Time to write again – It’s been a while.
There’s no better way to do this than by doing one of those really fun-fun and brutally honest life reviews.
It’s a way for me to measure where I’m at in life and reflect on where I want to go. I try to be as transparent as humanly possible in these. It also allows me to invest more into my own perception of myself instead of the perception others have of me.
Overall – I also think transparency/openness is the best long-term strategy to build up trust. It’s a trait I admire in others and one I aim to cultivate for myself.
Why you should read this: You might pick up a thing or two about how I set goals, how I structure my life and maybe even learn from my mistakes/successes
My Previous Reports;
PPS: Fancy Color code
Halfway into 2015. – Here’s what’s up;
- I’ll easily & consistently do my morning routine (1,5 hours)
How you start the day is how you’ll end it. I’ve come up with a series of routine actions that set me up for a great day. This morning ritual has been consistent for about 90% of the time. I’m still modifying (improving) it continuously.
- I’ll easily & consistently do my evening routine (1 hour)
Likewise, in the evening I take some time out of my day to reflect on what I’ve done and what priorities I should focus on next day. This evening ritual, has been at 95% consistency. Here’s what the routines look like atm;
- I’ll easily reduce my reaction time on common problems (PRINT OUT)
Common problems require habitual responses therefore I’ve printed out my IF-THEN list to respond more quickly to common problems.
- I’ll easily reduce media intake: NO YT, NO Blogs (Sunday), No FB 19, email 13 & 19
I’ve greatly reduced my media input during the day. I used to have information overload but by restricting my input to only books (and podcasts) I’ve pretty much cleared out a lot of mental clutter. I eliminated blogs completely and only go on Facebook when I really need to (otherwise it has to wait until 20). Haven’t watched the news in god-know-how-many-months (And I’m proud to call myself an uninformed citizen)
- I’ll easily read 30 minutes each morning
Reading is awesome. I’ve been reading for 30 minutes consistently every single day, which was part of my morning routine. I’ve increased this to one hour a day recently (replacing the writing). I’ve read;
> Charlie Hoehn – Recession Proof Graduate Student
> Models – Mark Manson (2x)
> Principles – Ray Dalio
> Emotional Intelligence – Daniel Goleman
> The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People
> The Four Hour Work Week (Audio-book)
> As A Man Thinketh (3x Audio)
I’ve also been using a pacer and peripheral vision to double my reading speed the last two weeks (without losing comprehension – which is key) . Doubling your rate is possible but reading speeds of 1000 wpm and upwards (like Buzan claims) hamper comprehension IMO
I’ll easily write 30 minutes each morningBy re-evaluating my priorities I’ve completely removed writing on this blog out of my routine. I can’t justify writing as a priority due to the low impact it has on my life quality relative to other pursuits. (More on this at the end) (I’m sorry) (kinda)
- I’ll easily do a archive review bi-weekly (wednesday & sunday) to cement knowledge I find essential
On Wednesday and Sunday I’m reviewing the most essential knowledge by using simple questions and recall (instead of reading). Knowledge needs to be repeated if you want it to help improve your life quality.
- I’ve made new week planners :)
Personally? I think they’re really sweet and allows for clear priorities during the week. I bring these with me wherever I go.
The consistency in my routines has been great. I’ve increased the time I meditate from 10 to 15 minutes and I’m going to bump it up to 20.
Reviewing how I should deal with common problems has made me able to react faster when they arise. Emotional mastery if one of the most difficult challenges to overcome – since in the moments we need it the most we’re often least capable of thinking rationally/clearly (tiredness, fear, anger, …). Therefore pre-made “emergency-plans” are a great option.
Additionally I’ve been practicing gratitude and positivity by writing down three things that are going great/are exciting in my life and three things that I’m grateful for (as suggested by Michal & the five minute journal) – By focusing on the positive you can actually change your brain pattern and become an optimist, it’s a key habit & definitely recommended (research)
I’ve been reading my Personal Mission Statement daily but realized that isn’t enough. After re-skimming psycho-cybernetics (2nd best book ever) I realized that I need to see myself being and acting as I’m already that person. Therefore I’m focusing down more on visualization in the morning
I’m considering trying out dual ‘n back training to increase memory & brain performance.
