These 5 Questions Can Help You Set Better Goals

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If your goal follows all the rules — specific, measurable, etc., — but you are still struggling to achieve it, it may be time to consider the core of the goal itself. In other words, how important is the goal to you? Instead of being driven by productivity or meeting simple tasks on a to-do list, you must also do the work to achieve your goals.

In this video, Entrepreneur Network partner Jeff Rose points out it is not simply enough to sign up for a gym membership or buy new tennis shoes; you have to get yourself to the gym and physically commit to working out.

Rose also challenges you to ask a group of five “why” questions. By analyzing each facet of your goals, you can get to the root and make conclusions about their importance to you.

Click the video to hear more from Jeff Rose about analyzing your goals.

Related: Here’s How to Find the Best Members for Your Mastermind Group

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Want to Succeed in Life? Every Day, Do This Thing First

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CREDIT: Getty Images

We live in the age of self-improvement. Wherever you go–your home, your car, your bar, your favorite bodega or bookstore–it’s forever there, staring you in the face.

The potential of a better you. Happy, strong, and successful. Prospering in all the important things, including your relationships and career.

It can drive you a little crazy. Most of us are satisfied to excel in just a few areas, and if we sacrifice our beach body by prioritizing parenting over the gym, so be it. But the ads keep pouring in: You can be perfect.

It’s pure B.S., of course. Life is short, and we can only strive so much. But if you put a gun to my head and demanded that I choose a single rule to live by–a rule to rule all others in the quest for human excellence–I’d have a ready answer.

Always do the hardest thing first.

It’s by no means an easy rule. It’s easy to say, and it feels nice to say it, but the minute you sit down at your desk, and that hardest thing is in front of you, and you’d literally rather do anything else–all bets are off.

Now for the good news. I’ve practiced this rule for many years, and can confidently report that with enough repetition it becomes habitual. You’ll still recognize the hardest thing as being the hardest thing–whether it’s balancing the books, making a sales call, or wrestling with your taxes–but the psychological dread that caused you to procrastinate in the past will have disappeared.

Here are three suggestions for taking the beast head-on:

1. Prepare the night before.

Before you go to bed, review tomorrow’s agenda.  Channel your inner Alex Honnold–if you haven’t seen Free Solo yet, I highly suggest it–and memorize every move in advance. Single out the moves that really suck, and then the one that sucks the very most.

Legendary Chinese general Sun Tzu advised that you learn to “know your enemy…and in one hundred conflicts you will naturally prevail.”

You now know your enemy. Meditate on it. Let it stand out in your thoughts. Isolated, it isn’t quite so intimidating.

2. Establish a soothing ritual.

Confronting your enemy in a dull or disordered state of mind is a great way to get slaughtered. To avoid this, establish a ritual or routine that you perform the moment you walk through the office door.

Arrive five minutes early. Greet your colleagues by name. Act cheerful and alert. Take your stuff to your desk and get organized.

Now make a cup of coffee or pour a glass of water. (Be methodical–your co-workers should be able to set their clocks by your movements.) Return to your desk. Seat yourself and take a sip. Fire up your computer. Your mind should be in a clear, calm state by now.

3. Inform someone else of your plans.

Announcing your intentions will ease your burden and provide extra motivation to succeed. You don’t have act like you’re running for president, but don’t be shy about it, either.

Tell a trusted teammate: “I’m going to do X now, and I’m going to show you when I’m finished.” If it helps, add some humor. Confide that you haven’t been looking forward to this particular responsibility and you hope talking about it will help you become the hero your mother always said you were. Or, if you had a rough childhood, that it will help you avoid becoming the lazy slob your mother always said you were.

Complete the step by following up with your teammate. Enjoy the euphoria for a minute or two, then move on to the next responsibility.

The rewards for doing the hardest thing first are obvious. The moment you cross that chore from your list, your mind unfurls like the first day of spring. Suddenly, other difficult tasks aren’t so difficult. Suddenly, your mind is totally yours, whereas before it belonged to the task you were postponing.

