If you’ve accomplished these 7 things in life, you’re doing better than most

We all want to feel accomplished in life. But do we?

Often, it doesn’t seem that way.

You strive daily to reach your goals and dreams and what do you get?

You guessed it… little affirmation and more challenges.

Sometimes it can feel like you’re just running on a treadmill, like your efforts aren’t valued or even recognized.

But, here’s the thing: you may actually be doing much better than you think. 

That’s why I’ve put together this list of 7 key signs that you’re doing better than you give yourself credit for.

1) You’ve learned to say “no”

Believe it or not, the ability to say “no” is a major achievement.

How so, you ask?

Well, it’s simple.

When you say “no,” you’re actually saying “yes” to yourself.

Now, let’s break it down a bit.

Have you ever found yourself overwhelmed with commitments, scrambling to meet deadlines, and feeling drained at the end of the day?

If the answer is yes, you’re not alone.

We’ve all been there, stuck in the vicious cycle of over-commitment. But learning to say “no” can be your ticket out of this never-ending loop.

So, the reason I consider saying “no” a big deal is that this simple word means you’re valuing your time and energy. You’re giving priority to your needs over external demands. 

Most importantly, saying “no” allows you to focus on what truly matters, be it your family, career, or even some much-needed “me time.”

Pro tip: Practice saying “no” in low-stakes situations first, like turning down an extra task at work. This will build your confidence to say “no” when it really counts.

2) You’ve made peace with your past

How many times have you thought about the importance of the past?

That treasure trove of memories, experiences, and lessons, both good and bad.

Let’s face it: it’s an inevitable part of life.

But how you deal with it can be a real game-changer.

So, here’s the thing:

If you’ve managed to make peace with your past, give yourself a high-five right now.

This means you’re on the right track.

So, why is reconciling with your past so crucial?

Well, holding onto regrets, grudges, or mistakes does nothing but weigh you down.

Think about it.

When we ruminate on our past errors, we’re stealing joy and peace from our present.

And here’s something I’ve learned: the past may shape us, but it doesn’t have to define us.

Making peace with your past frees you to focus on the now and plan for the future. It’s like shedding a weight you didn’t even know you were carrying.

Pro tip: Write down the things from your past that still bother you. Then, physically cross them out or tear up the paper as a symbolic gesture of letting go.

3) You’ve cultivated a positive mindset

Ever heard the saying, “Your mindset is everything”?

Well, it’s true.

A positive mindset is a cornerstone of a fulfilling life, and if you’ve got one, you’re already ahead of the game.

So, why does mindset matter so much?

Because a positive mindset doesn’t just make you feel good — it actually changes the way you approach challenges, setbacks, and opportunities.

Let’s admit this: life is full of curveballs. But if you’ve cultivated a positive mindset, you’ve got the ultimate tool to hit them out of the park.

Still, it’s not about ignoring life’s difficulties. It’s about facing them with a can-do attitude.

In short, a positive mindset can turn obstacles into opportunities. And honestly, who doesn’t want that?

Pro tip: Start your day with a positive affirmation or a gratitude exercise. It sets the tone for the rest of the day and keeps that positivity flowing.

4) You’ve found what makes you happy

Happiness: it’s the elusive goal we’re all chasing, isn’t it?

If you’ve figured out what truly makes you happy, then you’ve unlocked one of life’s most rewarding achievements.

Seriously, this is a big deal.

What makes finding your happy place so significant?

When you know what brings you joy, you can:

  • Design your life around it
  • Make more informed decisions
  • Build meaningful relationships

It’s like having a roadmap for your life, steering you towards experiences and people that uplift you:

No more wandering aimlessly or settling for less-than-stellar situations. You’re in the driver’s seat now, and you know exactly where you’re headed.

Take it from me: nothing fuels a fulfilling life like knowing what makes you truly happy.

So whether it’s a hobby, a career, or even a specific person, cherish it. And more importantly, make time for it.

Pro tip: Keep a “joy journal” to jot down moments or activities that bring you happiness. Revisit this journal whenever you need a pick-me-up or a reminder of what to focus on.

