<![CDATA[EVERGREEN LIFESTYLE GEMS - Blog]]>Fri, 31 May 2019 12:48:08 +0100Weebly<![CDATA[05 Goal Setting Mistakes You Should Avoid Making]]>Tue, 14 May 2019 05:10:06 GMThttp://lifestylegems.com.ng/blog/goal-setting-mistakes

​    We all have goals that we want to achieve both big and small but sometimes we find out that we’re not making any progress. This could be because we are making some mistakes when setting our goals that we may have failed to realize. In this week’s blog post, we’re going to explore some common goal setting mistakes that we should avoid making if we’re not making them already. Let’s gooo!

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Common Goal Setting Mistakes


   To be truly successful in life, we need goals and aspirations, something to look forward to and that’s where goal setting comes in. Goal setting can be very empowering, motivating and inspiring (to you and others) when done right. For that to happen, the goals you set must be effective. When you set effective goals, you progress faster towards the life you crave.

​    However, if you make any of the goal setting mistakes, mentioned below, you’ll only be wasting your time and you may end up quitting before long. You should get familiar with the trappings of some common goal setting mistakes so you don’t fall victim. Without further ado, here are some of these goal setting mistakes: 

  1.  Setting Tasks Not Goals

   Goals are only truly effective when they help you grow through challenges and what have you, but if you can breeze through them then they are not effective goals but merely tasks. For example, I do chores daily but it doesn’t mean they’re helping me grow anymore, they are things I can easily and sometimes mindlessly do and they don’t seem to add any progressive value. 

   If you find yourself always breezing through things you’ll start to feel bored and may start questioning the meaning of life (yes, it can get that deep sometimes). As humans, what makes us feel alive and even human is overcoming challenges we face, so if you find yourself crushing your goals all too easily, you might want to re-evaluate. 

  2.  Setting Too Many Goals

   When you set too many goals, you may become like a spider caught in its own web. It is counterproductive. As I mentioned in my post, 7 Solid Ways to Motivate Yourself, setting too many goals become “competing motivations” and since you cannot multiply yourself like the Shadow Clone Justu, you’ll end up not really making progress on any of your goals, at least not to the otherwise fullest extent. In other words, according to Mind Tools, “you have a fixed amount time and energy. If you try to focus on many different goals at once, you can't give individual goals the attention they deserve.”

    When setting goals and cherry picking which ones you should go for, you have to prioritize and pick quality over quantity as cliché as it sounds. I recommend focusing your goals on no more than in 3-4 different areas of your life such as health, wealth, relationships, etc. 

    The key thing here is to be stingy with your focus and keep your goals limited. Speaking from experience, it doesn’t do you any good trying to spread yourself too thin trying to accomplish a million and one goals, it’s just not worth it because you end up abandoning your goals altogether. Thanks for coming to my TED talk. 

  3.  Not Planning 

   There is the popular saying that “a goal without a plan is just a wish.” It even starts with writing your goals down, attaching the necessary mind set to accomplish said goals, actions you need to take and smaller tasks you need to perform. 

    Don’t underestimate the power of planning, it can turn a difficult goal into a fairly simple one and a lack of planning can turn a simple goal into quite the stubborn one to accomplish. What’s the harm in planning? It improves your chance of winning... if Daenerys Targaryen stuck to the plan, maybe she won’t be losing dragons every other week or so many soldiers and trusted subordinates.

   When it comes to planning and goal setting, the three most important things in my opinion would be clarity of purpose, breaking your goals down into smaller bits and taking action. Once you’ve gotten these three things down to a T, it will make even bigger, long-term goals much easier to achieve.

   For more on planning, see 11 Steps for Creating an Effective Plan

  4.  Setting Unrealistic Goals

   In this social media era and what seems to be microwave success, we seem to want to get things too quickly, unnaturally quickly at that. As a young person who came into my own when social media was getting off its legs, I find myself asking, they’ve made everything easily accessible; lost contact with an old friend? You can find them on Facebook; bored? You can watch any video of your choice on YouTube or Netflix; single and horny? Sign up for Tinder; want to pay for something? You only need one click! So why is success not quick? Well, so far smart people haven’t come up with an app for legit overnight success so maybe in the 3000s. 

   Anyway, back to the present... Many of us put pressure on ourselves by trying to achieve our goals at unnatural speed or magnitude. For example, an unknown artist wanting to “blow” off their first ever song is usually as unrealistic as dinosaurs coming back to life or Buhari staying in Nigeria for long or Trump saying smart stuff. 

  Setting unrealistic goals are a recipe for disaster; So make sure to set goals that are actually SMART i.e. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely (see How to Set Your Goals & Smash Them). For example, losing 50 kg of fat in 4-6 months through a strict regimen is a SMART goal. 

   Also, be sure your goals are within your control because if you can’t control your goals then they’re rendered less effective. For example, as an artist, “blowing up” in a month might not be within your control but bettering your craft is, building your profile on social media, networking, etc. are definitely within your control. While you’re at it, take a look at past goals that you weren’t able to achieve, see if you can revise them, and try again.
  5.  Not Tracking or Reviewing Your Progress

   A goal that cannot be tracked, reviewed or measured is not a SMART goal. Achieving any set goal will take a decent amount of time and sometimes you may not feel like you’re seeing much progress, what you should do in times like these is to track and review your goals.

   Think about it this way, if you submit two essays and you get the first one back with some feedback on where you went right and wrong versus the second essay where you didn’t receive any sort of feedback, which is more beneficial to your development? The former right?

   This is exactly why tracking and reviewing your goals regularly are important so you know how much you’ve accomplished so far. For example, if you plan to save N100000 but you don’t bother to count how much you’ve already put forward, how will you know how much you still need to reach your goal amount?

