Can you really change your life today?
Yes, you can. Today and every day, if you embrace change, rather than hide from it. This article is about how you can make change a force for good in your life, and achieve greater success and happiness.
You may want to get slimmer and fitter, find a better job, overcome an addiction, pass an exam, win the respect of your peers, start a business, stop self-destructive habits, live longer, win at a sport, move on from past pain, overcome anxiety, learn a language, find the perfect partner, or you might simply have a yearning for a more fulfilling life.
Whatever it is you want to achieve, you will find not only inspiration in these pages but also effective techniques you can put into practice, right now, today.
As I write these words, it’s winter. But where I am is not cold. I am sitting on my terrace in shorts and a tee-shirt. Four hundred yards in front of me, the tranquil Atlantic Ocean glistens under a blue sky. I see herons and egrets in the fields. I see sand dunes backing onto a stunningly beautiful beach. It’s peaceful, blissful. Inside the house, my wife is gracefully practicing yoga. All is well I am a happy man.
But it hasn’t always been this way.
As a young man, my life was chaotic. I dropped out of college. Work was a drudge that had to be done, as I drifted from job to job. I had no aim. There was a broken marriage. I smoked and drank, didn’t exercise, had a poor diet, and put on weight. Life became a battle, as I let change happen to me. The problems piled up higher and higher.
I became angry with the world for treating me so badly, for not putting me on the pedestal that I thought I should be on. The change was something I feared, as it always seemed to be bad and out of my control. I became desperate, thinking I would die of emotional exhaustion before I reached middle-age.
But desperation can sometimes be a blessing, and so it was for me, as desperation forced me to look for new solutions. Gradually I began to turn things around. I retrained as a therapist, learned Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Motivational Therapy, and applied my new knowledge to myself It was a revelation. My life changed from being harrowing and exhausting to being exciting and rewarding.
Since then, I have worked with thousands of clients in health centers, hospitals, and in the community to help them experience positive change. Many of the original ideas in these pages were developed working with them, and I am grateful for their feedback.
In the course of this work, I have seen certain principles succeed time and again. These have worked with all kinds of people and in all sorts of different situations. The success rates have been phenomenal. Everyone who has stuck with the principles that you will discover in this article has succeeded and I do mean everyone.
None of the concepts in this article is complicated. Mysticism or great leaps of faith are not required. You simply need to learn some principles that will give you a solid way to deal with your difficulties or achieve your ambitions, whatever they might be. All you have to do is apply these concepts and you will change your life for the better.
Looking back over the past few years, I can recall so many times when I have changed my own life for the better, sometimes in small ways, other times in major ways. I list below some of the changes I have made in the last few years that have been important to me, simply to demonstrate that I am not merely writing this article from theory.
I am no superman – I am a flawed human being. I have emotional ups-and-downs, fears, and unhelpful thoughts. I do irrational things and make mistakes, just as we all do. But I have a set of cognitive tools now that limits my errors, cuts me some slack, and keeps me on track for whatever is my goal at any given time.
I have lived the ideas you will find in this article and continue to live them every day. They are vital to me if I had not found them, my life would not be the joy it is today. They are a reliable and proven set of concepts and tools, which have allowed me to achieve diverse goals like these:
I have moved country three times, and have lived in some astonishingly beautiful places.
Quit smoking in 2012 and have stayed stopped.
I learned to speak Portuguese.
Monetized my hobby into a business with thousands of customers in multiple countries.
I found and married my ideal partner.
Lost 30 pounds without dieting.
I wrote an article, which became a bestseller in its genre, and am now able to work professionally as a writer.
I have found a way to eliminate colds and other minor illnesses from my life.
I am able to work when I want and play when I
I created, with my wife, a two-center lifestyle, dividing my time between two of the most stunning locations in the world. In the winter, I live in the sunshine of Portugal’s Algarve coast. In the summer, I live in the gorgeous landscape of England’s West Country.
I am living my dream.
None of the above happened by chance. It happened by choice.