Mark Zuckerberg : How to Build the Future
How to Have a Great Future
Building a great future will require making changes to your life now. Whether having a great future to you means having a family, a high-paying job or getting into your dream school, it’s the things you do today will affect your tomorrow. You will have to plan and make deliberate changes in your life. Follow the steps in this article to have a great future.
Letting Go of the Past
Know that your past does not define your future.You may have had some downs, some failed grades or poor relationships - this does not mean that you will fail every exam you ever take or have poor relationships for the rest of your life. Acknowledge any role that you may have played in these and also look at other factors that may have been at play.
- The point of this is not to point fingers or lay blame on any one. Understand that you have some control over the quality of your life.
Learn from your mistakes.Look at things that may have gone wrong in the past and look at your behavior then and now. Forgive yourself. Are there any lessons that you can draw from them? Write them down. Is there anything you’re doing that you know will have consequences that you will regret later? Instead, do something that will be of benefit to you later, or at the very least will not cause any harm.
- You will have to exercise some discipline. It’s easy to repeat behavior just because it’s familiar, it’s what you’re used to doing in a particular situation. For example, if you’re used to eating lots of sweet things and now you have diabetes, it will take time to adjust to your eating habits.
Move on.Take the lessons you’ve learned, and carry on with life. As your past defined your present, your present will define your future. What you do now, will affect your future.
- Allow yourself to fully feel any grievance you may have for the past. For a friendship that went sour or for a project you set out to do that didn’t work out the way you wanted. Write about it or discuss it with someone you trust. Express your view on the matter and why you’re upset about it. This will help you better understand your situation.
- Accept that what’s done is done and that you can only deal with the here and now.Forgive yourself for your mistakes and if you can, make amends with others.
- Internalizing this may take longer than a day. Your choices, habits and behavior in the past made who you are today. It will take time to cultivate new habits that will make who you are tomorrow.
Living Your Values
Define your values.Make sure you know not just what you stand for but also what you don’t. Being true to yourself will give you inner peace.Make a list of ten rules that you live by. These will give you an indication of what your values are.
- For example, if one of your ‘rules’ is ‘I must never tell a lie’ then you value honesty. Or if one of your rules is ‘Never be rude to others’ then you value politeness.
- Once you think you’ve defined your value, check to see if they really are your values. Look at how you make decisions on a daily basis. Do they truly reflect your values? If you break your ‘rules’ and you feel upset, guilty or distraught, then that rule most likely reflects your values.
- Here is a to help you define your values.
Set your goals.Set your ambitions in line with your values. Where do you see yourself in five or ten years’ time? What can you do now that will help you achieve these ambitions? If you see yourself in a certain kind of job, research the kind of skills that you need for that. Find out how you can acquire them.
- Think about your priorities and passions. Maybe your priority is to find a high-paying job so that you can support your family in the future. Or maybe your priority is to better the community in some way. Maybe your passion is writing, or your passion is maths.
- Research how you can make your passion fulfill your priority. You most likely have an idea of a ‘dream future’ with a ‘dream job’. Start there. Search online for the skills, qualifications and experience you’ll need to get there. Read the biographies of people who you aspire to be like.
- Plan your goals. Break down your goals into smaller, manageable steps. Find out what you’ll need to do in order to achieve each step.
- Your ambitions may change over time. You only have control over your actions, not your circumstance.Make sure how you react and respond to your circumstances reflects your values. So long as your ambitions stay in line with your values, you will likely have a great future.
Question yourself.Whenever you set out to do something in life, be sure you know your reasons for doing it. It’s very easy to slip into ‘autopilot’ or to do things just because others are doing it or because they’re telling you it’s the right thing to do.If you do not lead your life with purpose, you are less likely to achieve your goals.
- Questioning yourself will require monitoring the way you think and the things you do. Negative thinking styles will hinder your efforts to achieve your goals.Be sure to do this every night before you sleep if not constantly throughout the day. Self-monitoring will become habitual over time.
Lead a healthy lifestyle.Taking care of your health now will improve your chances of seeing your future through. A healthy lifestyle includes healthful eating, physical activity, a regular sleep cycle, good hygiene habitsand actively making time to relax and destress.You will see the benefits of these in your present as well as your future; a healthy lifestyle will have psychological, social and physical benefits.
