Home Success Important Life Choices That Determine Success

Important Life Choices That Determine Success

Trista February 10, 2020

Life is an ongoing series of decisions that we need to make. Like the famous Robert Frost poem says- the road less traveled is often more difficult, but it has greater rewards. And yet, the road not taken will remain a mystery. The older you get, the more you will wonder what could have been or an alternate universe where you chose a different path. If you could go back in time, would you choose things differently?

No matter what age you are right now, it’s never too late to start a new chapter. These are some of the most essential life choices people need to make to succeed in life. We’re not here to tell you what’s right or wrong. Everyone has free will, and at the end of the day, it’s up to you.

How will you become successful if you don’t even take your cut of the work? Credit: Life

35. Paying Yourself First

One of the most common financial advice pieces also happens to be one of the simplest and easiest to implement in your own life: pay yourself first. What this principle boils down to is always setting aside money for your own goals, whether it’s a savings account, investment opportunity, or a treat you’ve been saving up for before you pay your bills and start spending on non-essential items for the pay period. It ensures that little expenses like a coffee with a friend or a book you’ve had your eye on don’t chip away at the amount you ideally want to save.

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A simple way to enact the idea of paying yourself first is transferring a set amount of money into your savings or investment account automatically when you get paid. You may even be able to have your employer send a portion of your paycheck directly into a savings account instead of your checking account. If you don’t currently have a bank account, a firebox could be used to keep an allotted amount of cash saved away as soon as you cash your check for opening an account or a cash purchase like a used car. Whether it’s $10 or $1,000, always pay yourself first.

Taking care of a four-legged friend can add purpose (and years) to your life. Credit: Unsplash

34. Having A Pet, Especially A Dog

Anyone who has ever had one of man’s best friends knows that dogs function as a furry, hot-breathed alarm clock. You will never have to worry about oversleeping or sleeping in with a puppy in your house. People who own dogs tend to get up earlier than those without, which is no surprise. However, they tend to exercise more than those without. Why? Thanks to the enjoyment of walking with a furry companion and the high need for exercise of dog breeds. Better to walk that extra mile than have Fluffy eat your favorite pair of expensive new shoes.

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People who own dogs also tend to live longer, giving dog owners a chance to work longer and earn more money over their lifetimes. People who own dogs also tend to have lower blood pressure, lower levels of stress and depression thanks to both the necessary exercise and the loving companionship that comes from having a pet. Any way you look at it, if you can financially and physically manage to have a dog, they are a great decision to enrich your life in many ways, from health to even potentially wealth. Just make sure you look into pet insurance for those vet bills!

Working out is essential for all ages and genders. Credit: Philly Mag

33. Exercise

Regular exercise is one of the best decisions you can make and one of the best investments you can treat yourself to for your long-term health. That doesn’t mean you need to run out and get new equipment or an expensive health club membership. Any physical exercise, even walking around your neighborhood for a half-hour, is a great start and a massive boost over a sedentary lifestyle. If you’re stuck inside most of the time from weather or disability, there are many YouTube videos on gentle indoor exercise for people of all physical ability levels. Any kind of workout has myriad health benefits.

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People often think of exercise to lose weight and gain muscle, but it has many mental health advantages. Exercise can help manage the symptoms of mild depression and anxiety and can help people with ADHD focus. In addition to the mood-boosting benefits, regular exercise can also help keep your bathroom habits steady, which is a plus for everyone. Exercising outside, as long as you don’t have allergies, can be especially mood-boosting since you can savor some sunshine and beautiful surroundings while getting in your daily steps. If you find an exercise you enjoy, it becomes far easier to make it a routine.

Reading really is fundamental; it is essential for everyday life! Credit: Shutterstock

32. Read A Book Every Day

While it may seem impossible to believe, many people in the United States don’t read even one book in a year’s time. Not one! For many, it is the busy rush of day-to-day life that leads to merely watching TV to relax at night while reading feels like more “work.” Many also lose the love of reading in high school when forced to read many older, dry novels that don’t do much to engage young readers. Unfortunately, if you’re finding that this all applies to you, reading a book regularly is one habit strongly associated with successful, motivated people.

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Successful people tend to have an unquenchable thirst for knowledge and see gaining new information as a route to self-improvement. With this in mind, successful people read a newspaper or similar source of high-quality news every morning. Furthermore, they read a book during the day or before bed at night. While non-fiction is a great way to increase knowledge on a favorite subject or start learning an entirely new topic, even fiction is an excellent exercise for your mind and works to expand your vocabulary. Reading can be a great way to wind down before bed, as long as you don’t end up reading a stressful page-turner.

