No, I am not ahead of the game.
I do not have ample time.
Nothing is guaranteed.
I will not be fine.
Sure, I’ve done one or two impressive things for my age. So what? At my age, Elon Musk was building PayPal.
In comparison to many, I’m ahead of the game…but why compare myself to the many. Even when comparing myself to those I respect, there is no reason for me to ever feel lax or like I am guaranteed to come out ahead.
The truth is, I’m not.
Here’s the truth: I’m lazy. I slack off, I waste time, and I don’t get shit done. This isn’t always the case, but it is more often than it’s not.
Here’s another truth: I love life most when I’m in one of two states: Either I’m adventuring completely, with no plans for my days and much exploring. Or else I’m creating something, and devoting everthing I’ve got to it. If I’m creating something and giving it any less than all I’ve got, I don’t feel good…and that’s my body telling me that I’m operating wrong.
Yet I sit at my computer and feel overwhelmed or bored or simply lazy. Why?
I don’t know for sure, but I believe it has to do with human’s natural tendency to be inactive. In a survival setting, it is in our best interest to conserve energy so that, when the lion leaps out of the bushes, we’ve got all the energy we need to run away.
But the time of lions has passed. I am not in a survival setting.
I am in the time of philosophy, where how you think dictactes how you live. I am in a setting of lifestyle design.
I have a choice to make, and my natural inclanation is towards the latter while my desire is towards the fomer. I can choose to exert all my energy into cultivating a lifestyle & mindset backed by philosophy that allows me to remove all barriers, self made and otherwise, and give everything I’ve got into whatever I’m focused on, thereby maximizing the chances of turning my goals into my reality and enjoying my life to it’s fullest. Or I can choose to take it easy, live a normal life, and look back at the end of my life without great pride or great regret…just a collection of passable memories.
To me, the latter is death. What is the point of living, and living consciously, if you live on autopilot?
Yet the former is not an easy route to choose. It is the path that is walked by heros, and no others. It’s followers are most often found in fiction novels, and quite rare in reality.
I want to be one of those who choose a path of self-moulding. I am nothing that I do not choose to be. None of us are. But most of us choose to accept the influences of our outside world and so be moulded into something that is not entirely under our control.
It does not have to be this way. Social awakwardness, fear, laziness….it’s all just the product of being moulded instead of moulding oneself.
How can I mould myself?
First, listen to no one without hearing your own objections. Convention states that everyone has down days. It states that, at 19, I am ahead of the game. It states that you can’t always give 100%. That you’re emotions are you, instead of a tool of yours. That your thoughts and your mind are you, instead of just a set of tools.
What am I? I am my inspiration. My emotions & my thoughts are tools of my inspiration. My body is a tool of my mind. They need not effect me anymore than a pop-up notification need be clicked. I can take note them, address them immediately, or complete ignore them, depending on what best serves my inspiration.
I know what I want. I know it instictively.
I know how to get it. Usually instictively, or else I know how to learn how to get it.
Often, despite this knowledge, I will do something that is not what I want or not the best way to get it. My emotions and preconceptions and fears take hold of my actions and steer them off the best course.
This need not happen. I know all that I need to know…going about following that knowledge is simply a process of treating my thoughts and emotions as imperfect tools, and doing what is best for my inspiration.
I don’t want to regret my days. I don’t want to go to bed knowing that I did no do my best. I don’t want to be a servant of my lower selves.
I want to go to bed proud and exauseted every single day. I want to spend my days absorbing reality to it’s fullest, and building my life into what I dream it can be. I want to be completely fearless, and have the internal mindsets and rituals to override all obstacles and bring me rocketing towards my goals.
This isn’t just about adventure & entrepreneurship anymore. I’m not here just to make an automated income that lets me travel and have fun. This is about love, and finding the perfect woman, and having what I need to be the best man in the world for her. This is about body hacking, and learning all the supplements and rituals and tests and experiments I can do to optimize the capabilities of my body and mind. This is about immortality, and learning how to live forever by whatever means I can. This is about being the kind of person my mentors & role models will enjoy spending a lot of time with, and feel confident in asking and following my advice. This is about deep adventure, doing the kinds of things that change the way I see the world and having nothing outside of my reach.