    Tracking and reviewing is also good for knowing where you’ve gone wrong so you can readjust and if need be, re-evaluate and change or update an obsolete goal. Goals are never set in stone, so don't be afraid to amend them if you need to. And if they’re set in stone, sometimes you just gotta break the fucking stone!

   It is also important that when you reach a small or big goal(s) you should reward your success, it goes a long way in the continuous goal setting process. 

   In conclusion, when setting your goals you need to know if they’re goals and not tasks, not too many, have a solid plan, SMART and make sure you track and review them on a regular basis. Additionally, make sure your goals are yours and yours alone and not the brain child of someone who wants to live vicariously through you or people you’re trying to impress or appease. 

   Quotes of the Day
   i. “One way to keep momentum going is to have constantly greater goals.” - Michael Korda
   ii. “It is important to set your own goals and work hard to achieve them.” - Yuichiro Miura 
   iii. “A goal properly set is a halfway reached.” - Zig Ziglar 
  iv. “In absence of clearly defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily acts of trivia.” - Unknown
   v. “If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or things.” - Albert Einstein 

​   Are you guilty of making some of these mistakes or have you been guilty and aren’t anymore? Comment below. Help me and others by Sharing this on social media, SUBSCRIBE to my blog for awesome weekly content and to get my free e-books. Follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. See ya next time!
  Previous post: 06 Useful Tips for Getting Out of Debt

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<![CDATA[6 Useful Tips for Getting Out of Debt]]>Tue, 30 Apr 2019 05:54:15 GMThttp://lifestylegems.com.ng/blog/debt

   Being in debt can make you feel imprisoned, less than and generally reduces your happiness levels. I was recently in debt and I can tell you for a fact that IT SUCKS 100%. Sometimes we’re in debt because we can’t help it because the money was necessary, sometimes we’re in debt because of our bad spending habits. In my case I was in the latter category. I kept wondering how I found myself in not one but two debts which I had to pay back one quickly. They weren’t necessarily huge debts but as an unemployed person, they seemed so big and insurmountable if I didn’t get external help.
    Debt can make us feel insecure, desperate, pressured and a whole lot more negative emotions but paying off our debts gives us a peace of mind and sense of relief that is unmatched. In this week’s blog post, we’re going to explore some tips for getting out of small debts. Let’s gooo!

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How I Got In and Out of a Little Debt

    I previously mentioned that I was in debt, but luckily for me, my first debt had been essentially forgiven after I more-or-less came clean that I spent part of the money I was supposed to keep. My second debt however was looming when I was forgiven of the first one. I knew I had to pay back the money so I could get this awful weight off my chest. I was supposed to give money to different people but I kept stalling until I spent some of the money and I was calculating I had some extra money stashed somewhere.

   When I finally counted the money that was stashed, it fell short and I couldn’t for the life of me tell you where the money went. Was it a miscalculation or did I spend the money without remembering? I had to pay this money back in a few days and my head wanted to explode, where will I get money from? I was praying a little bit but I wasn’t so sure about prayer because I prayed to win the prize money for a writing competition I entered but I didn’t win a dime!

    I called my best friend and told him my current situation and he consoled me. I got off the phone and put on one of my jackets I hadn’t worn in a while, lo and behold, I found some money in one of the pockets, it was way more money than I expected so I had to thank God first and I called my best friend back to tell him the good news. I checked the pockets of the windbreaker hoodie next to it and found some extra money, I was dumbfounded but not so surprised. Funny thing about me is I usually have some money that I have forgotten about in any of my pockets at any given time.

   Anyway, essentially, two of my smaller debts had been paid off with some extra change and my frown or should I say frustrated look quickly became joy and excitement. The bigger debt hadn’t been paid off so I had to call my creditor to be a bit patient. Luckily for me she was understanding and the way I paid off my debt was to put my pride aside and ask one of my friends in the US for assistance (told him I can't pay him back though) and that was how I paid off my debt. Since then, I have been avoiding things that will put me in debt. My money is usually spent on buying mobile data so I had to change networks from a more expensive and more reliable one, Airtel to a much cheaper one and a little less reliable network, Glo. 

How to Get Out of a Little Debt

Debt can make you feel like you're drowning without a lifeguard in sight! You must learn to be your own lifeguard.

​   Debt can make you feel like you’re drowning with no sign of rescue. Sometimes you may have asked those around you for assistance but they didn’t help you. Debt can be a good thing because it helps put your bad financial decisions and bad money habits (if you have any) or that of your partner into perspective and you can change things for good! So, without further ado, here are some useful tips for getting out of little debts.

  1.  Avoid Going In Debt

There’s the popular saying that “prevention is better than cure” and in this case it most definitely is. The negative emotions associated with debt are not worth it especially when juxtaposed with the positive emotions of feeling free of debt. When I was in university, I made sure I barely went into debt and if I was ever in debt it was usually to my sister whom I paid back as soon as I got my money. Paying her back wasn’t fun to be honest, I felt like keeping the money for myself. The other debts I fell into during my uni days was overdraft which was no more than £10 and the bank took it as soon as I put enough money into my account.  

   As much as possible, try not to go into debt because it can sap away your happiness as quickly as Thanos can snap his fingers (see How to Live a Happier Life). So as much as possible try to live on a budget and track your spending. If you absolutely must borrow some money, ask yourself a few questions: Is it a want or need? Is it relevant? Is there interest? Can I pay back soon? How can I pay back?
  If you answer all the questions with proper certainty then you can go ahead to borrow the money.
  2.  Make a Conscious Effort to Stop Borrowing Money

   If you want to get out of debt fast, you have to stop using debt to fund your lifestyle. The reason I even went into debt was because I was using the money (which wasn’t mine) in my account to buy data so I could be online all day every day. When you make the conscious decision to stop borrowing, you have to also cut out the temptation, so in my case it would be telling people to stop sending money for me to keep especially when I’m broke.