Perform the three steps religiously. Accept that you’ll fail–probably often. But then, something magic will happen. Gradually, you’ll improve. Your focus will tighten, your mood will lighten, your value will increase. And one happy morning, when you briskly crank out a task that six months ago would have haunted you all day, you’ll know what self-improvement really means.  ​

PUBLISHED ON: MAR 21, 2019

Ten Success Habits of Goal Achievers

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People who regularly achieve their goals, no matter how big they are, don’t do it by behaving like everyone else.

One thing they typically have in common is consistently practicing success habits, every single day.

If you’re aiming to achieve a breakthrough goal in 2019, here are ten common habits that goal achievers use to rise to the top:

1. Get up early.

The average person needs a lot of time to wake up and get out of bed. Goal achievers, on the other hand, are so excited about their goal that they’re eager to get up and make the most of the day.

To achieve a breakthrough goal, get in the habit of waking up early and getting out of bed quickly to act on your goal. Recognize what a gift each day is and be excited about what it will bring.

2. Follow a morning routine.

How you spend the first hour after you get out of bed is important to the success of your day. So, after getting up early, follow a success ritual every morning. Fill the first hour of the day with positive, creative activities like practicing gratitude, reading, visualizing and going over your priorities for the day. The benefits of doing so will pay off in spades.

3. Pursue knowledge.

Goal achievers yearn to know who they are and what they’re capable of. They also want to become experts in their field. So, they read and study every day.

Instead of getting distracted by the trivial things in life, such as checking email and social media, block off time each day to read to understand yourself better and become better at your craft.

4. Become obsessed with the goal.

Goal achievers are obsessed with their goals, dreams and routines. They think about them almost all the time.

Since what you focus on expands, if you have a big goal in your sights, becoming obsessed with achieving it will go a long way in moving you from where you are to where you want to be.

5. Meditate.

Goal achievers meditate to improve their focus, relax and clear their mind and recharge.

To help you stay connected with your goal, incorporate meditation into each day. It can help you become more focused, get better results and reduce stress as you go through the day.

6. Stay the course.

Goal achievers pursue their goals and dreams relentlessly. They overcome adversity. They sweep aside anything that stands between them and their goals.

Persistence is an essential factor in achieving any goal that makes your stretch. So, get in the habit of pivoting or finding ways to navigate around impasses. Finish what you set out to do. Over time, your persistence will grow into a proved, progressive power that can help you achieve any goal.

7. Prioritize activities.

Most people complete all kinds of meaningless tasks each day just to be able to cross them off their long to-do list. Goal achievers, on the other hand, make a list of the most important things, usually three to ten tasks, that they must accomplish that day.

Make sure you do at least one thing each day that moves you closer to your goal. Every evening (or morning if you prefer) make a list of the top goal achieving activities you can take the next day and then act on them, starting with the most important task.

8. Exercise discipline.

Goal achievers are highly disciplined when it comes to executing tasks that will lead them to their goals. So, they often miss parties or other social events, work out when their mind tells them to stay in front of the computer for a little longer, read when they’d rather keep working and don’t eat the junk food they crave.

Sacrifices like these make you the person you need to become in order to lead the lifestyle you imagine.

9. Spend time with other purpose-driven, successful people

Our environment plays a role in our success because we’re the average of the five people we spend the most time with. Goal achievers understand this and have a habit of spending time with people who are more successful than they are.

You can turn your life around by choosing to associate with positive individuals who are full of life and spend time with creative, ambitious people with goals and dreams.

10. Take care of the mind and body.

High achievers make taking care of themselves a priority. They recognize that food is fuel and that in order to reach their ambitious goals they need high-octane fuel. They also understand that healthy eating helps keep them healthy. They exercise and have good sleep patterns.

Nothing will get done if your mind and body aren’t performing. Don’t wait until you have a health scare or lose a loved one to force you to take complete charge of your health. Taking care of yourself needs to be a regular commitment.

Start with small bites
These are all great habits, right?

And none of them are hard. You can start applying them right now. But start small – one change at a time.