You are a reflection of who you hang out with, meaning guilty by association. Credit: Pinterest

31. Choose The Right Friends

Sadly, all friends are not created equal. While most friends are tried and true and will have your back and uplift and support you in making healthy decisions for yourself, it is possible to have friends who enable bad behavior on your part or even encourage it to match the bad behavior they themselves engage in. It’s also possible to have jealous friends who try to hold you back so that your shine doesn’t cast a spotlight on their shortcomings. Other friends can be time or energy vampires, always asking things from you but never seeming to have the time to help you in return.

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If any of these are ringing true, it’s crucial to take stock of your values and goals and see if these friends are truly going to help you on the path to achieving your dreams. Bad friends will not only drain your time and energy but depending on their personalities, they may even attempt to sabotage you or hold you back from making the best decisions so that you stay on their level instead of progressing. While it’s always hard to let go of old friends, if you find a friend consistently standing in the way of your dreams, it may be time to put an end to that relationship.

Make sure you put yourself first — it’s not selfish in the sense you think! Credit: The Impact

30. Love Yourself

It may sound cheesy, but loving and valuing yourself for exactly who you are is an absolute must if you ever want to be successful. Becoming successful often takes great leaps of faith and considerable risks, and how can you take those actions if you don’t have confidence in yourself first and foremost? It’s absolutely fine to have things you’d like to change about yourself, like certain habits you’d like to drop or healthy habits you’d like to cultivate, but at the end of the day, you need to be able to look in the mirror and like whom you see.

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Having a strong internal sense of self-worth is not only crucial for your happiness, but it can protect you from being taken advantage of personally and financially. A person with a strong internal sense of worth will be more likely to fight back against a boss trying to underpay or overwork them since they know full well they are worth more than poor treatment. Someone with good self-worth also won’t need to look to others for validation, which is especially important if your circle includes people who are jealous or resentful of the steps you’re taking towards success.

It’s important to do the right thing, even if nobody is watching and you don’t get anything in return. Credit: Dropmark

29. Integrity Is Forever

Opportunities can come and go, and finances rise and fall, but your reputation will follow you forever. On your road to achieving success, you may encounter offers that go against your value that would profit off of or exploit other people for your gain. While these may be tempting for quick money or a shot at long-term success, it will never be worth it in terms of integrity. People never forget being taken advantage of or ripped off, and you don’t want that legacy to follow you since it will harm your ability to succeed throughout the rest of your life.

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It’s essential when embarking on new financial ventures to take stock of your values and decide well-ahead any investments or take any new opportunities you are not comfortable doing and working with. Are there specific industries you don’t want to work in, like weapons manufacturing or mining? Are there types of investment structures that you don’t want to support due to the high risk to regular people? Deciding what you’re willing to do before any seemingly lucrative and tempting opportunities come along will help keep you feeling rocksteady and in line with your values and your integrity.

The key is to manage what you can and let go of the things you cannot control. Credit: Grounds USA

28. Control What You Can

You can’t control many things on your journey through life and especially on the journey to success. A business partner’s decision, a financial roll of the dice, the tides of the market, and more will all be mostly outside of your control. So it’s essential to let go of the things outside your power so you can focus all of your time and energy on the factors you can control. While it will always be tempting to agonize over the stock ticker or refresh your emails waiting for a response, these time sinks can ultimately hurt your ability to move towards success.

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There are so many daily factors relevant to your success that you can control that there is no point in wasting time on any of those factors outside your control. You can manage your attitude, how you respond to a challenge, how you structure your day, how you react to a setback, how to invest your time in a given day, what you’d like to learn that day and more. You can’t always control what life serves up at your door, but you are still in control of how you choose to respond, and the choices you make in those situations, especially challenging ones, will likely be integral to your future success.

You might have a teacher or coworker within your field who can help mentor you about how to become successful. Credit: Mentor Washington

27. Find A Mentor

One of the smartest moves any professional can make in their career is to find a mentor. A mentor can be a coworker, a professional organization member for your area of expertise, or a retired member of your profession. While academia comes with built-in advisors as you study, people in the private industry may need to work a bit harder and do some searching to find someone willing to serve as a mentor. For the private sector, especially those notorious for heavy workloads like computer programming and engineering, a retired mentor may be best since they won’t have to balance you with a high workload.

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Mentors can be truly invaluable for the expertise they can provide young and developing professionals. They truly have “been there” and “done that,” and they can help navigate you through the sometimes complicated world of professional work and development. They can help you avoid both major pitfalls and minor mistakes within your field, as well as helping you see opportunities that you might not have noticed otherwise. Mentors can also help you wrap your head around responsibly using the earnings from your field, especially if they made the most of their working incomes through savings and investments. Finding a mentor can save, or even make you, a ton of money.