   In your case it can be by no longer using credit cards or borrowing money from friends or family. This will help you focus solely on your current debt so that you can develop a game plan to pay it off quickly. As long as you’re willing to stick to your decision even when times are hard and the temptation to borrow is high then you will stop having a debt or borrowing oriented mind set.

  3.  Live on a Tight or Bare-Bones Budget

   First of all, I have to say that not living within our means is why many people are in debt today and in many ways they don’t know how to budget (see 06 Costly Budgeting Mistakes You're Probably Making). Second of all, paying off your debt shouldn’t put you in a situation where you can’t even survive, you should be able to have enough for transportation and feeding at the very least.

  In order to quickly pay off your debt, you will need to cut costs and live on a tight budget, the amount of your debt will dictate how tight your budget will be. According to Holly Johnson from The Simple Dollar, by living on a tight or bare-bones budget, “you’ll cut your expenses as low as they can go and live on as little as possible for as long as you can.”

   A bare-bones budget will depend on what you spend your money on but it should have needs only or should I say essentials like rent, utilities bills, etc. This means you may have to sacrifice going out to eat, paying for your DSTV, mobile data, or any other unnecessary spending. A budget like this is designed to help you pay more toward your debts. For example, if you owe N50,000 and you normally pay 5,000 monthly, with a bare-bones budget, you can pay 10,000-15,000 monthly depending on how things go.

  Johnson further advises that you should “Remember, bare-bones budgets are only meant to be temporary. Once you’re out of debt — or a lot closer to your goal — you can start adding discretionary spending back into your monthly plan.”
 4. Sell Stuff You Don’t Need

  Many times we’re looking for money elsewhere when all the money we need is lying around looking at us in form of things we don’t need at home. I’m sure you have stuff you don’t need that you could sell and make some cash, heck if there’s a pawn shop close by you can sell them and buy them back later.  You can sell your stuff to your neighbours, friends, family or just sell them online via Facebook, eBay, Instagram, etc.
  5.  Don’t Try to Pay Multiple Debts Simultaneously

   When we owe multiple people or sources money, we tend to try and pay them off all at once but we end up not really making much progress. It can feel like the debt is like a sea you’re drowning in even if you can swim.

  The best way is to pay back the loan with the highest stakes first i.e. the one with the highest interest rates, the one where the creditor is a no nonsense or unreasonable person, etc. This means you will have to prioritise how you will pay off your debts and soon enough you will be out of debt.
   6. Throw any Excess Cash at Your Debt

   While we’re in debt or trying to get out of it we may be fortunate enough to have some extra cash, maybe someone remembered you and sent you money (probably your best case in Nigeria) or like in my case you find some money in your pocket or you get a bonus from work you weren’t expecting or you won a competition or whatever else.  It is obvious that when you’re in debt and you get excess money that you should use it to pay toward your debt so that you will be able to be free from the shackles of debt faster.
   In conclusion, when it comes to paying off your debt, your mind set matters, so do your habits, what you’re willing to sacrifice and planning. Planning is very essential (See 11 Steps for Creating an Effective Plan).

   QOTD: “A man in debt is so far a slave.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson



   How do you manage your debt and your finances in general? Comment below. Help me and others by Sharing this on social media, SUBSCRIBE to my blog for awesome weekly content and to get my free e-books. Follow me on InstagramFacebookTwitter and Pinterest. See ya next time!
   Previous post: 7 Solid Ways to Motivate Yourself

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<![CDATA[7 Solid Ways to Motivate Yourself]]>Tue, 16 Apr 2019 08:51:34 GMThttp://lifestylegems.com.ng/blog/motivate-yourself

   We all have big dreams but one thing separate those who make it happen and those who don’t and that is repeated action. In order to have repeated action one must in many cases have passion or a strong motivation driving them toward it. For example, you may have a strong affinity towards writing so you may decide to become an author, or you have family members to feed so you know you can’t fool around.
   Based on how I am (I don’t like to stress myself), I can find it a bit difficult to take action, to motivation myself. I could start but continuing isn’t usually isn’t my forte, simply because it’s stressful, but as the saying goes “no food for a lazy man.” in my case since I eat every day, I’d say “no good results for a lazy man.”

  In this week’s blog post, we’re going to be talking how to motivate yourself or the art of self-motivation because sometimes it can be quite hard to do so but it is the underlying ingredient for success. Let’s gooo!

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  Daily Motivation isn’t Guaranteed

   Some days we wake up feeling inspired, filled with energy and feeling on top of the world! Days like those make us feel like we can do anything but… other days, we wake up feeling heavier than a ton of bricks, we don’t feeling like doing anything like the Bruno Mars song, we feel lazy and tired and don’t want to face life.

   This means that motivation is not something reliable, it is based on feelings and emotions even though we know better, in the battle for dominance on a daily basis emotions would almost always win over logic. This means that even though you know that you should be working (logic), you can’t get up from bed because you don’t “feel like working (emotion).

  BJ Fogg, who runs the Persuasive Technology Lab at Stanford, says “we should assume that our “future self” is going to be lazy with no motivation. We need to set up systems to make achieving our goals as easy as possible — even when our motivation is low.” In other words, “motivation doesn’t work, systems do!”

  This means you need to set up a chain of things to do where one thing leads to the next aka a routine. For example, if you want to exercise every day, your routine may include putting your exercise kit near your bed before sleeping, then when you wake up, you brush your teeth, take a shower and be on your way to exercise.

