I have a lot of people to thank for initiating my personal development journey.
For starters, there’s Elliott Hulse. He convinced me to drop everything back home in Virginia and move to Seattle to begin the life I wanted.
Without Elliott, I never would have had the motivation to get off my ass, get in shape, and move across the country without any friends or family around for 3,000 miles.
Now even, four years later, Elliott is still coming through for me as a powerful mentor. He just released his book King, and it came at a very serendipitous time for me.
When you open yourself to the Universe, the Universe provides for you.
Likewise, when I was struggling with confidence and determination, I stumbled upon Victor Pride and Bold & Determined.
I actually don’t remember which article of Victor’s was the first one I read, but I know it dealt with making money online or finding motivation. This was at a time when I was burned-out and struggled to work towards my goals.
Bold & Determined gave me a kick in the ass. It’ll kick yours too.
Here’s a sample of some of Victor’s best articles:
- You, Inc.
- The No Bullshit Guide to Making Money Online
- 32 Things Every Man Should Do
- 18 Things Every 18 Year Old Should Know
Where Elliott was my biggest motivator behind changing my weak and uninspired lifestyle, as well as following my heart’s calling, Victor was my biggest motivator behind changing my complacent, working-for-the-system mindset.
Bold & Determined became one of my top resources when I was getting started online. I wanted to know how to make money on your own, without working for a company. I wanted to know how to take charge of your own life.
The 4-Hour Work Week
The 4-Hour Work Week is a fantastic book written by Tim Ferriss. It covers in depth how to simplify your life and work while freeing up your most important asset, time, to do what you actually want.
You do this by following the DEAL principles:
First you define your goals and set timelines to achieve them. You also clarify the specific methods you will take to accomplish these goals.
Next, you eliminate anything and everything you can from your life that does not support the actualization of these goals. Or you pay someone else to do it for you, such as a maid or virtual assistant.
Then you automate your money making process by developing systems that can perform a majority of your business’s functions. You do the major, difficult work once, then allow your systems to repeat and distribute that piece of work to your customers. Selling eBooks and clothing from your blog would fit this description.
Finally, you liberate yourself from the corporate world and the 9-to-5 lifestyle.
With your long-term goals clearly defined, unnecessary time-wasters eliminated, and your systems automating the money-making process for you, you can finally gain the liberation and freedom that people believe is reserved only for the super-rich.
That is, if you have developed good products and solid businesses that are capable of supporting you.
Welcome To The Dark Side, We Have Cookies
I absorbed and digested as much of The 4-Hour Work Week as I could, and immediately began implementing its strategies into my lifestyle. Victor is good on his word.
The elimination phase was a fun one.
You don’t completely realize all the little things that become huge time-wasters in aggregate until you start to become more conscious about your daily activities. Checking emails, doing laundry, preparing meals, sitting in traffic… all that stuff adds up to HUGE amounts of time.
This is all time you could spend doing something that makes you money, or makes your happy. Or better yet, both.
Remain aware of these tiny time-sucks. Remember, each time you fuck with your phone, you’re wasting seconds that add up to minutes that add up to hours…
Hours of productive time you could be using to build your brand, your business.
Tim Ferriss recommends the habit of “batching” similar tasks into the same blocks of time.
This allows you to accomplish tasks quicker by reducing the ramp-up time your brain needs when switching from one task to another. It also reduces the physical “setup” time to begin a task.
You will also be eliminating stress from your life by reducing and eliminating these idle habits.
How often have you checked your email late at night, or on the weekend, and ended up worrying about some upcoming task for work?
All this does is distract you from being productive in your “off” time. Or worse yet, rob you of valuable sleep.
By eliminating the unnecessary stuff and streamlining the rest of your daily life, you’ll go farther, faster.
However, all of this information doesn’t come without a price.
There is a dark side to The 4-Hour Work Week… if you allow it infect your mindset.
It came to the point where I was so focused on eliminating time-wasters and trying to make my daily activities so efficient, that I began to stress myself out worse than when my life was completely disorganized.
Small things began to annoy me. Much, much more than they should.
Getting caught at a red light or behind a Prius would piss me off more and more because my mindset had shifted. After I began thinking about business all the time, I realized this petty bullshit was wasting valuable time I could be working.
I also stressed out more and more about the things that I couldn’t eliminate yet, due to financial constraints.
Do you know why the wealthy pay someone else to clean their house?
It’s not because they’re stuck up. It’s because their time is worth more doing something other than cleaning a house.
There are still a ton of responsibilities I’d much rather pay someone else to take care of in order to free up my time to do things I enjoy, but I’m not yet to that level of financial independence.
Several months after applying the DEAL principles, I had to take a step back to find a happy medium.
I needed to streamline my daily life to the point where it could be the most efficient as possible, while not unnecessarily stressing me out.
My point here is don’t let optimizing your lifestyle negatively impact your state of mind.
Don’t try to simply your life by overly complicating things.
And don’t get hung up on the little things.
Your life will never be 100% efficient.
Optimize your life as much as you can, but don’t let chasing The 4-Hour Work Week consume you.
Take time to enjoy the little things in life and just breathe for a moment.
You’re going to be “working” more than 4-hours a week, trust me. But at that point, you won’t really see it as work anymore.
You will see it as your passion. As what you love doing.
Good luck on your journey,