Of course, there are other success habits you can develop to achieve your goals. Add other practices that help people achieve big and bold goals in the comments below.

To your success,

Bob Proctor

Why You Need To Follow Your Passion, Even If It Requires Sacrifice

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I call this “the passion trap”.A quick look over at Amazon suggests that “follow your passion” is a lucrative bit of advice. But (and I’m definitely not the first to say this) it’s not the best advice. And I’m a much happier, more “successful” person for interrogating the reasons behind my passions.!

Story time.

The first email I ever sent was to Stephen Hawking. I sent the email in the spring of 1998 when I was 16 years old from a computer at my high school (because I didn’t have internet at home) using a friend’s AOL account. I had just finished reading Hawking’s A Brief History of Time and knew that I wanted to be an astrophysicist (or a cosmologist). I emailed Hawking to tell him how much of an inspiration he was to me and how passionate I was about physics.

Passion. Follow your passion. For those of us lucky to have choices in our life trajectory we’re bombarded by advice to follow our passions. Chase your dreams. Go to culinary school. Major in whatever you love. Drop out and start a company! Listen to no one, just follow your heart!

When I was in high school I was a physics and math chauvinist. I saw psychology and the biological sciences as “soft”. My love for physics was probably planted in part by this goofy book:

I’ve always been inclined toward the sciences, but that book lit a fire in me. It got my imagination going about what could be possible if enough smart people got together to work on a Big Idea. This creative aspect of science really drew me in and, I’ve come to realize, shaped my career.

Whenever anyone asked 10-year-old me what he wanted to be when he grew up, I’d answer “an astrophysicist”. Yeah, I wasn’t the coolest kid. But that spark stayed with me and I found some fun outlets. I spent a lot of time in high school playing video games, role playing games with friends, etc. All of the nerd-flavored creative outlets.

As for school, it was easy and I coasted through.

Home life was… non-standard… so when I was given the opportunity to skip my senior year of high school to attend the University of Southern California I seized it. One late August night in 1998, at about 2 am, I called up my buddy Curtis and he drove me to Los Angeles to drop me off at college.

I immediately declared as a physics major and kept going with all the “advanced” versions of the courses. Around the same time I discovered that I enjoyed socializing and I made a lot of new friends. One part of my life was rewarding, the other was not, so I stopped going to classes. I did poorly, but I had a lot of fun doing it. My love for physics started waning due to the monotony of the work and the lack of wonder exhibited by the professionals I saw working in academic physics.

The only reason I didn’t drop physics sooner was the fear that my physics friends would make fun of me for “going soft”. And because I didn’t know what else to do.

Physics was all I’d ever wanted to do. Physics was my passion.

There’s that word again.

Becoming a astrophysicist was this grand ideal I’d built up for myself. It had become part of my identity. Once you start defining yourself by one thing—a political belief, religious affiliation, career, family, whatever—you lose identity to that thing. You reduce the number of paths to happiness and success and wrap your entire self around it.

To put it mildly: that can be unhealthy.

Modern psychological thinking generally breaks “passion” into two distinct subtypes. In their highly influential 2003 Journal of Personality and Social Psychology paper, Les Passions de l’Âme: On Obsessive and Harmonious Passion, Vallerand and colleagues differentiate harmonious passion (HP) from obsessive passion (OP):

Harmonious passion (HP) results from an autonomous internalization of the activity into the person’s identity. An autonomous internalization occurs when individuals have freely accepted the activity as important for them without any contingencies attached to it. This type of internalization produces a motivational force to engage in the activity willingly and engenders a sense of volition and personal endorsement about pursuing the activity. Individuals are not compelled to do the activity but rather they freely choose to do so. With this type of passion, the activity occupies a significant but not overpowering space in the person’s identity and is in harmony with other aspects of the person’s life.

