Is it worth it to go after your goals? The easier way to accomplish anything
If you’re in midlife and you are ready to “make the most of your second half,” then you might have some big goals – things you really want to do!
So, you start planning. And then you look at your goals and think, “ugh, this is going to be hard. It’s going to take a lot from me to accomplish this thing or have this dream of mine become a reality.”
And you can get really overwhelmed.
We might even think – Is it even worth it to go after my goals and dreams if I’m just going to be more stressed?
Well, we definitely don’t want to add a lot of stress to our shoulders. Stress, as we know, can be really bad for our overall health and wellbeing.
But, considering everything else in life – maintaining a home, caring for children/grandchildren, pets, or parents, your career/job, relationships, finances, social activities, appointments, etc. etc. etc. – adding more to your plate can seem HUGE.
And, we aren’t “spring chickens” anymore! (Not that being a spring chicken ever meant that I didn’t feel overwhelmed!)
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The good news is that going after your goals and dreams – even in midlife – does not have to be stressful. It doesn’t have to be hard or take a ton of time or energy.
There IS an easy way to get things done! So, YES, it is worth it to go after your dreams and goals!
It helps to choose the BEST tools or methods to help you reach those goals and have those dreams come true!
And the best tools/methods are LEVERAGED.
What is LEVERAGED?
I learned about “leveraged habits” from Demir & Carrie Bentley of Lifehack Method. Something is LEVERAGED when it helps make all other things easier or unnecessary.
So, choosing tools/methods that are leveraged makes it easier to accomplish other things.
One of the practices that I find to be leveraged is MINDFULNESS MEDITATION.
The benefits of mindfulness are so great that there is no denying that practicing mindfulness meditation makes your other responsibilities and habits and life in general easier.
And, when your responsibilities are easier, there will be more room for adding things to your plate, like going after your goals and dreams.
If you want an easier way to get things done, keep reading to find out how mindfulness meditation is key.
What does mindfulness meditation do for a person who practices it regularly?
4 Reasons Why Mindfulness Meditation Makes it Easier to Get What We Want
1. Boosts our immune system’s ability to fight off illness.
This is huge! Because when we are healthier, other things in life are easier, obviously.
If we are fighting a physical illness, our bodies are using a lot of energy in that fight. Think about when you just have a common cold. Even then, you don’t have the energy to get stuff done.
So if there is a way to boost our immune system, I say, why not – especially if it’s something that isn’t hard, doesn’t take a lot of time, and doesn’t cost you anything!
2. Improves our sleep quality.
“Sleep is essential to every process in the body, affecting our physical and mental functioning the next day, our ability to fight disease and develop immunity, and our metabolism and chronic disease risk. Sleep is truly interdisciplinary because it touches every aspect of health” (Erica Jansen, University of Michigan, School of Public Health).
Wow – did you know just how important sleep is? In the past, I did not do well if I didn’t get enough sleep.
I don’t always need quite as much anymore, but I have learned that there can be some really bad effects on our quality of life if we don’t get enough good quality sleep and have a consistent sleep routine.
So, practicing mindfulness meditation is also leveraged because if our sleep quality is improved, our wellbeing is also improved, which in turn makes things in life easier! (Are you sold yet??)
3. Increases our positive emotions.
Did someone say HAPPIER? When I’m in a bad mood or feeling angry about something, I am definitely not able to focus as well as if I’m in a good mood.
I guess there are times when you could use anger to motivate you, but it’s not sustainable.
Normally, if we’re feeling some difficult emotions, we tend to get stuck. We might be dwelling on the difficulties and ruminating.
In those cases, a lot of the time our bodies become tense and closed up in a way. So, it’s just more difficult to do anything really productive.
Generally, feeling positive emotions is just so much more motivating! Our bodies and minds become more open and energetic.
Again, another reason why mindfulness meditation is leveraged.
4. Reduces stress.
One study said mindfulness meditation might even be as good as antidepressants for fighting depression. Being stressed out or burned out takes a huge toll on us.
Our bodies tense up and it can really increase inflammation leading to feeling shitty and even to illness.
Being depressed is a whole other story. It can keep us from enjoying life, let alone getting things done that need to be done. (Read about everything I tried for my depression, and what worked for me.)
Reducing stress leads to many benefits like:
- Sleeping better.
- Controlling your weight.
- Having less muscle tension.
- Being in a better mood.
- Getting along better with family and friends.
- Improving your digestion.
- Lowering your blood pressure.
These things all lead to overall improved wellbeing. So, if practicing mindfulness reduces stress, you’ll also get this long list of benefits. Now that’s really leveraged!
And, there are actually even more benefits:
Mindfulness meditation increases parts of the brain that are linked to learning, memory, emotion regulation, and empathy.
And it helps us focus, tune out distractions, improves memory, attention skills, and decision making.
If I am able to reap all of these benefits, even just a little bit, then my overall well-being and satisfaction with life has just improved!
But is mindfulness meditation easy?
We’re all looking for “life hacks” right? We always want to find the easy way to get things done. I know I do!
So, we know that practicing mindfulness meditation will help, and yes, it is easy.
The most important thing is to be consistent with the practice. Just like any habit, the more consistent you are, the more benefits you will receive.
But, it does NOT take a lot of time, energy, or effort.
And, don’t you need to be a Buddhist or Spiritual guru. There’s no prerequisite to practicing mindfulness meditation.
One of the easiest ways to get started is to follow along with a guided meditation. Below are a couple that I found that can be a good way to get started.
Mindfulness meditation is just one way of practicing mindfulness though.
Mindfulness itself is “paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, without judgment.”
Sign up to get on the Midlife Pursuits Mailing List and get FREE Month of Mindfulness Calendars each month. Each of these calendars includes ideas of how to bring mindfulness into your daily life. And these are quick super simple things that you can do, in addition to meditation, to be more mindful and reap the benefits of the practice!
You don’t have to be overwhelmed! Yes, we have to do lists a mile long, in addition to things we WANT to do.
So is it worth it to go after what you want? YES, it’s 100% worth it to go after what you want – even if you’re over 40, over 50, or even over 75! Don’t think about all there is “to do.” You can make it easy for yourself!
You might also find this post helpful: Basic Goal Setting Essentials.
Let me know what you thought of this post. And, hey – join us in our private Facebook Group – Over 40~Making the Most of Midlife. We talk about things like this and touch on lots of other topics related to well-being in midlife. (It’s a totally kind and supportive group!)
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