5) You’ve learned from your mistakes

Let’s get real for a second: mistakes suck.

Nobody likes messing up, and the sting of failure can be downright painful.

But if you’ve learned from your mistakes, then you’ve got something incredibly valuable.

You’ve got wisdom.

Let me share something personal.

I’ve made countless mistakes in my life, both big and small. There was a time when I would beat myself up over these, thinking they were a sign of failure.

But with time, I came to realize that every mistake was an opportunity to learn and grow.

Here’s why I’m telling you my story:

If you’ve reached a point where you can look back at your mistakes not with regret but with gratitude for the lessons they taught you, then you’re doing better than most.

Why I’m so sure?

Because it’s a sign you’ve learned to transform stumbling blocks into stepping stones, and that’s a significant achievement.

We all make errors, but not everyone takes the time to analyze and grow from them. And that’s where you stand out.

Pro tip: After a mistake, take some time to reflect on what went wrong and how you can avoid it in the future. This isn’t about self-blame — it’s about self-improvement.

6) You’ve embraced your imperfections

Change can be terrifying, especially when it’s unexpected or significant, right?

That’s why most of us are afraid to reveal our imperfections.

But embracing imperfections as an achievement?

It’s also a part of life. And here’s why this is so counter-intuitive yet so essential.

Our world is too obsessed with perfection — think filtered Instagram feeds and endless self-improvement books.

But trust me, if you embrace these imperfections, this actually means you’re doing better than most.

But trust me, this actually means you’re doing better than most.

Think about it.

Your imperfections are part of what makes you unique. They’re the quirks, the idiosyncrasies, and yes, even the flaws that make you who you are.

By embracing them, you’re not settling for less — you’re celebrating the full spectrum of your humanity.

I bet this sounds impressive.

That’s why I’m sure about one thing: once you start appreciating your imperfections, you’ll find something far more valuable: self-acceptance.

Pro tip: Turn your imperfections into assets. Got a tendency to speak without thinking? Maybe that’s a sign you’re spontaneous and authentic. Find the silver lining, and you’ll find your strength.

7) You’ve cultivated gratitude

Did you know that practicing gratitude can actually improve your mental health and overall well-being?

Believe it or not, it’s not just a feel-good mantra — it’s a science-backed fact.

This means that if you’ve cultivated the habit of being thankful, you’re not just polite — you’re smart and emotionally resilient.

Let me explain how this works:

Gratitude is so much more than saying “thank you” or counting your blessings on Thanksgiving.

It’s a mindset, a way of seeing the world.

When you’re grateful, you’re more likely to focus on what you have rather than what you lack, turning your attention away from the negatives and toward the positives.

And you know what else?

Thanks to this habit, tough times become easier to navigate because you have this bedrock of positivity to ground you.

The result?

You can face challenges with a more balanced perspective, knowing that even in the worst of times, there’s something to be thankful for.

Pro tip: Make it a habit to jot down three things you’re grateful for every day. Over time, you’ll train your brain to seek out the positive, creating a virtuous cycle of happiness and gratitude.

Final thoughts

Hopefully, these 7 milestones prove you’re doing better than you might think.

These signs aren’t just trivial milestones. They’re transformative chapters in your life story, contributing to:

  • Emotional intelligence
  • Personal growth
  • Resilience

If you’ve checked even one of these boxes, give yourself the credit you deserve. You’re well on your way to living a life of purpose and meaning.

You’re well on your way to living a life of purpose and meaning.




Picture of Nato Lagidze

Nato Lagidze

Nato is a writer and a researcher with an academic background in psychology. She investigates self-compassion, emotional intelligence, psychological well-being, and the ways people make decisions. Writing about recent trends in the movie industry is her other hobby, alongside music, art, culture, and social influences. She dreams to create an uplifting documentary one day, inspired by her experiences with strangers.

Enhance your experience of Ideapod and join Tribe, our community of free thinkers and seekers.

Related articles

Most read articles

Get our articles

Ideapod news, articles, and resources, sent straight to your inbox every month.