Obsessive passion (OP), by contrast, results from a controlled internalization of the activity into one’s identity. Such an internalization originates from intrapersonal and/or interpersonal pressure either because certain contingencies are attached to the activity such as feelings of social acceptance or self-esteem, or because the sense of excitement derived from activity engagement becomes uncontrollable. Thus, although individuals like the activity, they feel compelled to engage in it because of these internal contingencies that come to control them. They cannot help but to engage in the passionate activity. The passion must run its course as it controls the person. Because activity engagement is out of the person’s control, it eventually takes disproportionate space in the person’s identity and causes conflict with other activities in the person’s life.

I hate to go all “Medical students’ disease” here but this really seems to capture the gist of my personal physics passion struggle. Breaking out of that was very hard for me. It really felt like I was abandoning my identity. Or like I was lying to myself about who I am.

During my sophomore year I lived in a crazy place. One of my friends wanted to take a psych class and, because I had a free slot in my schedule and I had no idea what to do, I took that class with him. The classes I did attend were pretty cool. Dammit if it didn’t turn out that people, and not just particles, are fascinating, too!

Fast forward one semester: I go to register for classes my junior year and find out that my grades had been too low for too long and I was basically kicked out of school. Long story short: I plead and begged, got a one-semester reprieve, got my shit together, and became a psychology major. I finished all the required courses in a semester.

I devoured the stuff.

At the time USC only had a cell/molecular biology major. No cognitive neuroscience. So I basically made my own major (though my final degree was in Psychology). I took C++ and Java classes, AI, Philosophy of Mind, Communication, etc.

I volunteered in a research lab as an RA and discovered that my ability to write code was a semi-magical skill because I could automate a lot of laborious manual jobs. I learned that I had a “knack” for approaching problems that way.

Really my interests as a doe-eyed wannabe cosmologist kid aren’t that different from my doe-eyed adult neuroscientist self. My weird childhood, party-fueled and tumultuous college years, and crazy friends made me odd but kept me optimistic and protected me from being jaded. Ironically I now use a ton of math and physics in my neuroscience work.

Take that chauvinistic past-me.

Now, instead of asking “how are we all here, these tiny specs in the vast universe, pondering our origins?” I spend my days asking “how are we all here pondering our origins, we tiny specs in this vast universe?”

Ask yourself if you are harmoniously passionate, or obsessively, and if the answer is the latter, remember you are not your job, your belief, your class, your color, or your passion. To paraphrase a dear friend of mine: don’t follow your passions, follow your competencies, and you might just find you enjoy doing something you’re good at.

(Note, some of the above also comes from my answer to For those who work in neuroscience, how did you end up there? Were you interested in it from the beginning?, which is relevant here.)

This article originally appeared on Quora.

5 Ways to Keep Yourself Inspired to Achieve Your Goals

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5 Ways to Keep Yourself Inspired to Achieve Your Goals

Image credit: PeopleImages | Getty Images

John Boitnott
VIP CONTRIBUTOR
Journalist, Digital Media Consultant and Investor
5 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The daily routine, and even drudgery, of life sometimes beats our dreams out of us, a little bit at a time. Before we know it, we’ve lost the drive we once propelled us to achieve our goals.

Inspiration is what drives creativity, innovation and progress of all types. Inspired people design a better mousetrap, create iconic works of art and lead businesses that radically transform marketplaces. One of the best ways to keep making consistent progress is to keep the fires of inspiration stoked. There are a lot of ways to accomplish this. Start with the following five tips.

1. Use inspirational quotes.

We tend to accept and mirror back the qualities, ideas and traits that we see around us every day. That being the case, sometimes all it takes to stay inspired is to expose ourselves to a few inspiring words on a daily basis.

Take a page from Jeff Bezos’s book and stick printed copies of your favorite motivational quotes on the refrigerator. You can also put inspiring quotes or affirmations on sticky notes around your desk, on your mirror, or on your computer monitor.

Finally, framed quotes can be purchased online, and you can even make your own version using sites such as Zazzle and WallWritten.

Related: 10 Inspirational Quotes to Keep You Going Through Hard Times

2. Make a list of your reasons.

Reaching a big goal can take a long time and a lot of effort. It’s no wonder that we sometimes feel like we may simply be making life a lot harder for ourselves. Often, the harder we have to work at reaching a big goal, the easier it is for us to lose sight of reasons why we adopted the goal to begin with.

