The 10 Laws of Getting Shit Done

The 10 Laws of Getting Shit Done

A Simple Guide to Getting Shit Done

This article is going to be brief. It’s going to focus on getting more writing done, but the principles can apply across various hobbies of professions.

It’s an article written by a serial procrastinator who’s had to train himself to be more effective and efficient. Hopefully it will help you do the same.

Law #1: Get Up Early

Working when everyone else is sleeping is the best way to get a better bang for your time. That is, your hours of work before everyone else wakes up, especially everyone else in your own home, is – in my experience – about 3x as effective as the hours after. (Read This: How to Wake Up Early)

This can work for the hours after they’re gone to bed as well, it just depends on when you work best. I woke up earlier today, got a bunch done, but am enjoying a glass of wine right now as well after everyone’s gone to bed.

In my own work, though, those early hours in the morning account for a 3 to 1 ratio. That is, if I work from 5am-7am, I get 4-6 hours of 9am-6pm work done.

Law #2:  Have a Content Strategy

This is something new for me, but it’s already done wonders.

Have a singular focus for each week.

Here’s how mine works:

Monday: 3, 1,000 or more word articles for Average 2 Alpha.
Tuesday: Newsletters for the week, or up to two weeks ahead to allow for more free time.
Wednesday: Filming/podcast day
Thursday: Big Projects Day
Friday: 7 smaller articles for Facebook, A2A, and CHF
Saturday & Sunday: Big Projects Days

This is a wonderful thing to implement into your routine because you know exactly what you have to do, you do it, and you can prepare for it the night before. It doesn’t matter what you do for work, have some kind of strategy to your WEEK, not just to your days.

Law #3: Use Work Blocks

My goodness this is effective!

Block off time within your day for specific tasks. Our brains function optimally for about 90 minutes – or for a maximum of 90-minutes. Train your ability to focus by starting with 30-minute work blocks and progressing to 90-minute work blocks.

The key is to focus on a single thing and nothing else for the entire work block.

Law #4: Shut Off Your Phone!

Phones are attention-suckers. They take us away from the things that we want to create. They’re actually road blocks to productivity, they’re not the productivity machines that they’re marketed to be at all. (Try This: The ‘Put Your Phone Down’ Challenge)

Shut it off and work!

You are your work. This is what you’re here to do, and to do it at a high level you need SUPREME focus.

Law #5: Get Away From Other Humans

Team work is good. Solitude is optimal for production.

To actually produce, not to think or to come up with ideas or to hear opinions of your work mates, you need to be alone.

Mark Twain used to write from a shed when he and his family would go on vacation. The list of great writers and workers who wrote and worked in solitude is never-ending.

If you want to produce numerous great things, find some alone time.

Law #6: Have a Firm Ending to the Day

Don’t just work all of the time. We know that by shutting down a work day at the same time every day we give ourselves a deadline that acts to increase productivity.

We also know that we’re more creative when we’re not constantly worrying about work.

Use a finite and common time to end your work day every day. Waking up earlier will make this not only possible, but much easier.

Law #7: Force Yourself to Work/Write

Depending on motivation is what losers do. Winners rely on their habits. You have to force yourself to work, you have to force yourself to write.

Getting in the habit of waiting for motivation is what losers do. It’s a horrible way to live and to work because you rely on the whim of the muse.

You CONTROL the muse. You tell that bastard when to show its face.

Get in the habit of working when you set times to work, and your degree of motivation should be irrelevant. You’re a worker, regardless of whether you feel like it or not.

Law #8: Don’t Be Busy

Or, never rush.

We’re programmed and told that being busy is good. But being busy is useless. Being effective is everything. Be effective, but don’t rush.

Don’t feel the need to show that you’re doing something. Have a single thing you work on every day, and chip away at the boulder in front of you.

Work should be methodical, not romantic.

Law #9: Use stimulants.

Yup. I said it.

Drink coffee, take omega-3’s to help you focus, take alpha brain to do the same.

Don’t take drugs. But structure your diet in a way that will help you create optimal energy.

Join our newsletter to learn a few tips about how to get more out of what you eat.

Law #10: Track Everything

Track your time. Track your time spent on your computer. Track what you do and what you don’t do. Track your breaks. And take breaks!

Don’t’ be busy for busy’s sake. Getting outside and running around or working on the yard is a must for productivity. But be real about how you spend your money and how you spend your time.

When you know where it’s going you’ll know exactly what you can fix.

Now get to work!

About The Author

Chad Howse: Chad’s mission is to get you in the arena, ‘marred by the dust and sweat and blood’, to help you set and achieve audacious goals in the face of fear, and not only build your ideal body, but the life you were meant to live.

You can contact him at –
http://www.ChadHowseFitness.com/
https://www.Facebook.com/ChadHowseFitness
https://www.YouTube.com/ChadHowseFitness

3 Tools to Help You Get More Done In Less Time Using Less Energy

3 Tools to Help You Get More Done In Less Time Using Less Energy

The ability to focus on a single thing for an extended period of time is becoming a lost skill. As it goes, grit goes, and production decreases.

As we, individually, give away our ability to focus on a single thing for an extended period of time, our ability to produce at a high level decreases dramatically. And that’s essentially what we want to do in life: product at a high level.

We want to accomplish something great and of value. Yet by noon we find ourselves lethargic, unable to make good decisions, unable to do what we set out to do as we watch our to do lists get perennially pushed to tomorrow.

Our productivity drops. Our goals become safer, easier. Our value and purpose as men begins to conform to what everyone else attempts. We join the sea of mediocrity that has become culture. (Read This: Fuck Mediocrity!)

You want more. You want to become something better than what the masses attempt. It hangs on your ability to focus and the energy you gain from having a singular focus.