- I’ll easily do 3/4 workouts/week focusing on progression
My consistency is great on this. Due to lower back pain (overload) I’ve reduced the volume of my training to three times/week and refrained from heavy squats and deadlifts on the same day. I’ve also done a full deload week and haven’t had any problems the last 3 weeks (since I’m guessing I’ll probably need my back some more in the future) I’ve lost 2kg since I’ve started intermittent fasting (4 weeks ago) Physique update;
I’m not satisfied with the results. The relative change is nearly non-existent.
I’ll easily improve bench press to 120Kg-, Improve deadlift to 220Kg, Improve squat to 180KgI stopped caring about strength (for now). My aim is to build more mass. My reasons to train are; look good (measured in aesthetics), feel great (measured in energy & blood levels)
- I’ll easily wake-up each day @ 6:40 consistently, No matter what (except relaxation-sunday)
90% consistency. That’s probably the closest I’ll get. Due to work, appointments or flow I’ve stayed up later than the planned 23:00 and made irrational snooze decisions.
- I’ll easily grow out beard (three weeks)
Let’s just say I’ve successfully achieved the molester-look. I don’t have enough growth to sport a decent looking beard although I really want one. I’ve considered beard transplantation, steroids and hair growth products. Decided not to (for obvious reasons)
- I’ll easily go without supplements for three weeks (experiment) NO whey, no omega 3, no multivitamins
I wanted to see the difference in energy and frankly I didn’t notice any changes. I’ve cut them out completely but am planning to do a re-integration period when the budget allows it.
- I’ll easily do a one week morning fast experiment
After Ludvig talked about IF I was curious to see the results for myself. I’ve been fasting from 21 to 13 each day so far the last 4 weeks but haven’t seen any changes in mental focus. I ascribe my 2kg loss to IF though.
- I’ll easily do a 30 day NO-FAP
I believe in the concept of sexual energy. Which means when you don’t satisfy your sexual needs (Not ejaculating) you’re more inclined to display “mating behavior” which is everything from being social, working out, reading, making money to writing, waking up early and whatnot. I believe I’m more consistent on working on my goals compared to pre-NO-FAP. It’s person specific but I’ve found it makes me more focused, energized and motivated instead of “emptied out”.
I haven’t been focusing much on improving my health but I have set up new metrics (more on this in “how to track your progress”) which will help to measure the improvements I’m making. I mainly want to increase arm & chest size since I believe those to be weaker areas of mine.
I want to focus on increasing my energy by sleeping more (23 to 6;40) and juicing. I always go to bed too late. I’m convinced I perform better in the evening like Tim Ferriss does. My best/most creative work starts around 21 and ends around 3-4 AM.
I’ll be focusing on weight loss for the next 3-4 weeks through intermittent fasting and am probably going to increase the fasting time to 21 – 15. After that I’m gaining again!
Fat Simon coming up.
- I’ll easily sell “The Life Guide” on my blog for 7$
I’ve put “The Life Guide” online for sale as another way to generate income (also on amazon). I’ve already sold a record-breaking number of two copies!. Héhé. I really like the book although I think it’s bit too long and could be shortened. I haven’t received much feedback on it so far, so really I have no clue.
- I’ll easily create my own HTML sales page
I really like the way this turned out. It was good practice and I even found it fun to do (produced flow). You have a free and paid option (for support). I said on Facebook the book was going to be perma-free – so that’s exactly what it’s going to be.
- I’ll easily get a part-time job paid for performance whilst learning a skill; use money for better food/better books/positive income/assets (%)
I’ve called three electronic repair shops and told them I’d work for them for free if they could teach me how to repair Iphones & laptops. I’ve also contacted three side-jobs. They all declined. I believe my background in science and health is not an asset to their business so I should build up some relevant skills first. Currently I’m still doing my sidejob at the trash collecting department which allows me to make 150-160€/day. The last three months I’ve only “worked” about 4 days.
