8 habits of people who always move forward in life, according to psychology

There’s a fine line between marching in place and making actual progress in life.

According to psychology, this line is often defined by habits. Habits can either keep us stuck in a rut or propel us forward.

Those who consistently move forward, they’ve got some tricks up their sleeves. Or rather, they’ve got some habits that give them the edge.

In this piece, we’re going to delve into the 8 habits of people who are always on the move, always progressing. And these aren’t just any habits, they’re psychologically-backed habits.

So, if you’re ready to step out of stagnation and into stride, then keep reading. Because these are the habits that can help you do just that.

1) Embrace change

Let’s get this straight – change is inevitable.

And according to psychology, the people who always move forward in life have one thing in common – they embrace change.

Now, embracing change doesn’t mean they’re constantly seeking it out. Nor does it mean they always love it. But they accept it as a part of life and adapt to it rather than resisting it.

Think about it. Life is full of changes – new jobs, new relationships, new cities. The list goes on and on.

People who move forward understand that these changes aren’t just hurdles to get over. They’re opportunities for growth and learning.

So if you want to be one of those people who are always moving forward, start by embracing change. Accept it, adapt to it and learn from it.

And remember, change is the only constant in life. So might as well make friends with it!

2) Practice resilience

Life can throw some pretty hard punches. And while it’s not always possible to avoid them, you can control how you react to them.

Resilience is all about bouncing back from adversity. It’s about picking yourself up after a fall and continuing to move forward.

Now, here’s a personal story. I remember when I was let go from a job I absolutely loved. It was a blow, and for a while, I wallowed in self-pity. But then I realized something – this setback was not the end of my career. It was just a detour, a hiccup on my journey.

So, I dusted myself off, updated my resume, and started reaching out to new opportunities. It wasn’t easy, but my resilience paid off. Today, I’m in a position that I love even more than the last.

People who always move forward in life practice this kind of resilience. They don’t allow setbacks to stop them; instead, they use them as stepping stones to bigger and better things.

Next time life knocks you down, remember my story. And get back up again. Because that’s what movers and shakers do.

3) Set clear goals

Have you ever started a journey without knowing your destination? Probably not.

The same applies to life. Those who consistently move forward have a clear understanding of where they’re headed. They set clear, achievable goals and then work towards them.

Here’s something interesting – researches found that people who had their goals written down are more likely to achieve them compared to those who don’t. 

People who move forward use their goals as a roadmap. It helps them stay focused, make informed decisions and resist distractions.

If you want to keep moving forward, take some time to outline your goals. Not in your head, but on paper. You’ll be surprised at how much clarity it brings and how much closer it brings you to your destination.

4) Practice gratitude

It might seem unrelated, but practicing gratitude is a powerful habit of those who continue to move forward in life.

Gratitude shifts your focus from what’s missing in your life to what you already have. This shift in perspective can help you appreciate your journey and remain motivated even when progress seems slow.

Instead of dwelling on setbacks or obstacles, people who practice gratitude focus on their achievements, however small they might be. They celebrate every step forward, every milestone reached.

Start a gratitude journal or take a moment each day to reflect on what you’re thankful for. It’s a small habit that can make a big difference in your journey forward.

5) Show compassion

Compassion is not just about being kind to others, but also to oneself. It’s about understanding that everyone, including yourself, is doing the best they can with what they have.

Those who constantly move forward in life understand this. Compassion allows them to forgive themselves when they stumble, and to pick themselves up and continue on their journey without self-judgment.

They also extend this compassion to others, realizing that everyone is on their own unique journey. This breeds a sense of shared humanity and positivity that fuels their own progress in life.

Be gentle with yourself when you fall short of your expectations. And remember to extend the same kindness to others. Because at the end of the day, we’re all just trying to move forward in our own way.

6) Seek continuous learning

There’s a saying that goes, “The more you know, the more you realize you don’t know.” This couldn’t be truer for those who are always moving forward in life.

These individuals understand that there’s always something new to learn, something more to understand. They seek out knowledge and experiences that can enrich their understanding of the world and themselves.

I remember when I first started writing. I thought I knew all there was to know about it. But the more I wrote, the more I realized there were so many techniques, styles, and perspectives I had yet to explore.

Continuous learning became my habit. It kept me curious and eager to improve. It transformed my writing from a mere hobby into a fulfilling career.

Never stop learning. Be curious, ask questions, and seek out new experiences. It’s a journey of growth that will keep you moving forward.

7) Stay committed

Moving forward requires commitment. It’s easy to start something new, but it’s sticking with it that truly makes a difference.

Those who keep moving forward are committed to their journey. They understand that progress may be slow at times, and there might be setbacks. But they stay the course, no matter what.

They realize that reaching their goals isn’t a sprint, it’s a marathon. It requires patience, dedication, and a whole lot of perseverance.

Commit to your journey! Stick with it, even when it gets tough. Because it’s in those moments of difficulty that true progress is made.

8) Believe in yourself

This is perhaps the most crucial habit of all. Those who continually move forward in life believe in themselves. They trust in their abilities, their potential, and their journey.

This self-belief fuels their confidence, motivates them to take risks, and inspires them to chase their dreams.

Without this belief, all the other habits we’ve discussed can fall flat. Because if you don’t believe you can move forward, you likely won’t.

Learn to cultivate a strong belief in yourself. Know that you are capable, you are deserving, and you have what it takes to keep moving forward.

Final thoughts: It’s in your hands

The fascinating realm of psychology offers us profound insights into why we behave the way we do. When it comes to moving forward in life, these eight habits are backed by psychological research.

However, it’s crucial to remember that knowledge alone doesn’t create change. It’s what you do with that knowledge that matters.

Whether it’s embracing change, practicing resilience, setting clear goals, or believing in yourself, each of these habits can influence your journey.

But ultimately, the power to move forward lies within you. It’s your choices, your actions, and your mindset that determine your progress.

Your journey forward is in your hands!

Ethan Sterling

Ethan Sterling has a background in entrepreneurship, having started and managed several small businesses. His journey through the ups and downs of entrepreneurship provides him with practical insights into personal resilience, strategic thinking, and the value of persistence. Ethan’s articles offer real-world advice for those looking to grow personally and professionally.

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