This is about living a life worthy of a great novel’s main character. A Jarlaxle, who changes the lives of legendary warriors for fun, destroys and creates dynasties for pleasure, lives life for the enjoyment of it, hangs around dragons & heros & villains & legends, and is remembered only as a confused memory of a dramatic whirlwind of action and creation by most who cross his path, be they a street merchant or a king.
This is about disregarding the game everyone else is playing, making a better one, and finding a select few who you would enjoy playing deeply with.
This is about being worth the gift of life that most of us have forgotten the value of.
This is the hard part. You’ve come to a full stop. The laws of physics want you to stay put.
As usual, the first step to being awesome is getting started. But, to go from here to awesomeness will require all your focus & willpower.
You might enjoy it, and you will for sure once you’re back in the flow. But, no matter what, it will be hard. You need to rev up your brain, get it thinking in the right patterns again, and jump forward to get shit done.
It doesn’t matter what stopped you. It could just be a slow morning. Or it could be a breakup, falling in love, crashing your scooter, taking a vacation… Whatever it is, it derailed you from your priority #1: Entrepreneurship (in my case, at least).
So what do you do? If you’ve got a routine, you follow it to the dot. 50/1o rituals, morning rituals, learning rituals, the works. You work and work and work until you’re exhausted, and the only goal is to get your mind back to that awesome state of entrepreneurship.
First: Get Motivated. Persistence is remembering what you want. Why are you doing this? Read your life goals? Read brain training by Tynan.
Second: Remember this…Procrastination will not make you happy. You won’t feel good at all after giving into it, you will wish you could go back and change it. You will be re-enforcing this habit which, surprisingly quickly when left unchecked, will throw you wayy off your path towards your goals and into somewhere murky and sodden. If you’re avoiding work because it’s hard or scary, remember that you can only improve my failing. Don’t be afraid to fail, just try. Just do it.
Third: Start. Do what you gotta do for 50 minutes. Take a 10 minute break. Another 50, and a 40 minute break. Repeat ad infinitum.
Fourth: If you really need help, call up a friend & mentor. Tell them what’s up, hear their advice, and then go back to step 3.
At the end of the day, if you tried, feel great. You’ve done well. That’s all that matters: you gave it your all. Tomorrow, repeat the process till you’re back in the flow.
You want to live an awesome life? This is part of the recipe.
In the last 6 months, I’ve had an AC Separation (shoulder and collarbone no longer attached), an STD, a hurt pinky toe, and a scooter accident resulting in a 2 inch squared, 3/4 inch deep gash in my knee that had to be sewn up.
I think I’m being stupid.
But where is the line? What separates adventurous from stupid? How can I parkour, skydive, drive fast, and go see the more dangerous parts of the world without a bit of stupid?
I think perhaps the answer lies in preparation. Go do awesome stuff, but prepare for it. No one skydives without learning how to use a parachute. So learn how to use a parachute while on the ground. How to drive while going slow with a teacher. How to parkour on soft surfaces. The rules of the dangerous parts of the world and how to maximize my chances of survival.
And how can I ensure this? By following a life principle I have toted for years but, I now realize, have not actually followed as closely as I should have.
The life principle of looking at the worst and best case scenario of every action I take and every goal I undertake. Answering: how bad is the worst case, on a scale of 1-10? How good is the best case on a scale of 1-10? (1-passing and not a big deal, 5-long term and real impact, 10-permanent & life changing.)
What can I do to minimize the chance of the worst case from happening? If the worst case does happen, what can I do to get back to the state at which I started?
And what can I do to maximize the chance of the best case coming to reality?
Let’s retroactively apply this to my last 3 injuries (skip to the end if you don’t care to see the principle in action):
What’s the worst that can happen with Parkour? I could fuck up a move and wind up breaking something, paralyzing myself, or even dying. That’s a 5,9, & 10 out of 10 respectively.
What’s the best that can happen with Parkour? I can learn this cool new skill that keeps my body fit, entertains me, allows me to traverse obstacles that I encounter on adventures, and my help me escape someone when I need to. That’s a 4 out of 10.
So from a logical standpoint, learning Parkour is a bad bet. However, I still want to learn it.
So, what can I do to minimize the worst case from happening? I can practice on soft surfaces like grass mats, and master each technique before doing it anywhere near pavement. I can get a more experienced person to tutor me and teach me. I can take it slow and make sure that I don’t take any serious Parkour risks.
