Don’t let 2017 turn into Ground Hog Day! 3 things to change your life.

3 things to change your life in the new year!

Today is the first day back at work for most people, and while holidays can be refreshing, I wonder how many people are feeling like this is just more of the same old thing.

Last night I watched the 1993 movie Ground Hog Day, a classic old flick featuring Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell and was so inspired by its relevance to our lives. If you have not seen the movie, it is basically about a weather man who travels to a little town to report on their annual event, Ground Hog Day. He is frustrated with life as he feels he has more to offer but is stuck doing things that he deems unworthy of his time and talents (sound familiar!). He then becomes stuck in a time loop, destined to repeat the same day over and over again.

Phil quickly realises that there are no consequences to his actions and starts taking advantage of people for his own pleasure. But he soon recognises how unfulfilling his life has become as it has no meaning or value. As his romantic pursuit of his colleague Rita continues to fail, he becomes depressed and takes his own life….only to wake up the next day and have to do it all over again.

As you would expect, the loop breaks and the movie ends when he has the perfect day, culminating in Rita falling in love with him. But his journey of finding meaning along the way is an inspired one.

First, he starts helping other people. From changing a tyre, to repairing relationships, and even saving lives. Second, he focuses on developing himself in a positive way by learning an instrument (which he masters and plays amazingly at the town celebrations).

The point is, if your life feels like Ground Hog Day there are things you can do. Dan Pink is a thought leader on behavioural science and author of the book ‘Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us’. He points out that humans need three key things:

  • Autonomy – to be self-directed
  • Mastery – to get better at things (like learning an instrument)
  • Purpose – to focus on something that has meaning (not just earning money)

If you don’t know what your purpose is yet, then try to do one thing every day that makes a positive impact on someone else’s life. Over time this will evolve and your life will develop meaning and purpose.

Happy New Year!