Why NOW is the Time to Change Your Life. The Results Are In!



A few weeks ago I put up a survey asking readers about Life and Happiness. The purpose of this survey was two-fold: 1. To help you reflect on your life 2. To help me gain an insight into what you would like to see on The Start of Happiness. Firstly, the survey was designed to help you take just 3 minutes out from your day to day life and think about the bigger picture. It's very rare that we spend time thinking about our longer-term goals, how satisfied we are with our life and what we can do to improve. And you know what? The results show it... I was particularly suprised by the answers to one of the questions:
"Did you have a New Years Resolution for 2012? Or did you set goals at the start of the year to achieve by year end?"
Only 29.5% of readers said that they had set goals for the year... this shocked me! This is crazy! Goals are a MUST HAVE for any individual looking to live a happy, fulfilling and successful life. But it's an awesome wake-up call for not only some of the readers but also for myself in terms of where I can take this. The other thing that struck me hard was the fact that many of you don't have clarity on where you want to go in life. Even more upsetting, is that most of you don't even get to live out your passions on a daily basis... your life is your choice! Going through the responses to this survey has made me even more passionate about taking The Start of Happiness to another level and giving you something unique, different and something worthwhile that can help you change our life. But for now, let's go through the responses in detail as I'm sure you too would be quite interested in these results!  

The Survey Results

The survey was up for 2 weeks and in that time we had over 200 responses from readers worldwide. This is fantastic to see! With over 200 people that have taken some time out to reflect on their life, that is a simple starting point for making a huge difference in your life to come. As always, it takes ACTION to get results. You guys are already 1 step ahead. On to the results.   Questions 1: On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you? This was interesting but also quite concerning. The good thing is that 18% of readers said that they are feeling pretty damn happy scoring between 8 and 10, however it was only 4% of readers that said they are super-happy. A large chunk of readers, 25% infact, responded at 7/10 indicating they are reasonably happy but some improvements can be made. A key concern is that more than half of the responses indicated a score of only 5 or less! The good thing is, you're definitely in the right place to be changing that! :)     Question 2: On a scale of 1 to 10, how clear are you of your purpose in life? Without purpose in life, there is a lack of direction. Understanding what you want to do and where you want to go is a huge factor in your success, happiness and life fulfilment. The scores were quite evenly spread across all levels. Roughly 36% of you said you have a really good understanding or at least some direction by scoring 7/10 or above. Once again, the concern here is that 64% of responses indicated a 6/10 or below, illustrating a large number of readers uncertain around what they want to get out of their life.     Question 3: On a scale of 1 to 10, how regularly do you get to live out your passion? More than 75% of responses indcated a 6/10 or below for this question. This is a major concern! Even more concering was that 41% of responses indicated a score of 4/10 or less! Living out your passion regularly is KEY to happiness and success. NOT ONE response indicated daily! (being 10/10)... I was flabbergasted by this!! We need to do something about this!! The good thing is, you can change your life.     Question 4: Do you Agree or Disagree that having clarity of your goals in life and pursuing them is an essential element of being hapy? The good this is, 82% of the responses indicated yes and only a couple of you mentioned no. There is still a large portion (16%) of you sitting on the fence to this question and that's not a concern. It's a matter of simply trying it out and looking at the results that come which we can get to in future posts.     Question 5: Did you have a New years Resolution for 2012? Or did you set goals at the start of the year to achieve by year end? What I found VERY interesting was the link between the above question and this one. Although 82% of readers mentioned that they agree that having clarity of your goals in life was linked to happiness, only 29.5% actually set goals at the start of the year!  57% of readers mentioned that they did not set any goal or any new years resolution at the start of the year. The good thing is, we have a couple of months until 2013 and I can tell you that I'm going to make it my mission that to help you make next year the year that you will be changing your life.     Question 6: On a scale of 1 to 10, how much progress have you made towards your goals for 2012? Although 29.5% of readers set goals for the year, only 16% have made sound progress scoring 7/10 or above. This indicates that many people are finding it hard to actually stick to their goals once set and remain focused to achieve them.     Question 7: On a scale of 1 to 10, how important is it for you to have a clear understanding of what you want to do in life? I found the link between the answers to this question and the answers to the questions above quite interesting. 91% of you say that it is important to have clarity of what you want to do in life, however as we saw above, only 34% have a reasonable understanding of this! (scores of 7/10 or above) This is a HUGE difference... the good thing is, this gap simply represents opportunity for you to find that clarity and focus your life on what matters to you.      Quesiton 8: On a scale of 1 to 10, how clear are you of who you are? Your strengths? Weaknesses? What motivates and energises you? Two-thirds of the responses indicate that readers are generally pretty aware of who they are (66% scoring 7/10 or above). This is great to see. What I pick up from this is how do we start to ensure you can leverage your understanding of your strengths and weaknesses to then build on what you want to get out of your life.     Question 9: What do you think will help you gain clarity of what you want to do with your life? This responses to this question help to clarify what you need to do gain clarity in your life, but also it helps me in understanding where I can help you. Responses were quite varied, but the largest response was 36% of you mentioned that a mentor or coach can help you in this area. I wish I could understand what was in the 'Other' bucket here... if you answered 'other', please feel free to message me what you think could help you gain clarity of what you want to do in your life. It was quite concerning to see that 8% of readers indicated that they feel they won't be able to gain clarity of what they want to do.       Question 10: What is holding you back from achieving what you want in life?  The responses to this question were rather equally spread. It goes to show that there are a number of reasons that are holding people back, however what I am curious about is how much of this is a perception. For example, the largest response was 'money' at 14%. There is a general perception that money can solve all of your problems. If you win the lottery, you can quit your day job and start doing the work you love. However, what's stopping you from doing it now? Money is often NOT the problem, but it's rather a lack of clarity of how to start without the freedom of time or money. I'm interested to explore this one further.     Question 11: What is the main thing you need now to help you achieve what you want in life? 'Overcoming my fears' was the highest response here, with 25% of responses indicating this. This was closely followed by 'clarify of my life goals' at 23%. Throughout the responses, there seems to be a general consistent theme that many readers are unsure of what they actually what to do with their life. Overcoming fears is another interesting point that I would love to explore deeper. A lot of the time it's the fear of losing income, or the fear of impacting relationships, or the fear of looking incompetent. Taking the first step and expanding your comfort zone is key for achieving this.        Question 12: What are you most interested in? I loved this question as it is one that helps me dramatically in understanding what you want. But also, it helps you gain an understanding of where you can start to focus your time and energy to help make a big impact in your life. 50% of responses indicated that they would love to learn more about turning a passion into a lifestyle (27%) and finding your purpose in life (23%). A further 33% mentioned that overcoming your fears is of key interest (18%) and sustaining happiness (15%).  

