A mental year

7 01 2015

For me, 2014 needed me to be strong on the inside, just as much as on the outside.

Most of the time we look at our physical self and work on that. Like most people, I’ve worked hard to achieve some physical goals. They’re easy for everyone to see. You’re recognised for them. So they’re very satisfying.

Last year taught me that what goes on inside is just as important. And you need to work on that too. But you might not receive the same recognition for your progress. Your hard work will go unnoticed by others. Don’t let that stop you. Just make sure you recognise it yourself.

So what have I learnt?

You can override your brain. Yes you can have certain strong instincts, but you can fight them. You can tell yourself to do something different. In 2014 I battle my competitive instincts, but then I used them to my advantage too. Get to know yourself and what your drivers and motivators are, and use them, or dampen them, as you need to. It will help you achieve your physical goals too.

Listen to those that you care about. Especially if they’re telling you stuff that you don’t want to hear, it’s probably really hard for them to be telling you. So don’t get angry with them. Hear them out, thank them for being honest. Go away and think about what they’ve said and what you could do about it.

Be brave. Bravery has many meanings. It’s often associated with doing some adrenalin fuelled activity that involves an element of risk. Like bungee jumping. Or riding a motorbike. Both of which I’ve done (or do). But I’m not brave for doing these things. Bravery also relates to making tough decisions. And having the courage to stand behind them. But don’t let other people define your bravery as stupidity, which can often happen. Don’t doubt or regret your decision. Make it and move on.

Similarly, don’t regret mistakes you’ve made. Learn from them and help them make you a stronger, better person. Understand why it was a mistake and how not to make it again.

Take yourself out of your comfort zone once in a while. Although it may scare the shit out of you, take that leap of faith. I did this a couple of times last year and I found them to be the most rewarding experiences.

Haters gonna hate. That’s not your problem. It’s theirs. Let them get on with it. As they say in football, don’t let them drag you down to their level. Take a leaf out of the business world and don’t focus on the minority of detractors. Pay most attention to those who matter most.




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