A written list of your reasons for pursuing a specific goal can help you stay motivated and inspired to put in that hard work and keep on striving to grab the brass ring.

When you’re creating your list of reasons behind a specific project or goal, aim to keep the list as long and as emotionally powerful as possible. We may use reason and logic to make decisions, but when it comes to putting in the hours for long-term goals, emotion is what keeps us fired up and motivated.

You could simply create the list and then set it aside. However to make the most out of this tactic, print your list and then schedule personal time each day to meditate on those reasons. By reinforcing your decision each day in this way, you internalize those reasons more and even expand upon them if you like. When you find your motivation waning, pull those reasons out anywhere and at anytime for a quick hit of inspiration.

Related: 7 Proven Ways Meditating Prepares You for Success

3. Let others inspire and lead you.

Sometimes, we humans make things more difficult than they need to be. For example, you can struggle through a process or goal on your own, refusing all help — or you can learn from those who have gone before you.

Regularly read biographies and memoirs of people who overcame seemingly insurmountable obstacles or who attained goals similar to yours. Allow yourself to be inspired by their victories and accomplishments. If they reached the goal, you can, too.

4. Select a physical representation.

In many religions, objects are imbued with specific spiritual meaning and used by the faithful to attain a more peaceful and balanced state of being. Buddhist malas and Catholic rosaries help center and focus the mind, while the Jewish mezuzah serves to sanctify the home and remind those of their relationship with God.

Talismans don’t have to be religious or spiritual, however, in order to be useful. You can use a small, meaningful object to help remind you of the importance of your project or goal. You can use any object of art or decoration, or a piece of jewelry if you prefer, as long as it visually represents for you some aspect of your intention. If you can create one, even better.

Remember, it doesn’t need to speak to anyone else except you. Display it on your desk, on your wall, or somewhere you’ll see it regularly, or leave it in a pocket of your clothing. The key is your association of the object with your goal. It can recharge your inspiration each time you see or touch it.

Related: How Consistent Exercise Makes You More Productive

5. Exercise, meditate and play.

Stress is an inspiration-killer, and one of the best defenses is a complete change of pace, both physically and mentally.

Let yourself wander, both mind and body. For example, even a simple daily walk provides physical exercise and allows your brain to decompress and destress. When you permit your mind to wander, it’s more capable of making creative leaps and generating new, viable ideas.

Finally, don’t let yourself buy into that “all work and no play” ethos. Truly inspired and creative people realize that, as important as hard work is, you also have to fill the well at some point.

Engage in some activity that’s relaxing and fun, without a competitive edge. Woodworking, painting, and even coloring books can be effective outlets to decompress and play, giving a stressed-out mind a chance to breathe and get inspired again.

Setting Realistic Goals Linked to Higher Level of Well-Being

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A new study shows that people who set realistic goals can hope for  better well-being.

The key for later satisfaction is whether the life goals are seen as attainable, according to psychologists at the University of Basel in Switzerland.

For the study, researchers used data from 973 people between the ages of 18 and 92 living in German-speaking parts of Switzerland. More than half of the participants were surveyed again after two and four years.

The participants were asked to assess on a four-point scale the importance and the perceived attainability of life goals in 10 areas: health, community, personal growth, social relationships, fame, image, wealth, family, and responsibility and care for younger generations.

The study’s findings revealed that perceiving one’s personal goals as attainable is an indicator for later cognitive and affective well-being.

This implies that people are most satisfied if they have a feeling of control and attainability, the researchers explained.

Life goals also hold predictive power for specific domains, according to the study’s findings. For example, participants who set social-relation goals or health goals were more satisfied with their social relationships or their own health.

The researchers also found that the link between life goals and subsequent well-being appeared to be independent of the age of the participants.

However, age did play a factor in what goals people valued.

The younger the participants were, the more they rated personal growth, status, work, and social-relation goals as important. The older the participants were, the more they rated social engagement and health as important, according to the study’s findings.

