I don’t want to over simplify this but honestly this is the case. In business we say that there are certain “money making activities”. Well really, in life in general there are certain “value creating activities”.
Whoever gives the most value wins.
Now this doesn’t mean you will be happy, but you will feel accomplished. This is no different than the producer vs consumer paradigm. You are always either producing or consuming something. Whether that consumption is food, tv shows, youtube videos, etc. Here’s a list of value creating activities (activities that will allow you to give more value to your tribe and the world at large) and value destroying activities. We all do the latter, so don’t freak out next time you watch a movie as there can also be positive messages in some of the consumption. this list should help you identify the difference between the two and help you be give more value.
Value Creating Activities & The Why (Healthy Producing)
- Reading or listening to books that can give you more knowledge so you can give people the correct advise when needed and help people through tough times.
- Exercise so you can be strong and protect your tribe. This will also increase your sex life and overall attractiveness to mates.
- Meditating so you can be centered and focused while everyone else is over stimulated.
- Taking action in various areas of your life so you can get first hand experience which is by far the best way to learn.
- Creating and Publishing any type of content that can help people (audio, video, text, etc). This is not only a great release but has the power to really attract the right people to you and build something powerful.
- Making new friends that are unique and can have a special place in your life. If your life were a movie it would be boring if you were the only character. Your friends should be wide ranging and not destructive to your well being. A good supportive social circle is more powerful than any pill you could take.
- Self reflection and correction to take a look at your life in a non judgmental way and change things that really aren’t working in your favor.
- Having role models to look up to so you can always know what you want is possible.
- Sex, the ultimate act of any producer. It makes a baby folks. Think this one through.
Value Destroying Activities & The Why (Unhealthy Consuming)
- Watching any movie or tv show because it is someone else’s story and not your own. A numbing a effect occurs. Does not include documentaries.
- Taking in useless information that only exist to waste your time (news, pointless youtube videos, some reddit threads, websites, most fiction books).
- Eating any kind of processed food or sugary drinks consistently destroy your body slowly which makes you less capable to do give value to the world around you.
- Smoking, as it deteriorates your body which ruins your life – literally.
- Alcohol, as it deteriorates your brain and makes it less capable, especially in the long term.
- Any non-natural drugs (prescription drugs) will destroy your life. Sometimes they are necessary but it’s best to not get addicted as they will life altering effects on your neurology.
- Using social media for the wrong reasons can cause such a distraction that it will actually ruin your relationships, not enrich them. The most important thing is the people around you in the moment right now, not on a screen. Use with caution.
- Playing any fictional game on any devise that does not add to your actual life.
- Watching porn consistently (daily) destroys your dopamine receptors and could lead to enormous problems for both sexes, but particularly males.
- Buying stuff you actually do not need as it burns a hole through your wallet which makes you less likely to buy actual stuff you may need in the future.
Is it possible to use “Value Destroying Activities” to gain a Creative Edge?
Isn’t “value destroying activities” a bit harsh? Listen, i watch some great shows on TV and have seen some great movies. I love Inception so much i watched it 3 times in theaters. What the hell is my problem?!?
Every once in a while, these activities can help you create value and help you find comfort. But if you do any of them consistently they will kill you mentally and sometimes lead to death. Some people use substances like alcohol, nicotine, marijuana, etc. to temporarily gain a creative or mental edge. This is fine unless you are over doing it. You should be able to live day to day without any of this bullshit, but it won’t kill you if you do it in moderation.
Do you watch TV every day? Shitty content on the internet daily? Yes, it does have an effect on you. However small, it is still poison if you unhealthily consume anything, be it bad food or the news.
In every moment you are either creating your own story or living in someone else’s.
Running a company can be incredibly rewarding. Let’s be honest though, it is not some fairy tale. It’s incredibly hard and requires a lot of grind as well as constant out of the box thinking. In order to be successful, you have to want to do things that other people just aren’t willing to do. You have to create simple systems for extremely hard tasks.
In the case of Elon Musk, you have to sell people on the idea of living on Mars (SpaceX) or the vision of not using gas to fuel your automobile (TESLA). For some of us the visions are a little bit easier to sell and the path seems cleaner.
But the path is never clean. The journey of starting something worthwhile isn’t as simple as flipping a switch. It isn’t something you can do in 4 hours a week. You can get results, but you should not expect to create something that will enrich peoples lives by laying on a beach not working 300+ days out of the year.
Uptime and Downtime
When you are not eating glass (starting and running a business you hope to have massive success), you should take at least some downtime. If you have made a run in your business, maybe take a few weeks off. In the summer of 2014 I went to Europe for 6 weeks. It was a rewarding in many different ways that have nothing to do with business. If you aren’t having success, you do not deserve to reward yourself. Humans respond to either pleasure or pain. If you are rewarding yourself before you are successful or have made a good run it can cause massive problems in just about every area of your life. Have you ever trained a dog? Well, we work a lot like that – don’t give yourself any rewards unless you have done the trick!
“Don’t analyze, don’t spreadsheet…”
This is going to be quick – but i just wanted to write a few notes on change.
