View profile

KNOW what to do next in life with this effective approach.

KNOW what to do next in life with this effective approach.
“What do I do with my life?”
Forget that.
It can be hard enough to answer the question, “What do I do with my day?”
Still, you have to do something with your life, and I’m guessing you want to be happy while you do it.
The following approach is what I’ve used to get myself on the right path in life.
It does take some time, although not a ton, and the rewards are definitely worth it.
Support The Mental Health Update
If you buy something through one of these links, I’ll get a small percentage to fund the hours of work I put into this content every week. Thank you for considering.
This book by poker player/psychologist Annie Duke really influenced me when it comes to the strategy I’ll describe below. It will improve your thinking for sure.
And that books pairs well with Atomic Habits by James Clear, one of my favorite books of all time. It’s not specifically about the below strategy, but it will help you become the person you need to be to accomplish whatever you want to do in life.
And now…on to the show!

What to Do With Your Life? (Use This Effective Approach)
Here’s the typical thought process when you don’t know what to do with your life.
Oh my gosh, I’m lost.
I don’t know what to do.
I want to be happy.
I want to find meaning.
But I don’t even know where to start.
This is impossible.
You think there is one, great thing that will make you happy.
You think you’re just supposed to know what to do with your life and choose it so you can be done with the agonizing decision-making process.
But this is not how life works.
How often have you thought really hard for a few minutes and just KNEW, like that, what you were supposed to do next with your life?
I’m not talking about minor decisions.
I’m talking about the pivotal decisions in your life, like choosing the right career or life partner.
These are not decisions you should take lightly.
And fortunately, there’s a strategy you can use to figure out what you are supposed to be doing in life.
I call it making small bets, and it’s something I’ve been doing for years and years.
It’s the only strategy I know that drastically increases the odds that I’ll end up doing something I love.
Here’s what it looks like.
Say you’re at a crossroads with your current job and you don’t know what to do next.
Society would tell you that you need to immediately know what the next big move is–and make it right then and there.
But like I said above, this is not how life works.
You don’t think, “OK, I’m an engineer, now I will be a sales professional.”
You don’t say to yourself, “OK, I’m working for Bongo Corporation in Maine, and now I will go work for Bango Corporation in California.”
Life’s not that simple, and if I’m being honest, we shouldn’t want it to be that way.
We’re not robots, after all. Figuring it out for ourselves is part of the joy of life.
No, what you need to do is make small bets.
You need to think about 3-5 activities you could pursue that will get you headed in the right direction.
What you choose to pursue as small bets will depend on your particular situation and what goals you have for your life.
Let’s just say that you’re deeply unsatisfied with your current career path.
Instead of just choosing a whole new career path in an instant, test the waters with small bets.
You could:
  1. Volunteer in the field that you’re interested in
  2. Take a part-time job in the new field–or one that is tangentially related to it
  3. Help a friend by doing something that someone in the new field would typically have to do
  4. Read a book about the field to see if you even like it
  5. Watch YouTube videos about how to get started in the new career
These are all small bets that have very little risk.
And the good part is that you’re not committing your whole life to them.
I don’t know about you, but I panic when I feel like I’m not going to have time to do everything I want to do in life.
Making small bets solves that.
By pursuing an activity for a few months to a year, you get valuable experience. Most importantly, you learn about the activity and about yourself.
When I’m choosing new projects to work on, whether for fun or professional reasons, I ask myself, “Am I going to learn something here even if I fail?”
If the answer is yes, I do it.
If it’s no, I move on and pick something else.
Small bets increase your learning speed, and they diversify your risk, to borrow a financial term.
When you don’t put all your eggs in one basket, well, your eggs aren’t all in one basket. They’re in lots of pretty little baskets that you can carry around from place to place. They’re much less likely to break, and you never know what you might find to also put in that particular basket.
I Don't Know What to Do With My Life...No More
"SHOT THROUGH THE HEART, and you're to blame!!" - Bon Jovi
"SHOT THROUGH THE HEART, and you're to blame!!" - Bon Jovi
I didn’t one day wake up and decide, “I need to be an entrepreneur. I need to risk everything right now and just go work for myself.”
No, I worked lots of jobs in lots of fields and realized that working for myself is the most likely path to happiness. For me.
I always want things to be better.
I always want to try my own strategies.
And that mindset and approach doesn’t work well in a big, bureaucratic environment.
Now I get to work on lots of little projects, which my curious brain loves.
And I only got to this point after years of making small bets.
Today, take some time to ask yourself:
Where am I stuck in life?
What are my biggest goals?
What are some small bets I could make to accomplish them?
What could I start doing in the next day, week, and month to learn as much as possible?
When you don’t know what to do with your life, don’t sit there and ruminate about it.
Try something out.
Make a small bet.
If you still can’t get started, make the smallest bet you can possibly imagine.
Life is short.
Learn as fast as you can so that you can get on the path that is right for you.
I really hope you’ll try this out. It’s helped me beyond belief, and I’m a person who deals with a lot of anxiety. If you have any questions about it, just reply to this email!
Thanks for reading. I’ll see you in a few days.
Jordan
Do you enjoy this newsletter delivered to your email every Tuesday and Thursday?
Does this newsletter enrich your life and give you the boost you need to get through your week?
Consider sending a few bucks to my Paypal or Venmo (@Jordan-Brown-555).
I spend hours putting these two newsletters together every week because I want people to have information that I wish I had when I was struggling.
Short on funds? I totally get it.
Send this sign-up link to people you think might enjoy it. No matter what you do, this newsletter will always remain free to anyone who wants to read it.
Did you enjoy this issue?
Jordan Brown - Mental Health Newsletter Writer, Poet, Social Worker, and Advocate