- Consult a nutritionist about the best kinds of food for your body type.Be sure to have balanced meals and to eat a full breakfast.
- Aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day.How much you need as you age will change and will be affected by other health factors such as your current weight and your heart condition.Consider asking a friend to join you in a sport you like or to start jogging together.
- A good sleep cycle takes into consideration not just how much you sleep, but also when you sleep. The most restful sleep occurs at night with a nap during the day.Try to be in bed by 10.30 and to nap for an hour or so during the day.How much sleep you need will most likely vary depending on your level of activity, food intake and rest throughout the day.
- Take care of your hair, your skin and your teeth. Self-grooming will boost your self-esteem and make you feel more fresh throughout the day.Experiment over time with which products and routines suit you best. Talk to a stylist or a dermatologist about how to take care of your hair and skin.
Working Smarter (Not Harder)
Be efficient.Remember that the quality of work you put into an hour is more important than the number of hours you put into the work. The quality AND quantity of your work matter. Sometimes working for a long time on something gives you the illusion that you are getting a lot done when really you haven’t had a productive hour.Be open and honest with yourself about the quality of your work. If you need help, ask for it. Other people might be able to give you better tips on how to do something efficiently and effectively.
Take time to relax.Working smarter means taking small breaks while you work and also making a point to schedule relaxing activities into your day. This improves your creativity and productivity and lowers your stress levels.
- One popular study recommends working for 52 minutes and taking a 17-minute break to improve your productivity.
- Make it a point to do things that you find relaxing, such as yoga, meditation, painting or reading. Experiment with different activities to see which best suits you. What is relaxing to you may not be relaxing to someone else.
Spend after saving.It’s always smart to save money for the future now. Set aside an amount that you will save every month. Make a list of special circumstances or emergencies under which you will use this money.
- If you are still studying, consider getting a part-time job. This will teach you the value of money and time, and instill responsibility and discipline in you.
Build a network.Be kind to people now. Build a network of people you can rely on for advice and support in the future. This includes your friends, people you work with who are higher in the command chain than you are, your peers and your mentors and teachers. Look to those with more experience than you for advice on how to work towards the future you dream of. Even if your idea is something that they don’t have personal experience of, they can still give you solid advice that applies to you.
Reflect on the good in your life.Being grateful has long-term benefits on your health, work, and social life.Every night before sleeping, think of the good things that have happened today. Include the things people have said and the things others have done for you. Reflect on the things you ate and the basic necessities you have. It’s easy to take these things for granted. Often, we are too busy thinking of the few negative experiences we have throughout the day to feel positive about the many good things.
- Sometimes, we suffer a great loss and need to grieve. Grieving does not necessarily mean that we are ungrateful and being grateful does not mean you’re not allowed to grieve. It’s a natural human process.
Train your mind to look for the good in everything.It’s easy to adopt a negative outlook on life. Actively looking for the positive aspects of every situation will help you be grateful.It will help you criticize and complain less and appreciate more. If you find yourself in an unfavourable situation, ask yourself what you can learn from it.
- If you find yourself in a generally low mood, look to your thoughts. What are you thinking? How are you thinking? Are you complaining about something? Are you blaming yourself or someone else for what happened? Ask yourself if what you’re thinking is based on fact or opinion. Is there truth to your thought? Think of other ways of looking at your situation.
- This doesn’t mean that you’re not allowed to have negative thoughts. Everybody has negative thoughts occasionally. Believing all the negative thoughts to be true is what will have a negative impact on your life including lower mood and motivation to work for a great future.
Thank people along the way.Make it a point to thank others who are a valuable part of your life or who have helped you do things to make a better future. Not only will this open the door to more beneficial relationships but will also improve your physical and mental health.Send thank you notes to professional acquaintances and be thoughtful and caring to those you’re close to.
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- If you feel like you're falling back instead of growing and developing, it's okay. Ask for help. The important thing is to keep going.
- It's ok if your definition of a 'great future' changes over time. We all evolve and grow as people. Stay true to your values.
- Always try to stay positive and try harder to achieve something.
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