You can be successful and still follow your morals and values. Credit: Pinterest

26. Follow Your Values

We already talked about the need for integrity and how important it is to establish a positive, healthy reputation that will follow you throughout your career or financial life. Part of developing this sense of integrity is getting to know, articulate, and then follow your values. Most of us have a vague idea of our overall moral values like not lying, stealing, or hurting others, but it can be harder to pin down what our professional values are, especially in financial areas. Are there specific industries you’re uncomfortable with? Are there certain types of investments you find predatory? These are all critical questions to ask yourself as you get started.

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Once you feel you have narrowed down and honed in on your values, it’s important to articulate them both to yourself and others. Sharing your values could be important when it comes time to politely turn down an opportunity or job if it’s something that doesn’t align with those values. Picture them yourself can help you in the event of a tempting option that you know will inevitably conflict with your values despite the potential gain. It’s never too early to think about your professional and financial matters, and make sure you keep developing them as you and your career grow!

It’s okay to ask for help when you need it. Don’t feel ashamed to seek out a professional. Credit: KVC

25. Get Professional Help

Getting professional help can mean a lot of different things to different people. For some, it may mean getting an experienced mentor in their field, like we just talked about. Alternatively, for others, it might mean getting a professional non-commission based financial advisor to help them learn about investments, the stock market, and more. Again, for others, getting professional help can have a deeper meaning and include getting professional help for mental health concerns or neurodivergent issues like ADHD that could make finding success more difficult. There is no reason to tackle the problems like mental health alone, and there is no badge of courage or honor to be won for trying to fight such issues alone.

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Achieving success in life is complicated enough as is, but if you’re struggling with an issue like depression, it can become almost impossible without professional help. It’s important to get medication that helps you function as the best version of yourself or engaging in professional therapy to develop better behaviors and coping mechanisms. These can help you get a firm footing in life and make the road to success a lot less bumpy and challenging. Always make sure you’re giving yourself the best chance of success by investing in yourself, and that includes investing in your health and well-being.

You can be a role model for everyone around you from your coworkers to your children. Credit: J&D Photography

24. Be An Example

As is often said, “talking the talk” is one thing but “walking the walk” is far more difficult and meaningful. The same applies to success. As you are on the road to becoming successful, there will doubtless be other people watching you and the actions you take. Along with behaving with integrity and following your values at all times, it’s equally important to be a positive example to others. If you choose to live your life in a way that sets a positive example to follow for others, it will undoubtedly benefit you in the long run.

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While we talked about the need for mentors a bit ago, it’s important to note that as you grow and become successful, you could become the mentor for someone else and pass along the information and experiences you gained on your route to success. If you have consistently been a great example to follow throughout your career of a financial journey, you’ll have people lined up wanting to learn from you, which will enrich your life and theirs. While working with integrity and trying to lead as an example may feel like it’s holding you back at times in a competitive industry, it will reward you in the long run.

Having good intentions is at least a start, and then you can communicate from there. Credit: Pinterest

23. Assume Good Intentions

Unfortunately, it is far too easy in our world to assume that miscommunications, missed connections, and other undesirable disconnects are the result of bad intentions from someone else versus the far more likely factor of simple mistakes or misunderstandings. If you want to travel far on the road to success, it’s vital to approach all situations in good faith and assume others are doing the same. We aren’t saying to be naïve, of course, but don’t take malicious intentions or deceit if there’s no reason or evidence to suspect it. Engaging in business in good faith will help grow our reputation as a great person to deal with.

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The most successful people in life are often noted for their seemingly boundless optimism. Assuming good faith in others goes a long way towards cultivating optimism and believing others engage in bad faith grows the exact opposite: pessimism. Pessimism is a poor fit for success, be it personally or financially, since it reduces your ability to roll with setbacks and seize on new opportunities as they develop. Cultivating a strong sense of optimism and seeing the good intentions behind actions will help you communicate positively and always keep moving forward. Plus, if you give others the grace of good intentions, they’re far more likely to extend them to you!

There is always a silver lining to look for in a bad situation. Credit: Pikrepo

22. Look For Opportunities In Setbacks

Setbacks and pitfalls along the road to success aren’t fun, there’s no sugar-coating it. You may lose money, time, a much-hoped-for job, or some other primary goal on your long-term road to success. While it will be painful, and there’s no way of avoiding it, how you process and respond to those losses will play a huge role in determining how successful you ultimately are throughout your lifetime. We just talked about how vital optimism is, and it applies especially in the case of setbacks. Pessimistic people may well give up at the first major setback, while an optimist may be able to see an opportunity in disguise.

