8 Ways to Own Your Life

03/07/2015 09:27 am ET | Updated May 07, 2015
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1. Accept responsibility.
One of the first and fastest ways to own your life is to take responsibility for your life. The good, the bad, the ugly -- it's all on you! Our perspectives, attitudes, reactions, feelings, thoughts, beliefs... these are all things that we control ourselves. This is an amazing thing because it means that you can create the life you want since you are at the wheel.

"Taking responsibility for being exactly where you are gives you the power to be exactly where you want to be." -- Unknown

2. Stop blaming.
It's very easy to blame sometimes, especially since most of us have some sort of experience of being treated wrongly or unfairly as children. Adults aren't perfect, and some of them are total screw ups, but we can't forever let the mistakes of others be an excuse for us not living the life we want. Likewise, we can't let things like a failed marriage or a bad past decision have any power over our today. Every morning, you have a clean slate. No one can stop you from being the person that you want to be or living the life you desire to live, unless you grant them that power.

3. Forgive.
This is a huge task, usually one that requires a lifetime of repeating. Holding onto past hurts only holds you back from living the life you truly want. By holding a grudge, you are harboring negative energy, which will only poison you. Sometimes, the ones we hold the most grudges against are ourselves, for past mistakes and actions we deeply regret. You can't live a happy life if at some subconscious level you don't believe you deserve one. Everything we experience, even the bad, helps us grow in some way. Forgive others and yourself and instead be grateful for the lessons you've gained.

4. Change your attitude.
Your attitude plays more importance on your quality of life than you may think. Ever notice when you have a bad attitude that your day just seems to keep getting worse? It's because you're a ball of negative energy walking around collecting more nearby negative energy! When you force yourself to be in a good mood (and yes, many days it requires force) and you look for the good things in your day, what happens is that you bring more good things to you. Don't waste another day pushing the good things away!

5. Decide what you want.
Have you thought about what you really want in life? Not what your mom wants for you, not what you think you can accomplish only because it's easy, but what you want. If money or circumstance weren't an issue, what would your heart most long to do? Don't worry if it feels too big for you to achieve on your own, it likely is. The magic of this universe that we live in is that it meets us more than halfway when we go after a dream. When we really know what we want and believe we can have it, when we expect it to happen, we set magical forces in motion that arrange the people and circumstances in our lives necessary to achieve our dream. Check out some of these life-changing books for more inspiration.

"Everything you want is on the other side of fear." -- Jack Canfield

6. Become intentional.
Become intentional with your time. Implement a daily routine. Highly successful people are known for following morning routines every day. A time that you prepare for your day first without letting the outside world bombard your mind, to write or read over your goals, exercise and eat a filling breakfast. Basically taking time for you before the day starts so you feel mentally prepared! Also, become intentional about the kind of people and information you let come into your experience. Negative people, stories, and articles that promote hate, fear or controversy only breed more negativity and drag you down.

7. Compete with no one.
When we're running a marathon (and that's what life is, a marathon, not a race) and we don't focus on our own path because we are too busy looking around us to see where everyone else is, we start to stumble. We start wondering if we're not good enough, or why good things are happening to them and not us. Don't focus on anyone else but you. Be grateful for where you are and the things you have achieved. Every day is a fresh start to go after your own dreams and improve from your yesterday.

8. Check in with yourself.
Keep in touch with yourself on a regular basis. Even if you don't have time for a morning routine, take a few minutes each day to benefit from some alone time. Read over your goals or intentions for the week. It's amazing what we can forget when we don't remind ourselves! The coolest thing is looking back over the month and seeing all of the things you can check off your list that happened without you even realizing it.

Owning our lives can seem a bit overwhelming at first, but if you just start small and turn everything into a habit as you go along, in no time you will begin seeing the obvious and magical changes of living life with a different mindset, and there is no better time to start than now!