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Image / Self / Advice / Relationships

Are you living the life you want? If not, then you’re settling


By Niamh Ennis
31st Oct 2022
Are you living the life you want? If not, then you’re settling

Stop what you’re doing right now and ask yourself: are you living the life you always wanted for yourself? Is everything that you are doing moving you closer to bringing your dreams to life? If not, then you are settling.

I say that not simply to grab your attention, but to show you that in order to live a meaningful and purposeful life you have to acknowledge, first of all, that you are settling for less and then put the required steps in place to stop doing it. What feeling does it bring up in you when I say that you should never settle for less in your relationships, your career or in any area of your life? If you’re thinking ‘yeah, easier said than done,’ then ask yourself “why do I believe that what others want matters less than going after what it is I really want?”

Far too many of you settle for careers that simply don’t excite or challenge you anymore, all because you are too scared of what might happen if you were to look elsewhere. The risk of being rejected, and what that might bring up, stops you; the fear of what others will say or think blocks you; the feeling that you have no choice in any of this can all seem like reasonable deterrents and so you stay where we are, you settle, even though you know it is making you utterly miserable.

You sit back seething with increasing resentment as you witness others around you make what looks like big brave decisions to change their careers and stretch themselves while you allow your fear to paralyse you into total inaction.

WHAT DOES ‘SETTLING FOR LESS’ ACTUALLY MEAN?

If you’re not going all in, whether that be in your career or your relationships, then I’m afraid it sounds to me like you are settling. When you settle for less, you are not reaching your full potential and are choosing to be mediocre and average, instead of attempting to become the best possible version of yourself, whatever that looks like to you.

When it comes to your career, knowing your own personal non-negotiables will give you the confidence and certainty to refuse things that just aren’t aligned with what you know to be important to you. You can then choose to prioritise your desires and lean into the trust that, if you do what makes you happy, it will be evident in everything that you do.

If you’re unsure as to what that might look like for you, I’d invite you to think about someone whose career you admire and who you look up to. What is it that they are doing that appeals to you? Use them not as a point of comparison but as a source of inspiration. Can you discover what steps they took to get them to where they are and what qualifications did they acquire on their way? In today’s technological age, accessing the information you need to discover more about them, couldn’t be easier. When you have this you can begin to map out the steps needed to get you there.

DO WHAT SUCCESSFUL PEOPLE DO.

A lot has been written about ‘purpose’ and our quest to discover our own personal purpose, and another way of approaching this is to stay in pursuit of who it is you are becoming and remain focused on that. So, just who is it that you want to become? The truth is that if you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten and if you tolerate less than you deserve, then that is what you will continue to receive.

Look to those you admire and observe what habits they engage in to help them on their way. I’m guessing that they might wake up early to get things done before the rest of you do. Perhaps they engage in rituals and practices for their minds and their souls to inform them and propel them forward. Do you think it’s likely that they protect their energy and ensure that they give themselves the best chance of success possible, every single day, especially on the days when they don’t feel like it, as they know this is exactly when they need it the most? If this works for them then the chances are it will work for you!

HOW CAN YOU STOP SETTLING?

Accept that the decision to continue doing what makes you miserable is entirely yours -which also means that the choice to change it is also yours! Stop agreeing to things that you don’t actually want just because you think it’s the polite or expected thing to do. Value yourself more. Remind yourself that what you want matters most to you, and that’s how it should be. Observe when you find yourself tolerating the bad behaviour of others and making excuses for it. There is no excuse for it. Build better boundaries and be consistent in keeping them. Remember boundaries are not you changing the behaviour of others, they’re you changing how you let others impact on your life! Devise a very realistic plan with a credible schedule that you know you can keep to. With each goal assign a feeling to it asking ‘how will I feel when I achieve it?’

Finally, stop blaming everyone else for what isn’t working in your life. Take responsibility for the choices you are about to make and go all in. “The dust settles. I don’t.” It’s difficult to ascertain who originally came up with this quote but I know that I love everything about it and I encourage you to make it your new daily affirmation. You deserve better and deep down you already know that!

Niamh Ennis is Ireland’s leading Change & Transformation Coach and author of GET UNSTUCK who through her private practice, writings, programmes, workshops and podcast has inspired, activated and helped thousands of people to make significant changes in their lives. She is an accredited Personal, Leadership & Executive Coach and the Lead Coach in the IMAGE Business Club. Follow her on Instagram @1niamhennisGET UNSTUCK is available now for pre-order and will be released nationwide on November 11.

Photography by Pexels.