there are struggles involved, but you do it.
- Decisions that you think are yours
Were the decisions you made were fully yours or someone else directly or indirectly convinced you to take that decision.
For example, have you bought your toothpaste because it suits your dental health or because some doctor on TV convinced you that it is the solution to all your dental problems?
This is a small example but you might have taken much important decision in your life because someone else has convinced you. They can be your relative, friends, teachers etc.
- Decisions you know are not yours
These are simple to figure out because you know you have done that against your choice or because you had no choice. There can be several reasons for this which we will discuss later.
The point to think about is the second one – decisions that you think are yours. When you will be fully aware of how and by whom your life if heading you will be ready to prepare yourself for a journey towards a designer lifestyle; a process to live your life on your own terms.
So now when you know that where do you stand on the scale of the defaulter to designer, your next step is to move forward on the scale towards the designer lifestyle.
Let us first study the factors which stop you to live your life on your own terms and try to solve or eliminate them from our lives.
What stops you to live your life on your own terms?
- Fear of failure
Fear of failure is actually the fear of taking the responsibilities of your failure. It is the fear of shame when the world will tease you and laugh at you. It is the fear of answering the questions that people will be asking. It is the fear of losing something that you risk in your decision.
Doing something = 50% chance of failure/success + enjoyment of doing what you like + learning + improvement + satisfaction
Not doing it = 100% failure + regrets + yes you will be saved from facing the world
For your own experiment, just try to think of one successful name who has never failed in his/her life.
- Lack of Confidence
You sometimes reject yourselves from deserving a dream of yours. You don’t believe in yourself and think that you are incapable of it. At this point you unintentionally surrender yourself to destiny. You stop dreaming and taking decisions. You hire society or closed ones to do this for you. They set your goals and take decisions for you.
- Lack of knowledge
In this condition you are unaware of the path that will take you to your destination. The solution is stepping out of your house and move towards your destination following sign boards and taking help of the people on the way.
Even those who know how to reach their goals will have the unexpected on their ways.
It would be better for you to accept that you will never have a crystal clear vision and knowledge about your goal but you can surely gain that gradually.
- Lack of Time
Lack of time is not a valid reason but manier times people fool themselves with the excuse that their life is fully scheduled and they do not have enough time to start what they want to.
- Approval of the closed ones
These are the people we care for and who care for us. It is the most difficult to ignore them. If we do so we feel like a selfish person.
As we grow from a child to adult, the number of people we need an approval from increases. At first they are our parents, then school friends, partners, spouse, children etc. They have their own reasons for their disapprovals as they have been with us since a long time. But that doesn’t mean that you should not take challenges to expand your capabilities and improve the quality of your life. Once you have seen a dream, you cannot live your regular day * x years of your life. Your life has to be changed.
You are not supposed to take anyone’s approval to live your life on your own terms but remember that whatever you do without the approval of your closed ones, it is your responsibility understand that why they don’t understand you.
- Thinking what others would think
THAT’S NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS
How to succeed to live your life on your own terms?
- Accept yourself
In order to improve, you will first have to stop fooling yourself. Do a proper SWOT analysis of your present self being honest with yourself.
Accept what you found and feel good about yourself. Self – improvement is a positive thing and you cannot achieve it when you are negative about yourself.
- Take responsibility
We often stop doing something because of some unexpected troubles we face in the way. Sometime there are external factors that cause us troubles and failures.
You cannot blame these factors for your failure. If you fail, you are solely responsible for it and for getting it fixed even if the loss is not done by you.
Designers do not have an option to sit and cry on their destiny.
- Be Independent
Utilizing resources and taking help is a part of life but these can also be hurdle when you are fully dependent on someone or something for your growth.
Being independent does not mean doing everything by you. If you are the leader or even a member of a team, your work will be dependent on many other factors and people. Here comes the role of good management and techniques to handle people and get your work done.
You are independent if you have control over the factors which could have made you dependent.
Doing maximum work by yourself is the best option when it is about your personal work. When your scope of work increases you need people to work with you and the game is to work on your own terms inspite of that.
- Take Calculated Risk
You have to take risks in life and even if you don’t, you life is always at risk. When it comes to live your life on your own terms there will always be several uncertainties you are not sure about. Still you have to keep moving forward. You will have to take the risk.
Taking risk does not mean to jump into the fire when you know you will die. What you need to do is to take calculated risks. Consider the worst outcome of what you do and it should be such that you can still survive with the worst outcome.
You need expertise to learn to take risks and so start risking and experimenting with small decisions. When you win them you will learn to deal with other risky decisions as well.
- Wise ways for working with you decisions
If today you will decide to live your life on your own terms, you will have a list of desires to fulfill. Like you will want to travel, learn music, start a new business and what not. Don’t start all at once.
Initiatives take time, energy and focus. To successfully make this initiative of yours sustainable, dedicate this time, energy and focus on one thing. Once it goes smooth and become your routine start with new. You don’t want stop your new way of living because of your own mess.
This was about taking big decisions of your life. There will be situations where you will have to take spontaneous decisions, say you want to party with your friends at a restaurant of your choice. People with good convincing power will do this easily, but what about others.
“Win- Win Situation”! Come up with a way where all the parties win and no one loose. If you want to buy the chance to choose the restaurant of your choice you will have to offer something in exchange which does not matter much to you. Everything you gain will cost you something.
- There is more than one road to reach one destination
When you present a plan to someone for seeking advice, they might tell you or rather prove you that you cannot do this or this plan is fail. It can be a business plan or telling you friend that you are going to propose this girl. At this point of time what they actually mean is that you cannot do this in that particular way. They always fail to tell you that there can be other ways as well to achieve the same goal.
Same is the case when you get stuck somewhere and you see no other option to move forward. Think of with what other ways you could have achieved same goal. Start with the scratch if your decision is really that important to you. Your learning from your previous experience will surely work as a catalyst in your new journey.
- You can make wise decisions but not right decisions
| Make your decisions right instead of making right decisions
Decisions are never right or wrong but what you do with them make them so. Once you realize that it is always in your hands to make decision right, the ‘wrong decision’ word will completely vanish from your dictionary.
You have to be a ‘Jugaadu’ (Problem Solving) person to come out of the mess on your path and at any cost* reach to your destination.
- You don’t need to fight and make enemies
Many times you will have to opt between the choice you want to make and the people who are close to you. Even if they don’t understand you and you go against their wish, you are not supposed to fight with them and make enemies.
They are your well wishers who do not understand you and not your enemies. Love them, be with them but do what your heart says. Just tell them “I have to do this”. Maybe they will understand you if not your decision.
Please comment your opinions on this article or something you want to add to this.