I’m working my way through Tim Grover’s, Relentless, right now.
Tim is Michael Jordan’s strength coach, and Kobe Bryant’s. He’s spent a lot of time around guys who are killers, winners on another level, they’re beyond competitive.
It’s a great book, one that dives into the darkness of victory, the instinct of it.
Instinct is something many of us have lost. We were born with instincts. I remember being a kid, wanting to beat anyone and everyone at anything.
I’d fight all the time. I loved it. Slowly, however, we all confuse being good with being nice. We see this desire to kill, to do
minate, to hunt, as bad, and we soften it, let it go in an attempt to civilize.
You cannot ever become fully civilized if you want victory. Something within you has to remain true to those instincts and sometimes advice can cloud that inner voice, that ‘gut feeling’ that a man should always listen to first.
While I’m a guy who gives advice, who shows guys how to eat, train and become more disciplined, the advice is something you have to watch out for. Too much of it can lead you to live someone else’s life and lose those instincts that we all need to thrive.
So take advice from people who actually have your best interests in mind, but don’t take advice from everyone. Don’t seek advice from everyone either.
Years ago I stopped seeking so much damn advice and started doing my thing, whether it was business or life, and it’s helped me live life on my terms and build a business on my terms.
Listen, who do we admire, the man in a crowd, one of many, or the original, the man who stands on his own, who leads, who goes his own way?
We’re a tribe here, but no man can lose his ability to listen to his gut, to thrive off instinct rather than advice.
My dog, Teddy, doesn’t for a second think about chasing a deer, he just does it, and it’s nearly impossible to hold him back.
A lion doesn’t think about killing, that’s just what lions do.
Men should spend less time thinking about doing what they know deep down they need to do, and just do it.
When you have a decision to make, make it, follow the first thing that came to your mind and deal with the consequences later.
If you’re wrong, pivot, and fix the mistake, but stop living the safe life, the life led by the advice of others, where the tough decisions of your life can be pawned off on someone else so that, in part, they can share the blame if it’s the wrong decision.
Trust your gut.
It takes confidence to trust your gut. And if you don’t have confidence, and you want to develop it, start there.
Start by making fast and firm decisions, then follow through on them.
Be the lion, do as lions do. React, forget if everything is perfect. Forget about thinking about every scenario and outcome.
In 1911, three men set out on the adventure of a lifetime. They wanted to trek the unknown territory of Antarctica and link it with other known portions of the desolate continent.
The three men were ages 33, 30, and 29 respectively. They were ambitious, strong, courageous, and unwaveringly committed in their endeavor, so much so that two of them died along the way and one barely made it out alive. He was all alone on the ice.
This is a far cry from the 30 year olds that walk in our midst today.
Instead, they have traded their ambition for something far less virtuous.
Men have become soft, emasculated, and lazy.
This is due in part to real men having become reclusive and passive, and our culture becoming impervious to masculinity.
Look around and you will see that men are more concerned about the pants that they wear and the way their hair looks than how to make ambitious goals, and pursue their dreams. They have become afraid of their own shadow and doomed themselves to a life of mediocrity.
Chances are, that if you are reading this, then you go against the status quo, that you as a man have found yourself on the other side of society. You have been called “rough around the edges” or “insensitive”.
Take this as a compliment
Unfortunately, our culture has deemed men who are passive, and relinquish their manhood virtuous, and esteemed.
What men really need is self-awareness, mastery, and other men to learn from.
“As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another” – Proverbs 27:17
Men need to pursue mastery and be in constant pursuit of huge ambitious goals. They must constantly challenge themselves and push themselves to learn new skills and to grow in strength, endurance and mindset.
These things can only be developed if they are done with discipline and consistency.
The Lost Virtues of a Man
Men need to have some sort of consistent physical activity that they do, whether it’s lifting weights, martial arts, running, swimming, biking or a combination of all of them.
When men don’t do this, they get fat, injured, or have health issues. Don’t believe me, look around.
They also need to have a why, a reason for existing. They need to know their why, so that they can work in their Strengths and become who they are made to be.
Socrates said it best: “No man has the right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training. It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.”
If you are not pushing your limits or putting your body under deliberate physical stress every day, you are denying your very essence.