  How to Motivate Yourself


    Motivating yourself goes beyond reading or posting #MondayMotivation quotes on social media, it is about setting up yourself to take action, sometimes the motivation comes before the action and sometimes it comes during the action; but having no motivation isn’t an excuse and that is why it is essential that you learn how to refuel your motivation when your tank is empty. Here are some tips on how to do so.

  1.  Remind Yourself Why You're Doing Something

   When you drive a car for a while, you have to refuel it or risk it going off. This is the same thing with motivation, motivation is finite and we can refuel it by reminding ourselves why we’re doing something. This can give us a boost to help us along with our task.

​   When you have a clear picture as to why you’re doing something you’re more likely to do it. It is important to have a strong reason for doing something because in my experience just reminding myself isn’t enough if the reason is flimsy, negligible or insignificant.

  You should regularly tell yourself the benefits of doing your tasks either by saying it loudly, in your mind or writing it down. For example, you can say “I am going to eat an apple every day because I want to eat healthier food plus it keeps the doctor away” or “I am going to write 1000 words every day because I want to be a great author who is renowned for their writing.”

   It is also important to remind yourself of the dangers of procrastination or inaction. For example, “if I don’t do this right now, I won’t be able to leave work early” or “If I don’t do this at all I’m going to feel like shit and I’ll regret it.”

  You can also set up little ways to remind yourself such as apps, a vision board, a friend, etc. One thing that I’ve learned is that when you make things easy to do for yourself, you’re more likely to do them.
  2.  Break It Down

  Remember when you were in maths class and the teacher used a method to solve the problem which you just couldn’t wrap your head around? What was going through your mind? Didn’t it feel like you’ll never get it and it made you weak and you probably gave up? What about when they broke it down by showing you a simpler method? Didn’t your eyes immediately light up as you finally understood what they were doing? Didn’t you feel amped to solve more problems using this simpler method? This is the same thing with trying to motivate yourself.

  One reason we may procrastinate (see 8 Practical Solutions to Procrastination) or feel unmotivated is because the task at hand may seem too big or painful to do. What you need to do is break it down into smaller bits, start with the easier tasks (because they build momentum) and work your way up to the harder ones. For example, if you have a 1000 words to write and it seems a bit overwhelming you can say “I will write 300 words in the morning, 300 in the afternoon and 400 in the evening because that’s when I usually feel inspired.”

  When you’re done with any task, check it off your list.
  3.  Reduce or Avoid Distractions Altogether
   When you have easily accessible distractions all around you then it becomes hard to focus. I was writing this blog post in my room but I had to leave because I kept using my phone so I left my phone in my room and came downstairs to write.

  Distraction is such a big deal for people like me because I’m always on my phone so sometimes I just have to put it away, because even when I’m working I may unconsciously reach for it and mindlessly scroll through like I’m going to find gold.

  There is only so much time in the day and only so much motivation so if you keep getting distracted, it is going to suck away your motivation like a leech. So, keep your phone away or put it on flight mode and get to work, you can also use a browser extension like StayFocusd to… well, I’m pretty sure the name gives it away.
  4. Develop Laser Focus

   In life, when we’re doing something, whatever it may be, something else may occasionally come along and BJ Fogg refers to them “competing motivations” and if we’re not careful, they make ruin our best efforts. It isn’t always our fault, we didn’t want to get distracted or get competing motivations but it becomes that way. For example, you have a kid you didn’t plan for and because you want to be responsible you may opt for getting a 9-5 job instead of chasing your dreams. Sometimes, it could be an emergency, family problems, or some other type of external pressure.

   But more often than not, we just move on to something else and we end up going nowhere on either side. This is usually my case, for example I started this blog wanting to put my voice out there, help people and make money. In order to do that, I have to gain traffic, experts say you can gain traffic from Google, my email list, social media etc. The best option is email list but in order to grow that people have to subscribe and that means sending traffic that way, i.e. Google ads, influencer marketing, social media ads etc. If I go with social media, there’s Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, etc. Along the line, I became more and more confused as to what to do, I jumped from one place to another and I can truly say I didn’t stay long enough in one place to reap the benefits.

  Developing laser FOCUS and being able to put some ideas on hold is a skill that almost guarantees we make progress on what matters. It is a skill that cannot be overemphasised, the truth is many distractions will come your way especially in this social media era, there are many methods to do things but if you keep jumping around, you’re going to be a jack of all trades and master of none. In my case, I decided to stick to mainly Instagram because I prefer it.
  According to Ramit Sethi, you can develop laser focus by setting one big goal at a time. “Pick your number one goal. Is it earning more money? Getting in shape? Finding your Dream Job?
Grab a pen and paper and write it down. Really do this now. This isn’t a silly “thought exercise.” We’re doing this to commit ourselves to one course of action and follow through.”
   5. Plan for Failure

   Successful people aren’t luckier than most people. But they do try more things, and they’re willing to fail. Failure isn’t seen as a dead end or end of the journey, it is seen as a necessary path on the journey to success. For example, we know the infamous story of how Thomas Edison tried 99 times or so before finally getting the light bulb correctly.

   Almost any successful person has a similar story where they failed repeatedly, never gave up and then finally succeeded. What differentiates them from mediocre people is that mediocre people give up too early and too easily because they failed once or twice of because it’s too hard. Successful people on the other hand, are not deterred by failure and some actively seek it out because they know in the long run, the lessons from failure are more beneficial than success.
   According to Ramit Sethi, “BJ Fogg and I sat down and talked about how we can use failure and “motivational waves” to our advantage so when others tire out we can have a system to follow through.
  How you can start using the principle of “motivational waves” right now:
 -  Make a list of everything you need to get to accomplish your goal.
 -  Then, set up those pieces to make it impossible to fail.
   Here’s an example what that might look like:
   BJ Fogg wanted to drink more tea. So he bought all the tea, an electric kettle to boil water, and set everything up in easy reach on his counter. Even when he felt like drinking something else, it was right there and a no-brainer to make.”