“Many of our results confirmed theoretical assumptions from developmental psychology,” said lead author Janina Bühler, a Ph.D. student. “If we examine, however, whether these goals contribute to well-being, age appears less relevant.”

The study was published in the European Journal of Personality.

7 Habits of Existentially Vibrant Living

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The following are the seven habits that, in my opinion, comprise the basis of existentially vibrant living:

(1)   the habit of making one’s own meaning (instead of “looking for it”)

(2)   the habit of accepting reality “as is” (put differently, the habit of “noticing ordinary perfection”)

(3)   the habit of being present in the moment

(4)   the habit of making conscious choices (which helps you de-program and re-program your life at will)

(5)   the habit of self-acceptance/self-compassion

(6)   the habit of accepting uncertainty (“because we are always flying blind into the unknown of what is yet to be”)

(7)   the habit of forgiving and compassion

These seven vital signs of conscious, meaningful, and mindful living are the goals of the program of existential rehabilitation.  Developing these habits will help you feel freer and more alive, more at ease and psychologically invulnerable, more attuned to yourself and more connected with others, and, most importantly, less preoccupied with what should be and more in awe of what already is.

Adapted from Present Perfect (P. Somov, New Harbinger Publications, 2010)

Surprising Countries Where U.S. Citizens Need an Advance Visa

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Many countries require U.S. travelers to present entry visas on arrival.

U.S. passport owners have the privilege of being able to visit various countries—among them CanadaMexicoFranceItalyBelizeIcelandNew Zealand, and more—without needing a visa. However, a number of international destinations do require that travelers with U.S. passports purchase tourist visas before entering the country. Here’s what you need to know about a few of the more frequently visited countries that require visas from U.S. citizens upon arrival.

Australia

Before heading to the Land Down Under, travelers with U.S. passports must apply for an electronic authorization from the Australian government known as the Electronic Travel Authority (ETA). You can purchase an Australian ETA online up to—but no later than—24 hours in advance of your departure. Electronic tourist visas are valid for one year and permit multiple stays of up to 90 days in Australia. They currently cost $20 per person.

Bolivia

Although U.S. passport holders can obtain visas on arrival at the Bolivian border, the extensive paperwork you need to have with you can complicate matters, which is why it can be better to apply for a Bolivian tourist visa online or at a consulate in advance. To enter Bolivia, U.S. citizens must provide a completed application form, a passport-size headshot, evidence of hotel reservations (or a letter of invitation to stay at a private residence), proof of sufficient funds and departure tickets, a photocopy of your passport, plus a yellow fever vaccination certificate. All of this is in addition to a fee of $160, which is only accepted in cash at the border.

Brazil

A Brazilian tourist visa costs $44 for two-year entry or $160 for 10-year entry, and it can be applied for online or at a Brazilian embassy at least one month before travel. In early 2019, Brazil’s Foreign Ministry announced that the country will soon eliminate visa requirements for visitors from the United States (as well as from Canada, Japan, and Australia). However, timelines for this change have not yet been announced, which means that until further notice, U.S. passport holders must still obtain travel visas prior to arrival in Brazil.

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China

Non-business travelers with U.S. passports are permitted to visit Hong Kong visa-free (for stays of up to 90 days). But to enter China’s mainland, U.S. passport holders must purchase an entry visa through the Chinese embassy no less than one month before their trip. China’s required visas currently cost $140 and allow for multiple entries to the country over the course of 10 years as long as the U.S. passport has a remaining validity of one year at the time the tourist visa is issued.

Cuba

Cuba might be the least surprising country to appear on this list due to its complicated history of travel regulations with the United States. But U.S. passport holders can visit the Caribbean island nation—they just have to adhere to a few specific requirements for entry, the first of which includes applying for a Cuban Tourist Card (sometimes referred to as a Cuban visa). These tourist cards can be purchased online and grant visitors a maximum stay of 30 days on the island. They’re valid for 180 days after purchase, which means you will need to travel within six months of obtaining the document. (Learn more about the legwork required to visit Cuba here.)