3 ways to get more done with less energy and in less time.

1. Only Make Necessary Decisions

Our brains have a limited capacity to make decisions. There’s actually a limited number of decisions we can effectively make in a day before our decision-making well runs dry.

When it runs dry we lack focus and our ability to optimally produce declines.

The solution is simple: only make decisions you have to make, especially early in the morning.

Steve Jobs cut out the decision of what to wear by wearing the same thing every day. Maybe that’s why nuns seem to have so much energy. Another solution would be to choose what you wear the night before.

The better route is to have a morning routine that doesn’t change. Have the same breakfast. Wear the same clothes. Perform the same routine so you don’t have to choose different paths.

This applies to work as well. You shouldn’t have to choose whether to answer an email or a text or a call. Shut everything off. Have blocks when you can check your phone or email or social media accounts.

Get in the habit of having habits, good ones, habits that take your decision-making out of your hands and give it to routine.

2. Remove distractions.

If you don’t want to eat candy, don’t go into a candy store.

Remove all distractions from your work space, even if that work space is a hobby space or a place of practice. There should only be one focus at all times, be it your work, your family, the craft you’re trying to perfect.

If you’re writing, there should be no phone nor internet. (Try This: The ‘Put Your Phone Down’ Challenge)

The single thing that gets in the way of much of our ability to produce is our phones. We like them because they give us instant gratification, but they rip meaning from our lives. Meaning hangs on being of value, of doing something worthy and of worth. We can’t accomplish much if our focus is being pulled in more than one direction.

Determine what it is you want to be focusing on. Focus only on that and don’t allow anything else to get in the way of this single focus while you’ve blocked off time to focus on this one thing.

We’ll cover ‘blocking’ in a sec (see “c” of the 3 tools section).

3. Tools to Help You Focus

a. ONE FOCUS

OneFocus is an app that shuts off everything on your computer but the thing you want to be doing. If you want to be writing, it’ll shut off the internet and every other app for whatever time you tell it to so you can work on the single thing.

Here’s the thing with focusing on one task; you get better at it the more you do it.

Initially you’ll want to check your phone, you’ll have to fight off the urge to turn your internet on or check social media. But focus is like a muscle, the more you do it, the more you resist those things trying to pry you from your mission, the stronger you become, the easier this focusing thing gets.

b. STOPWATCH/TIMER

To be productive I haven’t found a better resource than ‘time blocking’. That is, setting aside time to focus on a single thing, and when that time is finished, you immediately stop focusing on that thing.

Using a timer is ideal. The extent at which we can effectively focus on a task is 90-minutes. Build up to 90, start with 30.

Train your mind to focus. Other studies have shown a

c. THE PERFECT DAY FORMULA

The Perfect Day Formula is one of the best tools I’ve come across for scheduling and planning not only your days, but your life, the things you should be focusing on and removing the things that shouldn’t attract your time.

I rely on the journals and the tools within the kit heavily. When you craft our a perfect routine, a perfect day, and the perfect habits, you gain an energy that can’t be described. Energy becomes habitual. Your body becomes programmed to do whatever is it you should be doing and you get a thrust of energy to complete the task at hand.

Check out the Perfect Day Formula.

About The Author

Chad Howse: Chad’s mission is to get you in the arena, ‘marred by the dust and sweat and blood’, to help you set and achieve audacious goals in the face of fear, and not only build your ideal body, but the life you were meant to live.

You can contact him at –
http://www.ChadHowseFitness.com/
https://www.Facebook.com/ChadHowseFitness
https://www.YouTube.com/ChadHowseFitness

Methodical Persistence Beats Motivation Every Time

Methodical Persistence Beats Motivation Every Time

Forget Motivation, Be Persistent

In love as in business, he had a longer time frame, a more settled will, than other people. ~ John Chernow

Quiet persistence isn’t sexy. It’s not what gains one acclaim nor fame. We want to hear about the inspired, the motivated, the moments of daring that change a man’s life and the world in the process. (Read This: Quietly Become Great)

That’s not how it works.

Winning at life and in business is less about motivation and more about what you do every day.

The quote above is, of course, an observation about the constitution of John D. Rockefeller, once the richest man in the world and in comparing wealth to spending, also one of its most frugal.

He saw life not as a romantic novel with him as its protagonist, but as a culmination of each individual day.

Each day is a life. What you do every day determines what you’ll create by your end. It determines your legacy and your value.

Today we aim to be busy, to be engaged in something with energy. Rockefeller had the wonderful insight in this pursuit that…

People who are perpetually busy are rarely proportionately successful.

It’s not about taking chunks out of your pursuit. Life isn’t about the grand days, though there must be some. Life is a daily grind. The key word is daily. Not wanting to break routine, Rockefeller worked on his wedding day. He kept detailed accounts of his expenses and earning and worked hard, but never aimed to merely be busy. (Read This: 12 Business Lessons from John D. Rockefeller)

He took long breaks during the day. He got out of the office, but every day he accomplished valuable work. He chipped away at his work daily, not aiming to do it all at once, not aspiring to show that he was doing it all at once.

His work was habitual. His life was habitual.

My Content Strategy

My business is essentially writing. I do other things, like filming or editing or some work on the sites, but the vast majority of my time is spent at the computer writing.

Writing is seen as something that’s beholden to motivation.

The inspired are writers.

That’s just not the case. I’ve seen it in guys like Stephen King who write every single day. And I’ve experienced it in my own work and in my own life that good things don’t happen unless you work at them every day. No days off. No attempts to knock off 10,000 words in a day. Just routine.

I’ve had routines that relied on motivation. They’re routines that looked more at the work done in a week rather than putting specific tasks into certain days of the week. They don’t work. The work never gets done.