Men need to know what they are capable of. When you lift weights, move heavy objects, destroy your goals and win, then you become confident and more alpha minded.
Lifting weights just to lift weights is not enough. You have to train. Life is going to come at you from all angles and you need to be prepared to handle whatever it throws at you. The more you exercise your body and your mind and put it under good, deliberate stress, the easier the problems will seem.
Learn how to do heavy Lifts like the Deadlift, Squat, and Olympic Lifts. Get a trainer, or go to a fundamentals class to learn these lifts. Proper form is key.
Men don’t play the victim. They take ownership.
Your mind will tell you that you can’t do something. You have to be able to tell it to shut up.
You have to build your mind by repeating positive habits. There are two very important ways that this can be done.
Lift Weights and Exercise: Lifting weights boosts testosterone, builds confidence, and leaves you with a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction long after the workout. I quote Jocko Willink “If you want to improve mental toughness, try this: BE TOUGHER“
Read Good Books: You have to read books that set your dreams on fire, and grow your library of manly books .If the only time a man is getting information is from Social media, Netflix or the TV, then he must just like being useless. Every great man in history was a reader, Marcus Aurelius, Themistocles, Teddy Roosevelt, Solomon, and many more.
I’m not talking about hippie yoga crap. I’m talking about shutting up and listening to what is going on around you. Take five minutes every day to sit, breathe deeply and remain quiet. Focus on who you want to be, and your ideal day. Then go out and do your best to be that man.
Do these things every single day.
Men need a battle to fight, and a challenge to face
John Eldredge in his book “Wild at Heart”, said that men need three things.
A Battle to Fight
An Adventure to Live
A Beauty to Rescue
If a man wants to know what he is made of, I would urge him strongly to take on some sort of endurance event. Triathlon, Spartan Race 13+ miles, Biking, Marathon, Ultra-Marathon, go-ruck event, being away from your family or loved ones for an extended period of time.
A man will find out a lot about himself by physically and mentally challenging himself. The thing you don’t think you can do. That’s the thing you need to do.
Men need to continually learn new skills and become proficient at the ones already developed. If you want to build a website but don’t know how…then learn. If you don’t know how to bench press…then learn. If you don’t know how to shoot a gun, then go learn. Do manly stuff!
Men know that there is never an arrival point, there is never a destination. This life is asymptotic. Meaning you will continually come closer and closer to perfection, but never reach it. This should be encouraging because the sky is the limit.
Once you have a skill, work hard to hone it, and incorporate it into your daily life.
Every day you have a choice as a man, you can settle into mediocrity and passivity that this culture nurtures and cultivates, or you can set yourself apart and be the man you are made to be.
Being that man isn’t easy, because doing things the right way is not popular, and others will go against you because they are shallow scared little boys.
Boys hide and do what feels good, they don’t take responsibility or ownership. They are cowards, afraid of the success they can achieve, afraid to be dangerous and harsh.
It takes a man to make men.
How to obtain Mastery
Don’t look for shortcuts. First, say to yourself what type of man you want to be, then be that man. No one is going to push you more than yourself. A man doesn’t wait for things to be perfect, he takes action.
Stay Consistent. Don’t give up because something gets hard. Becoming the man you are made to be, takes time, effort and practice. Lots of it. Epictetus said: “No great thing is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig, I answer that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen.
Remain Teachable and Humble. These go hand in hand. Humility leads to being teachable. When you realize that you don’t know anything that is when you are ready to learn anything. Remember that you are a warrior and that you were made for greatness. Warriors are teachable, and always ready to learn.
Be willing to adapt. Things don’t always go as planned, but if you remain strategic in your approach and are developing your skill and strength then you will be able to adapt and change as new opportunities and openings arise in your life.
Challenge Yourself. Never think that you have arrived. That you have reached your destination. A man’s journey lasts a lifetime, and you can’t do things because you think you are going to get noticed or because you want accolades. Do the things you need to do because they will make you better as a man, not because you think you will be rewarded for doing them.
Don’t ever settle into mediocrity. Always choose the higher road. You will be a better man because of it, one that is born hardship, pain, discomfort, and grief. Life is never guaranteed to be easy, and as a man, this is the first step in developing a warrior mindset and a never quit attitude.
