Do you ever wonder why some people are happier than others? As a life-coach and author, I discovered that despite our vast differences, we are more similar than we realize. We all want love, acceptance, and appreciation. It’s our strategies for achieving these things that vary. In general, people see the world in one of two ways: full of possibilities or full of obstacles. Your interpretation of the world creates your reality.

Here are five ways to shift your perspective that can make a huge difference in the success of your life’s pursuits.

1. Stop focusing on problems that don’t exist.

Problems are an inevitable part of life. But how we approach them depends on our worldview. An excuse-oriented person falls back on reasons it can’t be done. Maybe it’s been done before, or it will take too much time or money, so they throw their hands up in the air and say, “why bother?”

Solution-oriented people look for answers in the unknown territory of life. They are the trendsetters, inspirational leaders, authors you love, or creative types tackling problems head on. They are the people who, instead of saying it can’t be done, say, “Watch me.”

2. Visualize results.

People fall into one of two buckets when it comes to making their dreams come true. They will focus on all the reasons it can’t be done or the results they want to see. If you are trying to reach a new goal, you have to do what you haven’t done before. That requires you to focus on the possibilities. Results-driven people often make their dreams come true faster, and they are happier, healthier, and wealthier.

3. Assume it can be done.

Last week I proposed a problem for my students to solve. One student raised her hand and politely said, “It can’t be done.” I smiled and replied, “With that mindset, you’re right. But if you assume it can be solved, you will be able to solve it.” The students who thought they could solve it did. Those who said it couldn’t be done stayed stuck.

The results we see in life are based on what we think. What you think, you become. If you want new results, look for new ways to approach old problems.

4. Know when to break the rules.

Steve Jobs, Pablo Picasso, Ghandi: all visionaries praised for their innovation. Without breaking rules, they wouldn’t have made the same impact or contributions that they did. That doesn’t mean all rules were meant to be broken. They exist to keep order in place.

But breaking rules with a purpose — relinquishing limiting perspectives to come up with creative solutions — is a necessary part of the creative process. Give yourself permission to break rules when you feel limited by them, as long as your actions won’t negatively impact others.

5. Believe the world is a kind, loving place.

We attract what we believe. If you look at the world in a negative light and see hate, sadness, and pain, you will feel more of that in your life. But when you focus on small acts of kindness, on love, on opportunity, and on hope, joy will be yours for the taking.

Life is what you make of it. Make it something great.

About the writer – Shannon Kaiser’s the best-selling author of Find Your Happy, Find Your Happy Daily Mantras, and the forthcoming book Adventures for Your Soul. She appears regularly as an happiness expert on AM Northwest and Huff Post Live, and was named among the “Top 100 Women to Watch in Wellness” by the Mind Body Green. Shannon’s the founder of, an award-winning self-help and personal development website. She’s an author, international life coach, teacher, and inspirational speaker who left her job in advertising several years ago to follow her heart and become a writer.


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