Authentic, actionable mental health. Improve how you feel. The Mental Health Update Mental Health Newsletter provides you with authentic mental health articles that make mental health issues like depression, anxiety, and OCD meaningful AND accessible.

This is different from typical mental health newsletters and articles about mental health challenges.

It's not just an Anxiety Email Newsletter or a Depression Email Newsletter - It's two weekly articles packed with timeless mental health wisdom and inspiration to start your day in a thoughtful, uplifting way.

I was tired of other "mental health care" newsletters blasting out generic lists of links and depression articles.

And I was especially tired of them not focusing on the everyday reality of mental health issues.

So I decided to come up with something I wanted to read.

This health newsletter is like a caring friend that just wants you to feel better.

Mental health awareness articles don't need to be all doom and gloom and filled with jargon.

With The Mental Health Update, you'll get practical mental health information, tips, and new ways to view the world. Especially now, with people reeling from the effects of the COVID 19 pandemic, we need trusted voices telling it like it is.

We discuss topics like anxiety, depression, OCD, the mental health to mental illness spectrum, social and communication skills, and much, much more.

This is what a few subscribers had to say about The Mental Health Update:

"If you haven't yet subscribed to Jordan's mental health newsletter, you absolutely should. It's chock full of good stuff to read and will help make your day better. Not unlike a daily vitamin for your mental health and soul..." - JR

"Encouragement from someone who has “been there” when it comes to mental health struggles. Comes in the form of stories and simple, actionable tips for reframing and working with - and through - your issues. One of the few newsletters that has survived my ruthless inbox decluttering sprees. Highly recommended!" - Kelila

"Jordan's mental health update is a welcomed email in my inbox. It often provides me with a chance to break from the mundane tasks of working in an office and take a moment for myself to hear his thoughtful and well put together thoughts on many aspects of mental health. As someone who works in the psychology field it's often a nice reminder and way of grounding myself to all the great work that's going on and the journey we all must take in supporting mental health. Thank you Jordan!" - Rob

I take my no-spam policy very seriously. I consider it a mental health obligation to not abuse your trust or raise your anxiety.

Newsletter articles sent on Tuesday and Thursday.

In order to unsubscribe, click here.
If you were forwarded this newsletter and you like it, you can subscribe here.
Powered by Revue
Missoula, MT