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Many first businesses fail, especially in industries like the restaurant business, whereas many as half of the new businesses fail. Many famous, wealthy people have a history of failed companies or ideas in their pasts, yet they could persevere and ultimately achieve success. One factor that can make you more likely to survive a setback successfully is rationally analyzing it and searching for any hidden opportunities that come along, even within setbacks themselves. Maybe a business failed, but did you make a valuable personal connection that could lead to future success?

If you start comparing yourself, the game will never end — and you will never win. Instead, love yourself completely. Credit: Medium

21. Comparison Is The Thief Of Joy

It is almost impossible not to compare ourselves to others regularly, especially in the age of social media. In the United States, the idea of “keeping up with the Joneses” and measuring your success by the success of those around you, be they neighbors or coworkers, is a long-standing cultural tradition. However, no two people are the same. Their values and goals are unlikely ever to be identical. Comparing yourself to others is truly a waste of time and energy. It could leave you dispirited and put you at a disadvantage on the road to success that is meaningful to you.

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Success looks different to everyone. It may mean a new boat or car for others or simply the massive accumulation of wealth. It’s important to define how success will look in your life and hold yourself to only that standard and no one else’s. Don’t let how other people express themselves or their success paint you into a corner. The only success that should ever matter to you is yours and how it can affect those around you, like loved ones. Ultimately, make sure you never let comparison sneak in and rob you of your happiness.

You might need to miss your mark a few times before you succeed. Photo Credit: Things/Shutterstock

20. Will You Risk Failing?

The fear of failure holds most people back from doing the things they genuinely want in life. You only get to fail at something so many times before you have run out of chances. People are afraid of losing relationships, money, time, and opportunities if they try to do something new and fail. This fear is hardwired in us from ancient times. Years ago, if we failed, it usually meant certain death. For example, if you were unable to jump from one ledge to another, you might fall. Sometimes, decision making can trigger a fight-or-flight response.

Some people are afraid that if they fail, everything else in their life will come crashing down. Photo Credit: Qilin’s prance Filmmaker/Shutterstock

In the modern world, the decisions we make as human beings aren’t usually life-or-death, but they still feel like it. Anyone who has become a self-made millionaire did so because they got over their fear of failure. They took a leap of faith. Alternatively, they set themselves up with a safety net to make sure they had something to fall back on. However, they were brave enough to take that chance. In some of our greatest moments of fear, rewards are just on the horizon. The cliché about missing shots you never take is a tired adage, but it still does hold the ultimate truth.

Regret can be a painful thing. Photo Credit: WAYHOME studio/Shutterstock

19. Regret Never Trying

We talked about how much fear can hold you back from trying new things in our last entry. That leads us to our second big choice you have to make. If you don’t do the things you have always dreamed of, will you regret it? For most, the answer is yes. Regret is genuinely the most painful and useless emotion since regret can’t ever change or fix the past. It is truly just the mourning for choices we didn’t make in the past and serves no purpose. So, insulate yourself from regret by being proactive and taking a chance on those things that will move you towards your goal.

Will you look back on your life and regret the chances you didn’t take? Photo Credit: Marjan Apostolovic/Shutterstock

Think back to all of the times in your life when you tried something and failed. Do you regret trying to do that thing? Chances are, you forgave yourself for the failure because at least you attempted. For example, if you ask your crush out on a date, and they say “no,” it will be embarrassing. However, at least you don’t have to look back and wonder if you missed an opportunity for them to say “yes.” Apply this idea to all areas of your life and be willing to take risks, even major ones, if success is a massive step towards your goal.

Sometimes, dealing with problems can feel like pushing a boulder up a mountain. Photo Credit: chaiyapruek youprasert/Shutterstock

18. Will You Ignore Or Deal With Problems?

Far too many people ignore their problems and hope they will go away independently without any personal intervention. It is why so many people end up having their car repossessed. Even more people end up in the hospital because they decided to ignore health issues for too long. That is because the idea of facing a problem head-on can be terrifying. Some people think that if they just keep moving forward, they can ignore an issue and hope it’ll disappear on its own. It rarely actually happens that way. If anything, ignoring a problem only makes things worse.

If you ignore your problems, things will only get worse. Photo Credit: fizkes/Shutterstock

With everything in life, you have the decision to face a problem head-on. The earlier you address an issue, the quicker you can get it taken care of. For example, if you try to put preventive maintenance into your life, it can help stop problems from happening before they even start, just like it would with a car. For example, if you take your vehicle for regular oil changes and check-ups, you can find an issue before the engine is ruined. Moreover, if you go to the dentist every six months, your teeth won’t fall out due to cavities.