- I’ll easily manage expenses/income each sunday
Check. I’m crazy good at managing my budget (one of my strengths). One of my friends noted that I eat the most food of any person he knows, for the least amount of money. I agree
I’m following my own career advice described in “The passion myth“ as well as the advice by Mikael for finding fulfillment in work. Therefore I’ve been programming almost daily now for the last two months. I’ve learned those three languages, how to work with git, use sublime text 3 to code my own pages and am aiming to become a full stack web-developer (which is my highest priority). Here’s some basic projects I’ve finished: Google Homepage, Google Search-Results, My Sales Page. Not satisfied with my progress.
- I’ll easily finish Odin = ONE THING
To get from point A (code retard) to B (web-developer) as efficient as possible I’m using a free online course called The ODIN Project. I haven’t been able to finish it yet as it is more challenging than I had expected (frustratingly difficult even). I’m at 37% completion at this point. Practical implementation of JS/Jquery is a bitch.
- I’ll easily have built my own website from scratch
Programming has been more challenging than expected and I haven’t been able to make that much progress yet. I’m mainly focusing down on the ODIN course but I’ll definitely tackle this in the near future.
- I’ll easily pass my final exams this year
I’ve passed all my exams/assignments this summer. I’ve also done an internship as personal trainer at a gym. I just need to do three more courses next year to get my bachelor. I’m not particularly proud of this achievement. I find school useless for the most part
I’ve gained a lot of clarity what needs to be done if I want to make a decent income after I graduate next year. I’m not counting on my degree to get me anything. Therefore I’m doubling down on web-developing daily (ODIN) so I can get started on that after I graduate. I also started a business-project with a friend where we’re going to sell meats online for athletes, since I’ll have heaps of free time with only three courses next year.
Is this the right path? I have no fucking idea and it’s my “best guess” I can make with the information that’s available. I know it’s not supposed to feel right. You make the choice right through investing into it.
By self-analysis I’ve learned that my strengths lie in technical skills (not people skills) like programming, writing, repairing, video-editing, … . So I’m trying out a bunch of them and see what suits me best. At the moment everything I’ve read points in the direction of programming although it can be really frustrating at times. (+I got a stereotypical image of a coder being a fat dude with a greasy ponytail that lives in his mothers basement playing WOW. NOT my ideal life – so there’s that)
Here’s how I feel when coding;
Anyway, my “liking” the things I do is subordinate to the higher purpose it serves though. If something is good for me in the long-term I’ll do it. If it isn’t, I won’t do it.
Simple as that.
- I’ll easily have weekly meetups with Michael & Nicolas
I’ve continuously been meeting up with two of my closest friends each week (apart from two weeks). It’s hard to come by quality friends that can push you to greater heights AND you can have a deep conversation with AND a laugh. I think it’s not a good idea to be dependent on anyone so I believe it’s a good idea to keep meeting new people through meet-ups. I’m really excited for our trip to France in two weeks though – it’s going to be great. Use engagement and openness to strengthen bonds.
- I’ll easily find a weekly social hobby and attend weekly meets
To improve my social skills, reduce social anxiety and relax from a busy week I think it’s a great idea to pick up strategy board-games on Sunday. Sometimes I still get a desire to play video games once-in-a-while and want to escape in fantasy/sci-fi. I’m looking to get into Dungeons & Dragons and Eclipse. (If my ponytail starts to grow – warn me in time).
God, I’m a nerd.
- I’ll easily schedule an interview with Owen Cook (didn’t send) , Mark Manson (coming up), Tai Lopez (didn’t answer, mailed 4x) & Charlie Hoehn (denied)
I want to meet some interesting people through my blog and have some of my opinions stress-tested by people that are smarter than me. I know networking isn’t my strong suit therefore I’ve been keeping a “contact-list” with cool people I’d like to get/keep in touch with as recommended by John Corcoran . I
sendspam them a mail once-in-a-while.
- I’ll easily do 1 coding Meet-up
I want to do some useful meet-ups besides board-games and therefore I’m going to check out some experts who can shorten my coding learning curve dramatically.
