Achieving External Success
• Manage your finances. Learning how to manage your money will help ensure your financial stability over time, regardless of your income.
• Keep track of your expenses. Subtract your monthly expenses from your monthly income to determine how much spending money you have available each month. Also, review your bank statements often and notice where you spend your money. This will help you prevent over-spending and ensure that your bank statements are correct.
• Understand your income. When calculating your income, be sure to take into account the federal, state, and social security taxes that will be deducted from your gross pay. Don’t overlook miscellaneous deductions, such as health insurance premiums, savings bonds and loan payments. The resulting number is your net pay, which is what you end up taking home with you.
• Cut back. If you are not earning enough money to cover your net expenses, then look into your expenses to see where you might be able to cut back.
• Save money. Every month, you should deposit some of your money into a savings account. Consider asking your employer to directly deposit a portion of your income into your savings account.
Invest cautiously: If your workplace offers a retirement savings plan, put your excess incomes in that.
Manage your time. Putting off important tasks until the last minute can cause you unnecessary stress, and increase the likelihood of errors and negligence. Manage your time so that you have enough time to complete tasks effectively.
o Use a planner to help keep you organized throughout the day, week, and month.
o Set reminders on your smart phone and make use of its electronic timer for better time management.
o Make a list of all the things you need to do in a given day, and check off each task as you complete it. This will help you stay organized and motivated.
Achieving Internal Success
• Enjoy the present moment. If you are constantly dwelling on the past or daydreaming about the future, you are missing out on the present moment. Remember that the past and the future are simply illusions, and that real life takes place here and now.
• Start paying attention to negative thoughts so that you can move on from them and enjoy the present moment. If a negative thought arises in your head, then acknowledge it, label it a negative thought, and then let it fade away.Regular meditation or mindfulness exercises can help to make this feel more natural for you.
Get in the habit of paying attention to small details around you. Appreciate the feeling of the sun on your skin, the sensation of your feet walking on the ground, or the artwork in the restaurant you are eating in. Noticing things like these will help you silence a rambling mind and appreciate every moment.
• Don’t compare your own life to other peoples’ lives. Unfortunately, many people measure their own success by comparing it to the success of those around them. If you want to feel accomplished and happy, you will have to value your life for its own sake.
• Many people have the tendency to compare the low points of their own lives with the high points of other peoples’ lives. Remember that no matter how perfect somebody’s life may seem, behind closed doors everybody deals with tragedy, insecurity, and other difficulties.Pay attention to and limit your use of social media to help you remember this.
• Rather than comparing yourself with people who are “better off” than you, think about all of the people who are homeless, chronically ill, or living in poverty. This will help you appreciate what you have rather than feeling sorry for yourself. Try engaging in volunteer work to help make this more apparent. This can help to boost your happiness and confidence as well.
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