Is it your dream to run your own business? Photo Credit: Rawpixel.com/Shutterstock

17. Do You Want To Be Self-Employed?

In today’s world, many people wish they could be self-employed because of their sense of freedom. While it’s true that working from home is excellent, there are pros and cons to both lifestyles. As someone self-employed, you have the freedom to make your own schedule, and you can be flexible with which clients you choose. But you will have to pay for your own taxes, health insurance, and more. There is almost zero work-life-balance, and if you don’t have a close relationship with friends and family, it can also get very lonely. There is no such thing as chatting around the water cooler. Moreover, when something goes wrong, you often don’t have anyone to turn to for advice.

Some people enjoy their job, even if it’s working for someone else. Photo Credit: SeventyFour/Shutterstock

A traditional career has its pros and cons too. With a regular full-time job, your boss will take care of your health insurance and benefits package. You have a set schedule where you know when it’s time for work and when you can relax. Furthermore, if you work under a union contract, there are certain rights and privileges that you can enjoy. However, you might be so busy that you won’t be able to make your schedule. Taking time off can sometimes be a complicated process, especially if you have a limited number of vacation days. It is one of those decisions that have no right or wrong answer. Everyone has to choose what works best for them.

A lot of people choose to move to the United States for a better life. Photo Credit: spyarm/Shutterstock

16. Where Do You Want To Live?

No one can control where they were born. Some of us were lucky enough to be raised in a safe suburban neighborhood in the United States, while others struggled to survive in a Global South country. Your geographical location can sometimes make or break your chances of success. Once you become an adult, you have the choice to move anywhere you want, within what your finances allow. Many younger people move to costly areas like Los Angeles or Portland without a clear idea of earning enough money to survive in such gentrified. These expensive cities can lead to long-term debt and struggle.

Sometimes, moving to a new town can help you improve your life. Photo Credit: Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Plenty of people can become successful anywhere in the world by using their Internet connection. Nevertheless, there are specific industries out there where following your dream will require you to move. For example, if you want to be an actor, it only makes sense to move to Los Angeles or New York City. If you’re not willing to move to the right location, you may never be able to follow your dreams. Conversely, if your goal is simply a typical career path, moving to a city like Los Angeles or San Francisco will add a massive cost of living to your life that could easily be avoided by living somewhere like Kansas City.

The person you marry is one of the most important decisions you will ever make in your lifetime. Photo Credit: Nopparat Nambunyen/Shutterstock

15. Are You Going To Marry The Right Person?

In the United States, 50% of all marriages end in divorce. For those relationships that have fallen apart, they might look back over the years and wonder where things went wrong. Were there red flags that told them that the marriage was not a good idea, but they moved forward anyway? Social pressure often leads people into getting married even when it’s not what will make them happy. After being in a relationship for years, there is always the pressure from family to pop the question. Furthermore, if you don’t think you could do better, or you felt comfortable, you may think marriage is the best option, even if this person doesn’t feel like “the one.”

Going through a divorce can be one of the most difficult things anyone can experience. Photo Credit: Photographee.eu/Shutterstock

Before you get married, you should make sure that you both have the same values. Do you both want children? How many, and when? Do you have mutual respect for one another? Is there sexual chemistry? Can you imagine still loving this person even if they were old and disabled? Do you love them unconditionally? There are so many things you need to consider before jumping into marriage. If you’re not sure, you may want to seek help from a relationship counselor. Also, make especially sure your financial values match, as arguments over money are incredibly common and can tank marriages.

Some people only go to college to please their parents. Photo Credit: Yuttana Jaowattana/Shutterstock

14. Are You Living For What You Want Or What Your Parents Want?

In 2015, 36% of people in their 20’s had gone to college, compared to just 24% of young people back in 1980. The numbers are going up because times are changing, and employers now expect you to have a degree. However, many of these students only went to college because their parents told them it was the best and only option for succeeding in life. Now, many of those people have a crippling amount of debt without the ability to use their degree for a job. Most of the time, parents push you to do things when they are living vicariously through you. In this example, maybe they never went to college, so they forced you to go in their place.

Your parents may be disappointed, but it is more important to do what makes you happy. Photo Credit: Iakov Filimonov/Shutterstock

Usually, this is coming from a place of love. Your parents want the best for you, and they may feel that it’s necessary to push you to succeed. Alternatively, they might have a very narrow view of success where only doctors and lawyers are the ones who make much money. Nevertheless, once you become an adult, you need to decide if you will live someone else’s dreams or your own. You will never succeed in a job or career you hate since you will lack the passion that motivates hard work and makes it feel worthwhile.