Now, I work on one thing a day, with other days left for bigger projects. Every Tuesday, for example, I work on newsletters. They get done and they fit better together because they’re tackled in the same mind-frame.

Podcasts and other videos are on Wednesday.

The other days have their purposes be they articles or bigger projects, even books, even things we’re not releasing until next year.

The pursuit has to be daily and routine in order to be productive.

When you get your work done every day, you free up far more time to live as well, and writing in my mind is dependent on living a life worth writing about.

Your Work. Your Life.

It isn’t about what you appear to be doing, but about what you actually get done. Not all of us have bosses that understand this. Most bosses want you to show up at a certain time, on their clock, and work as they want you to work. (Read This: How to Get More Done in Less Time)

Do that. And do more.

With your training, aim to add small but effective habits into your routine to get you closer to your goal.

It’s not just the workout, but the 200 push ups you do everyday, or the breakfast that you have or the run or walk you go for after work.

Create the habits. Do the work. Don’t look for acclaim or eyes focused on what you’re doing or how you’re doing it. Don’t tweet or Facebook the epic work you’re doing. Just go at your business methodically. Track it. See the progress you’re making. Measure everything. And continue this boring ass march that will one day give you an unmatched source of pride.

About The Author

Chad Howse: Chad’s mission is to get you in the arena, ‘marred by the dust and sweat and blood’, to help you set and achieve audacious goals in the face of fear, and not only build your ideal body, but the life you were meant to live.
You can contact him at –
http://www.ChadHowseFitness.com/
https://www.Facebook.com/ChadHowseFitness
https://www.YouTube.com/ChadHowseFitness

12 Business Lessons from John D. Rockefeller

12 Business Lessons from John D. Rockefeller

If your only goal is to become rich, you will never achieve it. ~ John D. Rockefeller

Life requires contradiction.

You have to save ruthlessly and yet sometimes you have to risk it all on yourself or your dream. (Read This: How to Spend Money Like a Winner)

You have to be steadfastly disciplined, yet you have to break your routine, turn it upside down if you’re going to fully grow.

You have to work hard, yet you have to not work at all to ensure that your hard work is effective.

I’m working my way through Titan, the book about John D. Rockefeller. The lessons are beginning to pile up and I haven’t even cracked 100 pages.

The book gets into the psychology of the man, which is interesting, though it sometimes evolves into theory and takes away from the reader’s ability to interpret what he’s reading. Still, the psychology behind the man who was at one point the richest man in the world is fascinating.

To understand why he did what he did, or at least to speculate with sound logic, forces you to reflect on your own life and decisions.

Rockefeller is wonderfully frugal. I love it. While the rest of society tries to show their success, he avoids and scoffs at such an attempt. He doesn’t feel the need to show off. He doesn’t want to be above anyone. He sees saving as a far more practical use of money than play, partying, or the acquisition of stuff – something our society is caught in.

Yet, he borrows.

He sees where the refinery business can possibly head and he continues to borrow large amounts to grow the business.

A man who meticulously scours the books looking for money owed or wasted or due, who will chase down someone if they owe his company a penny, or if they’re owed by his company for the same amount, doesn’t seem like the sort to borrow anything. But he does, continually and often.

He also wants control, complete control over every aspect of his company. That isn’t him, personally, but in the sense that he brings every aspect of their operation in house so they’re not dependent on someone else for a service, he even hires a plumber.

He also has an incredible work ethic, yet he breaks his work days up, going for walks, getting outside, going home for naps, all because he sees this approach to work, one not rushed, as far more effective than the put your nose to the books and don’t look up until 10pm approach.

He’s disciplined even in his non-disciplined areas of life.

In Rockefeller we have a guy we can take very simple lessons from, and if we’re gritty enough, we can use them to create immense wealth in our own lives.

12 Life and Business Lessons from John D. Rockefeller

business-lessons-rockefeller-2

1. Don’t get trapped by the desires of trivial people.

What many of us pursue in life, our goals, dreams, the status we want to inhabit, is a trap. It offers no real value. It gives us no meaning or purpose and it prevents us from giving something of ourselves to others.

We aspire to have, not to build. The images of what we should want are displayed in every corner of our lives. We compare ourselves to our neighbors, our friends, the people we follow or befriend on social media. What we want and who we want to become turns into something measured by what we can acquire, drive, live in, dress in, and what we wear on our wrists.

This stuff doesn’t actually matter. The clothes, the cars, the homes, the boats, none of it matters. Rockefeller knew this deeply. He despised it. As his wealth grew he built estates that paled in comparison to the gaudy estates of the Vanderbilt’s or other wealthy families. He didn’t host elaborate parties or buy anything remotely flashy.

It’s easy for us to look at a man of immense wealth and say, well that’s easy to do when you’re ‘there’, but this distain for the trappings of trivial minds has to start young because it’s so incredibly difficult to develop later in life.

Rockefeller saw the big picture, something that few are able to see. He saw that even by saving pennies, it would bring him closer to whatever end he sought even though that end may have been something so broad as ‘success’. A penny saved, not a dollar or a hundred dollars, but a penny was his focus.

One of his favorite maxims was It’s better to save now than to have to save later.

The best way to do this is to know exactly what you’re spending money on but also to have the clarity to know what’s worth the expense and what isn’t. Investing in acquiring knowledge, in a coach or a program or putting money back into your business is worth it. Buying stuff that clutters up your home rarely provides even remotely the same value.

2. Borrow to grow faster.

The hardest problem all through my business career was to obtain enough capital to do all the business I wanted to do and could do, given the necessary amount of money. ~ Rockefeller

The man borrowed. He borrowed often as a means to grow his business faster. It’s always a risk to borrow, and it’s something I’ve never been extremely comfortable doing, but the logic is sound, so long as you’re good at paying off your debts – which Rockefeller was extremely good at.

