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What Should I Do With My Life? 16 Steps to Design Your Ideal Life

We’ve all asked ourselves at some point – what should I do with my life? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one with this kind of dilemma and life crisis.

What Should I Do With My Life

For almost all of us, life can be a crisis in motion. No matter where we are or what we do, we’re always left with second thoughts, hopes, and more dreams. Have you ever found yourself wondering – what should I do with my life? We all have. But only a few of us can boast of living our dreams.

We all envision living the life of our dreams, one that actually makes us proud of ourselves for living that way. While this is easier said than done, it is possible. Is it an easy road? No, nothing worthwhile ever comes easy. As cliche as that sounds, it’s true.

If you want to live a better life, one you’ve always imagined, it’s going to take a lot of drive and dedication to get there. Most importantly, you should know what you want before finding a way to accomplish your dream life.

[Read: How to be really successful in life and take that next step of success]

What should I do with my life?

Firstly, before you go any further, don’t hate yourself every time you feel let down in life. It feels terrible, but at least you have a desire to do something with life. And that passion, that hope and dream can help you pursue your ambitions with renewed vigor.

When you’re stuck in a rut, clarity is what you need more than anything else. A muddled mind will not make you feel better; it’ll only confuse you.

You need to think clearly to be able to answer the question – what should I do with my life?

You have to know what you want and where you’re headed, and this is part of what makes having a better life more complicated. Many people get stuck in this part, so they never move forward.

So really ask yourself what you want and need, and if you’re willing to go through what it takes to get there. [Read: Feeling like a failure? 14 ways to find your will & change your mindset]

How to live your ideal life

Undoubtedly, we all want to be living our best lives. However, you have to be willing to do whatever it takes to live a life that makes you happy and proud.

For instance, you need to have a vision board or a list of goals to have a better insight into what you really want to achieve.

A list helps you envision the big picture of what you want your ideal life to look like. Another important thing you need is something many people also struggle with: finding their passion.

We all want to live our best lives by following our passion, but this is where the battle of practicality versus passion comes into the picture. [Read: How to find your passion – 17 secrets to seek it in simple things]

16 steps to do something with your life that’ll make you feel better

If you really want to change your life for the better or are confused about what you should do, just use these simple steps. It’s all you need to refocus and redirect your life to a better path.

1. Start today

If you feel like you need to do something with your life, don’t put that thought away. If you’re unsatisfied with your life, try to understand what you dislike about how you live your life. Understanding what bothers you will help you know what you really want better.

If you keep procrastinating or delaying making significant changes in your life, you’ll never achieve the kind of life that makes you genuinely happy. You can’t procrastinate when it comes to big life decisions either, as that’s a harmful habit you need to work on.

To start your new journey, ask yourself this vital question before moving to the next step.

What do you really want from life? Don’t moan or whine, or worse, say “I don’t know!” Just what the hell do you really want? It’s necessary to have this answer if you want to create a life that’s perfect for you. [Read: I don’t know what to do with my life – The voice to find your way]

2. Make a list of things you like

What are you good at? And how do you think you can get closer to your dream life by using the ability you’re good at? These two questions will help you create a list of things you can do with your life that’ll give you satisfaction and help you pursue your dream.

Remember, you don’t need to start a new Facebook to become a billionaire, nor do you need to be born with a silver spoon stuck in any of your orifices. Even a tiny start and a small idea can help you set the foundation for greater things in life.

Many of the wealthiest people in the world didn’t start out with a big idea immediately. They started small and created new paths to achieve success and happiness in life. Think Oprah or Richard Branson. They started really small by doing things they were passionate about, and today, they’re living the dream, aren’t they?

List out ten things you’re passionate about and pick your three favorite options to pursue. [Read: How to be perfect in everything you do and build a perfect life]

3. Beating the crossroads

Crossroads are the biggest confusions in life. They can trick you, confuse you into making the wrong choices and torment your mind for years when you feel like you’ve taken a few bad roads. But that’s what life is all about. It’s a series of crossroads.

Every day, you’re going to face your own crossroads, be it big or small. Sometimes, even the briefest conversation with someone on the street can impact you or change your life forever.

If you know what you desire from life *for most, it’s immeasurable wealth!* start to pick directions that can lead you towards attaining that life. This really all goes back to knowing what you want right from the start.