India
India’s visa application process changes frequently, so the Indian embassy in Washington, D.C. urges travelers to check its website for updates before planning a trip. At the moment, however, India’s tourist visa regulations are as follows: U.S. citizens can apply online for an electronic travel authorization referred to as an “e-Visa” up to four days before arrival in India, but no more than 30 days before travel. The e-Visa costs $100 and is valid for 60 days upon entry to India. (Be prepared to present a printed copy at customs in the international airport.)

Vietnam
Just as with Australia and India, U.S. citizens planning trips to Vietnam have the option to apply for an e-Visa—also referred to as a “visa on arrival”—online and in advance. Acquiring this e-Visa, which is valid for stays of up to 30 days, requires paying two fees: one “visa letter service fee” at the time of application and another “stamping fee” upon arrival in Vietnam. (The cost varies depending on length of travel and other factors—see more information here.) It’s important to note that Vietnam’s online visa approval process only applies to air travelers who arrive at one of the country’s international airports in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, or Da Nang; travelers arriving by land or sea must apply for a visa through a Vietnam embassy.

For the full list of countries requiring tourist visas from U.S. citizens, including Russia, Nepal, and Tanzania, click here.

11 Keys To Happiness, According To Science

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By Declan Malley

You’re dragging. Your life feels like an endless, meaningless repeat of the same old routine for the foreseeable future. It’s become difficult to get yourself out of bed in the morning because you simply don’t want to do what you need to do for the day. Don’t imagine you’re alone – everyone goes through this, and a lot of people get stuck in it. If you have no interest in becoming one of them, then read on.

1. Change your morning schedule.

It can be tough to do, especially if you feel no motivation to get up in the first place. Start small. If you’re a snooze button fiend, change up your alarm method – or placement. Switch to a different, delicious kind of breakfast if you can. Set ten minutes aside to meditate, stretch, or practice yoga. Choose anything that will help you personally succeed.

2. Find something that inspires you to kickstart your day.

What do you like to do to energize and push yourself forward? It matters, because if you’re consistently dragging in the morning, you need a special kind of nudge. Find what makes you want to jump out of bed and get into the thick of things. The list of possibilities is endless – it all comes down to finding the spark that works for you.

3. Meditate on a regular basis.

Whether you do so in the morning or not, it’s a good idea to engage in some sort of daily meditation practice. If that sounds daunting, approach it incrementally. You don’t have to set aside an hour or two – the regularity is what matters, not so much the length of the meditation. Once you make your ten or fifteen minutes into a daily habit, you’ll find it easier to expand your practice. It’ll feel so good that you will want to stay longer.

4. Dig deep.

You might be having a tough time finding motivation to try something new. Perhaps the problem is that you’ve lost your drive for what you’re already doing. Either way, you have to get down to the root of the issue. Is it fear? Is it a lack of inspiration? Does it relate to some other issue happening in your life? If you want to rediscover the drive that you need for a fulfilling journey, then you have to put in the internal work.

5. Reprioritize.

It’s so easy to get sidetracked in the day-to-day chaos of the hectic world that you live in. Don’t beat yourself up over it. It happens to everyone and most are completely unaware of the problem. They don’t understand why they feel overworked, stressed, and discontent. Sit down and make two lists – one with the activities you engage in that bring you joy, and one with those that cause you stress. Make the decision to incorporate more of those that are joyful and also to put them first as much as possible. Starting with the positive will make those tougher tasks easier to bear.

6. Get moving.

It may be well-worn advice, but it’s true – revving up your heart produces endorphins and motivates you to get the rest of your day in order. If you can stand it, try to start your morning off with some exercise, even if that just means getting outside and taking a walk in the fresh air. If you combine a workout with time in nature, you double the potential benefits. You’re almost guaranteed to be in a better mindset post-exercise.

7. Be brutally honest with yourself.

Is there an actual issue interfering with your motivation, or have you let yourself get lazy? Sometimes the truth is difficult to face. Everyone gets comfortable and complacent, but it’s your job to keep things fresh and rediscover your zest for life. If you don’t have that going for you, what’s even the point, right? Take a good hard look at the underlying problems.