The thing about growth is that the faster you get to the top the more control you’ll have over your own operation and your industry. Slow and steady is great, but if you have a plan, one that has been proven to work, borrowing to increase growth, to be able to do what you can’t do with the capital you currently have is good business.

Being uneasy with borrowing is also good because you don’t want to be indebted to everyone. Rockefeller actually used loans to control everything in his organization, down to the plumber they hired rather than depending on another company who they’d have to haggle and bargain with every time they needed something to be done.

3. Know what coming in and what’s going out.

Keep a ledger.

I just started doing this. Every penny I spend, including daily fixed costs like my mortgage or food or Teddy’s food, along with every penny earned, are logged in a little book. Rockefeller so loved his little ledger, he put so much importance on this ledger for his eventual success, that he talked about the actual ledger with fondess.

Long after he’d made millions upon millions of dollars he kept his original ledger in a safe along with his most prized possessions.

If you don’t see exactly how you’re spending money you won’t know what habits to curb. It’s also incredibly difficult to understand expenses when you’re not tracking them.

Keep a ledger. Write every single expense in said ledger, and review to see where you can make cuts and improvements. Knowing what you’re spending money on clearly plays a significant role in your ability to save, especially if we’re using Rockefeller as an example.

4. Don’t work for ‘hours’, work for effectiveness.

I was surprised to read this, but Rockefeller, a diligent worker, prized his work breaks as much as his work time.

He who works all day has no time to make money. ~ John D. Rockefeller

He saw working in the yard or staying active, taking breaks throughout the day, even naps, as just as important as the actual work. Putting your head down and simply working, being busy for busy’s sake, or being busy to show others that you’re ‘working’, to give the appearance that you have stuff on the go, does more harm than good, to a point.

Effectiveness is king. It doesn’t matter the hours you work, but the work you get done. Work breaks, getting outside, taking your time, improves your ability to get quality work done. And just as important, it decreases your burn out rate. (Read This: How to Get Shit Done)

This has definitely rung true in my life. I’ll work like a mad-man for 10-12 days, then burn out, and need a full two days off to ‘get back into it’, especially with writing, something that relies so much on creativity. When, however, I do yard work, go for runs or hikes or work on the house during a work day, I have a dramatically increased focus in whatever I’m working on, as well as a vast improvement in the quality and quantity of work I can get done in less time.

The key is not to rush.

Don’t rush to the office, rush to open up your computer, rush to get stuff done, creating a long list of ‘to do’s’ that never really get accomplished.

Take your time. Slow things down. Enjoy the process. Have a list of things that need to get done that aren’t work, things that are ideally outside, that get your blood flowing and fresh air into your lungs.

People who are perpetually busy are rarely proportionately successful.

5. Get rid of people who don’t align with your values… eventually.

Rockefeller was partnered with people who didn’t share his values. They didn’t want to borrow to grow. They didn’t like risk, yet they loved spending money on frivolous things. He didn’t avoid them all at once, but when the time came he bought them out.

He was patient, analytical, methodical. He used them as long as he could, then when he’d had enough he quickly moved to push them out of the company, paying more than market value in the acquisition, but a move that spurred him to become the richest man in the world.

You don’t have to remove everyone all at once. Bide your time. But when that time comes that you can get people out of your life or out of your business that don’t share your vision, act decisively.

6. Accomplishment is important, don’t undervalue it.

We live in a society that doesn’t require accomplishment, or at least that’s the narrative they push. Rockefeller lived in a time where success was a necessity if you wanted to have power over your own life and to be able to care for your family.

I just got back from Africa where money is incredibly important. We live pretty high on the hog here in the west, ignorant to the necessity of money. It’s important. Sure, it isn’t the be all end all and after a certain point it doesn’t actually improve your chances at happiness, but accomplish does. Accomplishment is necessary for you to feel as though you’re earning your air, that you’re somehow paying back the gift of life and serving some purpose while you’re here.

Don’t fall into the nonsense of the hippie fools that are out there trying to ‘find themselves’. It’s a pursuit that will never end. No, create yourself instead. Create yourself by creating something, anything, a legacy, a company, a novel, a way of life.

Doing something great with the talents you’ve been given is to live, it’s to be of use, it’s to serve a purpose.

Never undervalue the necessity of accomplishment in life.

7. Always treat people with kindness.

Rockefeller was a devout Christian. He also treated every single human he came across with kindness. It didn’t matter their status in life, he’d greet them with a smile.

We get lost in our own pursuits that we – I – almost ignore people. Pay attention to people not because it’s a good business practice but because it’s how to be a human.

8. Don’t try to meet people to ‘get ahead’.

In almost every ‘self-help’ or business book you’ll find the advice that you are who you know, and that you should make it your business to know people who are where you want to be.

Fuck that.

You’re going to get to where you want to be regardless of who you know, and to follow people around like a yes man, to change who you are, to hunt people down because they have what you want isn’t what great men do.

It’s cunning. It’s conniving.

I read this earlier in the book, and it’s one of the best things I’ve heard in a long time because it goes against what so many do, and so many ambitious people especially do, which is to find a mentor by going where their mentors hang out.

In the instance of Rockefeller, this ‘hang out’ was church. Young, ambitious men began attending the churches of wealthier men in hopes of creating a connection. Rockefeller didn’t like this. Church was an actual place of worship for him. He loved the people of his congregation and wouldn’t sell them out because he wanted something someone else had.

Again, this counters much of what business or success books will tell you, but it takes some confidence, and confidence based on reality.

If you’re good with you money, if you hustle, if you take proper risks, you’re going to eventually make what you want and be who you want. Your success isn’t hanging on an introduction.