What can I do to if the worst case does happen to get back to the state that I am in? In the case of a broken bone, I can heal it fully and rest. In the case of paralysis, I can learn the best ways of living paralyzed and devote my life to philosophy & creation of awesome shit. In the case of death, there is nothing I can do.
And finally, what can I do to maximize the chance of the best case coming to reality? I can learn from a teacher, so I can master all the moves as quickly and perfectly as possible. I can go out and Parkour with friends, so they can watch me and correct my errors, and help me if I manage to hurt myself.
What’s the worst that can happen with sex? I can get a minor STD, a permanent STD, or a fatal STD. That’s a 2, 7, and 10 respectively.
What’s the best that can happen? Enjoyable sex life, close bonds with lots of people through the experiences and sex chemicals. An 8.
Once again, sex itself is a logically shaky bet. But I’m not going to abstain from it, so what can I do?
What can I do to minimize the worst from happening? Always wear a condom, get regular check-ups.
What can I do if the worst does happen to get back to normal? With a minor STD, just ride it out, don’t fuck, and take any necessary medication till it’s gone. With a permanent STD, warn all lovers, have a LOT less sex, and do whatever I can to subdue it. With a fatal STD, just go adventuring until I die.
What can I do to maximize the chance of the best case scenario coming to reality? Once again, always wear a condom, get regular checkups, have sex mostly with people I trust and, of course, learn to be amazing at sex.
What’s the worst that can happen? I crash and break a bone, or die. 5 & 10.
What’s the best that can happen? I enjoy driving fast, I save time. 2
This one is clearly stupid. Don’t drive super fast, it’s not worth it. And learn what you’re doing before you go out.
What can I do to minimize the chance of the worst case coming to pass? I can learn to drive before hitting the road, not go ridiculously fast, and always armor up (helmet, long cloths, gloves, leather if I have it) before going out.
What can I do if the worst does happen to get back to normal? Broken bone = fix it. Death = see what comes next.
What can I do to maximize the best case scenario? Same as minimizing the worst case.
As Stepan said to me: Our tendency to leap headlong into things is both good and bad. It ensures an interesting life full of adventure. But it also ensures that we fuck up more often, and sometimes we fuck up badly.
I haven’t fucked up badly yet, but if I keep living like I am it won’t be long.
I will not abandon the trait of leaping headlong into things. I’d rather die living life to the fullest than live life through to old age with a lifestyle of caution. But I’d really rather live to old age, and perhaps immortality, while adventuring my whole life.
So the lesson is simple. It’s one I already knew.
Weigh the best and worst case of every action. Know what you can do to mitigate and repair the worst, and ensure the best.
If it’s still a worthy goal, do it.
If not, good thing you learned that before fucking up.
And, if you forget to do this, fuck up, and get really lucky (like getting into a scooter crash and literally walking away with a few stitches and a lighter wallet), learn from your mistakes.
Create a quick and simple method for setting a goal, milestones, and end markers for any goal.
Answer these questions:
What am I devoting significant time and/or effort to?
What do I ultimately want to get out of this goal?
The ability to sell
The ability to make $10,000 in 2 months by freelancing or using this skill
Where do I want to be with this goal in 12 months?
I want to have a steady stream of copywriting clients I work with.
I want to be making at least $3000 every month by freelancing this skill, and I want to be charging at least $60/hour and making my clients at least 4x what I charge from them.
What will I use to get there?
Earn1K, selling books (ogilvy on advertising, scientific advertising, other advertising books), practice on other’s businesses (for free and paid)
What is my next step to get there?
Learn how to sell myself using Earn1K, learn how to sell via Scientific Advertising, try and get clients who want to work with me.
What must happen or not happen for me to give up on this goal, or radically change how I approach it?
If I’m not making $1000/month by July 2013, I know something is very wrong. I will probably stop and get a full time job in sales (or something else) to learn this skill from people who know it.
Try writing. OR…
Try writing. OR…
Got any ideas? Comment them!
Visit volcano island
Go on the Rinjani trek
Climb Patua volcano – cook eggs on it
Climb Agun volcano
See authentic Bali towns
Visit the 3 Ghili islands
Hook up with couchsurfers
Learn to surf
Learn to wind surf
Learn to kite surf
Learn to drive scooter Go to monkey forest
See medicine man
Learn to dive
Go river rafting
Go mountain biking
– the raid movie