8. Rest – but really, truly rest.

In today’s world most people don’t really take breaks. You may tell yourself something you’re doing counts as “rest”, but odds are you’re still letting the rest of your life interfere with your relaxation. You have to set aside time to honestly let go, and if you’re lucky, there are people around you who can assist you with that. They’ll probably be glad to lend a hand if you express the crucial necessity – and it won’t hurt if you offer to do likewise in the future. There is no shame in relying on those who care for you.

9. Try something wildly outside your comfort zone.

Part of your problem could be a lack of new elements in your life that pique your interest. When you fall into a rut, you must pull yourself out of it – and one way to do that quickly and effectively is to attempt something that scares you. It’ll keep your enthusiasm alive and inspire you to go above and beyond where you are now.

10. Dance!

Seriously. Dancing is incredibly freeing and it brings the best out in everyone. It awakens your inner child and puts a smile on your face – what can possibly be wrong with that? Let everything go and dance like nobody is watching you. Life is too short to care, and nothing feels better than giving your body license to move in the ways that feel primal and true. It’ll take you out of your head and into your heart.

11. If you don’t like your life, step back and try to pinpoint why.

There’s nothing worse than feeling dissatisfied with your existence, but a staggering number of people out there aren’t happy. Most likely you’ve been plodding along and haven’t taken stock of where you are and what’s keeping you from satisfaction. Has something changed, or is the issue that nothing’s changed at all? Figure it out.

12. Be as completely present in the moment as humanly possible.

Your unhappiness could stem from the simple fact that you are living in the past or the future instead of the here and now. If you’re dragging, take note of every moment as it happens, and you’ll forget to worry about anything else. Your inherent motivation lies in the fact that none of us are guaranteed the next month, day, hour, or even minute. Take charge of your life and enjoy it fully as long as you hold its preciousness in your grasp.

Be The One Who Saves Yourself

See ThoughtCatalog Article Here
By Ashley Spargo

In a world full of everlasting change, there’s one thing that is certain. You are the only person that can save yourself. You are responsible for your happiness and your happiness alone. If you feel as though you’re drowning, you’re responsible for making sure you come up for fresh air. You’ve had some terrible luck lately? You’ve managed to make all of the wrong decisions? You’re feeling a little unsettled in your life right now? The guy you liked screwed you over?

SO WHAT?

You need to start being selfish. You need to start realizing that you come first NO MATTER WHAT. You are what matters the most to you. You need to realize that.

You’ve had terrible luck lately? It doesn’t matter if this is in your professional or personal life. This is something that is bothering you on a regular basis. You need to realize what it is that’s causing this and how you’re feeling about it and change it. You are the only one that can change your luck and how you feel about it. If you’re not going to change it, you’re better off embracing it.

You’ve managed to make all of the wrong decisions? REALIZE WHY. Realize why and change it. There’s always a reason to make a terrible decision. He hurt your feelings so you slept with one of his friends? Totally understandable. However, making it a regular thing is not. Let’s stop acting on emotions and begin making more rational and logical decisions. There’s no excuse for terrible behavior.

You’re feeling a little unsettled in your life right now? Change it up. Thinking about applying to grad school? Do it. Thinking about a career change? Start making moves. You control your happiness and if you’re feeling a bit blah about where you are in your life right now, do something about it and do it now!

The guy you liked screwed you over? WELCOME TO THE DAMN CLUB. He wasn’t worth your time anyway. You were much hotter than him, you cared more than he did, and let’s be honest, no one wants someone who’s sleeping with everyone. You’re feeling upset about the way things ended and that’s completely understandable. Stop feeling as though this didn’t work out because of something you did. Stop feeling the urge to drink until you no longer want him. What you need to realize right now is that he’s an ass. He’s an ass and a douche. You deserve a hell of a lot better and your time is coming.

Stop hoping for someone to come around and save you. Save your damn self. You’re worth so much more than you’re showing. Now act like it, girl.

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