If you know the direction you want to go towards initially, you will struggle less with being torn on crossroads. [Read: How to stop yourself from getting jealous of someone else’s success]

4. Draw inspiration from others

Who are your favorite role models who have achieved what you wish to achieve? In all probability, you’d find their autobiography in a bookstore. Read their autobiographies, and learn from their mistakes and victories. You don’t need to retrace their steps to the tee.

But just understanding the hardships and the problems they endured on their way to success can help you prepare yourself for your own journey. Take inspiration from the happiest, successful, or famous people that you feel motivated by. Use their story as a motivation to keep moving forward and getting inspired even in simple ways.

And beyond autobiographies, find ways to stay inspired every day, be it by watching a happy fella on the television or spending a few minutes on Youtube every day watching inspirational speeches from regular folk or movies. [Read: 13 inspiring ways to bring out the best In yourself]

5. Follow your passion

Ah yes, passion. Remember how we said passion is an important aspect if you’re asking – what should I do with my life? You have to know what your passion is right from the beginning and if you don’t, you must find a way to search for your passion.

Feel free to try a bunch of different things and you never know, you just might find what you’re passionate about. Also, contrary to popular belief, you can have several passions. The tricky part of following your passion is pursuing that dream without giving up.

You may be keen to do something with your life, but you really can’t achieve it unless you spend a considerable part of your day working towards that goal.

You can’t climb the next step tomorrow unless you set the stepping stone today. Remember this line, and every day, indulge in at least one simple activity that’ll bring you closer to your dream. Before you know it, you would have achieved your dream life without even realizing it. After all, every journey begins with a single step and every achievement has to start somewhere.

6. It’s a phase

When you feel low or lost in life, remember it’s only a phase. Don’t look back at the happy times and wonder where they’ve gone. It won’t help you get ahead in life. This feeling of helplessness is just a phase, and it will all pass as long as you consciously work towards changing your life.

But at the same time, don’t pursue your dreams too aggressively right at the beginning. You’ll end up tiring yourself out. It’s just like working out. Work out too aggressively in the first week, and you’ll feel sore and sick of it. You have to balance it out if you want to avoid burning yourself out entirely.

Take it at your own pace. There’s really no point in working 20 hours a day, only to lose the passion and desire to achieve something better. [Read: The millennial burnout – Are you suffering from wanting to do too much?]

7. There are simple ways, never easy ways

Don’t ever choose the easy and sneaky path. Most people these days always look for the easiest way possible, be it about losing weight, impressing the opposite sex, finding happiness, or earning money. Don’t be that person. Remember that nothing worthwhile ever comes easy.

There isn’t a cheat code to attaining your dream life quickly. If you’re asking, what should I do with my life, you should realize that your goals and dreams can’t be attained the lazy way. You could have a bright idea, but you can’t achieve anything by cheating your way to success. You’ll end up crashing sooner than you think and feel worse about yourself.

If you want to succeed in life, be prepared to get your hands dirty and work hard along the way. Think out of the box if you must, but don’t look for easy ways by cheating someone else of what rightfully belongs to them. [Read: How to be successful in life]

8. Money or satisfaction, or both?

This is the balance between practicality and passion. Look, here’s the thing. Money is not everything, even if you want it to be. You can pursue a path where you’re guaranteed stable finances, but are you happy? Happiness should be a part of your equation however you see it.

Don’t pursue a dream with the sole intention of earning more money. It’s an empty dream. Even if making a lot more money is your idea, provide a worthwhile service and something that genuinely helps others. Deserve what you earn. By doing that, you’ll feel a stronger purpose that’s beyond money that’ll help you sleep better at night. [Read: The reason behind why you’re losing your friends]

9. Compromises and milestones

We can’t achieve the goals in our minds all the time. In other words, our goals are like a stream of water flowing downhill. You can point them in a direction, but you can’t control it. As we grow and evolve, our dreams also evolve to better suit our needs and desires.

Don’t forget your ultimate dreams just like the stream of water that finally reaches the bottom of the hill, but be flexible enough to make compromises with your milestones and the directions you choose. When you see a better opportunity, grab it with both hands.

And when you see yourself going in a direction that’s taking you away from your dreams, move away. Along this path, don’t forget to set milestones for your goals.