- I’ll easily attend 2 networking events/seminars: II
I force myself to do more social activities as most of my routine doesn’t require human interaction (which is good in some ways; focus, progression, less distractions – but bad in others; more social anxiety, less practice of social skills). I want to make it a more integral part of my life, hence the social hobby and meetups. I’ve been to a entrepreneurs event and one on dating, two important areas I aim to improve.
After reading some research on personality psychology and having greater reference experiences I’ve realized that “being social” is just another skill you build up. Due to my long period of video game addiction I haven’t been exposed to an environment with a lot of people. This has resulted in late-blooming when it comes to dating and some social anxiety in large groups.
The only way to convince my brain of it’s own bullshit is by building up some solid references. Yes, I’ve never been a really social guy, Yes, I’ve never been that outgoing, Yes, I might come over as awkward sometimes. But I’m okay with that.
My failures of the past don’t determine my results for the future. And that’s something I didn’t really “get” until recently.
Temperament is not destiny. There’s no single human personality trait that cannot be improved upon through visualization, practice and simple exposure. So that’s exactly what I’ll do.
Also: I’ve slept with my ex again (I know). Which in retrospect was a bad decision – but I’ve finally put an end to it. In the end it was just a physical thing from her side when I was more emotionally invested.
Tip; “If you’re in the grey zone, you’ve already lost” (Thanks again, Mark) . Don’t try to win her over – move on.
The last three months I’ve gotten 6 new numbers, 4 kissed, 3 dates and had sex with 2 new girls – Which – for me – are great references. I find that tracking “my numbers” helps to build up social confidence through positive references. (Although a lot of men in the pick-up community use it as identification/quantification of their self-worth).
I think it’s really important to set open/honest expectations in relationships. I prefer this really genuine approach to dating as opposed to “playing games”. It makes dating refreshingly uncomplicated.
Overall I had some great reference experiences. I’m aiming to do some daytime-approaches regularly in the future. I want to be comfortable approaching & talking to girls I find attractive during the day.
- I’ll easily take a Sunday rest 10:30 sleep (18, back to planning)
I’ve scheduled in a “off-day” where I sleep later, take a warm shower and play some board-games with friends. It’s not entirely YOLO but I allow myself to take it somewhat easier. I’ve realized I can’t keep pushing myself on a heavy physical and mental training regimen. I need breaks. I don’t always think I’ve deserved it and therefore skip the off-day. I’d say it’s 80% consistent.
- I’ll easily approach a prostitute and start a convo
To challenge myself out of my comfort zone I approached a prostitute to have a conversation with. I found this pretty scary to do – hence why I needed to do it. She didn’t have much time though – apparently Friday are busy days when everyone comes off work.
- I’ll easily shout in public
- I’ll easily lie down in the middle of busy train station
I don’t consider this a challenge anymore – I’ve done this plenty of times. It’s considered inside my comfort zone now.
- I’ll easily go shopping with a go pro on my head
I wanted to record the efficiency at which I shop and increase my comfort zone more. I buy all my food for the week in under 7 minutes. Which I find pretty damn amazing. I’ve noticed people spend way to much mental resources on choices that have little impact on their life quality. “Should I go for mustard x or mustard Y? Should I get extra-soft or medium rough toilet paper”. Simplify/automate irrelevant choices. (I had a bit too much fun with the editing.)
- I’ll easily go for a run with a go pro on my head
Same thing – fun challenge
- I’ll easily go barefoot for a day
Try wearing no shoes on a random day and see peoples’ reactions. It’s pretty fun/exciting and I really only got two people commenting on it.
- I’ll easily film myself in public
This is another thing I’m pretty scared to do and therefore an indicator I should do it.
- I’ll easily climb on the roof of my dorm room
Me and Nicolas and Michael climbed on top of the roof of my dorm room. Novelty. Fun-Fun times. I even played self-made chess there.
- I’ll easily do 10 push-ups in a train – sit down like nothing happened
I’m a ninja.
- I’ll easily go out during the day and approach five attractive girls.