Be Legendary, Be Authentic.
Do Manly Stuff, Create goals and then conquer those big audacious goals that you set for yourself.
Kick ass. Ever. Single. Day.
Be the man that you were made to be.
Stephen Dull is a Navy Veteran, Cross-fit Enthusiast, Blogger, Podcaster, Engineer, who loves to lift weights in his garage, and help men be the men that they were made to be.
You’re one of the lucky ones. You’ve made it to your 90’s or even 100’s and it’s that time. You lie down for your final nap and never wake up.
If you’re a man of faith – and I am – you don’t think life stops there. Your soul, the essence of who you are, not just your physical form, lives on.
You’re dead but your consciousness still exists. I don’t think we take the same form, I think heaven is in the presence of our Maker and hell is in absence of Him. But for argument’s sake let’s say you go up to the pearly gates and see God.
Standing next to him is a fella that looks exactly like you. He’s a little stronger, more muscular, leaner. He looks like he’s lived more. He has scars on his face and hands and his skin is a lot tougher than yours is.
God says to you, Well done, you lived a good life, but you could have lived a far greater one. This guy is who I created you to be, this is your destiny.
In a glimpse, you see everything that this man, YOU, did. You see that he lived a HARD life. An arduous one. He didn’t compromise his values. He didn’t set small goals. He didn’t quit or cry or whine about his circumstances.
In this glimpse, you’re exposed to what you could have done, who you could have been.
You see the land you could have owned, the thousands of people you could have helped because of the millions and billions of dollars you could have earned.
You see the adventures you could have had and the scars they could have left.
You see the leader you could have been.
It hits you like a punch to the gut. You lived SMALL. You lived quietly. You lived a life of FEAR compared to what you could have done.
You were lazy, weak, afraid, envious, and cynical.
You could have been so much more.
If you have faith – and even if you don’t – compare yourself to this ideal, this potential, this man you can be, this man you’re created to be rather than comparing yourself to the guy next door or the fella down the street or the prick on TV.
Ambition is God Telling You What to Pursue
The second aspect of this epiphany, this glimpse, is that the man standing next to your Maker did what you’d always dreamt of doing.
He hunted in Africa, built a billion-dollar company, married his sweetheart, gave back, lived clean, worked hard, worked out, didn’t make excuses, and took action on the biggest dreams that YOU have.
… While you simply passed them off as dreams.
What your soul begs you to do should be given credence. It should be seen as important. Give it power, sustenance, by acting on it.
You know what your greatest ambitions are. There shouldn’t be anything in this world that can stop you from moving toward them.
Finally, the man you CAN BE has been beaten up. He’s failed. He’s had ups and downs and he’s almost died a dozen times.
His life, however, was lived on a far more grand playing field than the one you (we) currently occupy.
He DID the things that you only dream about doing.
He didn’t see obstacles or barriers, but dreams, destinations, goals.
Give your dreams the respect they deserve.
Set higher goals, aim far higher than anyone you know.
Then understand that nothing simply happens. Everything in life takes effort, pain, and persistence, and you can handle all of it.
Earlier this year I mentioned that I’m splitting my reading list up.
On one hand, I’m studying guys who’ve accomplished great things and either through their own words or their biographies, have left clues for what has made them over-achievers, winners, and even billionaires and conquerors.
The other part of my reading is learning marketing. I spend time reading articles and studies about testosterone and training and self-improvement, but knowledge on that front is useless if eyes don’t see my site, my youtube page, or my programs or books.
The first guy I’m studying is Trump, and I’m doing so because of something I noticed in a few of his interviews…
… His self-talk is POWERFUL
You can tell he doesn’t let doubt or negative talk enter his mind about himself by how he talks about himself, his accomplishments to others.
This can come off as incredibly arrogant. He doesn’t doubt himself. He talks himself up. He brags and boasts, but he also works.
Having true humility dictates that you understand that you have to work to get what you want. If you were arrogant, you wouldn’t work because you think you’re God’s gift to the world and that you’re entitled to what you haven’t yet earned.