You should be in a better place every year than you were last year. It doesn’t always have to be related financially. Sometimes, even a few experiences that you learn can be worth a lot. [Read: Couple goals – 27 fake and real goals you should look for in a relationship]

10. Leave your comfort zone

In order to answer the question, what should I do with my life, you have to be capable of leaving your comfort zone. You can’t stay within familiarity and comfort, no matter how easy it is to. If you want to achieve success and your ideal life in any way, be willing to expand your horizons.

So be ready to feel uncomfortable often when expanding your horizons. Leaving your comfort zone also helps if you’re still on the path of finding your purpose and passion. If you don’t know what you want yet, the discomfort will take you to places you never expected. [Read: 5 powerful steps to break out of your comfort zone]

11. Accept rejection and failure

This is something many people haven’t come to terms with, which is what hinders your road to success. If you want to live a better life, be prepared for several moments of rejection and failure. Do you honestly think that all successful people got to where they are today without failing at least once?

It took them several rejections before getting on the path of success, and the same would happen for you. You need to run towards rejection and mistakes instead of running away from them because only then will you be able to learn from each one. [Read: 8 positive ways to deal with rejection in any scenario]

12. Prepare for a long journey ahead

You have a long journey ahead, so expect that you won’t achieve your dreams and goals overnight. Success never comes easy, so you have to be willing to have the patience and dedication to achieve your goals.

Don’t expect perfection or progress overnight, as that puts a lot of pressure on yourself to get it right the first time around. It will take a lot of trial and error to reach your goals and the life that makes you happy, but this long road ahead will be worth it in the end.

13. Appreciate the uncertainty

Life will always be uncertain, no matter what. There will be aspects and outcomes you can never control, and that’s okay. If you’re asking, what should I do with my life, the key is to appreciate all the unknown that comes with it.

Life will be full of surprises, and that’s what makes life so mysterious and worthwhile. Appreciate not knowing what will happen a few years from now and which one of your goals you would have achieved by then. It might not be favorable to consider, but it’s a normal part of life. [Read: The dangers of relationship uncertainty and how to move on]

14. Stop trying to control everything

The more you try to control everything, the more frustrated you’ll become. So if you’re serious about turning your life around for the better, you need to stop trying to control every part of it. There will be things out of your control, and not everything will pan out according to your favor.

Again, this is part of what makes life so mysterious and worthwhile. Rather than controlling everything, let go of your need for things to happen a particular way.

If a specific path is meant for you, as long as you play your part in working towards your goals and dreams, it will happen eventually. But you won’t achieve success faster by being a control freak. [Read: 20 glaring signs you have a control freak in you]

15. Get yourself closer to your goal each day

You have to wake up with intention each day if you’re going to turn your life around. Whatever your goal might be, you need to actively seek your goals every day. It doesn’t have to be in life-changing ways, but you have to move towards your goals the best way you can.

For instance, if your goal is to find a career you’d thrive in, it’s crucial that you do things like go to job interviews or find out what path you really want to pursue.

16. Don’t hold your life back

In pursuing your dreams, don’t neglect your life or your loved ones. It’s good to be ambitious and determined, but not at the cost of losing your present life. Don’t sacrifice so much that you’ll end up hating yourself for taking the steps you’ve taken. You need to still live in the present moment rather than being obsessed with the future.

Otherwise, you’ll miss a lot of moments with your loved ones and before you know it, these moments have already passed. If you have a good day job, stick to it but spend a few hours every day bringing yourself closer to your dreams. If you spend a few hours of alone time with your lover every day, don’t give up on that.

Find ways to pursue your dream without too many sacrifices. We know you think sacrifice is everything, but it shouldn’t come at the expense of what life actually means – which is love, happiness, and memories. [Read: Making the choice between love and career]

What should you do with your life?

When you’re asking yourself this question, it’s essential that you make the necessary changes to turn your life around. Remember that nothing worthwhile ever comes easy.

So if you’re serious about figuring your life out, it takes a lot of consistency, patient, and dedication to do so.

Use these steps, and they will change your life forever. After all, it’s easy to wonder what you should do with your life. But it’s a lot easier to achieve that dream if you take those small steps. You never know, you could eventually be living your ideal life before you know it. 

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Keith Brown
With a penchant for downing more energy drinks than is sane, Keith Brown is a bartender and amateur mixologist who geeks about superheroes and spends way too mu...
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