How many guardian angels have swept in from the shadows to change the circumstances in your life?
Somebody introduced your grandfather to your grandmother. Somebody recommended your mother for the most important opportunity in her life.
Somebody helped your father through his most difficult life crisis, where he formed the wisdom that saved you.
Somebody chose your university application over somebody else’s because they had a gut feeling.
Somebody donated to the charity that funded a scholarship that somebody received and wrote a book that inspired someone to stop by the side of the road and help you change your tires.
Behind the scenes, and out of sight, thousands of people you don’t know, and will never meet, went out of their way to make your life better. They didn’t have to. They didn’t need to. But because they did, you stand here today with the opportunity to take advantage of all the blessings that are available to you.
Your very existence was the result of a stranger helping another stranger improve their life.
Count your blessings, for they are the result of love and kindness bestowed upon you by strangers. You cannot take a breath in this world without affecting the life of somebody else. What we normally refer to as the “circumstances” are simply the collateral effects of a decision made by someone who has no connection to you.
Someone made a choice that affected what you’re wearing. Someone made a choice that affected what you’re reading. Someone made a choice that affected your current income, career, place of residence, hopes, dreams, aspirations, and moods.
All of your decisions will have consequences that echo over the span of many decades in somebody else’s life. You cannot escape it; it’s the way the universe is structured. Your choices affect the lives of the people around you, whether or not you know them, whether or not you care.
How do you change your circumstances for the better? How do you solve the problems that are limiting your life?
How do you make your dreams come true?
You’ll need certain people to act on your behalf. You’ll need them to meet you, trust you, take a chance on you, and allow you to succeed. You’ll need them to introduce you to the love of your life, and find the job opening that is right for you, and help you convince the investors who will risk their savings on you.
You’ll need them to come help you in your time of need, when you lose hope, and when you need a shoulder to cry on.
They will have to sacrifice their time to motivate you. They will have to forgive you when you commit massive blunders. They will have to move many mountains in order for you to have everything that you want.
Why would they do that? What incentive do they have to go out of their way to make your dreams come true?
You will never know. Maybe they’re just looking after themselves. Maybe they’re trying to block the path of somebody else they don’t like. Maybe they’re trying to hurt someone. Maybe they’re just good people who want to give happiness to a stranger without getting something in return. Regardless of their motivation, they will act, and their actions will deliver the happiness that will one day be a part of your life.
The more people who decide to do that for you, the luckier you will be. The more we all act on behalf of strangers, the luckier we will all be.
How can you improve your chances of being fortunate? How can you make sure that all of your problems get solved as quickly as possible?
Go help somebody else with their problems.
That is the beauty of the universe, the more you help yourself, the lower you sink. The more you focus on fixing other people’s problems, the faster your own begin to disappear. It’s a concept that goes beyond religion, morals, ethics, or philosophy.
Lucky people are usually selfless men and women who dedicate a significant portion of their time worrying about the well-being of others. People who constantly face adversity and pain usually have little time for other people’s problems. I believe some have named the concept “karma”.
This concept is nothing new to you, but perhaps you have not focused on it as much as you should. Has there ever been a day where you thought more about what you can fix in other people’s lives instead of what you can do for your own?
Starting today, you’ll make it a point to help someone fix something every day. Help somebody find a job. Help them edit their resume. Listen to their struggles. Help them come up with a solution. Drive them to work. Help them move to a new home. Ask for nothing in return.
Do something that makes your day more difficult so that someone else can have things easier. Forget about what you’re dealing with, and do whatever you can to fix what they’re dealing with.
Like all of the advice that you will find on this website (and elsewhere in the world), it will not be as simple as flipping a switch and changing the way you move through life. All forms of wisdom are skills that you must work tirelessly to turn into habits. These skills are never instantly acquired after learning (or reading) them for the first time – they’re learned from the inside out. They’re learned after hundreds of failed attempts and stubborn perseverance.
Fitting other people’s problems into your own schedule takes time, work, and above all sacrifice. You won’t be able to have something you want. You’ll have to turn your back on enjoying some level of comfort or happiness in favor of somebody else. But you will never regret it.
There are enough problems out in the world. There are enough people hurting, and enough people in need of your help. You may not be fully happy, but somebody out there is struggling with a lot more than you are. These people are much closer than you think. You see them every day.
They are in your life, they are facing enormous challenges, and they have no idea that you hold the key to making them all disappear (which is probably why they have never asked).
The outcome will surprise you beyond anything you can imagine sitting in front of your computer on this very moment. The happiness you feel when you realize that your actions have changed someone’s life for the better is a million times greater than the happiness you feel when you successfully do things for yourself.
It makes you shed tears of joy. It makes you forget about the things you think you “need” or “want” or “can’t live without”. It erases the choices you “regret” and the problems you “are forced to deal with” or “can’t change”. It makes you drop to your knees and thank the universe, even if you’ve never dropped to your knees and talked to “the universe” before.
It makes you appreciate the gift of being alive.
Compare that to the happiness you feel when doing things for yourself. You smile and you celebrate and five minutes later, the problems return.
It’s time to experience more of the former.
It’s time to work tirelessly to make somebody else’s dreams come true.
Don’t waste any more time.
Andrew Gabelic is the CEO & Founder of Teledipity, a free pocket life coach with an eerie ability to send you the right self-improvement content at the right time (based on your personality and life stage). Check out what it says about you!