Take Ownership of Your Life in 4 Steps

This is a guest post by Anne-Sophie Reinhardt. She is an anorexia survivor, body image expert, and the owner of aMINDmedia. She empowers you to achieve a healthier and smarter life by returning to your true purpose and values. You can read her blog or follow her on Twitter.

“Remember, ultimately you are in control of your workout! I can motivate you to push harder. I can try to keep you from giving up, but in the end, it’s all up to you.”

A Woman Driving a Car - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/Lorado, Image #18194030

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/Lorado

This statement of our cycling instructor stuck with me because I see people give up control over crucial areas of their lives all the time.This lack of ownership reaches from personal health to thriving in our jobs and the level of destruction we create is often not realized until it is too late.

When I gave my eating disorder power over me, I stopped functioning, lost myself, and almost my life. When my brother beat me up over and over again for years, I resigned and stopped fighting. When I worked for Starbucks, I gave my boss the power to decide how much money I could make any given month.

Three completely distinct areas of a life. Three ways of giving up control.

Your areas of struggle will be different, but the lack of owning up to personal responsibility is the same.

If you’re ready to reverse this process and finally want to take control of your life, the following steps will help put yourself back on track.

  1. Start dreaming. How do you want your life to look? What have you always wanted to do? We cannot make any changes in our lifestyle if we don’t know what it is we actually want.
    • Maybe you want to move to a different country or travel around the world.
    • Maybe you want to sell your big house in the country and move into a small apartment in the city.
    • Maybe you dream of giving up your well-paying job and pursue the career of your dreams.
    • Maybe you secretly wish to end your relationship and be solo for a while.
  2. Determine what is holding you back. Once you’ve determined your dreams, try to zone in on what exactly the reasons are for you not acting upon what you truly want.
    • Why do you let other people rule over your life?
    • Why don’t you go after that job you’ve always wanted?
    • Why do you keep finding excuses for traveling the world?
    • Why do you envy others for having the guts to constantly evolve in all aspects of life but you never step outside your comfort zone?

    Be honest with yourself. Be ruthless. Take some time for yourself and really dig deep.

  3. Face your fears. Analyze what it is that scares the heck out of you. When I started to gain weight, I was terrified of being judged, harassed, and even left by my husband. Yet none of those fears were rational. My life didn’t fall into pieces because of a few pounds more on my hips. Instead it improved in ways I cannot even begin to describe.

    So, whatever your insecurities are, ask yourself if they are valid ones.

    • Does your fear of financial bankruptcy really hold true?
    • Does your relationship really keep you alive?
    • Do your toxic friendships really prevent you from being lonely?
    • Is the job you have really the only alternative to living on the street?

    Try to be as objective as possible, even if it feels very uncomfortable. You’ll soon see that most of your fears are just as irrational as my anxiety of social disgrace because of looking healthy.

  4. Make the changes. Now that you know why you’re not in control of your life and what it is your afraid of, it’s time to make changes. Start small in order to not get overwhelmed.
    • Maybe your diet is worse than it should be. So, start eating healthier food.
    • Maybe your exercise routine is non-existent. Start building one.
    • Maybe your time online is preventing you from moving your business in the direction you want it to go. So, reduce the time on the web to a bare minimum.

    You don’t have to quit your job in order to take back control, you can start small and work your way up to the bigger life changes. Start growing confident and then rock the world with your newfound freedom.

There is nothing more rewarding than being in full control of your life. Once you realize that, “Yes, I can have that power too,” there is no end to the possibilities and opportunities that will present themselves. You’ll soon see that the world is only waiting for you to make a dent in the universe. What are you waiting for then?

You owe it to yourself to take this leap before it is too late.

Question: What do you need to do next to take back control of your life? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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