Life Mantra


“I don’t want to feel overwhelmed.  I’m tired of the anxiety and stress.  Too often my mind is consumed with negative thoughts and my body is filled with physical tension.  It hurts.  I don’t want to feel like this.  I don’t want to feel like I live in a whirlwind of exhaustion 24/7.  I don’t want to just ‘get by’ day to day…”

Those are the opening lines right out of a live chat session I had last night with a long-time reader and recent course student of ours.  I’m sharing this with you today (with permission) because, in slightly different words, I’ve literally heard this same message from coaching clients, students and readers 1,000+ times over the past decade.

Can you relate?  To an extent, I bet you can.  Sometimes we all can.

Whenever I’m coaching someone who shares these feelings, I gracefully shift their focus from what they don’t want to what they DO want.  Because I know that what we focus on grows stronger in our lives.  I remind them that their life story is an expression of who they believe themselves to be – the thoughts and words they choose to express themselves, gradually shapes the core of their identity and destiny.

So let me ask you this:

How have you written your story so far?  Have you put your thoughts and words to positive use?  If I eavesdropped on your self-talk or your conversations with others, would I hear statements that create happiness, or statements that refute it?

Your ability to write a positive life story hinges on your language.  It is your inner and outer verbal expression that makes your joy possible and that infuses your life with purpose, meaning, and vitality.

So today, I challenge you to replace your negative thoughts and words with positive alternatives.  Take a look at the quotes below that I have selected from our blog archive.  Pick one (or more) of them that relates to your present troubles, and use it as a mantra by repeating it to yourself every time you feel negativity creeping up inside you.

  1. If the grass looks greener on the other side…  Stop staring.  Stop comparing.  Stop complaining and start watering the grass you’re standing on.
  2. Satisfaction is not always the fulfillment of what you want; it is the realization of how blessed you are for what you have.
  3. Sometimes you just have to look back at your past and smile about how far you’ve come.
  4. Just because it didn’t last forever, doesn’t mean it wasn’t worth your while.
  5. For everything you’ve lost, you’ve gained something else.  Appreciate what you have today.  Life does not have to be perfect to be wonderful.
  6. Just because you are struggling does NOT mean you are failing.  Every great success requires some kind of struggle to get there.
  7. You cannot expect victory while planning for defeat.
  8. Even though you cannot control everything that happens, you can control your attitude toward what happens.  And in that, you will be mastering change rather than allowing it to master you.
  9. Use your struggles and frustrations today to motivate you rather than annoy you.  You are in control of the way you look at life.
  10. Stop beating yourself up.  You are a work in progress; which means you get there a little at a time, not all at once.
  11. Sometimes things must change so you can change.  Sometimes you must break a little so you can get a peek inside to see what an awesome powerhouse you are.  Sometimes mistakes must be made so wisdom can be earned.  Sometimes you must overcome heartache so you can begin to follow your heart again.
  12. The true measure of your success is how many times you can bounce back from failure.
  13. Sometimes the wrong choices bring us to the right places.  To be creative and productive in life, you must first lose your resistance to being wrong.
  14. When you are no longer able to change a situation, you are challenged to change yourself.
  15. If you feel like your ship is sinking, it might be a good time to throw out the unnecessary stuff that’s been weighing it down.  (Read The Power of Less.)
  16. Stepping onto a brand new path is difficult, but not more difficult than remaining in a situation that no longer fits, or no longer exists.
  17. The story of your life has many chapters.  One bad chapter doesn’t mean it’s the end.  So stop re-reading the bad one already and turn the page.
  18. The truth is, unless you let go, unless you forgive yourself, unless you forgive the situation, unless you accept that the situation is over, you cannot move forward.
  19. Yes, it takes hard work to let go and refocus your life, but it’s worth every bit of effort you can muster.
  20. Head up, heart open.  To better days approaching!
  21. You’re never as good as everyone says when you win, and you’re never as terrible as they tell you when you lose.  The important thing is what you’ve learned, and what you’re doing with it.
  22. Be careful about who you give the microphone and stage to in your life.  Don’t just listen to the loudest voice.  Listen to the truest one.
  23. You’re not a failure because you can’t be all things to all people.  You’re a human.
  24. Never allow someone or something that adds very little to your life, to control so much of it.
  25. Never surrender your hopes and dreams to the tragic limitations others have placed on their own lives.  The vision of your true destiny does not reside within the narrow-minded outlook of naysayers.  Focus on facts, not judgments.  (Marc and I discuss this in more detail in the “Self-Love” chapter of 1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.)
  26. Don’t sit around.  Start moving!  In the beginning, you may not go in the direction you dream, but as long as you’re moving, you’re creating possibilities.
  27. You may be the only person left who believes in you, but that’s enough.  It takes the glimmer of just one star to pierce a universe of darkness.  Never give up on yourself.
  28. Encourage yourself, believe in yourself, and love yourself today.  Never doubt who you are.
  29. You are not a victim.  No matter what you have been through, you are still here now.  You may have been challenged, hurt, betrayed, beaten, and discouraged, but nothing has defeated you.  You have been delayed but not denied.
  30. You have to accept whatever comes your way, and the only important thing is that you meet it with the best you have to give.  Nothing more, nothing less.
  31. 99% of the time, the only thing standing between you and your goal is the fateful story you keep telling yourself as to why you can’t achieve it.  (Read The Miracle Morning.)
  32. You were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self, to live out your purpose, and to do it courageously.
  33. Whether you say, “I can” or “I can’t,” you’re right either way.
  34. All great achievements require time.  And all great achievements are worth your time.
  35. The person who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.
  36. When things are tough, you must be tougher.  Don’t pray for an easy life.  Pray for the strength to endure a tough one that leads to success.
  37. If you want to be happy and bright, let go of your need to always be right.
  38. Worry is a massive waste of time and energy.  It doesn’t change anything.  All it does is steal your joy and hinder your ability to make positive changes.
  39. Sometimes you simply have to stop worrying, wondering, and doubting.  Have faith that things will work out, maybe not how you planned, but just how it’s meant to be.
  40. In life, you usually get what you ask for, eventually, and it rarely comes in the package you think it’s supposed to come in.

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