Watching sports can be fun, but you won’t learn anything by watching. Photo Credit: Ivanko80/Shutterstock

13. Would You Rather Learn Or Be Entertained?

We live in a time where we have an endless amount of free content at our fingertips. If you have a Netflix subscription, there are so many TV shows and movies available, it’s impossible to watch them all in one lifetime. Same for YouTubers who are creating free content daily. When you get home from work, you decide what kind of shows you want to watch. Are you watching sports and reality TV? Moreover, does it bring any value to your life? If you have a limited amount of time for consuming content, it’s essential to decide how much entertainment versus learning you want in that time slot.

YouTube has millions of videos that will teach you anything you want to learn. Photo Credit: Sutipond Somnam/Shutterstock

Instead of watching shows that are purely for entertainment, you could spend that same amount of time learning information that will help you succeed and add value to your life. There are YouTube channels dedicated to every single career path you could imagine. It’s up to you how you spend your free time. While everyone deserves luxury and entertainment, it’s often necessary to put those aside in the scramble up the ladder in our society. If you truly focus on winning the race, you may want to spend your leisure time on self-improvement and continuing education.

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12. Live In The Moment Or Prepare For The Future?

This next question is problematic because it is vital to balance your life between living in the moment and preparing for the future. If you spend your money as soon as you make it, party, and only think about it today, you will be ill-prepared for the future. As soon as there is an emergency, you may not be able to pay for your expenses. Even worse, once you get ready for retirement, you might realize nothing is left for you to survive. However, always saving for the future can make life feel dull and could lead to burnout that harms your ability to save and invest long-term.

It is healthy to live in the moment sometimes. Photo Credit: Cristina Conti/Shutterstock

On the other hand, some people live purely for the future. Instead of having fun and making friends, they work their fingers to the bone and save money for the future. These people usually end up becoming more affluent, but it is like being Ebenezer Scrooge. If you spend your entire life chasing money instead of having fun, you might end up becoming a miserable older adult who is all alone. That is why it is so important to balance your life between these two. It’s OK to have fun and live in the moment when you are young, but always remember that the future will come someday.

Are you going to eat healthy food or junk? Photo Credit: Lightspring/Shutterstock

11. The Right Food

An estimated 140 million Americans are considered to be either obese or overweight. Years ago, plenty of people ate to their heart’s content and weren’t gaining weight. The only thing that has changed in our society is the prevalence of pre-packaged foods and drinks full of sugar. If you haven’t already seen it, we seriously recommend watching the documentary Fed Up. In it, you will learn just how corrupt laws and business tactics have been keeping Americans fat. After seeing this, you will realize that it’s not anyone’s fault they are overweight. They were essentially tricked into eating the wrong things. However, you don’t have to live your entire life that way.

Eating healthy can make you happier. Photo Credit: RossHelen/Shutterstock

Depending on your situation, it might be tough to make the right decisions when eating healthy things. If you have $5 in your bank account, eating from the McDonald’s dollar menu might seem like your only option. However, you could just as easily buy a head of lettuce and some dressing for $2. Go ahead and have a salad instead of a hamburger and fries. We need to admit to ourselves that this is a decision to eat unhealthy because it tastes better. You have the power to eat healthy foods and keep yourself living a long and thriving life.

The decision to buy a house or not can be one of the biggest decisions ever. Photo Credit: takasu/Shutterstock

10. Buy A House Or Rent?

If you want to grow your wealth, you may be thinking about purchasing real estate. After all, paying rent is really like paying off someone else’s mortgage. You won’t end up with an asset at the end of a rental agreement, either. Most wealthy people attribute home ownership to being one of the significant milestones in their financial growth. Purchasing a home is one of the greatest routes out of poverty and towards creating generational wealth since the property is an asset that can be passed on to children. Home-ownership, under the right conditions, is an extremely sound financial choice.

Even though it’s part of the American Dream, buying is not for everyone. Photo Credit: Song_about_summer/Shutterstock

However, there are some people out there who genuinely hate the idea of owning a home. They don’t want a 30-year mortgage to worry about. If they need to move for work, it is much easier to change apartments instead of selling a house. Furthermore, as a tenant, you’re not responsible for any repairs to the home. There are also many young people, especially in high-priced cities like San Francisco and New York, who are indeed locked out of homeownership by staggeringly high housing costs. Only you can decide what’s best for your situation, including which city to live in and whether to rent or buy.

For a lot of people, raising kids is a dream come true. Photo Credit: Daxiao Productions/Shutterstock

9. Do You Want To Have Children?

Back in 1970, the average age a woman started having children was 21 years old. Today, the average age has gone up to 26. Moreover, according to The New York Times, people in more success-driven cities like New York and San Francisco don’t start having kids until their 30s. People are waiting a lot longer to have kids because more people are going to college and focusing on establishing their lives before settling down. Children are also a genuinely massive expense over a lifetime, so your financial planning will need to factor in the high cost of raising children.

