In this article we will talk about five essential strategies to become the best version of yourself.
A few weeks ago, I published a poll on Instagram, asking users what kind of book they would buy. They had the following three options:
- A book that would help them better understand relationships;
- A book that would help them build the best, most attractive version of themselves;
- Or a book that would teach them to build the life of their dreams.
The majority of people answered they would buy a book that explained to them how to build the most attractive version of themselves.
So I thought that, before even writing a book about the topic, it would be a good idea to write an article about which steps someone can take to become the best, most attractive version of themselves.
What follows are five strategies you can use to massively improve your life and relationships.
1. How to Become the Best Version of Yourself: Have Less Respect For What Others Think of You
“Your opinion is not my reality.”
— Steve Maraboli
Most people are self-centered.
Don’t get me wrong here, this is not necessarily a bad thing.
However, if you think about it, most of us are often busy worrying about our own lives, all the tasks we have, what we should wear, what we should say in every situation, how we should talk.
So we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about others — I mean, judging others.
Perhaps, we spend too much time worrying about what others may think of us — while we shouldn’t, because they are too busy with their own lives, and thinking about what others may think of them, exactly as we do. It’s like an endless circle.
Let me give you an example.
Picture this: X, Y, and Z meet for a coffee. X is worried about what Y and Z may think of him, but they couldn’t care less, because in that moment they are being self-conscious too; they are too concerned about their own appearance, their body language, and their words, to actually even spend time and energy worrying about X outfit or what X says.
Sure, they might think “Nice outfit!” “X’s joke was not funny at all,” or “What an awful t-shirt,” but after a few seconds they will go back to their main thought: themselves.
Remember this: most of the time people don’t give your actions, your outfit, or your words the importance you think. They might say “How selfish,” or “How vulgar,” but then forget about what you did, what you said, or what you wore, just after three minutes.
This is why you should have less respect for what others think about you, by giving less importance to it. Always do what feels right to you, and remember that what someone might say or think about you is just their opinion.
2. Normalize Setting Boundaries
“Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves even when we risk disappointing others.”
– Brené Brown
According to IPFW/Parkview Student Assistance Program:
“A boundary is a limit or space between you and the other person; a clear place where you begin and the other person ends. The purpose of setting a healthy boundary is, of course, to protect and take good care of you.”
Your time and energy are priceless. As life coach Dana Humphrey explains, “It’s important to learn how to say no to things that overextend you and instead make time for things that matter more.”
“When you do this, you slow down life in a wonderful way. Creating boundaries and learning to say no also helps to bring your goals into sharper focus. You will feel happier and more productive,” adds Humphrey.
Boundaries are essential to building healthy relationships, and to make sure you’re protecting your emotional and mental health.
And they’re a great tool to help others understand which behaviors you can tolerate and which you won’t, instead.
Through boundaries you educate people to respect you, and teach them how you want to be treated.
This is why this step is essential to build the best, most attractive version of yourself.
3. Practice Gratitude
Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.
— Eckhart Tolle
If one of the most common self-help tips is to practice gratitude, there’s a reason.
As Humphrey explains: “A grateful heart attracts more joy, love and prosperity. The power of gratitude helps us express thankfulness and appreciation, which impacts the overall experience of happiness.
A journal is a great way to jot down blessings that come to mind and reflect on them later on.”
As Amy Morin explained in an article published in Psychology Today, gratitude improves physical and psychological health. And I couldn’t agree more with that.
When you focus on the things you truly feel grateful for, you influence your mood, because it’s very difficult to feel negative emotions and gratitude at the same time.
This means that when you concentrate on feeling grateful you are getting rid of negative feelings, even if it’s just temporarily it helps to positively influence your mood.
As a result you’ll focus on positive things, which will help you feel more positive emotions.
A great and easy way to practice gratitude is to start your day writing down a list of things you feel particularly grateful for. Consider it a pleasant, smart, and quick self-care habit that you can also repeat during the day.
4. Indulge in Self-Care and Focus on Personal Growth
Do you know what successful people usually have in common? They take care of themselves and are into personal growth.
That’s how they achieve great things and live their best life.
So consider self-care as a mandatory step.
See, without self-care you won’t have the energy you need to work towards your goals, to be there for your loved ones, to chase your dreams, and to truly enjoy your life.
To put it another way, without self-care you can’t build the best version of yourself.
There are thousands of healthy habits you can incorporate into your daily routine, you just have to find what works for you.
Here are some ideas:
- Drink a warm herbal tea, add some organic fresh lemon juice and a piece of ginger;
- Call a loved one;
- Spend time with a group of people who make you feel good about yourself — these can be your family, your friends, or even your colleagues, the important thing is they add positive energy to your life;
- Spend an afternoon in a spa;
- Eat a healthy meal;
- Take a long walk — this may sound obvious, but always worth mentioning;
- Do 50 squats;
- Meditate ten minutes;
- Or anything as little and simple as drinking some water.
5. Practice Empathic Listening
Active listening is important. However, it’s not enough.
Do you know when people actually feel listened to? It’s when you make them feel understood. And you only can achieve that through empathic listening.
Empathic listening is the art of listening with the intent of truly, deeply understand others. As Stephen Covey mentioned in his book — well, in his masterpiece — The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,
“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.”
People who use empathic listening, instead, make sure they listen to everything someone says — that is, they don’t just select pieces of information. They make sure they understand the context, the whole conversation and they also read the other person’s body language.
For all these reasons, empathic listening is key to build healthy and meaningful relationships.
How to Become the Best Version of Yourself: Final Thoughts
We were taught that focusing on ourselves is selfish, and that good people are the ones who focus mostly on others. However, that’s not the whole truth.
You can be a good person even if you focus a bit more on yourself. In fact, you can become the best version of yourself only if you put yourself first, and it’s not as bad and selfish as they told you.
Most of the habits that will help you build the best, most attractive version of yourself may be perceived as selfish by others, but the reality is they’re not. In fact, they’re healthy. To sum up, here are the strategies discussed in this article:
- Have less respect for what others think of you;
- Normalize setting boundaries, even when that means disappointing someone;
- Practice gratitude, even more than once a day;
- Indulge in self-care — this one is mandatory;
- Practice empathic listening, it’s key to build meaningful relationships.
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