   What is evident here is that by putting certain key measures in place, you can set up to do things that are beneficial to you whether you feel motivated or not and soon enough, it will become a habit.
  6. Find an Accountability Partner (AP)

   According to Paul Chernyak, “An accountability partner is someone who checks in on you time to time to see how you are doing with your goals.” This person could be your parent(s), friend, mentor or colleague. I’ll recommend a mentor because you look up to them and they are most likely teaching you one or two things.

  You should schedule meetings with your AP ahead of time so you have a certain date when you have to complete a certain task and this can be motivating. People get motivated by deadlines, university students you know what I’m talking about.

  I didn’t write a dissertation in university but I know each student who does is assigned to someone who will occasionally look through their work and give them honest feedback, you can say this person is an AP to the student.

  Your AP should also remind you of deadlines and whatnot; my mum doesn’t hesitate to remind to go and do my daily chores.
  7.  Get Rewarded

   Who doesn’t like rewards, right? Why do people participate in tournaments like The Olympics or World Cup? Why doesn’t scoring a goal or winning something make us so happy? Well, in my opinion, they are all rewards for a job well done. Rewards feel good. Penalties feel bad. And that’s why they both can work well for motivating you.
   According to Eric Barker, “research shows that rewards are responsible for three-quarters of why you do things.”
  An excerpt from The 100 Simple Secrets of Successful People says: 
Researchers find that perceived self-interest, the rewards one believes are at stake, is the most significant factor in predicting dedication and satisfaction toward work. It accounts for about 75 percent of personal motivation toward accomplishment.” – Dickinson 1999
   In other words, TREAT YOURSELF! But only when you deserve it by completing your task(s) or accomplishing a set goal.

  When we were in primary school, my dad would tell us if we came in between 1st - 3rd in class he’d buy us fried rice and chicken from Mr Bigg’s (a Nigerian fast food franchise) and soon enough all of us were trying to get there so we could eat and not share with our siblings in order to make them jealous.
  According to Barker, if you’re having trouble finding a reward awesome enough to get you off your butt you should try a “commitment device,” that is: “Give your friend $100. If you get a task done by 5PM, you get your $100 back. If you don’t complete it, you lose the $100.”

   In conclusion, self-motivation is what will let you become successful and let you stay successful, it is one of the most powerful skill anyone can have because without it, you just won’t get the job done. Plus, you should test and adjust each method until you find the one that works best for you.

  QOTD: “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommending it daily.” – Zig Ziglar


   How do you motivate yourself? Comment below. Help me and others by Sharing this on social media, SUBSCRIBE to my blog for awesome weekly content and to get my free e-books. Follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. See ya next time!

  Previous post: 5 Tips for How to Love Yourself

<![CDATA[5 Tips for How to Love Yourself]]>Mon, 08 Apr 2019 20:46:31 GMThttp://lifestylegems.com.ng/blog/love-yourself

   As I looked at the young man in the mirror last week, I didn’t like what I had seen, I had added more weight than I expected. The thing about weight is that it seems sudden even though it’s been building up for a while, you may notice you’ve added a little weight and it may seem inconsequential and then one day it becomes very evident that you’ve let yourself go. I have been at home for about six months and this was the result, home is the least productive place for me, I always fair better when I’m away from my parents. 

   I criticized myself a lot but that’s when it hit me, learning to love myself is the most important thing, weight can always be lost if I’m ready to lose it. To be honest, weight was just a physical representation of how I felt: annoyed, tired, lazy and too comfortable, I was annoyed that I was still home, I’ve never been home this long and it pricked me.

   In this week’s blog post, we’re going to be exploring how to love yourself, in other words how to practice self-love. Let’s gooo! 

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    What is Self-Love Anyway?

    These days we hear a lot about self-love or loving yourself especially on social media but do we really know what it means? Society hammers into us the importance for loving others but it seems be to willfully ignorant when it comes to self-love even though humans are selfish beings. 
To me, with all things being equal, self-love is the ability to acknowledge and appreciate oneself, be honest with oneself and to correct oneself and ultimately to continuous improve oneself. You can dumb it down to say it is the ability to always take care of yourself.  

   Why is Self-Love So Important?

    Time and time again, I’ve heard stories both from family members and others who talk about people they give money regularly to and when they don’t give them one time for any reason, they become ungrateful and it seems they get selective amnesia about all the money they’ve been given before. Suddenly, you’re a wicked person, like my mum said when you have money you have to sort out yourself first before you think about others.

    Loving yourself is probably the greatest thing you can do for yourself and for those around you. Self-love with yourself boosts your self-confidence and esteem levels (see 12 Tips to Boost Self-Confidence and Self-Esteem), increases your self-worth, minimises your self-doubt (see 5 Amazing Ways to Deal with Self-Doubt) and it will generally help you feel more positive. It may even become easier for you to genuinely love other people if you’ve learned the art of self-love.

   Furthermore, according to Katherine Hurst from The Law of Attraction, “If you can learn to love yourself, you will be much happier and will learn how to best take care of yourself. When you are truly in love with yourself and happy, you should stop comparing yourself [see Stop Comparing Yourself! It’s a Losing Game] to others so much and should find yourself more confident, not worrying as much about what others think.”

  Some additional benefits of self-love include: increased love, acceptance, and compassion for yourself and others; more tolerance of your flaws and weaknesses; enhanced self-forgiveness and self-trust; healthier mind set; improved ability to discover and fulfill your purpose (see 7 Methods to Help Find Your Life Purpose); improved relationships and friendships; improved work life; increased access to new opportunities; improved mental health (see 11 Ways to Take Care of Your Mental Health), etc.
   What You Need to Keep In Mind

  Self-love isn’t selfish. Why? Because without taking care of yourself, you are incapable of truly taking care of others. Self-love actually is beneficial to yourself and to others around you. When you are able to genuinely love and accept yourself, you are able to love and accept others much more fully.

