Sometimes people take life too seriously and it can lead to stress, burnout as an Entrepreneur and even resentment to what you do or people you know.
What does it mean to take life too seriously?
People that take life too seriously have trouble differentiating between what’s important and the trivial details. Hence are prone to be perfectionist. They also don’t take time to define the “why” as against clinging to the how.
It means being uptight about everything in life including processes and outcomes. You have that feeling that 99% of things are within your control which in reality isn’t.
You’re also perceived by others as being “too strict” or “too hard” not because you’re expected to lower your standards or values but you don’t give room for little mistakes and won’t let things go.
This may lead to one being sensitive or too reactive to events and behavior around you.
Humour is also an indicator of whether or not one takes life too seriously or not. It’s different from sarcasm where the intent may be to deceive or mislead.
When last did you smile or laugh today, hanged out with friends, lend a helping hand and forgave instead of being judgmental?
How to remind yourself not to take life too seriously
1: Life is a Game
In life, people win sometimes and people lose sometimes. Another reason to take risks.
If you stick to it – with time you get better at spotting patterns. Then you fail less often.
You get bored when all you do is win – I can’t imagine spending much time on any game that allows me win on every challenge.
You’re one call, one email, one idea, away from your biggest opportunity.
2: Life is short
Life is too short to worry about the little things. Worry doesn’t fix anything. Don’t dwell on the past or worry about the future.
One of the best ways to stop taking life too seriously is to live in the present moment and savor all that it has to offer.
In this game of life, nothing is fixed permanently.
Holding onto anger and resentment will only hurt you in the long run, so try to forgive and move on.
3: Find humor in everyday situations
Learn to laugh at yourself. If you can’t take a joke, you’re likely taking life too seriously.
Learning to laugh at yourself will help you relax and see the lighter side of things. Try not to stress over things that are out of your control, take deep breaths, and take breaks when needed.
4: Be spontaneous
Embrace your inner child.
Do something new and unexpected every day.
Adults often forget how to have fun and enjoy the simple things in life.
Embracing your inner child means letting go of some of your inhibitions and enjoying the moment.
5: Don’t cling to your Opinions
Fact is people are still gonna do what they want to do. They’ll only change when they want to. Your random opinion can hardly change anybody.
I leaned this lesson from J. Altutcher who has an interesting list on “why he doesn’t like to have an opinion.” I can’t say I practice this to the latter. But I do like to listen more than I talk to prevent imposing opinions on others while having conversations.
Plus I don’t talk about what I have zero interest in – politics, tv, news, most sports.
6: Don’t sweat the small stuff
It’s easy to get wrapped up in the little details and stresses of everyday life, but it’s important to remember that they’re just not worth fretting over.
I had a savings box as a kid. On few occasions, my siblings would touch it, not for a selfish need but sometimes just to fulfill a need before my parents were back from work.
And I’d cry and cry. I thought they were messing with my future. In reality – whatever I’d saved could be replaced within a day by the same siblings or my parents.
If only someone had told me that the principle of saving as a habit was more important than how much I had saved. Then i could stop sweating the small stuff.
Life is better when you don’t take yourself too seriously
— Pomp 🌪 (@APompliano) June 12, 2022
If you’re writing as a habit – the principle of consistent writing, sharing your message and improving is more important than how perfect it looks, or how many likes it gets.
7: Do things that makes you happy
Life is too short to spend time doing things that don’t make you happy. Find activities, people, or places that bring joy into your life and make an effort to incorporate them into your daily routine.
Figure out what you want, take action and stick to it long term. It’s the key to taking risks when you’re young and not giving up when you meet challenges.
8: Don’t give much f**ks
The other day, I was listening to a Podcast on J. Altucher show with a guest “Richard Cohen “– and he made a statement from his new book which was based on his dad’s powerful art of negotiation. He said something like this:
“Care enough” “But don’t care too much” This applies to not just to NEGOTIATIONS where the one that cares the least wins most of the time but:-
- Relationships– care too much – you’re friend zoned by the girl or avoided by the guy-
- School – the biggest lessons in life are learned outside the classroom
- Money – money comes to you the most when you don’t focus on making it
- Happiness – chase happiness and you realize how fleeting it is rather chase purpose
9: Don’t take Criticism personally
How you handle criticism tells a lot on how emotionally mature and secure you are and how much you see yourself as a leader or a follower.
How much approval do you need from others? Its important to stop seeking external validation from others.
Do you have an entitlement mentality? Learn to overcome entitlement mentality. The best leaders don’t take criticism personally.
It starts with you.
Do you criticize to condemn or want to modify behaviour? Do you believe in people over their mistakes?
A leader takes the blame and gives credit away often.
10: Stop arguing to win
Steve Covey had the perfect antidote to this type of mindset – “Think Win-Win” in his book Seven Habits of Highly effective people. Your goal is to find a common ground.
I’ve noticed a good way to know you’re going out of the line is when you start raising your voice. He went on to write another book to drive this point further “the Third Alternative.”
In any conversation, you don’t have to agree, but don’t be known to be the guy that’s always arguing. Besides I don’t know anybody that has built a lot of stuff that thrives on arguments.
Stop taking life so seriously
The most successful (and perpetually happy) people I know:
– Give zero fucks
– Do what they want
– Have fun in the process
Most people tell you to avoid this, they want you straight edge
Make wise decisions, but don’t take the game too seriously
— DAN KOE (@thedankoe) June 15, 2020
11: Bonus point: Learn from people way ahead of you.
Making effort to reinvent the wheel is a waste of effort most of the times.
Alex Hormzi, made a statement on learning frameworks from others “if you can’t make more than what they’re doing presently – shut up and do everything they say to the latter”
You’ve got to implement before you can make tweaks.
Invest in a Coach. Find people way ahead of you and surround yourself with their thinking and actions.
It robs off on you as long as you keep your mind open.
Don’t take life too seriously guys , because no one is making it out of earth alive.
I help entrepreneurs optimize their focus, energy & health.