Trump works. He sleeps 3-4 hours a night so he can work more than his competition. THAT is humility. Most people won’t boast or brag, but they also won’t work. They’ll think they’re entitled, worthy of what they don’t have, but they won’t vocalize it so they think they’re humble, they’ll show it in their actions, their laziness, their complaining.
I want to get into the mind of how a guy goes from starting his own real estate company, tackling the insanely tough New York market, to becoming the President of the most powerful nation in the world.
We’ll split this into two parts. Read both. Whatever your politics, forget about them for two days and take something from a guy who’s figured out to accomplish much of what he sets out to achieve.
Intelligence cannot be kept as a theory. It has to be put into action. I don’t count people who can talk about theories and intentions as intelligent. You’re (I’m) only intelligent if you create something, accomplish something…
… And those people who continually set massive goals and go out and achieve them are the most intelligent among us, so let’s learn from them.
Here are 3 lessons I’ve learned from Donald Trump that will help you become a more powerful man.
Lesson #1: You’re a king, you’re a killer.
In the early 90’s, Trump was in MASSIVE debt. He owed billions of dollars. The people and media outlets that had previously praised him were now calling him a moron. He was a piraya.
He admittedly lost the work ethic and discipline that got him his initial success and started believing his own initial hype (and going into billions of dollars in debt is a tough way to learn that lesson).
Everyone was after him. Bankers, media, colleagues, they all wanted his downfall. His old man, however, wasn’t buying this ‘end’. He wasn’t worried about his son or his future.
When Donald asked his dad for advice, his dad said two phrases:
“You’re a king. You’re a killer.”
Trump believed it. He believed his dad. He stood taller and faced the obstacles head on.
Here’s the truth:
YOU are a king. YOU are a killer. Act like it.
Don’t doubt yourself. If you doubt yourself, everyone will. Don’t diminish who you are. Don’t talk about yourself like you’re anything less than a king, a killer. And ACT LIKE ONE.
Work like a guy who can accomplish anything. Work harder than your competition. Hunt down your prey like the king of the jungle.
How you view yourself is the most important thing in the world.
You can see yourself as a king and a killer, or a failure and a weakling. But however, you see yourself is how others will see you.
You will not get the respect from the world that you crave if you don’t first give it to yourself.
Give yourself permission to be THE MAN.
Forget about sounding arrogant. Forget about being conceded. You’re going to do the work. You’re not entitled or lazy. So start seeing yourself like the man you can be, and talk like you’re that guy, too.
Self-talk is powerful.
It can be powerfully destructive or helpful, it’s up to you which one it is.
Lesson #2: You are who you think you are, who you say you are.
If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right. ~ Henry Ford
Ever since I started reading a couple books about Trump (How to Think Like a Billionaire, and, Think Big and Kick Ass), I’ve been paying close attention to my self-talk.
And it sucks.
I have a book that I’m releasing in a few days. And I’m worried abo
ut how it’ll be received. I’m thinking about worst case scenarios, I’m doubting myself and my abilities.
There’s no benefit to it. Even if the book is horribly received, I can write another one, a better one. It’s not the end of the world, but it’s more likely that it’ll be received well. It’s a good book. It’ll help thousands of guys learn how to eat and live in a way that’ll boost their testosterone levels.
Think like a winner.
Think like a billionaire.
In innate talent and ability, many billionaires are no better than you or I. They do, however, have more confidence, they give themselves permission to live to a higher standard. They talk to themselves like they’re kings and killers.
You and I HAVE TO do the same.
We have to get in the habit of not doubting ourselves in any way. We’re X on the way to become Y.
Trump talks about this in his book, Think Big and Kick Ass.
Don’t see yourself as a law student, but as a law student on his way to becoming partner.
Or a fitness pro, but a fitness pro on his way to creating a powerful publishing company.
Think bigger, not just in terms of goals, but in terms of who you are. And don’t you DARE doubt yourself. Don’t let those weak thoughts get anywhere close to you.
Lesson #3: It’s easier to get a $100 million dollar loan than a $50,000 loan.
The competition resides in being mediocre.
There are only a few hundred billionaires on the planet. That’s not a lot of competition.
There are billions of people who think small and set their sights low.
In one of the books, Trump makes the point that it’s easier to get a loan for a massive project than it is to get one for a small project.
