The growth and prominence of Twitter has led to the increased popularity of the word “trending”. It isn’t a new word, of course, but it can be used to describe an important principle of life.
Let me start with a question: Which way is your life trending?
Think about it seriously for a moment. Do you feel like you are moving backward, forward, or standing still?
I will tell you this: it is impossible to be standing still. Life is constantly moving forward so if you are standing still personally, you are actually getting left behind. In other words, you are trending downward.
You are either moving upward or downward. You are trending one way or the other.
Let’s look a little closer at the word “trending”. A trend is basically describing the general direction of movement over time. But a trend is never a straight line. It is a large-scale view of behavior.
If we were to develop a graph that was broken down to each day on the X-axis and your personal growth on the Y-axis, we would see that day by day your personal growth would go up and down. You have good days and you have bad days. But look at what happens if you zoom out and look at the entire week. Are you higher on the Y-axis than you were at the start of the week?
Nobody’s path through life is a straight line from rags to riches or failure to success. Self-improvement is a journey that works it’s way through deep valleys and over steep mountains. It doesn’t always move up, it doesn’t always move down, but what does it do over time? Is there more up than down? If there is, you are trending upward!
So the question is, what do you need to do to make sure you are trending upward?
It is not as difficult as most people think. Many people imagine that you need to do big things or make major changes to be successful. In actuality, that is far from the truth. The big, one-day changes are usually the least effective way to bring about permanent improvement. That is why so many diets and New Year’s resolutions fail.
The secret to an upward trend is daily, small, consistent improvements. Your goal is to be just a little bit better tomorrow than you are today. Of course you will have days that don;t go as well as others, but keep moving forward.
Remember the quote: “In the battle between the stream and the rock, the stream always wins. Not through strength, but perseverance.”
You want to be the stream, consistently moving forward so that your life will be on an upward trend towards your goals.
Here are a few things you could do today to help you trend upward:
1. Learn something new. Whether it is a skill at work, a parenting technique, a new word, or just something you are curious about; learn something new every day!
2. Make somebody’s day brighter. It is an eternal truth that when you lift somebody up, you are raised up as well. It is impossible to help others without helping yourself.
3. Set short-term goals. Look at where you are in life and choose a couple areas where you would like to improve. Don’t focus on the enormous goals that you won’t accomplish for many years, but go for the smaller ones that you could accomplish in a day or a week.
4. Read a book. There is a poster up near my children’s rooms that says, “Leaders Are Readers.” I have found this to be true. Make reading a habit!
5. Do more than expected. Whether you work for a business or are self-employed, find a way to do more than is expected of you. Look foe opportunities to go above and beyond without being asked and without seeking credit for it. This is the fastest way to succeed and move up in any organization.
Don’t forget to share this with your friends! It helps us spread positive ideas for self-improvement to as many people as possible!