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Holistic Health

How to change your life without losing who you are

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Julia Malacoff January, 10, 2020

Writer, trainer, nail art aficionado

Over the years, your many experiences have probably taught you that if there's one constant in life, it's that everything changes. From your career to your apartment to your health, you can count on things to keep evolving as time marches on.

While there are definitely some things that will always be out of your hands, there's plenty that you do have control over! Consciously making shifts that allow you to reimagine your goals might just change your life for the better — without forcing you to give up who you are. Here's how to make it work.

Ask yourself: Do I really want to do this?

Everyone has routine tasks they aren't especially excited to do. You're not the only one who dreads doing laundry, vacuuming the house and scheduling dental cleanings! But when it comes to conscious choices (such as where you work, who you spend time with and what you do in your free time) it's worth checking in with yourself about how much joy your current choices bring you.

Are you happy with how you spend your time? What would you rather be doing right now? Add a reminder to your calendar each week to remind yourself to think about what in your life brings you down and what lifts you up. Once you're actively aware of how your situation affects your frame of mind, it will be easier to cut habits that aren't serving you.

Spend time with people who challenge you

Soft photo of two sisters on the bed with old books and cup of tea in hands wearing cozy sweater , top view point. Two best friends enjoying morning. You should feel totally at ease hanging with your friends and loved ones. Strong relationships are built on the kind of trust that allows you to mispronounce new words, make mistakes and come up with the worst puns imaginable without worrying about being mocked or hounded.

These kinds of supportive relationships are perfect for getting out of your comfort zone. Follow your best friend to that trivia night they rave about; follow up with your colleague when they invite you hiking with their trail group; or hit up your cousin who always knows where to find the coolest local concerts.

Allow the people around you to open your eyes to new things and expand your horizons. If you're nervous about trying something new, at least you know you have someone to lean on that you trust!

Set a solid foundation for your future

Following your passions can set you up for success and happiness in the long run. When you direct your attention to things you're honestly interested in, there's a built-in incentive to build new skills and nurture your natural gifts.

Review your personal goals, both for the short term and way into the future. Do your hobbies and activities align with what you want for yourself? Do you feel like you're setting yourself up for something bigger and better? In other words, what are you looking forward to, and are you on track to really making it happen?

From there, you can make adjustments to line up the skills you're developing with the doors you want them to open for you. This way, you're bringing new momentum into your day and setting yourself up to change your life into one you actually want to live. Remember to celebrate the small wins you accomplish along the way — it's a journey, not a race!

Let go of fears about the future

Remember that thing about change being constant? Nobody ever knows exactly what lies ahead. So instead of worrying about what might happen, focus on how your current actions and activities line up with your values.

If you value honesty, are you being true to yourself? If you value courage, are you living boldly? If you value empathy, are you compassionate toward others and yourself? Cement these values by transferring them from your mind to the page. Create a list of personal values to remind you to embody the qualities you appreciate most every day.

That kind of list will change over time right alongside you, though, so once you've established your values and identified why they matter to you, reevaluate the list seasonally and take stock of where you stand with each of your values. This can help you stay grounded and on track — no matter how much your life changes.

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