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There’s no doubt that successful leaders face challenges with almost every step they take. While overcoming those challenges is pertinent to their growth, what truly defines their success is the challenges they impose on themselves through questioning their own thoughts and actions, even when no one else does.
By doing this, leaders become their own biggest critics and hold themselves accountable for their growth (or lack thereof) so they can stay on course to achieving the many goals they’ve set for themselves.
Centuries ago, Socrates said that the unexamined life is not worth living. He got it right as his words stand true to this day. In order to unlock our full potential and achieve our greatest dreams, we need to take a step back every now and then and examine the kinds of lives we’re living.
Here are 5 questions you should ask yourself every night before you sleep to keep you and your goals in check.
1. What was the best thing that happened to me today?
It’s part of human nature to get caught up with and fuss over the negatives that take place in our everyday lives, and, as a result, we forget to acknowledge all the positives. It’s important to let go, stop worrying about the things that are out of reach and focus on what we have. Being grateful for what I have has opened so many more doors of opportunity for me and I’m sure it’ll do the same for you.
Before you go to bed every night, remember to count your blessings!
2. Did I discover anything new about myself today?
Although there’s probably no one who knows us better than we know ourselves, there’s still a lot we don’t know. We learn more about ourselves as we come across new experiences and challenges. Some self-discoveries can even take us by surprise. When I was looking for a job while homeless in Phuket, I landed a marketing executive position in a real estate company. Despite having no previous experience in the industry, I realized that I was a quick learner and took advantage of my new-found trait to become the best salesperson I could be.
We learn new things about ourselves every day, through ourselves and through others. These new things should be acknowledged as they can change the course of your life in ways you never imagined.
3. Did I step out of my comfort zone today?
Trying new things not only kills boredom, but it also helps us overcome fear and grow. We discover more of what’s right for us and head in the direction of a future that’s best for our needs, wants, and goals. If we stay within the confines we’ve set for ourselves, we’re merely settling and that’s not a winner’s attitude.
Make it a habit to do something new every day, even if it’s just trying a new restaurant for lunch instead of your usual place. Challenge yourself with minor activities to start with and you’ll see some of the best things happen when you stray from your usual routine.
4. Did I work toward my goals today?
The discipline we apply to our goals allows us to attract wealth and unlimited opportunities in life, which is why we should work toward our goals every day. If we don’t, there’s a pretty good chance we’ll go off track and eventually forget about our dreams until one day we find ourselves regretting the lost time and missed opportunities.
If you want to achieve something big, start small. Break down your big goals into smaller, easier to achieve ones that you can set as your daily and weekly goals. Write them down on your planner and make sure you complete them. At the end of each day, always ask yourself if you’ve completed what you were supposed to.
5. What can I do better tomorrow?
Everyone has room for growth, even if you’re the richest, best-loved or smartest person alive. If we remained static, life would be boring. While reflecting on the day we’ve just had, it’s important to ask ourselves, “What can I do better?” Being able to answer the question doesn’t just mean you’re aware of your shortcomings, but it also means you’re aware of the true potential that you haven’t fully tapped into.
Once you’ve figured out what you can do better, start trying to do it better from the very next day onwards. As Thomas Jefferson said, “Never put off for tomorrow, what you can do today.”
When practiced as a daily habit, self-reflection is extremely powerful. By taking the time to ask yourself the important questions above, you can gain a better understanding of your strengths, weaknesses, emotions, and what drives you. Once you do, you’ll be in control of your journey.
About Andres Pira – philanthropist, real estate tycoon, author, speaker, and global citizen. Andres Pira enjoys living in Thailand, where his journey began from Homeless to Billionaire.
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