  To use an analogy, how can an empty jug be used to fill up someone else’s glass? It’s not possible! In the same way, it’s not possible for us truly give love when we are empty ourselves because we cannot give what we don’t have.

  You are most definitely the most important person in your entire world. This is absolutely essential to keep in mind. This is true because no one can care for you as much as you can and people don’t really care as much as we think they do (see How to Stop Caring What People Think).

  Your entire life is experienced through yourself and nobody else, you cannot truly live through someone else. It is always important to remember that you’re your own person, even if you’re a twin your fingerprints are different from your twin and that shows your uniqueness. When it comes to your understanding of reality, you’re the only thing that matters. This means that your reality depends on how much you love and take care of yourself.

  Your relationship with yourself is the most defining factor in shaping the kind of life you live. It becomes a problem when you cannot love the person who you will live your entire life through, you cannot swap bodies with people, this is not Freaky Friday. The less you love, listen to, and understand yourself, the more confused, angry, and frustrating you will be and the reverse is true as well.

How to Love Yourself


   How do you treat the people you love and respect? Aren’t you kind to them, patient with their thoughts and ideas, and you forgiving when they make a mistake? (SeeWHO HURT YOU?? How to Forgive & Let Go). Don’t you give them space, time, and opportunity? Don’t you make sure they have the room to grow? Don’t you tell them to take care of themselves?

   Now think of how you treat yourself…

   Do you give yourself the love and respect that you might give your loved ones? Do you take care of your body, mind, soul and needs; Such as sleeping properly, bathing and exercising regularly, eating healthy, meditating, expressing gratitude, having fun, accomplishing your goals? (See How to Set Your Goals and Smash Them).

   How many of these daily activities do you allow yourself? And if not, then can you say you truly love yourself? The truth is that you can’t truly say you love of yourself if you don’t spend ample time taking care of yourself and actually take your own advice regularly. At the end of the day, self-love surpasses a mind-set, it goes well into the actions you take and the decisions you make. So, without further ado, here are some tips for how to love yourself, body, mind, soul and all.

  1.  Learning Regularly

    Learning regularly is a very strong part of personal development. There is so much knowledge in this world that no matter how much time you spend learning you will never learn or know everything. This does not mean that one shouldn’t learn, in fact it’s the opposite, as human beings, learning new positive things regularly is good for our mind and soul, knowledge is food to the mind and soul. Plus, if you don’t learn regularly, you will be left behind, we all have things we are naturally better at and those are where our main focus should be but we should also try to learn things in several fields.
   Ultimately, what I’m preaching here is skill acquisition, skills are necessary tools we need to build the future we need, the fact that you’re reading this on a device means that humans used skills they acquired and improved over the years to build it. If they can, you can also use your skills to do something meaningful if you decide to learn on a regular basis. For more info, read my two blog posts on skills, 21st Century Survival Skills and 7 High Income Skills You Can Learn Online for 2019.
  2.  List Your Positive Attributes and Reflect on Them Regularly

   If you habitually look down on yourself and think negatively of yourself this can be difficult but it’s not impossible, it is important to know that self-love can be difficult and it takes a lot of work. According to Trudi Griffin from wikiHow, you should “try to find one positive thing about yourself to add to the list once a week. At the end of each day, reflect on your entire list.” She gives some guidelines on how to go about making your list.

  Make your list very specific: Instead of using general adjectives to describe yourself, try listing specific actions or attributes that describe who you are and what you do. For example, instead of simply saying "I’m a kind hearted person," you can write "I regularly volunteer at the local orphanage and I give them some of my used clothes. This makes me a kind hearted person." As you read and reflect on your list, remember that each item on the list, however insignificant it may seem, is a reason that you are worthy of respect and love.

  3.  Learn to Discern Your Thoughts

  You will hear a lot of things throughout the course of your life, you may be conscious to some and unconscious to others. You will be told that you’re too fat, too slim, too ugly, too short, too dark, your personality is too bland, you must be perfect, putting yourself first is selfish and preposterous blah blah blah. 

   Not all of these untrue and unhealthy perceptions will be apparent but soon enough, you may end up absorbing some of these unhealthy perceptions into the river of your mind-set and belief system, thereby polluting it like a toxin. In fact, many of these toxic perceptions probably have already been absorbed by us.  This brings me to an interesting quote by Gary Vaynerchuk which keeps coming to mind: “If your voice in your head is mean to you, remember that someone manipulated that voice and instilled it in you. Kill that fake voice and find yours. I love you, now love yourself.”

  Discernment is such a huge factor when learning how to love yourself, it helps separate the lies and the truths you tell yourself because loving yourself involves unlearning a lot of things that you thought were true or useful.

  According to Aletheia Luna from Loner Wolf, “To learn how to be discerning you need to question everything. Yes, this can be tiring, but it is worth every ounce of your effort. Why? Because being discerning will help you to sort through a lot of mental rubbish, antiquated beliefs, and harmful ideals. Learning to say “NO, that’s not true” helps you to discover what the truth actually is. And the truth is always grounded in love (but again, you will have to discover this for yourself). The more clarity you have, the more you will be able to support and stick up for yourself.”
  4.  Leave Your Comfort Zone

   Our comfort zone can be very tempting, it can seem like an oasis in a desert but in reality, it is a mirage, it’s just more barren land because nothing really grows there only mediocrity. You cannot truly love yourself if you don’t step out of your comfort zone and take risks, it’s even riskier to constantly stay in your comfort zone. As humans we can’t really experience true happiness if we don’t step out of our comfort zone and try new things (see 06 Ways to Live a Happier Life).

