In the iconic Robert Frost poem, he discusses how choosing to take the road less traveled has made all the difference in his life.
In other words, the hard road. The path that nobody wants to take.
It’s dark, it’s scary and you never know where it will lead you.
That’s the exciting part about it.
We’ve become such a soft society.
Everyone is constantly looking for the easy way out.
I don’t blame people that want things to be easy. It’s our natural setting.
Being uncomfortable is miserable. Constantly putting yourself out there, going through the hard experiences is brutal.
The thing that many people don’t or won’t understand however, is that you grow outside of your comfort zone. Not in it.
We should be taught how to take the road less traveled in school instead of all the other nonsense we are taught. Trigonometry? Please.
When you choose the hard path over the easy path, you are going towards the person you were meant to become.
You are going towards your potential and away from the status quo.
I’m going to give you 5 ways take the road less traveled and get ahead below, so that you can take charge of your life and grow into the person you were meant to be.
# 1- Choose books over television
Most people come home at the end of a long day and run right to the television.
I get it. After a long day, the last thing that you want to do is come home and read. On a rare day off, the last thing most people want to do is pull out a book and learn.
It’s easy to turn on the TV and zone out. Will it help you grow into a better person? Unlikely.
The vast majority of TV is pure garbage. From reality shows to toxic politics, little good is coming out of watching it for hours a day.
When you read books on things like personal growth, philosophy, business, finance and fitness- you are learning ways to improve your life and potential.
I’m not saying that you have to disregard the TV all together but adding an hour or even a half hour a day into your routine will make a huge difference.
A study even found that people 50 and over who read 30 minutes a day were less likely to die within a years’ time than those who didn’t due to the cognitive benefits it can provide.
Reading is powerful. It can instantly change your mood and thoughts. Nothing turns a bad day around for me quicker than reading a good book.
A little time spent reading instead of watching TV every day will go far for improving your life.
# 2- Choose discomfort over comfort
This can be applied to anything.
One of the reasons that people remain stagnant in their lives is that they fear discomfort. They do not want to get outside of their comfort zone.
Instead of speaking up in a big meeting and improving their chances of getting promoted, they stay quiet.
Instead of getting up an hour earlier to make sure they work out, they stay in the comfort of their warm bed.
Instead of going to that person and introducing themselves, they turn around and walk the other way.
Instead of learning a new skill and risk looking silly, they choose to stay where they are.
Every day of our lives we have the option of choosing discomfort over comfort.
Few people will make the choice to be uncomfortable and grow.
Those that are looking to take the road less traveled, choose discomfort over comfort whenever possible.
# 3- Choose exercise over being sedentary
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human services, less than 5 % of adults participate in 30 minutes of physical activity per day.
That’s absolutely pathetic. That means that less than 5 % get any type of physical exercise.
Our ancestors would be thoroughly embarrassed.
We wonder why we are such a sick country. Everyone just sits around all day and stuffs their face with junk food.
I get that we all live very busy lives, but if you can’t fit in 30 minutes a day to move around a bit something is wrong.
It doesn’t have to be lifting weights, but it should be something.
Based upon that statistic, choosing to exercise is the road far less traveled than most roads.
If you want to distinguish yourself from 95 % of the U.S. adult population, make some time each day to exercise.
# 4- Choose healthy food over garbage
This is closely related to the previous paragraph, but choosing healthy food over garbage is certainly the path less traveled.
I’m from the United States, which is one of the unhealthiest countries on the planet. We have fast food every ten feet on every single street.
With the abundance of fast food and other junk available, people can’t help themselves. The cheap price tag and convenience is enough to tempt anyone.
Once in a while probably won’t hurt you too much, but eating junk every day is a quick road to a life of misery and health problems.
The person who chooses the road less traveled, chooses healthy food over garbage.
They choose to prepare their meals at home ahead of time or choose healthy options if they must eat out.
It really does not cost more money when done correctly. Even if it does cost a little more, you will be saving yourself potentially thousands of dollars down the road in doctor visits.
# 5-Positivity over negativity
It’s so easy today to be negative. To complain. To whine. To blame everything on everybody else.
You know what’s hard? To stay positive no matter what. To decide that you will have a good attitude no matter what happens. To take ownership of your life.
It is extremely difficult to avoid negative people. Between co-workers, friends and even family members, negative people are abundant in today’s society.
Although it seems more common, it’s nothing new. Negative people have always been around. Go read any book on personal development from the 50s and you will quickly see they dealt with it then as well.
What’s new is the constant barrage of negativity we get from social media. If you are on social media, you are open to the opinions of others 24 hours a day.
It can be brutal and wear you down quickly.
I strongly advise you that you limit your use of social media. If you do use it, look for the positive things it has to offer over the negative things.
If you are surrounded by negative friends and co-workers, do your best to limit your exposure to them. It will not help you and will hurt you in the long run.
Do whatever you can to stay positive. Books, audio books, programs, speeches, anything.
Decide that you will make it a point to be positive no matter what.
Whatever happens, you can handle it!
Go your own way
The road less traveled is often lonely.
After reading through the above list, you will recognize that most of society chooses the road commonly traveled.
They stay in their comfort zone and don’t push themselves.
They do what’s easy and avoid the hard things.
Because of that, they don’t become the person they could have.
They waste their precious lives.
Don’t be like that. Whenever possible, choose the road less traveled.
It will be worth it in the end.