One day those same guys who younger ambitious fellas are chasing will come and introduce themselves to you.

Of course, if you’re not a worker, if you’re not smart, if you’re not good with your money, you’re going to fail regardless. So, don’t be a cunning snake after a relationship that will give you what you want. Instead, be the man who deserves what you want.

You see it in every industry, guys trying to suck up to older, more successful guys maybe to learn what they know or in hopes that they’ll ‘throw them a bone’, give them a hand, put them in the position they want to be in.

That’s a great strategy for mid-level guys. But men of honor, big winners, legends, they hold little doubt that they’ll eventually be worthy of what they desire.

9. Give religiously.

Giving should be entered into in just the same way as investing. Giving is investing. ~ John D. Rockefeller

Rockefeller was notoriously charitable. He gave when he had nothing. Then he gave more when he’d earned millions. He always walked the streets with crisp bills, handing them out to people as he walked by.

As soon as he was able, he began to give away 10% of his entire income. He gave to charities, to freed slaves, to churches – both his own and others. He gave and gave and gave.

He saw giving and earning as two things that didn’t oppose one another but things that went hand in hand. The more he gave he believed the more the Lord would bless him. He also saw the money he earned not as his own, but as a gift, and one that must be repaid.

Giving isn’t a duty, it’s not a necessity, it isn’t something you have to do with your money. It’s your money, do whatever you want with it. However, it is good to do. It is honorable. It gives a reason for your wealth, and not just providing jobs (which is the best form of ‘charity’ there is), but giving for the sake of giving.

He didn’t give for status or name, but because it was what he loved to do. He was a giver before he made a penny, and that giving only got greater as he made millions.

10Give intelligently.

Charity is injurious unless it helps the recipient to become independent of it. ~ John D. Rockefelle

Giving is useless if the recipient requires more and more and more. You’re just creating a dependent. This is how the government treats poverty, which is why poverty will always have a steady grip on socialistic societies.

Giving, true giving, must give power to the recipient in the form of skills or knowledge or a simple investment in their pursuit. (Read This: Don’t Give, Teach)

Giving intelligently is giving more than just money, but tools, knowledge, skills, and even time. The world is far better off with everyone contributing. The individual is far better off if they’re contributing.

To be a dependent is a horrible feeling, but people get accustomed to it. Don’t let them. Ask more of them. Show them their true value by enlightening them of what they’re capable of.

And it’s far better to give to someone with a little ambition than to give to someone devoid of it completely.

11. Win when others lose.

I have always tried to turn every disaster into opportunity. ~ John D. Rockefeller

Be up when others are down. Be positive when they’re negative. Work hard when they rest. Aim higher when they get discouraged. Find opportunity when others only see disaster.

It’s no secret that fortunes are made in disasters. When the masses sell, the few buy. When everyone’s in an uproar and a panic, distracted from what’s really going on, you’ve got to be searching for opportunity.

Creating opportunity is often a choice of perspective. It’s an attempt to solve a puzzle. Most people never attempt to solve the puzzle, they only see what’s wrong. They get lost in the disaster and never wake up to the opportunity that was hidden behind it.

Next time crisis hits, breathe, then begin your search for the opportunity that inevitably lies within it.

 12. Don’t rely on yourself for your income.

I would rather earn 1% off a 100 people’s efforts than 100% of my own efforts. ~ John D. Rockefeller

It’s silly to attempt to get rich off of your work and merits alone. Employ people. Have people who are smart and savvy and good at what they’re doing and get a cut from their work rather than only being paid for yours.

Having a little piece of a lot of people is better than relying solely on your own ingenuity.

ROCKEFELLER

Singleness of purpose is one of the chief essentials for success in life, no matter what may be one’s aim. ~ John D. Rockefeller

There’s a lot to learn from John D. Rockefeller. The guy knew what he wanted even if he didn’t initially understand how he’d get it. He wasn’t the first in the oil business, but he saw that the money and control was in refining the product, not in drilling for it.

I respect how he didn’t depend on others. He didn’t chase down mentors and he never undersold himself. He saw his value to his company, to any company he worked for, and he got what he thought he was worth, maybe not in the beginning, but eventually.

He was disciplined, both with his time and his money. He was ambitious, but giving and caring and unlike so many ambitious young men, he didn’t get trapped by the things that money could by, but the things that you could do with it.

About The Author

Chad Howse: Chad’s mission is to get you in the arena, ‘marred by the dust and sweat and blood’, to help you set and achieve audacious goals in the face of fear, and not only build your ideal body, but the life you were meant to live.

You can contact him at –
http://www.ChadHowseFitness.com/
https://www.Facebook.com/ChadHowseFitness
https://www.YouTube.com/ChadHowseFitness

The Ultimate Guide to Setting Life-Changing Goals

The Ultimate Guide to Setting Life-Changing Goals

There’s a pull that I can’t shake. I’m sitting at my dinner table writing while Teddy lounges at the base of the bay window that’s only a few feet from me and looks out onto my porch and then onto the cul-de-sac that I’m near the entrance of.

I’m in a house that I love, doing work that I’m passionate about, and yet this tug and lack of satisfaction compounds everyday. I want to be elsewhere doing more important things. I want to be in new places that scare me a little. I want to be hiking, hunting, camping, shooting, exploring, but I, like many of you, have shit that needs to get done and the more I work the more work seems to come into my life. (Read This: Adventure is Air for The Soul)

I love it. It’s a necessity and without work I’d have little meaning in my life. This pull has a few parts.

  1. There’s the distaste for mediocrity, for what “life” has become and what’s expected of me – of us.
  2. There’s the lack of satisfaction for what I’m creating, my work, and who I am. I’m not being enough, let alone doing enough.
  3. There’s the pull toward something, and it’s something I’ve experienced while I was in Italy and Argentina and Uruguay. It’s exploration that doesn’t need to occur halfway around the world or near its bottom, but it’s exploration that brings you to the present and allows you to appreciate it.