1. It’s Inevitable – Whether you want it to happen or not your life will change. Some of the changes will be good, others will be horrible.
2. The tough changes build character – Going through the death of a loved one or losing your job will test every ounce of emotional and financial confidence you have. These changes do something to you, they force you to be strong and keep moving.
3. Ride with the good changes as long as you can – When your life changes for the better, ride that wave as long as you can. Do whatever it takes because with ups come downs.
A final note – be proactive about your life. This is the book your writing and while you are going to experience horrible things, you get to decide how it all ends.
I, like many in their early 20s, am faced with this giant problem: Mental Fatigue. It could be my own fault for focusing on a million things at once or maybe it is simply a sign of the times. Either way, I’ve been searching for solutions. I’ve been listening to people like Dave Asprey, who is a genius when it comes to health. I’ve been participating in many online forums, reading books on focus and procrastination. I own a company, you would think with all this freedom I would be the ultimate focused person.
That is, until I started taking CILTEP + Smart Caffeine a month ago. Since then my life has drastically improved in ways that I must share.
Before I get into how CILTEP helped me focus and be an overall better human being, let me tell you – this isn’t my first time trying to solve brain fog. I’ve tried Alpha Brain, Modafinil and even made my own stack of supplements (with alpha GPC, Vinpocetine, Huperzine A and Piracetam). Afterall, everyone in silicon valley is taking something to give them an edge, why not me? Obviously with each one I felt a little something and in Modafinils case it worked but gave me a massive headache.
I don’t like headaches and i’m guessing you don’t either. When I stumbled upon CILTEP, I was initially thinking that it wasn’t going to work that great. I was very wrong – It works the best out of any brain supplement I’ve tried. It’s just the right amount of kick to make me a PRODUCTIVE BEAST!
My Relationships Improved
Most of us take supplements like this just to study better or be more productive. I took it to gain an edge at work, which i’ll talk about below, but it has also had a profound effect on my relationships. Have you ever felt like when you are with someone that you are not completely present with them? Like you are listening, but your not actually listening? With CILTEP this just doesn’t happen. Whether it’s my business partner or my girlfriend, they have have my FULL attention. Not only do they have my full presence, but when it comes time for me to talk I say things that are absolutely effortless to say – there is no thinking – elegant words just roll off my tongue. It’s a pretty good feeling for someone who is usually socially awkward!
I’m WAY More Productive
I work longer hours, not because I have to, but because I like to. CILTEP has given me this feeling of being in the zone that I can only compare to complete ecstasy. At the end of the day when I am done with work, i feel so satisfied with myself because now the amount of work I get done in 8 or 9 hours, is what i would have gotten done in two weeks pre-CILTEP days! The only way to understand what I am talking about is to try actually TRY IT. You will be doing yourself a massive favor.
The last few weeks everyone in my life has heard me talk on and on about CILTEP and how amazing it is. I can not shut up about it and soon, I may even start distributing it. Everyone should feel like this! Also, The company Natural Stacks has proven to be amazing. I 100% believe that they care about quality and what they are putting out there. I also started taking the new magnesium supplement they offer with great effects.
Just got back from an amazing trip to Barcelona, Spain. Met a lot of amazing people, saw a lot of beautiful architecture and of course learned some new swear words in different languages. Before I write this i want to say that everything i wrote exactly a year ago stands true to me still. In the last year this is what I’ve taken from life:
People are Mostly Nice
Some of the most successful, well off people I’ve met in life are extremely nice and giving. It may come as a shock because i believe the most people view people that are well off as assholes. I used to think this way when i was young and immature. The truth is you just don’t understand them and what makes them tick and if you did you would uncover a diamond. Successful people provide so much value to this world – they give jobs, they take care of their tribe and they ensure that there will be more great people by reproducing. Even those not well off are true gems underneath that initial shell they have when you meet them. Take time to get to know people and be interested in their perspective, it will pay back dividends.
You Have to be Selfish with your Time and Action Taking
If you don’t value your time and the action you take during it, you will die an unfulfilled life. I’m sorry to break this to you but the only way you will get ahead in any area in life is massive action. You aren’t going to somehow get connected to the right person if you aren’t making massive moves in your own life. Set aside time away from your closest peers to grow as a person. The only way you can actually GIVE is to be selfish. Have some values to live by and know what your goals are or else someone else will set them for you. Do you REALLY want to live someone else’s life? Fuck that.
Worse Before Better
Most things in life will get worse before they get better. If not worse, you will at least hit a plateau and if you are smart realize you have to kick yourself in the ass to get to that next level. You have to go through some pain to achieve what you want but the good news is when you look back it doesn’t seem like pain at all. It was all just part of the process. Unless you had previous training than…
You will be sloppy with your money, before you start to put it to work and become financially free.
You will be fat or unhealthy before living a healthy life.
You will hang out with shitty undependable people before you meet people that are more aligned with your values.
You will have months of no profit in business before you finally push through and make a profit.
You will have a shitty emotionally manipulative relationship before you have a good one.