Some people don’t feel ready to have children, but society pushes them to do it anyway. Photo Credit: Pikul Noorod/Shutterstock

If you are nearing the age of 30 and haven’t had children yet, you might be feeling pressure from friends and family to become a parent. You need to decide if it’s something you truly want for yourself and your partner. There is no shame in having a childless marriage if this is what you want from life. What would be worse is bringing a child into the world when you don’t want them. And if you’re going to have kids, you need to make sure you are in the best situation possible to take care of them.

College majors in the medical industry almost always lead to getting a good job. Credit: Burst by Shopify

8. What College Major Will You Choose?

If you are still young enough to be in college, you need to ask yourself if the major you chose will help you succeed. Will it give you a comfortable living up until retirement age? If you are unsure where to start, Kiplinger has a list of the best college majors for a lucrative career. Remember that college is an investment. You will be spending a lot of time and money going to school, so it needs to be worth it in the end. While everyone deserves to study their passion, that sadly just isn’t feasible with the staggering rising cost of tuition.

With college majors, there are so many different choices in front of you. Photo Credit: Gorodenkoff/Shutterstock

On the other hand, you should not pick a major solely because it is supposed to make much money. For example, many people try to go after a computer science degree, but if they have never taken calculus before, they will struggle through the courses. You should pick something that you are already good at and genuinely interested in that should lead to potential job opportunities. Also, the market tends to devalue any positions that start to make too much money. Hence the considerable push we’re seeing towards teaching more people to code so the industry can lower wages.

If you learn to invest, your money can grow over time. Photo Credit: Cozine/Shutterstock

7. Work For Your Money Or Have Your Money Work For You

This next bullet point is easier said than done. You will have to make a series of decisions in your life to make your money grow. Some people are so worried about making ends meet that they are hyper-focused on making enough money to pay their bills and enjoy life. However, if you only do this, you could lose out on opportunities to have your money work for you so that you work less. Thankfully, investing small amounts in the stock market is becoming easier thanks to apps like Robinhood that allow regular people to buy partial shares and penny stocks.

Do you want your money to work for you? Photo Credit: Joyseulay/Shutterstock

If you live in the United States, nearly everyone has the opportunity to invest in something where the compound interest will make a massive difference. If you start saving in a Roth IRA when you are in your early 20s, you can retire a millionaire. Furthermore, once you have a million dollars, that money can be put in a money market account that generates enough interest for you to live comfortably without working. Always remember to pay yourself first and focus on your savings and investing goals before spending money on treats for yourself or others to ensure you stay on track.

Sometimes, serving your community can bring more value to your life. Photo Credit: Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock

6. Serve Yourself Or Others?

In many cases, there is nothing wrong with living a life of giving, and it can even help you succeed. Look at people like Mother Theresa, who was sainted for helping orphaned children. Oprah Winfrey is famous for her generosity, and so is the YouTuber Mr. Beast. They all found a way to live a life dedicated to others’ service, but it also helped them succeed. One of the greatest benefits of achieving wealth is that you can then use it to better others and society as a whole, be it direct donations or funding things like vaccine research.

Are you living to serve yourself, or other people? Photo Credit: Liderina/Shutterstock

On the flip side, giving too much to other people can sometimes take away from your success. For example, if you are taking a back seat on your dreams to help a friend build their business, you will not make yourself a priority. Ask yourself how you would live your life differently if you lived it for your hopes and dreams. Desiring something for yourself is not selfish. There should be a way to balance what you want with giving to others. Make sure you don’t have any time or energy vampires in your life who are holding you back from moving forward towards your goals.

Sometimes, your heart can get in the way of making a lot of money. Photo Credit: Africa Studio/Shutterstock

5. Are You Going To Chase Money Or Love?

Love is the most beautiful thing in the world. Just like oxygen, it is something people need to survive and thrive. Even though it should be the objective of everyone’s life, society tricks us into believing that money is more important. However, you’ve got to pay the bills. Food has to go on the table somehow. And if you want to reach your full potential, it sometimes means sacrificing being in a relationship. It’s important to find a partner who shares your values on money, whether it’s non-stop hustling or saving every penny. A mismatch in financial goals can create a strained, unhappy relationship.

Some people need to choose between money and love. Photo Credit: Fotovika/Shutterstock

In some instances, people need to stay single for a long time if they want to succeed. Being in a relationship takes a lot of time and effort. So if you are working 24/7 to build your career, there might not be time to give to others. However, if you go too long only thinking about your selfish desires, you might ruin a great relationship. Or, your motivation to make money might not be greedy, especially if you are trying to help pay for your family’s needs. There is no right answer to this question, but it is still one you need to ask yourself honestly. What’s more important to you personally? Money or love?

