Anyone who has interviewed for a job has been asked the age old question “Where do you see yourself in five years?”

A cursory search of the Internet reveals the best way to answer this classic inquiry, but beyond what the all-knowing oracle known as Google advises you to do, have you ever really pondered this question?

Well let’s go beyond the question itself and instead skip right to the good stuff, here are 7 things you can do to make the future you, five years and beyond, a better you.

  1.     Stop thinking and start doing

In our society we like to talk and think and conversely think and talk. There is nothing wrong with conversing about a situation, business or personal in nature, but opt for actually taking action instead of attempting to gab it to death. For instance, if you have been thinking about starting a new business for many years maybe it’s time to start taking the proper steps to make this dream a reality.

  1.     Turn off the TV and read

From network television to cable channels, there are myriad incredible programs to view, night and day. Watching TV is fine but maybe cut out a few hours and pick up a good book – yes you can use your electronic reader. Reading increases your knowledge, entertains and can even make you a better writer.

  1.     Keep a journal

Write down your thoughts daily even if they seem insignificant. You might be surprised in five years some of your random writings might carry more weight than you previously thought.

  1.     Help someone even if they cannot thank you for it

It doesn’t matter how big or small the gesture offer assistance, even if you remain anonymous. Aiding others without needing the gratification of being thanked will help you grow as an individual and will enrich another person’s life.

  1.     Keep positive company

Negative people can act as a poison pill and completely upend your future plans. Your friends, coworkers, employees and even acquaintances should be positive, sunny people. Usually if you remain positive, negative folks will naturally scatter away. Lesson here, stay positive.

  1.     Stop living in the past and the future

The above point is a long way of saying remain present. You really only have now so why dwell on things you did in the past or constantly focus your thoughts on the future. Take care of things now and your past becomes the past and your future will take care of itself.

  1.     Without health you have nothing

Opt for veggies and eliminate the fried munchies as much as possible. Join a gym, start running, lift weights, walk… it doesn’t really matter what you do just become more active. First, though, see your physician to get the all clear and then get moving. In five years you will definitely thank yourself.