Do You, Boo Boo: How to Take Control of Your Life in 5 Simple Steps

Make the world your runway and strut it with confidence!
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Eripitan - University of Central Oklahoma
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Make the world your runway and strut it with confidence!
Photo Credit- ELLE

Kendall Jenner in the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, achieving one of her lifelong dreams -- Photo Credit: ELLE

“Do your thing. Do it unapologetically. Don’t be discouraged by criticism. You probably already know what they’re going to say. Pay no mind to the fear of failure. It’s far more valuable than success. Take ownership, take chances, and have fun. And no matter what, don’t ever stop doing your thing.” –Asher Roth

In life, it feels like we spend more time trying to make it through each day than we do actually seizing each day and chasing our ultimate goal: to grow and become more than we could have ever imagined.

I know life is hard and yes, we're all busy. However, it's worth trying to improve yourself as a person and grow despite your day-to-day circumstances. And I'm here to help you out. By following these five steps, you can begin to transform yourself into the best version of you, day by day. I won't say it'll be easy, but I do say it'll be worth it. 

Here we go!

Step 1: Accept your flaws.

body image and flaws

Body Image and Female perception -- Photo Credit: ELLE

I know that this is a big, difficult bullet point for many of us, but it is so vital that we accept our limitations if we are going to grow. We are all born different from one another and I think that we should remind ourselves of that and embrace those differences in healthy ways. 

For example, one of my most bothersome "flaws" is not being able to draw well, no matter how hard I try. For the longest time, I was upset about this because I love art. However, I now make up for it in different aspects of my life. Instead of drawing, which always frustrated me, I’ve learned to showcase my artistic side through fashion! And I love it. Style comes much more naturally to me, and I have so much fun playing with clothes and improving my fashion sense. 

I apply this strategy to many facets of my life. Instead of thinking that something is wrong with me, I think of a way I can accept that flaw and/or channel my energy into something I can improve.

Your natural attributes are things that make you unique and beautiful; never let anyone tell you any different. Look at yourself daily and give yourself words of encouragement before you start your day. It pays to be on your own team in life, so be your own biggest cheerleader and work with, instead of against yourself.

Step 2: Find your passion.

Find your Passion

A book to write down your thoughts.

Find that “thing” in your life that lights a fire under your soul and makes your thoughts race off like little children when they hear an ice cream truck on a hot summer day. That thing will not only shape you as an individual, but it will push you into all of the right directions. Your unique passions can be anywhere and in almost anything – you just have to put the work in to find them.

I know, it's easier said than done. But if you examine yourself, you can gain some valuable clues. Your passion might lie in things that you love to do, love to watch or maybe even love to eat. Think about times in your life when you get lost in an activity and time seems to fly by - those are areas to consider more closely.

It also helps to brainstorm ideas and ask friends and family members to help you and give you perspective. Sometimes our loved ones can see us more clearly than we see ourselves. Take their ideas into consideration and start exploring. You may not find your passions overnight, but if you put in work, you'll get there eventually.

Step 3: Control your thoughts.

Meditation/Control thoguhts

A stylish female meditating.

I know that this sounds a little silly, but trust me on this one. We are our own biggest critics and I believe that sometimes we stop ourselves from reaching our fullest potential. As humans, we are always striving to reach perfection, clearly knowing we’ll never make it there.

Unfortunately, we can’t be perfect, but we can stop worrying about our imperfections and bringing ourselves down. Instead of critiquing your abilities and skills, think positively and counteract your bad thoughts with good ones! 

Here's an easy exercise to try: For every negative thought that you notice yourself thinking, balance it with three deliberate positive thoughts. I promise you, you’ll soon begin to notice that you’re growing a positive mindset. Spend enough time doing this, and you’ll notice that everyone around you starts to become more positive too. Positivity spreads like wildfire, so go ahead and light the match!

Step 4: Filter criticism.

ignore the haters tshirt

Ignore the haters. -- Photo Credit: Society 6

Building off of my last point, criticism is something that can make or break us. We talked about internal criticism, so now let's discuss external criticism. You know, the stuff that comes from other people, both well-meaning and not. 

The best way to approach external criticism is to evaluate it before you internalize it. Ask yourself: Is this criticism good for me, bad for me, or just plain ugly, coming from someone that doesn’t have my best interests in mind?

Here's a guide to help you decide which kind it is:

  • Good criticism (or constructive criticism) is the kind where you can take what has been given to you and apply it positively to your life. This is the kind of criticism that you would expect from friends, family members and maybe even co-workers. It's the stuff that will help you grow.
  • Bad criticism is the kind of criticism that doesn’t help you and makes you feel more stressed about your situation. It's not immediately actionable, though it may be well-meaning. This type of criticism can come from anybody, but it is the kind of criticism that you should weigh lightly on your shoulders and not take to heart.
  • Ugly criticisms are the critiques that don’t have your best interest in mind and that hurt your feelings. This type of criticism should not affect your ultimate goal and quite frankly, just needs to be brushed off of your shoulders. As stated before, this type of criticism can come from anybody, but know this: the people that are truly in support of you, won’t hurt you. You'll know this kind when you see it - it either has a particularly nasty sting or it discourages you from following your dreams and being yourself.

Step 5: Follow your dreams.

Walking and following your dreams

A woman making her way downtown, walking fast and following her dreams.

I know that everyone has been told this cliché line every day since they were born, but it is one of my favorites so I'm going to repeat it. It is so important to follow your dreams. This ties in closely with finding your passion in life - oftentimes, the two will intertwine.

No matter the size of your goals, hold onto them and make a path to achieve them. Don't let anyone take them from you. Whether you think your dreams will bring you a large sum of money or just a glimpse of happiness, go for them wholeheartedly. You only get one life, so live it as big as your heart desires - no regrets. Believe in yourself, believe in your abilities and most of all, believe in your heart's desires. You are a GOAL DIGGER, so follow your dreams and conquer!

Get out there and work!

Of course, these steps won't be achieved overnight. They will take a lot of time and effort, but don’t give up. You are the "#GirlBoss" of your destiny and I believe in your strength, beauty, and your life! Go out there into the world and make a name for yourself; use these steps to transform your life and others around you, and watch the pieces to your ultimate life, fall into place. I promise you, you won’t regret it. Now, go out there and WORK IT!

What do you think? How do you run your life?

Do you ladies think that these are valuable tips to a successful life? How do you chase your dreams instead of just living day-to-day? 

As always, please tell me what you think below! Let's discuss and help each other chase those big goals in life.