29 Ways To Remind Yourself To Keep Sight Of Life's Bigger Picture

by Olly Joshi

You work a nine-to-five job (which likely isn’t actually nine-to-five, but you roll with it anyway). You work and work and work to earn enough money to live. And when you try your best to “live” when you’re not working, you find yourself exhausted from the working part of living.

In this whirlwind routine we call life, many things, which we may have previously thought to be simple, slip through the cracks and are forgotten. About a year ago, I was in a job that didn’t particularly stimulate me and I felt like I was drifting away from my friends and family. I was becoming so caught up in my life, making excuses for why things weren’t as I hoped they would be and, ultimately, I lost touch with the big picture.

So, one afternoon, I started to scribble down a few statements by which I wanted to try and live my life. Now, a year later, my “Key Manifesto” is available for purchase online and in UK shops. Check it out:

1. Have An Opinion.

You will never be heard if you don’t share your point of view. Of course, not everyone will agree with you, but that’s not the point. You can’t live by just saying what you think people want you to say. It’s fake, unfulfilling and, if anything, halts evolution.

2. Stop Moaning About What You Don't Have.

Firstly, no one gives a sh*t. Secondly, you probably have a lot more reasons for happiness than you do unhappiness. Think of it like that and the bad things won’t seem so bad anymore. True story.

3. Be Grateful For What You Do Have.

Okay, you may think this is the same as the point above. Wrong. It isn’t. The above point is to stop negative thoughts. This point is about communicating appreciation for all you do have. Let people know you are grateful for their company, love, gifts, small favors, etc. It’s important — if you don’t show it, you might want to consider changing your name to “Billy No-friends.”

4. The Only Thing Standing In The Way Of Everything You Want In Life Is Yourself.

This one is a biggy. When you strip down the fluff of your current situation in life, if there is anything about which you are not happy, all you have to do is change it.

Don’t like it? Do something about it. It really is that simple.

5. Get Over Yourself.

Believe it or not, you are not the only person on this planet who is special. Hard to believe, I know. Especially as you have been told throughout your childhood how special you are by your parents. Of course, to them you are, but unfortunately, that’s as far as it goes. So don’t go belittling others and putting yourself on some sort of red velvet cushioned pedestal. It’s an ugly trait, and will eventually bring you back down to earth with an almighty bump.

6. Don't Listen To Those Who Say You Can't, They Are Just Afraid You Might Actually Get It.

You have taken that big step to do something you want to do, something you’re passionate about doing — it’s ambitious, which is the best part about it. You know it won’t be easy, but you can’t wait to get stuck in and try and make something of it, and more importantly, of yourself. Then, out of the blue, come those bloody naysayers.

The people (quite often your friends), who wish they had the determination and willpower to do what you are attempting and who try to plant seeds of doubt in your mind. However, this is not out of spite, but out of their self-appeasement.

Go with your gut. If you feel it’s right, it’s probably right. And if it isn’t, it’s not the end of the world. Learn from it and try again.

7. Pronounce Your T’s.

Don’t get into sloppy habits when you speak. It’s lazy and makes you sound unrefined. Let’s be honest, how difficult is it to remember to pronounce them? It’s not. So, to recap, it’s not parrrr-eeeey, it’s ParTy.

Which leads me on to my next point…

8. Party.

Okay, so you want to succeed in life. Of course you need to work really hard at whatever you're doing, but you also need to let your hair down and have a good time with your friends. PARTY. Live a little.

9. Remember Your P’s & Q’s.

Manners. Whether you were brought up with or without them makes no difference because they are arguably the building blocks to who you are as an individual and very much determine how others perceive you. The next time someone holds the door open for you, say thanks. Seriously, it isn’t hard, but it is appreciated.

10. Daydream Daily.

You did it when you were a kid, but why did you stop? Take a moment every day to daydream. It fuels ambition and feels good — really good. Reignite the kid in you.

11. Smile.

Even if you are in a bad mood, squeeze out a smile. It will automatically make you feel better. It also makes you more approachable — everyone likes someone who smiles.

12. Make Time For Your Friends.

Even the ones who are “just so busy right now.” Requests to go on dates are pointless if you don’t follow through with them. Your best friends are important, so make time for them. If you both follow that rule, you will both be free at the same time. Done.

13. Make Time For Your Family.

Don’t take them for granted. Yes, we’re all mega busy, but make time to see you family every so often.

14. Have Some Bloody Ambition.

Why would you not strive to be the best you could possibly be? Imagine achieving your best-case scenario, then double it — aim that high.

15. Don't Settle For Mediocrity.

What’s the point? If you’re happy with mediocrity, you might as well go home.

16. Write Things Down.

Remember that great idea you had once? Oh, wait, you probably don’t because you never wrote it down! Whether it’s that 'eureka' moment or just your to-do list for the day, write it down. It’s a lot more manageable and enables you to get sh*t done.

17. Be A Maverick.

Break the rules, not the law. Don’t try too hard though — no one likes someone who tries too hard. Challenge the norm and turn ideas on their heads. See what happens. You’ll never know if you never try.

18. Be Generous.

Giving to others is so much more satisfying than giving to yourself. So go on, be generous. Cheer someone up who isn’t having as good a day as you are. Instead of walking past a homeless guy on the way to work everyday, tomorrow, buy him a coffee and a sandwich.

19. Be Confident, But Maintain Modesty.

Believe in yourself; be proud of who you are and be confident in all things you do. But remember, the sun doesn’t shine out of your ass — so don’t be cocky. If you do a good thing, you don’t need to seek approval of others. Just be happy you did a good job then move on.

20. Hold Doors Open And Doors May Just Open For You.

I have a thing about doors being held open, but this is not just about literal doors. Do good and good is much more likely to come back to you.

21. Try New Things.

Step outside your comfort zone and open your imagination. Park that "it just isn’t me" excuse at the door and go experience new things. Whether it’s trying a new food or buying a one-way ticket to Brazil, just do it. There is no time like the present.

22. Revisit Old Things.

You can learn a lot from old news; if it was good once, it may still be valuable. Revisit it and maybe give it a fresh chance. Suddenly, it is no longer old, but reinvented and awesome again.

23. Go For A Run.

Do it even if it is raining, miserable and cold — these are usually the best ones. Splashing through puddles feels good and clears your mind. And, it’s good for you.

24. Drink Water.

It’s good for you — like really good for you. Agreed, it makes you need to pee, but that’s just something with which you must deal, I’m afraid.

25. Stick To Your Promises.

If you say you’re going to do something, make sure you actually do it. Don’t be a person who gives it all and never acts. If you make false promises to yourself, you’re likely to do so to others as well.

26. Try Not To Contradict Yourself.

Otherwise, your opinion will always lack weight and let’s be honest — it makes you look like a bit of a wally.

27. Limit Time-Wasting Activities.

Through the course of writing this post, I must have checked my Facebook at least 12 times, walked around the house aimlessly four times and got sidetracked looking out the window at low flying airplanes three times. Still, I’ll go nowhere until I’m done, so I'm just wasting So. Much. Time.

28. Collect Your Thoughts.

“Me time” is massively underrated. Go for a walk through the park every now and again. Take a seat on a bench and take a moment to press pause and think about your life RIGHT NOW. Reassess your life at this moment in time.  Think about the future and what you want from it. Then, get up off the bench and go and get what you want.

29. Don't Assume All Clichés Are Nonsense.

Assumption really could be the mother of all f*ckups.

Find out more about the Key Manifesto at:, Twitter/Instagram: @KeyManifesto, Facebook:

Photo credit: Dawai Tuk Kambingku