  If you’re struggling to love yourself, then you’re staying in your comfort zone way too much. Stepping out of your comfort zone doesn’t mean you must go sky-diving if you’re scared of heights or anything scary like that, sometimes you just gotta put one foot out of your comfort zone and slowly take your whole body out of it. What I mean is that you can take it one step at a time and gradually step out of your comfort zone by doing the little things, little things that are new and can make you nervous, it’s all about taking the first step! (See 3 Reasons to Leave Your Comfort Zone).

   So, how can you leave your comfort zone behind? First, write down what you want to do, it can just be one thing and then out and do it. Soon enough, you go about doing many things you could only dream of and then you’ll believe in yourself and the power you within you.

  5. Be Your Own Bestie

   Many people are their worst enemy because of how harshly and negatively their self-talk is. If you were step into this kind of person’s river of thoughts, you’ll soon discover that you’re like fish in poisoned water, too toxic to survive in. It makes you wonder how they themselves can survive in such a toxic mental environment.

   If most of us spoke to others the way we spoke to ourselves or others spoke to us the way we speak to ourselves, we would be friendless! You are with yourself 100% of the time, through all the ups and downs so it becomes very essential that you become besties with yourself, it will make your life much easier and simpler.

  To really practice self-love, it is important for us to consciously change our relationships with ourselves, and treat ourselves with compassion and consideration just as we would with a best friend. This involves being there for yourself when it’s hard, motivating yourself, having fun with yourself, rewarding yourself when you deserve it and a whole lot more. More importantly, it’s about learning to trust yourself more. The way to start doing this is to spend more quality alone time getting to know yourself and discovering what makes you, you.


   Self-love isn’t always easy, some days you messed up and may feel so bad that it may feel like you can’t love yourself, some days you feel on top of the world, other days you just feel like you’re in the middle of it, this is all part of the process. Self-love isn’t always constant or on the same level, it’s like a hill or waves of the sea, sometimes it’s high, sometimes it’s low. You may lose friends on this journey and it will hurt you but you should remember that if they truly cared about you then loving yourself wouldn’t be an issue.

   My article is kind of shallow and doesn’t do this topic enough justice, if you want a more in-depth article on self-love you can check out Aletheia Luna’s article, How to Love Yourself More.

  QOTD: “Self-compassion involves treating yourself with the same kindness, concern, and support you’d show to a good friend. When faced with difficult life struggles, or confronting personal mistakes, failures, and inadequacies, self-compassion responds with kindness rather than harsh self-judgment, recognizing that imperfection is part of the shared human experience.” - Kristin Neff 


   In what ways do you show that you love yourself? Or do you have any extra tips for how we can love ourselves more? Comment below. Help me and others by Sharing this on social media, SUBSCRIBE to my blog for awesome weekly content and to get my free e-books. Follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. See ya next Monday!

   Previous post: How to Stop Caring about What People Think

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<![CDATA[How to Stop Caring about What People Think]]>Mon, 25 Mar 2019 08:03:04 GMThttp://lifestylegems.com.ng/blog/stop-caring
Credit: Party Flvrs
   It is a human desire to be liked, loved, respected and held in esteem. So, naturally because we are social beings we care what others think of us, how people see us is important to us, we don’t want to be judged or criticised. This means that we can act in ways to put up a front and it isn’t always healthy. We care about how we’re viewed so much that we tend to suffocate ourselves, and don’t live true to ourselves and it can have adverse effects on us. All that being said, there will always be exceptions. 

  In this week’s blog post, we’re going to be looking into how to stop caring about what other people think of us and start living better lives. Let’s gooo!

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  Why do we do things, or not do things, because of how we expect others to react?

   In reality, there are many times when we act or react based on how we think others will think or say, we think to ourselves “what will they say if I do this?” Due to this question we often ask ourselves, we don’t end up doing or not doing what we want all because we’re afraid of what other people may think. Having this mentality isn’t completely bad or wrong, in fact it is useful when we’re thinking doing something crazy or risky.

   The opinion of a trusted person or a professional can go a long way in helping you out, for example, if you want to drop out from university, it’s best to ask what will others think and then talk to someone about it before making your final decision.

   The issue is that we also care about the opinion of others who aren’t all that important or don’t understand our situation, for example classmates and colleagues who are only acquaintances if anything at all. It’s even worse when we catch feelings or prevent ourselves from doing what you want because of haters.
    There are times when the people’s supposed opinions you care about are your friends and family and that stops you from acting true to yourself, it isn’t always easy especially when they won’t understand so that shouldn’t stop you, I know it is easier said than done but it can still be done!

   Reality Check

   Many people don’t care nearly as much as we think they will, this is because we’re self-absorbed beings, we’ve got our own issues to deal so why should we care about you all that much? If you keep trying to live up to other people’s expectations, you’re gonna get tired eventually because you won’t be able to keep up and your true self will cry.

   Many times we expect people to have a greater opinion over our choices than they do, this is probably we’re looking at ourselves through how we think they see us rather than how they actually see us and this can make up overly harsh on ourselves. Think about it, do people always notice when you get a new haircut, buy new shoes or wear new clothes if you don’t tell them?

   Next time you find yourself being self-conscious or worried about what someone else may think of your choices, remember that you’re probably making a mountain out of a molehill. Don’t allow fear of the what-ifs prevent you from doing the things you want to do.

  You should also keep it in mind that life is better when you live it on your terms and don’t necessarily concern yourself with how others perceive you.  According to Nia Shanks, “There’s great freedom from doing what makes you happy; being authentically yourself. Whether this is something as simple as how you dress, the career path you choose, or anything else. When you’re true to yourself and don’t allow the assumed thoughts of others dictate your choices, life possibilities expand, and your joy increases.”