Banks want to attach their name and brand to something big, not renos in a poor part of town, but a big project in a big part of town.
Most aim for the small things. Few aim for the big things.
For Trumps first few deals he had no money. He had to go out and raise a ton of money, but also pit the banks and the city against one another. In one deal he ended up PAYING LESS THAN ZERO because the city gave him a massive tax rebate that was more than the initial loan he got from the bank.
He went into the deal with literally no money. But that didn’t stop him.
It took years of negotiation, but holy hell did he get a good deal.
Most of us aren’t even aware of the bigger options.
We’re so set in a smaller way of thinking that we limit our options all-together.
Thinking big requires you to step back and truly see the possibilities. A part of this is studying what’s possible.
Spend time studying the biggest players in whatever game you’re in.
See what they’re doing. Study that actions they take, and live on their level.
Everyone can teach you a lesson.
The reality is that there are people who are playing on a bigger stage than you are, but their abilities don’t differ all that much, the same for myself.
How you talk to yourself, what you set your sights on, who you think you are, these are the things that determine the man you become, and what you accomplish in life so long as you’re willing to work.
A lot has been discussed about testosterone’s ability to induce fat-loss, enhance muscle growth, and increase libido. That’s all good and well, but testosterone’s true impact extends far beyond just these three areas. As a man, your testosterone levels are a major driving force in your overall health, energy, and well-being. In this article, I’ll go over the importance of this hormone and how it impacts various aspects of your mind, body, and behavior.
Testosterone Improves Cognitive Function
Elderly men (over the age of 50) screened for subjective memory complaints and low testosterone levels were brought into a lab and assessed for various measures of cognitive functioning. After baseline measurements were established, participants were given varying doses of testosterone treatment. The experiment lasted 52-weeks, after which participants across the board showed significant improvements in general cognitive functioning. Similar results were found in another study, in which 8-weeks of testosterone treatment significantly improved verbal fluency in healthy men.
How testosterone impacts the brain is not exactly understood, but researchers theorize that T plays a role in preventing brain tissue decay. This might explain why men with low testosterone have an increased chance of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
In a study of 108 elderly men (over the age of 65), participants were randomly assigned to wear either a testosterone patch or a placebo patch for 36 months. Bone mineral density measurements were recorded before and after the 36-month period. At the end of the experiment, researchers found that the lower the pretreatment testosterone level of the subject, the greater the effect that testosterone treatment had on increasing the bone mineral density of their lumbar spine.
In another study, 609 men (over the age of 60) were observed over a period of 16 years. Bone mineral density and lifestyle factors were assessed at baseline and testosterone levels were also taken into account. After analyzing the data and adjusting for factors such as age, weight, fracture history, smoking status, and calcium intake, researchers found serum testosterone to be independently associated with the risk of osteoporotic fracture.
The strength of your bones is directly correlated to the amount of testosterone running through your veins. To minimize your chances of developing osteoporosis and other bone complications, it is essential that you develop the habits to help maintain optimal levels of testosterone.
Testosterone Maintains Heart Health
Testosterone’s primary function is the strengthening of your body’s muscles, and no muscle is more important than your heart.
In an examination of 83,010 elderly men with documented low testosterone levels, researchers observed how testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) impacted the subjects’ cardiovascular health. After analyzing the data, researchers found that the normalization of the subjects’ T-levels after TRT led to a significant reduction in the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Similar results were reported in another follow-up study of 11,606 men, in which low testosterone was noted as a possible predictive marker of cardiovascular disease.
When compared to men with normal testosterone levels, men with low T tend to have significantly higher body mass index, systolic blood pressure, triglycerides, cholesterol, and blood sugar. All of these factors affect cardiovascular health negatively.
One of the mechanisms through which testosterone improves heart health is by stimulating red blood cell production. Hemoglobin is a compound present within red blood cells that carries oxygen. By increasing red blood cell production, testosterone allows for a more effective transport of oxygen throughout the body.
Testosterone Fuels Your Competitive Drive
In a study of 64 men, each subjects’ T-level was assessed before and after a rigged one-on-one competition. After the first round of competition, participants chose whether or not they wanted to compete again. Researchers found that fluctuations in T-levels independently predicted whether or not subjects would choose to compete again. The losers who experienced a spike in T were more likely to choose to compete again compared to the losers who experienced a drop in T.
