5 ESSENTIALS FOR TRAILBLAZERS WHO WANT TO KICK BUTT

Devin Brooks
 

Let me tell you -

Over the past few years, I've realized more than anything that my mindset determines whether or not I will accomplish my goals. I'm not just talking about willpower (because it's actually bullshit, but more on that later). I mean the different ways in which I've learned to push through, and when to give myself a break.

I've found that there's five things that help me tremendously. These things helped me write over 140,000 words in about a year, learn InDesign, and create this blog. Only one of them is a product (surprise!).

Here they are. Five things every trailblazer should have to help along your badass journeys:

1. A PLANNER

No. Not a regular, dollar store planner. A heavy duty, sometimes-it-comes-in-a-binder-cause-it's-so-badass planner. Planners are your goals made reality. When you write it down, you tell your brain that you are committed to the tasks at hand.

My planner has a name. Meet Patricia:

Patricia Planner Photo
 
 

Patricia goes wherever I go. She follows me around and slaps me on the hand whenever I get off track. She has a nice pocket of bulleted space for each day of the week, as well as another portion for random note taking throughout the day. Patricia came from Anthropologie. Target is also great, as well as Paper Source.

You've got a lot to do each week, even if you think you have a date with your couch and Netflix. It's hard to remember everything. That's why you write it down.

Distraction can be a curse, and planners with hand-cramping details are the saving grace.

 

2. A SENSE OF HUMOR

The go-getter life isn't easy. A lot of projects will not go according to plan. You will stutter on your path, and stutter often. While you need to take yourself seriously, because you are doing great, passionate work, you also need to be able to laugh at yourself. Laughter keeps the crazy away.

When I lived in New York City, some weeks seemed like a big gaping hole waiting to swallow me. There were weeks when I thought fuck it, I quit. A good laugh was my savior, whether it was a friend's bad jokes or too much Saturday Night Live.

Laughing is just like crying, but with a happy edge: it's cathartic. Trust me: after a good laugh, you'll realize the world isn't going to end.

 

3. a good relationship with crying

Also: remember to cry. Allow yourself the experience of holing up under your covers or in your bathroom and letting wet all over your face. You may scoff, but we need to cry; we wouldn't have the ability to produce tears if we shouldn't use them every once in a while.

Sometimes we don’t even know how upset we are about a situation until we start to cry. Crying as an emotional reaction can help you put things into perspective. It can help you realize, Okay, this is important to me so I need to deal with it. Otherwise, it may just be too easy to push it aside.
— Shauna Mackenzie, huffington post

Some days the weight of your journey and your goals may kick your butt, and your confidence might even shatter.

That's all right. Here. Sit down on this fluffy couch. Have a cry. Then, afterwards, pick yourself back up, and get back to work.

 

4. SLEEP

For the love of all that is good get yourself some sleep. I know some of you are all-nighters. You may even feel pride in your under eye circles. I used to be like that. I'd get giddy thinking about it. I wasn't going to stop for anything. I was hard core.

Then my mood dropped. Then the crying started (the unproductive kind). Then I stopped working.

You need sleep. Your body is the vehicle by which you kick butt, and if you do not give it enough fuel, you are screwed.

The National Sleep Foundation recommends 7 - 9 hours of sleep for young adults and adults. No, silly, not per week. Every night.

If you're a chronic night owl, then slowly add an extra hour or two each week. You'll be amazed how much more productive, and happy, you are.

 

5. OPTIMISM AND skepticism IN EQUAL AMOUNTS

I believe a healthy woman is both a hard-head and a Disney Princess when she needs to be. Sometimes I let the romantic giddy ideas of success skip around in my head, and other times I put my foot down.

Why? It depends on the situation, and my intuition.

I worked at a boutique once where the boss rubbed me the wrong way from the start. He promised a lot of pretty things, but I turned on my skeptic no, sir attitude, and it served me well when he didn't come through.

On the other hand, I worked with a director once who talked about a future project he wanted to produce. I trusted him, due to previous experience, and let my hopes fly. Just like that: the project was made.

It can be hard, when you're figuring it out, to know what's good and what's full of, well, you know. Listen to what your intuition is telling you. If it seems too good to be true, then it is. You have no time to waste on people who will let you down.

FUTHER READING: 5 WAYS YOU'RE SCREWING UP YOUR LIFE

What about you? How do you create your ideal mindset?


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