This gnawing on my soul is so strong that at times it makes me useless. I’m so preoccupied with what’s out there that I’m neglectful of what’s here.

I don’t think this attraction to the audacious and unknown is a bad thing at all. Most people have this even if they’re not fully aware of it.

Steven Pressfield has one of the best descriptions of ambition I’ve ever read when he writes:

Ambition, I have come to believe, is the most primal and sacred fundamental of our being. To feel ambition and to act upon it is to embrace the unique calling of our souls. Not to act upon that ambition is to turn our backs on ourselves and on the reason for our existence.”

Ambition is our soul telling us what will bring us meaning and purpose and value and true happiness in life, it’s something we cannot ignore. Ambition, however, or the realizing of our ambitions require far more from us than whatever it is we’re currently doing and more importantly, whoever we are in this moment.

Who we are right now is the reason for what we have – whether that’s good or bad. That’s to say, the man I am right now has led to this powerful thirst for more because he’s only produced a fraction of what my soul wants for sustenance.

As I am right now, writing on my desk that’s in my house that’s in a wonderful neighborhood, has given me what I have right now and what I can do right now. But what I have and what I’m doing on a daily basis is not nearly enough. So it’s the man, me, who must improve if I’m going to provide my soul with the nourishment that will bring me a feeling of excellence, of accomplishment, a feeling that I’m doing what I was put here to do as the man I was destined to become. (Read This: Become The Man You’re Obsessed With Being)

Life changing goals start with a vision.

The vision is ‘your unique calling’. It’s that voice that may be but a whisper that tells you to travel or to start a business or to write a book. You may push it down because it sounds unrealistic. You may even crush it because to follow it would mean turning your life, everything you’ve done to this point, upside down. But in stomping it and tempering it and killing it you’re also imprisoning the single thing that will make you feel alive, and there are few of us in this world that truly feel alive.

They then depend on the person.

The second step to real life-changing goals is figuring out who you must become to accomplish them. I immediately think of Adam Brown, the Navy SEAL who went from drug addict to husband and father of two who was also one of the world’s most elite warriors. (Read This: 9 Lessons I Learned From True American Hero, Adam Brown)

It’s an easy example because the elite warrior could not also be the drug addict. The father could not also be strung out on drugs, heroin to be exact. And if a man can go from being completely addicted to heroin to becoming a member of SEAL Team 6, then there’s no valid reason why a fella who runs a web site can’t write best-selling books or embark on adventures worth writing about. There’s no reason why a plumber can’t start his own business that finally leads to financial freedom or a school teacher can’t start selling things online, working from anywhere she damn well pleases.

The dream that’s dependent on the man, however, must be won in habits.

You are your habits. We know this. I know this. It’s my habits that don’t allow me to become the man that my most audacious ambitions require.

Let’s set the goal-setting aside for a minute and think about those dreams.

Why Aim for Average?

So we have this thing called a life. We’re given a canvas on which we can paint whatever we like, which is this world. And almost every one of us chooses – and yes it is a choice – to aspire for things that do nothing for us.

Rather than writing down the thing or things that gnaw at our very being we push them down and suppress them, only allowing them to breathe when we lay our heads down at night and dream.

All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake up in the day to find it was vanity, but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible.” ~ T.E. Lawrence

It sounds so foolish when you write it down. We have two choices, follow our ambitions or follow the mindless path that our society has set up for us and most of us choose to follow the path already laid out, and it makes sense.

The path already laid out requires little risk and less effort. We can be lazy and scared, we can lack discipline and persistence and still “win” at this path. We can buy the things we don’t need to impress people whom we should not aim to impress. We can rise in this path with some ease if we so choose.

However, while this path requires less risk and effort and persistence, it’s also asterisked with a guarantee that we will not feel fulfilled, happy, as though we’re living a purposeful life. We will not feel alive.

Thus, the choice to run from your ambitions and toward the monotony and emptiness of a life lived to garner the compliments and envy of others is incredibly stupid. It guarantees a life that’s never truly lived. It puts you from the womb immediately into purgatory where you wait out an entire lifetime to die and hopefully enter heaven.

Let that resonate. There is no wrong time to start living. There is no “too late” to hunt down your ambitions like you were Theodore Roosevelt in the African Savanna. Death is the constant. You will be dead and all that you will have done will have come and gone so why in God’s name would you not do what your soul begs and pleads with you to do?

And so, that pull must not be fought but fed.

Taking Action on Life

And so I get to writing…

I write down a couple things.

  1. I write down things I can do during the week – things I must do habitually during the week – that will feed my soul.

Things like shooting the rifle, the shotgun, or the bow and arrow. Hiking. Camping. Taking Teddy out to different areas outside of town at the foot of the Rockies.

  1. I write down things that I have to habitually work on.

1,000 words a day on the book – no days off. Aspects of the business that need improvement to get it to where I want it to be and what I want it to be doing.

  1. I write down the big goals and dreams and trips.

They’re dependent on habits, but if you don’t write them down you’ll have no clue what kind of habits you need to develop.

From there I work on the daily routine, which is the most important aspect of this plan, this map to life.

The habits that you need to be the man that you’re required to be if you’re to reach your goals have to be daily. You can’t take days off. Start small, then add more.

This part is on you, figuring out what you need to do to become who you need to become. After that it’s just a matter of being that guy every damn day and seizing opportunities as they present themselves.

Final Notes

If you have the goal of traveling, book the trip now then force yourself to earn it. I booked Italy for 3 months on credit, and forced myself to be financially secure by the time the trip embarked, which was 3 months later.