In another study, university tennis players were assessed for their testosterone measurements across six matches during their varsity season. Researchers found that T-levels rose just before matches and that the players with the highest pre-match T reported the most positive improvement in mood. After playing the matches, T-levels in the winners were higher compared to the T-levels in the losers. The winners also experienced higher T before their next match compared to the losers who had lower T before their next match.
Competition is a fundamental aspect of our nature as men, and research confirms that testosterone factors in to affect this trait. That being said, this relationship could just as easily be affected in reverse. For example, a mindset centered on performing well could also boost T, which would then further fuel your competitive drive.
Testosterone Makes You Attractive
76 men were brought into a lab in pairs and instructed to compete for the attention of an attractive female. Researchers found that the subjects’ pre-competition testosterone levels were positively associated with their expressions of dominant behavior and with how much the woman indicated that she “clicked” with each participant. The conclusion of the study was that testosterone plays a major role in regulating the behaviors that enhance mating success.
In another study, researchers investigated the relationship between circulating testosterone and both masculinity and attractiveness of facial appearance. What they found was that, across the board, composites from high-testosterone men were judged to be more masculine and more attractive than those from low T men.
Testosterone Improves Your Mood
In a meta-analysis of 16 human trials with a total of 944 subjects, researchers observed a significant positive impact of testosterone treatment on mood. This finding is further exemplified by the results from another study, in which 6-months of testosterone treatment helped 19 out of 30 men overcome depression.
In yet another study, 3987 men were assessed for depressive symptoms, of which 203 were diagnosed with depression. When analyzing the data, researchers found that the participants with depression also had significantly lower testosterone levels than the non-depressed men. They concluded that men with testosterone levels in the lowest quintile have the highest prevalence of depression.
Irritability, anger, uncertainty, and aggression are all emotions that tie back to mood. If you’ve been experiencing these emotions more frequently as of recent, it’s likely that low testosterone is a contributing cause. Taking the steps to increase your T can definitely help overcome these emotions and allow you to feel more relaxed and at ease.
Testosterone Increases Your Appetite For Risk
In an interesting study of male financial traders, researchers found that a trader’s morning level of testosterone was predictive of his day’s profitability. The traders willing to incur the most risk also set themselves up with a higher chance of scoring big. Similar results were found in another study, in which both men and women with high testosterone consistently showed a willingness to incur greater financial risk while gambling than their lower testosterone counterparts. And if that wasn’t enough, MBA students with the highest testosterone levels were more likely to choose the riskiest careers in finance.
By definition, risk is associated with potential downside. That being said, risk is definitely something you have to indulge in in order to rise above your current circumstances. As the saying goes “high risk equals high reward”. Don’t look at risk as something good or bad but just know that, without it, growth cannot occur.
Testosterone Helps You Live Longer
794 men (aged 50-91) were followed up with over a period of 11.8-years. During the follow-up, 548 deaths occurred. When observing the data, researchers found that the men with total testosterone levels in the lowest quartile were 40% more likely to die than those with higher levels. This relationship held true even after adjusting for factors such as age, body fat, and lifestyle.
The research is very clear on this:
Low testosterone levels are independently associated with an increased mortality rate in elderly men.
Of course, it’s not only about living longer. Quality of life is equally important. And given the benefits listed above, testosterone helps in that regard as well.
Testosterone is the biological cause of masculinity. Everything that you would consider “manly” (deep voice, broad shoulders, facial hair, etc.) can be traced back to the amount of testosterone running through one’s veins. That being said, the influence of this hormone is far wider than just controlling these characteristics. The strength of your bones, the health of your heart, and the function of your brain are all aspects on which testosterone exerts a major influence.
By developing the lifestyle habits that align with the maintenance of optimal T, you will ensure that your mind and body are functioning near peak potential. By maintaining these habits over the long-term, you will sustain your youth and virility well into old age.
About the Author
Mo Saleem is an independent men’s health researcher and founder of TripleYourT.com. His mission is to empower men with the evidence-based action steps to help optimize their testosterone levels so that they can actualize their potential.