How To Stop Being Dysfunctional And Become Highly Functioning

Photo by Nick Harris1

We Are All Dysfunctional

At some level, each and every one of us is dysfunctional. As human beings, we all have issues.

We all have a past. We all have hang-ups that have the potential to drag us down in life.

At a certain point, though, something has to change. We need to grow up. We need to stop letting life control us. We need to get in the driver’s seat of where we want our lives to arrive in the future.

If you desire to move into renaissance living, then you must first move out of dysfunctional living.

Moving Beyond Dysfunction

Yes, we all realize and agree that we live with a certain level of dysfunctional behavior. But, how do we move beyond our dysfunctional patterns and move to a higher level of living? In order to move beyond dysfunction, you need to be “functioning” at certain levels in order to even begin the process.

I would like to offer the following steps in moving from dysfunction to highly functioning:

  1. Recognize your dysfunction. This probably seems like a “duh” statement, but you can’t change something in your life before recognizing you have a problem. This is similar to a family doing substance abuse intervention on another family member. Those who struggle with substance abuse aren’t going to change unless they are forced to recognize that they have a serious problem.
  2. Decide to change. Again, this may seem overly simplistic, but there is power in making a decision to change. As soon as you decide to make a change, the change process begins. It’s like pressing the start button!
  3. Set a new standard. Once you’ve come to the place where you have decided to change, it’s time to establish a new standard. Your old, dysfunctional behavior is no longer acceptable. You’ve decided to “rise higher” in your life. Seek out high functioning role models you can pattern your life after. I believe this one step is where massive change begins to take place in all of our lives.
  4. Employ the “rocking chair” technique. This technique is so simple. Pretend you are in your 80s or 90s, sitting in your rocking chair on the front porch of your house. As you sit there, you’re thinking back over your life. You envision what your life would look like if you continued living in your dysfunction; and you can visualize what it would look like if you made massive changes and became highly functioning. How do you feel? Is it really worth it to continue in your dysfunction? Is this really what you desire your life to become when you get older?
  5. Seek the services of a professional counselor. If you suffer from moderate to severe levels of dysfunctional behavior, then you really need to unpack your issues with a professional. They’ve been trained to assist you into better living.
  6. Establish new habits to replace the old dysfunctional habits. Old habits truly don’t die until we have replaced them with new, better habits. Get clear on your new habits immediately.
  7. Establish better goals. Write down exactly who you want to become. Then, establish goals that will get you from where you are today to where you desire to be tomorrow.
  8. Take massive action. You can write down all of this stuff. You can be crystal clear on the direction you desire to go. But, in order to make the changes you desire, you have to take massive action. One step at a time. One day at a time.
  9. Rinse and repeat. Each day when you get out of bed, you need to put one foot in front of the other and continue with the changes you have decided to make. It’s all about the choices we make each day.

Dysfunctional or Highly Functioning?

So, after reading this post, where to you see yourself? Are you in massive denial? Are you highly dysfunctional and need some major help?

Maybe, you’re in the process of making some of the choices and changes I outline above. That’s great! Start wherever you are at today, make better choices, and move beyond dysfunction to highly functioning. Embrace renaissance living at the highest levels possible.

How To Live With Excellence In A “Good Enough” World

Photo by PraveenbenK

Good Enough

Are you familiar with the phrase “that’s good enough for government work?” Everywhere we turn, it would seem that many people settle with just “good enough” in the majority of areas in their lives. They settle for good enough in their work. They settle for good enough in their personal lives. And, they settle with good enough in their relationships. Welcome to the world of mediocrity.

Those of us in a passionate pursuit of renaissance living, though, know that this is not the best attitude. Sure, there will be times and occasions where we will be in a hurry and can only do what we can do in that moment. What I’m talking about here in this post is a general, overall attitude. People who never push themselves to go to the next level in their lives and their work. If you were to boil it down to its simplest level, we’re talking a general attitude of laziness.

Going To The Next Level

So, if you’ve just been living a life that’s just been good enough to get by, what are the steps to break out of this attitude and mindset and get to the next level of excellent living?

Here are a few steps I’ve found helpful in getting to a higher level in my own life:

  • Change your attitude. Don’t accept an attitude of “good enough” any longer in your life. The people who are living incredible lives in today’s world do not live by the motto of “good enough.”
  • Demand the best you can get. Related to the first step, the next step in a change of attitude is demanding and expecting the very best in all areas of your life. Don’t settle! Also, don’t allow those around you to manipulate you into settling. If this is happening with your family and friends, then make it very clear that you can’t settle for less than the best in your life.
  • Rinse your cottage cheese. In the book Good to Great, author Jim Collins lists the characteristic of “rinsing your cottage cheese” as a factor in taking companies from good to great. The “rinsing your cottage cheese” factor refers to an extremely disciplined world-class athlete named Dave Scott who would literally rinse his cottage cheese to get any extra fat off. He believed that being disciplined in this one, additional, small step would give him that extra edge in competition with others. So, what does Dave Scott’s example mean to you? Dave was a world-class athlete because he lived he an extraordinary, disciplined life. If you want to live a life of excellence, then you need to be ultra-disciplined in all areas of your life as well.

How’s Your Attitude?

Where do you find yourself, today? Has your attitude been one of just “good enough?” Or, are you trying to break free of that mindset and go to the next level in every aspect of your life?

I would encourage you, today, to embrace renaissance living. Experience the renewal process in your life. Change your attitude, demand the best, and be ultra-disciplined in order to get extraordinary results!