THIS has got to be the most challenging/scary thing I’ve done the last three months. I randomly go out during the day and approach girls I find attractive and say; Hey I’m Simon – I thought you were kind of cute and wanted to get to know you better (thanks Mark). I’ve actually had some great reference experiences (and numbers) with this and it has become increasingly easier to do. I’ve done this for four consecutive weeks so far. Respectively approaching 3, 3, 5 and 6 different girls. I’m going to continue doing this. Note to self: 15 year old girls are too young (and probably illegal too)
Routine is great, it allows for progress; working out, reading, waking up early, meditating, visualizing, journaling and whatnot are awesome to get superior, daily results. But do you know what else routine is ?
Therefore I try to break out of this adaptation by regular challenges I set for myself. Mostly doing things I’m afraid of (to build courage) or simply novel new activities. I call it the 80/20 YOLO-Rule. Happiness comes – partly – from diverse life experiences therefore spicing up your life with excitement/challenge is mandatory.
How To Measure Progress
To measure progress in your life I’d recommend keeping a basic excel spreadsheet with some quantifiable results like your energy, your diet, your social meets, approaches, money you’ve made and anything else you’d like to measure. Fill this in weekly. Yeah – I’m pretty anal/structured about these things.
Here’s some of the main lessons I picked up the last three months;
- Success in one area of your life does not compensate for failure in another
- We are the product of our environment, temperament & choices (environment being the determining factor). Your character and results can change.
- We measure ourselves automatically by weaknesses as they are so apparent. We neglect the importance of our strengths as their sheer presence is so self-evident. Don’t.
- Only the weak are cruel and corrupted. They feel easily threatened in their self-worth and therefore to lash out at what they call is the disturbance.
- There’s two important skills to master in life on which all others depend: Build discipline to conquer laziness/fatigue, build courage to conquer fear.
- No amount of self-improvement can compensate for a lack of self-acceptance. Practice gratitude & self-acceptance
- Don’t listen to what most people say. If you ever find yourself on the side of the majority, turn back. Most people are overweight, poor and have bad relationships but yet will regurgitate the same advice that got them nowhere.
- You are like everyone else in the room. If you look around and see morons, you are a moron. If there’s no-one that makes you feel at least a little incompetent, you should find a better room.
- If you aren’t doing or saying things that make you feel a little uncomfortable, you’re on the wrong path. Resistance is the mark of a great path.
- Simplify the small stuff; what clothes you wear, what color curtains to pick, what food you buy, what to text to people,… . Don’t spend mental resources on low-impact choices. Get the big things right; health, wealth, meaningful relationships, meaningful work, interesting experiences, ideas.
- Run away from people who seem too perfect. They cannot be trusted.
- Women should not be the main focus in your life. It doesn’t make you long-term-happy.
- Prioritizing means sacrificing really worthwhile alternatives for even greater options.
- It’s impossible to say something about the world without immersing yourself in it.
That said, I’m going to put the blog on a halt for now. I can’t justify putting more time and energy in it at this point in my life. I have other areas that need tending which will yield a far greater ROI. I still love writing though (investment) and will try to lower down the frequency to once a month (no promises though). I have about 5 more semi-finished articles to be posted.
I also want to have more experience under my belt in life. I don’t just want to spread (cool) information from the things I read in books.
I have a terrible fear of wasting my youth on “the wrong things” but that said, there’s really no way to determine if you’re doing “the right things”.
I use these simple steps for getting what I want;
- Find A Proven Method
- Visualize The Process Required
- Execute On It & Stick To It (Try it until completion)
Overall, I like to believe I’m living a very simple and efficient lifestyle. My direction is remarkably clear lately.
Last piece of advice;
“Life is simple, people are good” – Remember that.
The world won’t help you remember it.
I feel goood man.
Take care & Stay strong,
Note: It’s difficult finding a balance between sharing myself and giving too much information. I realize that not every thought that comes into my mind needs to be shared. But in the past I’ve been way too inhibited and therefore I think this type of communication is exactly what I need.
I don’t share everything but I got to say I’m quite comfortable with who and where I am at this point.