When was the last time you checked in with yourself? Have you stopped lately to think: Am I happy? Do I feel fulfilled? Am I content exactly where I am? You may find yourself mindlessly moving through your day with the fervour of Hussain Bolt, and the actual solid presence of a man in a tinfoil hat staring at the sky, not being aware of what's really happening—like all of us sometimes do, daily. But with the ubiquity of metal and emotional distress in men—and women, of course—we do need to slow the hell down, quiet our minds and have a mental check up with No.1. We all need to make sure we're aware of what's going on. So, as it's coming toward the end of the year, and we're winding down for winter, it's a great time for a little self reflection, guys!
1. What have been your own personal stressors this year?
What really fuc***g pissed you off this year? What pushed you into a state of unrest? What was it that, despite your best efforts, kept you awake at night? Thankfully, I'm not in a position where I'm lying awake at 3 a.m worrying. Not anymore! But for those of you who are, listen to your gut and hear what's stressing you out. When you know exactly what, or who it is, maybe it's time for some action, potentially, healing some of that stress before moving into 2019.
2. How are my relationships affecting me?
Have you heard of the Four F's? Friends, Family, Finance and Fucking! Apparently, if you and your beau, or babe, can discuss these topics openly and honestly, in perpetuity, your relationship is golden and you can work through most things. Do you have healthy friendships? Are there any toxic people floating around in your circle? So if it's romantic, or platonic, or even a family member, have a little chat with yourself and find out if you're getting, and giving, the best in your relationships.
3. Who are your five people and are they the right ones for you?
We've been told we're the average of the five people we spend the most time with. Pretty similar to point #2, but I thought this deserved a little section of its own. So, who is it? Work colleagues, partners, parents, roommates, or for you digital nomads out there, your five people might change on a monthly basis! Even though I work remotely I would say my workmates do fill a lot of my time—even though we work from home it's like we're together all day. Pretty handy for those of us who suffer from cabin fever and for those extroverts who derive energy from others. Other than that, a circle of friends, and, due to my consumption of podcasts there are a few people who are always in my ears. These days, Brian Keane—for the most part! Make sure you are around the right type of people. Their energy and efforts affect you more than you might realise.
4. Am I doing enough?
Quite a general one, applicable to fitness, personal life, work. In the latter, for instance, let's not say are you doing enough, let's ask are you working smart enough? You may need to batch work or do some calendar blocking, in order to make sure you're being productive. In relationships, you may need to be more present with your girl or guy. Yes, lads, put down the phone and have some real face time with your significant other. Letting online followers take precedence over your partner, when you're out for dinner, ain't healthy. It does seem like our phones may be killing our sex lives! And in fitness—this one is written with myself in mind—are you getting off the damn couch emough and getting your ass to the gym?
5. What should I do less / more of?
It's no big secret what the key to happiness is: stop doing shit that makes you miserable! Leave the job that makes you tear up in the car on the way to the office; leave that partner who disrespects you or treats you like you shit on the regular; workout more if you hate the way you look naked. Stop doing, or taking part in situations, that leave you with a visceral feeling of dread and disdain. Now remember: there are things that make you uncomfortable in a really positive way; don't get those things mixed up.
6. What's your soul job?
What's your mission? Your purpose? What North Star are you following? Let's be really honest here, guys. Really. You know what it is. Some of you may act all coy, and unassuming, making out that you don't know what it is. That may be a touch of fear to go after the life you want. But for us, all of us, on some core level we all know what it is. Just listen; then, follow.
7. What are you grateful for?
To most of you, gratitude is just a simple thank you to the barista for your coffee, or a cheers to the bartender on a Saturday evening. But gratitude as a facet of your day, can change your brain. Whether it's gratitude letters, meditations or journals, feeling a big old thank you to the universe (or whatever you call it) can modify your mindset on a incredibly profound level. I do attempt to practice it daily, for my career, my relationship, family and all the other amazing blessings I, somehow, seem to have gathered; but it's a tough practice to maintain. So, what are you grateful for?
As always, I want to hear from you! What have you been asking yourself lately? Leave a comment or slide into my DMs on social.