If you have the goal of building a business, start now, start something now. You don’t have to quit your job. When I first started this business I kept my training business for a good two years. I woke up very early and stayed up late to work on this thing. I finally needed to quit my main source of income to remove the safety net that would allow me to work on this business. (Read This: How to Get Shit Done)

A few habits that I have in my day that will help me become the man I need to become to live the life I’m being called to live:

  1. Read 37 pages a day.
  2. Wake up early everyday (even weekends). My time is 4:30am. Your time may be different. I can’t see how life can be won if you’re not winning your mornings though.
  3. Train everyday, even when I don’t want to. It should read, especially when I don’t want to. This can include running or hill sprints if I’m not lifting, but something that brings pain and something that I have to force myself to do must occur daily or life’s just too easy to get tough enough to become the man I need to become.

What habits have you incorporated recently?

What’s your big dream?

About The Author

Chad Howse: Chad’s mission is to get you in the arena, ‘marred by the dust and sweat and blood’, to help you set and achieve audacious goals in the face of fear, and not only build your ideal body, but the life you were meant to live. He’ll give you the kick in the ass needed to help you live a big, ambitious life.
You can contact him at –
http://www.ChadHowseFitness.com/
https://www.Facebook.com/ChadHowseFitness
https://www.YouTube.com/ChadHowseFitness

10 WAYS TO GO FROM VICTIM TO VICTORY

10 WAYS TO GO FROM VICTIM TO VICTORY

“I just don’t have the time…”

“They can do it because they don’t have children.”

“I’d love to start my own business but I’m already working 50 hours per week.”

These, my friend, are all bullshit excuses that you give yourself for not taking action. In a world where social media and meetings take up most of our time, we’re busier than ever…but much less productive.

Doing more doesn’t always mean getting more done.

If you’re an entrepreneur who wants to start his own business, a wantrepreneur who likes the idea of working for yourself, an average joe who just wants to be healthier, or simply just become a better father (or mother), then allow me to prove to you that the only thing holding you back is  your mindset.

If you can incorporate even just a few of the tips I am about to share, you’ll finally be able to quit your job and work for yourself, achieve the body of your dreams, or just spend more quality time with your wife and kids.

Warning: these action steps are not easy and may come across a bit judgmental; however, if you can get your feelings out of the way, your head from out of your ass, and open your mind a bit, you’ll have all the tools necessary to become a greater, more productive version of yourself and finally live your life with purpose.

10 Ways to Go From Victim to Victory

1. Make Time, Not Excuses

If you’re complaining so much and don’t want to have a job, but, you have to feed your family or pay off your college loans, good news – your parents didn’t have this option – but all of you do. Go home, and instead of watching fucking Breaking Bad, work!” –Gary Vaynerchuk

Truth is, it’s not actually about time at all – we’ve all got the same 24 hours in a day. It’s about figuring out what is truly important to you.

Do yourself a favor – for one day, write down, every hour, what you’ve done in the last 60 minutes. If one of those hours was spent watching The Walking Dead but you “don’t have time to work out”, then I recommend that you reevaluate your priorities. (Read This: The Most Important Question You Can Ask)

If keeping up with the Kardashians is more important than your physical health, or spending time with your kids, or working on your business, then just admit it to yourself and move on. But stop creating obstacles that don’t exist by telling yourself that you don’t have time. You do. We all have time – it’s how we use it that separates the winners from the losers.

[Tweet ““We all have time – it’s how we use it that separates the winners from the losers.” -Alain Gonzalez”]

Action Step: Dedicate 3-4 hours every night (9pm-1am) to working on your business. Sacrifice an hour or two of sleep for however long it takes to get in a position where you no longer have to. If you work at night, do the opposite: get up earlier and dedicate a few hours each morning to doing the same. Make time, not excuses.

2. Disappear

We’ve all been there: You sit down at your desk ready to get shit done. Next thing you know, it’s 2am and you’ve spent the last 4 hours refreshing your email, retweeting motivation quotes, replying in the group text your buddies trapped you in, and scrolling Instagram wondering why no one is following you. (Follow me on Instagram: @musclemonsters)

You’ve done everything there is to do, except the most important: work!

You wake up the next morning and you’re not a single inch closer to reaching your goal. Oddly enough, you’re confused as to why your business is in the same place it was when you started 4 months ago.

You’re not moving the needle.

3-4 hours of dicking around on the internet – or staring into your phone with a stupid look on your face –  is not the same as 3-4 hours of undistracted, completely focused work. Problem is, because you were at your desk – as opposed to sitting on the couch – you mistake this time-wasting, mind-numbing activity for actual productivity.

But….results don’t lie. And your lack thereof is a clear indication that you’re not doing the work.

Action Step: When it’s time to work, it’s time to work. Before you sit down to work on your business, put your phone on airplane mode. This eliminates any interruptions from texts, phone calls, social media notifications, etc. Download a plugin like StayFocused that allows you to block certain sites for however long you’d like – forcing you to avoid going down the rabbit hole that is Facebook. Grab a cup-o-joe, lock your door, and disappear into your zone.

3. Do the RIGHT Work

“Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Replying to emails is part of your work, but spending time working on the one thing that will grow your business is far more necessary. So if you’re a writer, for example, then checking and replying to video comments should never come before working on your new book.

This is not to say that it isn’t important to respond to your followers or film videos for your YouTube channel – but those things should always come after your most important work is completed.

Ask yourself this: what can I do today that is going to bring me closer to where I want to be tomorrow? If your goal is to write a book, then replying to emails is probably not the best use of your time – writing is, so do that.

