The phrase live life on your terms can be received as a bit vague. What does it even mean to live life on your terms? Perhaps you think you already are, in which case, you’re probably very happy and fulfilled. However, for many of us, this is not the case. To truly live life on your terms, means to live it according to what makes you happy. It means to only do what you want to do. But how many of us can answer what we truly want?
Everyone will have a different definition of what living life on your terms means. In its simplest form, it means to live life according to your values. This is when you know what’s important to you and you align all of your actions in each area of your life according to those values. You rarely compromise your happiness for others, you are fully present in everything you do and you probably radiate inspiration and empowerment.
I was recently watching Game of Thrones and my favourite character was Bronn. He was Tyrion’s bodyguard when he first appeared on the show. The reason I loved him, was that he was consistently, unashamedly true to himself throughout the entire show. He never wavered his values, he always reminded people of exactly who he was and they all just had to deal with it. And they did. Even when people tried to change him as he became more important in his stature, he didn’t falter on his values. He remained the same.
Most of us think we live by our values but then our fulfilment doesn’t align. We don’t feel happy, we struggle and we get caught up in mundane routines that make it harder to make changes.
Our values are not set in stone as such. We can change them (and we should) whenever we want. But we have to know we need to do this. When you experience a period of growth which will usually show up as you feeling stuck, this is when you can adjust your values.
Put simply, just ask yourself, what is important to me now? What is important to me so that I can feel fulfilled? What do I want?
One of the first questions I’ll ask a potential client is “what do you want?” I ask this after they have told me of their life story, what they’re struggling with and all the good work they’ve already done. Asking this simple but difficult question is their first experience of the transformative power of coaching.
Very rarely do I get a client who happily answers the question. Sometimes I can see the client struggling that I offer them to close their eyes and just imagine. But there can be so much resistance. They start talking for the sake of talking. Then they might re-tell me what’s been happening in their life.
But I want to know what they want. I want to know how I can help them get there. They are so used to not knowing what they truly want or daring to know what they truly want, that this question scares them.
Knowing what you want from your life is the first step to living life on your terms. So ask yourself “what do I want?” Then ask yourself “what do I need to do to get there?” For any excuses that might come up, ask yourself “what will stop me from achieving what I want?” Below is an example of what this can look like in the major areas of your life.
Try it for yourself and you will live life on your terms too.
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