   The people that should care about public opinion or perception are politicians and other public figures because it can help keep them accountable but even that should have its limits. 

 5 Tips to Help You Stop Caring What Others Think

  1.  Know Your Values

  Knowing what’s important to you cannot be overemphasised, having values and principles we live by make us better people. There’s so much power in knowing who you are, what matters to you and what you want; they help you make decisions and other thinks. Once you have this strong sense of self, what others think of you stops being a concern or a priority. People will always think whatever because they lack 100% context, only you have 100% context of your life.  
   When you know your values, you'll start saying no to some things and you will put yourself first because others won’t. When people pressure you to for example, drink, go out or do them a favour you won’t feel the guilt of saying no or the need to say yes. It will also help you fend off distractions and help you stay focused on what’s important to you. When you start putting yourself first, you’ll lose people but at least you’ll gain a better quality of life.

  2.  You Only Live Once

  When most people are about to die, most of their regrets aren’t materialistic, it’s about the opportunities they didn’t take or things they didn’t do because they cared about what others would think whether it’s their loved ones or random peoples. Ultimately, they wish they lived happier lives (see 06 Ways to Live a Happier Life).

   As we live our lives, it’s important to remember we’ll die soon, it could be today, tomorrow or years from now but however long it may take, death is inevitable. When we are able to accept our fate of eventual death, it can liberate us, we will stop worrying and start living because YOLO, you only live once and nobody can live your life for you! We should strive to live with as little regrets as possible, take the opportunities when necessary, strive for self-improvement, etc.

 3. Only Value Few Opinions

As much as there’s liberty in being yourself and not caring about what others think butttttt it doesn’t mean you should become unhinged and do whatever you like. Like I said before, you need people to check you when you’re about to do something risky, crazy or new.

    In essence, it is important to value some people’s opinions. You should have people to confide in who have your best interests at heart, but you should take their advice with a grain of salt because some of it might be out of fear or complete context.

   How many times would you let the unsolicited opinions of strangers get you down? Why should you feel bad when people you don’t give a fuck about tell you how much weight you’ve added or something else? Some people are going to dislike you, and there’s nothing you can do about it.

 4.  Stop Trying to Make Everyone Like You

It is impossible for everyone to like you, you can’t be everyone’s piece of pie, and not everyone likes pie. Some people will always hate on you, not because of you but because of they are insecure (see How to Overcome Insecurity). Instead of caring about those who don’t like you and trying to convert them, focus on personal development for those who like you and who matter.

    It helps to remember the same way you can’t make everyone like you, it’s the same way that no one can; Jesus was betrayed and crucified and he didn’t hurt nobody. You have to be your own friend, be compassionate to yourself and stop bending over backwards trying to please people because you’re only going to be taken for granted and left disappointed (see How to Deal with Disappointment).

   As Nia Shanks advises, “Spend your time and energy living an awesome life and using your talents, gifts, and abilities to make the world and people around you better. Let other people like you not because of who you’re trying to be, but because of who you genuinely are. Or, as I like to say … I’d rather be hated for who I truly am than loved for something I’m pretending to be.”

   There are people who will appreciate for who you are even if your friends and family don’t, they are called your tribe or community, they understand your situation and perhaps they can relate; so go find them! When you surround yourself with these people, you feel safe and well-nourished internally.
 5.  Stop Chasing Perfection

    Many of us are under the impression that if we do things a certain way or if we become a certain way or become “perfect” that everyone will love, praise and respect us. This is a wild goose chase or like build castles in the sky, it’s all an illusion.

     For example, if you follow dreams and become a success, your old friends or neighbours may say “you’ve changed” or “you’re proud” or “you think you’re the shit now, huh?” and your new friends will be happy for you. At the end of the day what becomes evident is you can’t be the same person if you want to be successful and change is just part of the process. There’s no point where you can be perfect enough for everyone to accept you, you will only be compromising.

   Instead of chasing perfection, you should chase excellence, perfectionism is the enemy of excellence! If you wait for things to be perfect, you will never do anything, for example, the perfect time to do something doesn’t exist, you create the time to do it. Try to be excellent because you can attain that and so can others.

    I make Instagram videos almost every day, I love doing it but I make a lot of mistakes, I get tongue twisted, I forget my lines etc. I do a lot of retakes but when I’m satisfied that I’ve said what I need to at the 1 minute mark I upload it. The videos are by no means perfect and I make mistakes but they get the job done and that’s what matters to me.
It’s important to keep this in mind, “Whenever you’re trying to get better at something, there will always be a “gap” at first. Meaning, you’re not as good as you’d like to be.”

   Perfectionists are more vulnerable to feelings of shame and embarrassment. Especially, when they’re trying to be perfect in the public eye. People who chase excellence are not as susceptible to such vulnerability and honestly, perfectionism is just very stressful!

   In conclusion, the opinions of others should be lord over your life because you’re going to keep suppressing yourself, as long as you’re not hurting nobody or doing something illegal, you should live true to self. It is usually refreshing to see people who really don't give a fuck in the right way! For more on this topic, you should read The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Manson and follow Gary Vaynerchuk.

   QOTD: “Every second you spend on other people’s opinion on what you’re doing is wasted on your ability to take that same time and use it to execute on your actions to win the debate in the end.” – Gary Vaynerchuk  

   When was the last time you didn’t do what you wanted because you cared more about what other people would think? Or when last time you didn’t care and did what you wanted? Comment below. Help me and others by Sharing this on social media, SUBSCRIBE to my blog for awesome weekly content and to get my free e-books. Follow me onInstagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. See ya next Monday!


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