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Are You Living Your Life According To A Success-Checklist?

Written by: AnneMie Decatte, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


First of all, you need to ask yourself the question: "What does success mean to you?" I have noticed that when I ask people this question, many don't really have a straight answer… or raise their eyebrows and take a pause.

A business woman or secretary working on a laptop expresses her joy while looking at the laptop screen.

So, it is important to have a think about what success means to you (and only you) before doing anything. Moreover, it is probably also a good idea to jot a few things down, so that you can come back to it after you finish reading this article.

I am sure we can all agree that having a system in place to monitor performance when executing a job can most definitely be useful to measure productivity, however, when it comes to how we gauge success in our life, the checklist approach is probably not the way to go.

In life you will be faced with many so-called dilemmas that in turn will throw in numerous variables – things that can work in your favour or against it ‒ and then it will be up to you to make a choice.

Most of the time, this is easier said than done.

How do you make sure that you are the one making the decision and that your decision is not solely based on other people's contributions?

Quite often we allow that little voice in our head to tell us that! we better be normal' or ! that it is a safer bet to just fit in'. Many people ignore their desires and grant the pressure from society permission to influence their final decision.

You can make a conscious decision ‒ on your own ‒ by asking yourself the following basic questions:

  • Is X or Y the right thing for me at this point in time? Why is that so? ‒ Is this decision going to make a positive impact on my life? ‒ Am I going to be happy in the long run?

  • Am I going to learn something? (Now here is the good news: We always learn from anything we do!)

  • Am I opening or closing doors for myself, by saying ‘yes’ to this? ‒ How does this decision fit in with the long-term plan that I have set out for myself?

  • Do I make this decision for me OR is it to please the people around me? ‒ How is the decision I am leaning toward making me feel? (Good vibes: go with it/ Doubt and feeling off: re-think).

Listen to your intuition. You have all the answers already within you.

Most of the time we do believe that the choices we are making are our own, but I can honestly say that me too I have fallen in the trap of taking steps because this was the right thing to do according to society's norms, without asking myself the above-mentioned questions and I didn't allow myself to go with what my gut was telling me.

I am even happy to admit that I did see red flags 'clearly' (yes more than one) and nevertheless continued with certain decisions that I could still have gotten out of without bigger consequences at the time. But no, I simply ignored my inner voice because all looked good on paper. However, the reality was far from that initial ideal.

Of course, a few years later, now deep into the situation, the red flags were no longer flags ‒ they were now gigantic walls and impossible to ignore! So, now faced with a not so pleasant reality I had to make another decision, the decision to change course completely! And so I did!

As mentioned before, everything in life turns out to be a lesson. So if you don't get it right the first time, there will be a second chance. As any lesson you have to learn in this lifetime will keep coming back until it has been understood. Even moving half the way across the world, won’t stop you from being confronted with the lessons meant for you.

It is crucial that we are one hundred percent accountable for our choices, so there is no one to blame.

This begins and ends with asking ourselves many questions and of course by being totally honest when answering them. Only this way, we can live life by what it is we want, not what others have in mind for us.

It is a sad truth that most people do live their life according to a success checklist: Finishing high school, continuing their studies even though they have no idea what they want to do with their life in the future; finding a partner because they are "already 27", getting engaged, then getting married. Buying a house, settling down and of course not to forget having a baby or two or three. It has come to my attention that everyone wants to have a baby, but very few are interested in raising ‘a conscious human’.

If you don't follow that pattern, you are seen as a weirdo and you often hear that there must be something wrong with you. I personally have stepped out of this paradigm a long time ago and I live my life just the way I believe I should live it spreading positivity, mindfulness and awareness. Furthermore, I feel blessed to have had the strength to step away from this sheep-like mentality and to be true to what is really important to me. In addition, what is true for one person might not necessarily be the same for another. We are all unique individuals and we should be respected for our uniqueness. I love it how outsiders have tried and still try to sell me their life choices, but I am over the moon with my own. I don't judge them and I also don't wish to be judged.

I have heard the craziest statements from people about why they made certain decisions: One young lady stated that she had a child because then she would have to work 'less' as she believed the husband would finally step up in the household. Another lovely soul told me that she was planning to get pregnant next year as she would be 32 and that was the age to get started with kids, especially if you want a few. Later on in the conversation she stated that her partner could get so drunk he cannot behave himself…I then asked her if she was sure about having kids with him as raising kids is not a one-woman's-show, but a joint commitment.

Many people know deep inside that their decision might not have the outcome they had hoped for, but go ahead anyway. The beauty of it all is that life will always find a way to make things work out, but wouldn't it be nicer to be more aware, honest and mindful when we make a decision? By raising our awareness and only when we are truly honest with ourselves can we discover different levels awareness, stand by our choices and own our future!

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AnneMie Decatte, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

AnneMie Decatte, is an advocate for Accountable ETHOS™ as this approach assisted her to live the epic life she lives today! Her mission is to help people make confident and accountable choices through Communication, Value Alignment and Emotional Mastery. She is the COE of Accountable Ethos and has been coaching and mentoring people internationally since 2006, and this in a personal and professional capacity. She claims: ‘When adopting Accountable Ethos, be ready to elevate as life will never be the same!!!



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