Working can be exhausting, but it’s better than being broke. Credit: Burst by Shopify

4. Would You Rather Be Tired Or Broke?

Sometimes, the one thing stopping someone from success is pure exhaustion. If you come home from work, you want to lay down on the couch and take a nap. The thought of going to a side-hustle or starting a business seems exhausting. Giving up your nightly beer in favor of waking up at 6 a.m. sounds like too much of a chore. However, it’s important to consider physical limitations. If you’re disabled, don’t push yourself into illness with a side hustle since the medical bills alone will negate any income you earned. Ideally, everyone deserves to rest after a hard day’s work.

Doctors work 24-hour shifts, but they make a lot of money. Credit: Burst by Shopify

The truth is that most successful people earned their money because they were willing to work through total exhaustion. They might work 60 to 100 hours per week and barely sleep if it means meeting their goals. These people would rather be exhausted than broke. Depending on your situation, you might truly want to choose sleep and health instead of money. The decision is up to you. However, be aware that humans need rest and relaxation to be healthy, and sometimes driving yourself to exhaustion is counterproductive because the quality of your work will diminish. Quality tends always to be more valuable than quantity.

Sometimes, going back to school as an adult can change their life for the better. Photo Credit: 4 PM production/Shutterstock

3. Should You Go Back To School?

If you already graduated a few years ago, you might regret the major you chose when you were in your teens or early 20s. You may just not be passionate about the same topics if you ever were at all. Maybe you are considering a career change. If so, you might be thinking about going back to school. It can accelerate your personal growth and potentially help you earn a more considerable income, or it could be a colossal mistake that could put you deeper into student loan debt. If you go back to school as an adult, look into scholarships and programs for non-traditional students.

Graduating with a new degree could help your career path. Photo Credit: gui jun peng/Shutterstock

Before deciding to go back to school, take out a pen and paper and start to project how much you will make if you continue with your current job until retirement. Then, calculate how much you will make if you get a higher-paying job with this new career you hope to get after graduation. Subtract the cost of your new degree. Would it be worth it? Furthermore, are there other expenses involved like child care? Sometimes, this decision might also have to do with your happiness and well-being instead of money. No one can make this decision for you, but it is essential to think long and hard about the pros and cons.

Do you want to quit your job? Photo Credit: YAKOBCHUK VIACHESLAV/Shutterstock

2. Should You Quit Your Job Or Stay For Life?

There are many people out there who feel unhappy with their job. Moreover, if they work in a toxic environment, they might even have a manager or boss who makes them feel inadequate like they can’t do any better. No one can tell you whether you should quit your job or not, and life circumstances may force you to stay somewhere longer than you would like. However, every person on this planet deserves happiness. If you are extremely unhappy in your workplace, make an escape plan. We are not suggesting that you should stand up at your desk and declare that you quit. Nevertheless, if you are unhappy, you should prepare your resume and start applying for new jobs.

Some people are truly happy with their job and want to stay there for life. Photo Credit: NDAB Creativity/Shutterstock

On the other hand, you might be delighted with your current job. Some people have the complete opposite problem of being content in a position that other people consider to be not so impressive. For example, maybe you genuinely love working in a clothing store because you love fashion. However, your parents are always telling you that you should have been a lawyer. No one should make you feel inadequate in any way. If you love the job, you are doing and make enough money to get by, that’s the most important thing. There are plenty of people out there who make much money but are miserable. So hold on to happiness when you can.

Are you taking a backseat in your life or driving? Photo Credit: WeAre/Shutterstock

1. Do You Want To Be A Driver Or A Passenger In Life?

There are some people out there who like to go with the flow. They are not too concerned with how they do in school, what job they get, and so on. These people are essentially passengers in their own life. If something terrible happens, they feel helpless, as if it was predestined for them to fail. This sense of powerlessness can often lead to feelings of depression and unhappiness. Furthermore, when something goes wrong, these people are more likely to blame their parents, teachers, or spouse. If you’re content only to be a passenger, you can’t be too surprised if the car veers off your desired course.

It is possible for you to take control of your own life. Photo Credit: SvetaZi/Shutterstock

If you want to make changes in your life, you need to be the driver. Take control of the vehicle that is your life. No matter what your circumstances may have been when you were born, you ultimately have the power to improve your life. Yes, there are some people out there who had it easy. Furthermore, for you, it may be a process of crawling before you can run. However, with every decision you make, you are getting one step closer to success. Don’t let anyone else tell you what your life should look like or what you’re capable of.