Action Step: Take 80-90% of the time you can dedicate to work, and allocate that to your one thing. If all you’ve got is 2 hours to spare, then 100 minutes of that time should be given to your most important task, period. Do this until you’ve reached a position where you can dedicate 4 hours, per day, to your one thing – this is where you’ll find the definition of true productivity.

4. Create a University on Wheels

According to the U.S. census bureau, the average travel time to work is about 25 minutes.  That’s almost an entire hour you spend in a car, on a train, or a bus, 5 days per week. That doesn’t even account for the time you spend driving to and from little league games, to the gym, or picking your kids up from school. 5 hours+ a week of yelling at the asshole in front of you who can’t drive, trying to break your previous record on Angry Birds, or Facebooking about how much you hate your job – a complete waste.

Instead, use that time to help get you further ahead. No matter what your goal is, there is always going to be something you should learn. What you listen to, read, or watch is going to be completely dependent on what your goal is, but the idea is the same: don’t waste 5 hours each week on bullshit that isn’t going to help you get where you want to go.

Action Step: Find a podcast or audio book to help expand your knowledge on a given topic and play that while you drive. This simple strategy will allow you to listen to one new book every single week – that’s more in one month than most people read in their entire adult life. Turn your car (or bus or train) into a university on wheels.

5. Keep Your Work Space Organized

The research is very clear that a messy work space will raise cortisol levels and decrease productivity.

Clutter bombards our minds and leaves us feeling anxious and overwhelmed. And worse than that, it draws our attention away from what should be our main focus – that one thing.

Action Step: Before you step away from your desk for the day, organize it. Make sure everything is neatly placed where it belongs and toss out whatever items you don’t want, need, or use. A clear work space allows for a clear mind – keep it organized.

6. Open Your Fucking Eyes

Most people have it backwards.

Here’s what I mean: They try to schedule their passion project, a gym session, or reflection time after or around their favorite TV shows or football games. Fuck that!

If your business is failing or your health is taking a nose dive or you just want to become a better father in general – fishing, poker nights, beer with your buddies, and watching Lost is not a priority!

Action Step: In order, make a list of all of the things that are important to you (i.e. your wife, your kids, your health, your legacy, reality TV, sports, partying, etc.). Next – and this may sound harsh – open your fucking eyes and never let the things lower on the list come before the items above it.

7. Cut These 4 Toxic People Out of Your Life

You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” ~Jim Rohn

Simply put: the fastest way to becoming a loser is to hang out with losers.

[Tweet “The fastest way to becoming a loser is to hang out with losers.”]

Perhaps they’re not losers in the traditional sense. Maybe they went to a prestigious college, got great jobs, earn a good living, and are pretty good parents. Still, they’re not exempt from being cut off.

You see, there are two types of people in this world: boosters and anchors.

Boosters will push you to work harder and bring out the best in you.

Anchors, on the other hand, do nothing but take from your happiness, your ambitions, and suffocate you in negativity.

Action Step: Watch the video below, identify the individuals in your life that fit the personalities I’ve outlined, and cut the cord. Fast.

8. Say “No” More

Co-workers will ask for your advice. Classmates will request your help with a project. Friends will need an extra hand when moving. The older we get, the more birthday parties we’re invited to. And so on.

I’ll be the first to admit…it’s hard to say no.

But if there is one thing I learned about being a Yes Man, it’s this:

When you say yes to something, it’s imperative to understand what you’re saying no to.” ~The One Thing by Gary Keller

Every time you say yes, you make a commitment. When you tell your buddy that you’ll help him paint his house, you’re actually telling your kids that you can’t help with their homework; or telling your spouse that you won’t be home for date night; or telling yourself that you won’t have time to write today. So before you say “yes” because you don’t want to disappoint someone, think about how many people you might disappoint if you do say “yes”, including yourself.

Action Step: If a co-worker needs help with a project, but it means 2 hours less of working on your business, then simply look and see where on your priorities list your business is in comparison to your co-workers personal issues. If your business comes first, then just say “no”.

9. Stop Multitasking

“Multitasking is merely the opportunity to screw up more than one thing at a time.” -Steve Uzzell

If you’re ever interviewing someone for a job, ask them what their strengths are. If their answer is “multitasking”, shake their hand and send them on their way.

Multitasking is bullshit.

Don’t believe me?

Try answering client emails while flipping back and forth to the word doc where you’re writing your book proposal.

Now tell me how much longer it took than if you’d just written the proposal first, and then answered the client emails. The reason is simple: when we try to do multiple things at once, we are constantly storing and restoring the state of a process. This is known as context switching. On top of that, we’re making more errors due to insufficient attention to the task at hand – a waste of time.

A study conducted at Stanford University found that multitasking is less productive than doing one thing at a time. They found that those who are regularly faced with a barrage of information cannot focus, recall information, or switch from one job to the next as well as those who focused on one thing.

Action Step: In order of importance, knock out one task at a time. With less context switching and more attention on the task at hand, you’ll be more effective and efficient with your time. Stop trying to do it all at once!

10. Man Up!

Boys do what they want to do, men do what they have to do.

Stop spending time bitching and complaining about how hard it is or how you’d rather be fishing. Do the work.

Not in the mood to make your 20 sales calls? Make 30.

Too tired to get to the gym? Jump in your car and go anyway.

Your kid wants to play catch while your favorite show is on? Shut the fucking TV off.

Action Step: Forget about how you feel, it’s irrelevant. Man up and get shit done.

About The Author

Alain Gonzalez is a former skinny guy turned jacked fitness pro whose transformation story has been featured in articles on websites all over the internet. He has dedicated his life to helping naturally skinny guys like himself to overcome their genetics and take their physiques to the next level.

Alain Gonzalez
Fitness Author
Strength Coach
Certified Personal Trainer
Founder, www.MuscleMonsters.com