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Upshift By Downshifting Your Life

Freedom - Upshift by Downshifting your LifeDo you ever a step back to assess what you’re doing with your life is actually what you want to be doing? Are you spending enough quality time with those closest to you? Are you engaging in your favourite activities as much as you’d like to be? Are you making use of your creativity? It’s easy to get sucked into the societal way of thinking, do the 9-5 grind (or 8-6, or 7-7), and lose sight of what actually matters. A survey last year published shocking statistics revealing that two thirds of workers in the US and Canada were dissatisfied with their working lives. Given that we work 5 days out of seven for 48 weeks a year – that’s a massive chunk out of our lives to be dissatisfied isn’t it? We live in a fast-paced world but things are changing. Opportunities are opening up all over the place when we actually look for them – particularly online. You can upshift by downshifting your life. The idea of job security is out of the window and it’s encouraging people to think a little more outside of the box. I was made redundant in 2009 and I think it’s the best thing that happened to me. This article from Psychology Today really caught my attention as it rang very true…

Upshift By Downshifting Your Life

1. What are the things you value the most about your life? Choose 5 of these as a starting point, a basic model around which to structure the life you are trying to create.

2. What commitments are most important to you? Seriously evaluate which ones are in keeping with the 5 things you identified as most important to you? Think about completing your existing commitments and refusing to take on any new ones.

3. Assess the way you use your time. Most of us have a daily routine, with many fixed activities and chores. Evaluate which things are absolutely necessary and important for the 5 areas you identified as having the most value for your life.

4. How much time do you spend communicating? Assess the amount of time spent online, emailing, text messaging, and on your cell phone. How can you cut back on the amount of time you spend doing these activities? Again, it’s about high priorities.

5. Assess how much time you spend on a daily basis with TV, radio, internet, newspapers and magazines. Decrease your consumption to receive basic information from a worthy source, once a day. So much of what is presented in the media is repetitive and redundant.

I think the main problem with the societal way of thinking is that we’re not encouraged as we grow up to focus on our passions, our strengths and our innate talents. We’re not taught to think about how we can add value – we’re taught how to get jobs, so we can work our way up a slow corporate career ladder so by the time we’re 65 we’re exhausted, our health has deteriorated with 40 years of stress, we’re unfulfilled and then our incomes are stripped from us! Five weeks a year if you’re lucky to go on holiday? Something’s not quite there. Everyone has the capacity to add value to the lives of others in some shape of form. As creativity expert, Sir Ken Robinson says, we were all born creative, it’s just that most of us are educated our of our creativity. What do you think? Are you you thinking this is an unrealistic way of thinking?

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