Next Steps

Thanks so much for all of you who took part in the survey! By spending that 3 minutes of your life reflecting on the bigger picture, you are one-step ahead of the rest in changing your life. It has also provided me with some invaluable insight into what it is that you are after, and I'm excited to already be working on a number of awesome things that you are seriously going to love! Keep an eye out! If you haven't already, you can sign-up and get access to the Happiness Toolkit which has free guides, tools and resources to helping you live a more satisfying, happy and fulfilling life. You can also join the fun on Facebook! If you feel as though someone can benefit from this post, please share it with them via one of the buttons below. Thanks guys! I'm really excited by what's going on here and I hope you are too! Keep an eye out for some big things to come! Brendan P.S. If you think someone would be interested in these survey results, please share via one of the share buttons below!
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Comments

  1. says

    I set big, scary goals for how I want my life to become. But I don’t worry about them on a daily basis. Instead I set myself one single daily goal:
    To improve everything I do everyday, even by a small amount.
    This is my understanding of the Japanese term “Kaizen” or “C.A.N.I.” as Tony Robbins called it (his acronym for “Continuing And Never-ending Improvement”). I was amused last year when Sir Chris Hoy attributed the phenomenal success of the British Cycling Team to doing lots of little improvements that they make on an ongoing basis. I’m not an expert on Buddhism but I think it combines that wonderful notion of Being In The Moment with Looking To The Horizon

    The wonderful thing for me is that it takes the pressure away from me for reaching the big, scary goals because it is just a little thing here, a little thing there and that makes it so easy to make the change. The other great thing is because it is a little change, if it doesn’t work, I can change back and even go the opposite direction without any pain, aggravation or loss of face.

  2. Larry Hochman says

    This is interesting, Brendan. A goal, as I’ve learned and taught it, has to be something measurable. A goal to be happy, or to be more purpose driven, etc. is more an intention than a goal. It’s not just semantics…because when people create a goal, one thing that makes it challenging is the “fuzziness” many have around how to actually get started. Definitely a topic worth exploring.

    • says

      Hi Larry,

      I completely agree with you. Without a measurement you will never know whether you have achieved that goal.

      I wouldn’t advise people to have a goal to be happy. I think it can actually create MORE unhappiness by focusing on it too much. Instead, it’s simply best to have SOME goals in your life that you are passionate about. Simply working towards these goals, building confidence, sensing achievement, have a purpose and direction will ultimately lead to happiness.

      Brendan

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