Each year you get older you will realize what is important in life, but almost always things will seem bad before they get good. Everyone has shitty days, months and years. Stay in the game and keep taking massive action. This is all just part of the PROCESS, don’t get discouraged.
Embrace Chaos and Change
Nothing in your life will stay as it is. Your friends will change, the economy will get bad, your business model will get old, your new car will not look as appealing and you will grow old. You have to come at one with the chaos of the world and learn to love it while at the same time adapting to it. Your only here because your ancestors were able to adapt. The only thing you have is your values. They will be tested. There will be storms beyond your wildest imagination – deaths, people screwing you over, money issues, and the list goes on. What determines that you stay on top of your game is top notch values and massive action taking towards your own personal success.
Never Act on your Emotions, Except when they are Right
In certain areas of your life you will get feelings that things should be a certain way. Remember, that anything that happens to you in life only has as much meaning as you give it. You are the decider here, no one else. You can have passion without acting on your emotions – if you know your values and what you stand for. Sometimes you will get a feeling that will be right, but often that is the result of something happening to you over and over and you not giving it the attention it deserves. You were sort of ignoring it. The only time you should act on your emotions is when you realize that you were ignoring some set of things that were happening to you over and over that don’t benefit your long term goals. It’s very, VERY easy for events to slip under the radar. Other than that – never act on your emotions especially when it comes to work because often the path to success is very clearly defined if you would just follow it. When you act on your emotions you will be all over the place, constantly looking for “the next thing” and ignoring the long term. You don’t want to wake up an old man / woman and realized you wasted your whole life, do you??
Outside of Work, Have Fun
When you are working GO HARD and BE EFFICIENT. But after a hard days work have some fun – party with your closest friends, have a lot of great sex and enjoy the time you have on this earth. Travel and meet new people. Laugh and joke around. Go on an adventure. Make a fool of yourself at your nearest karaoke bar. There is this myth that people who are successful or striving to be successful don’t have fun and are boring. I’d rather be dead.
Life is Fragile
Late last year my cousin was killed by a drunk driver and my mom told me on the phone: “Paul, you are not promised tomorrow”. I wrote that on my whiteboard so i will never forget it. Any day, any moment your life could end. Don’t go around thinking that you will be here forever – you better live every single day like it is your last. Work as hard as you possibly can, love without restraint and make sure the people that are closest to you feel your presence. Live in the now because it’s all you have.
That’s all for this year, still learning and growing 🙂
I started using Lift as soon as a buddy told me about it. I was largely turned on by the iPhone app because I already knew that our habits / rituals every single day really make us who we are. Lift allows me to put in any habit i want to do on a daily basis, lets me check in each day and also gives me a push notification to tell me how good I’ve been doing. This may sound a bit robotic, but it’s really not. This application has really changed my life. Here’s a look at what my habits are:
I could talk about a lot of things on that list but by far the one that has had the most impact is a reminder to call my Mom and Dad. For a while i was too busy to remember small, yet extremely important, things like this. Lift has made it so it’s right next to every important habit i do on a daily basis.
Don’t Overwhelm Yourself
I don’t put everything on Lift. For example, i don’t put “eat healthy” because that is a given. You are going to have to eat no matter what every day. I put things on here that I don’t have to do, but that if i keep doing them on a daily basis will have a powerful impact on my life. I don’t have to work out, work, call my mom / dad, read, or be social. But Lift has pushed my in the right direction and serves as a constant reminder that these habits are important to my end goals.
“Rituals are where the power is” – Tony Robbins
If there is one thing I have learned from living in Las Vegas for the past 5 years while simultaneously running a business, having a social circle and trying to hold down relationships it’s this: You have to take responsibility for everything going on in your life and be completely focused.
I’ve managed to stay centered here, so I feel that my advice to you is valuable.
Step 1: Set Boundaries
What is a boundary? It’s a mental fence between what you will and won’t accept. Are you always taking on things that you don’t have time for? Are you getting 2 hours of sleep every night? Do you have an obsessive relationships?
It’s time to set some boundaries my friend. Set them with your family, friends and most importantly yourself. Stop agreeing to things you don’t want to do. Let people know in a non-bitchy, down to earth way that you won’t be able to do that certain thing anymore.
Step 2: Meditate
I meditate 20 minutes a day and it has greatly improved my focus. Now instead of being all over the place when working, I can zone in and be present. My attention span can go from chill to in the zone because i do this every day. How does one meditate? I’m not going to get all spiritual here, because the way i meditate is very simple yet effective.
Sit in a chair upright or sit on the floor (Indian style). Set your phone alarm for 20 minutes. Either keep your eyes open and focus on the wall or close them (i personally keep my eyes open). Breathe in and out slowly 5 second in, 5 seconds out. As you are doing this feel the aliveness of your body. If a thought comes (and they will) just let it pass and keep breathing. The goal of meditation is to get to a place of no mind (no thought). What you may not realize is just how distracting your brain can be, taking up meditation daily will increase your brain power and lower your cortisol (stress hormone).
Step 3: Get rid of Distractions
Take a inventory of your surroundings – objects, people and events. Which of these objects, people or events are a complete distraction to you? Remove them (be civil). I have been off facebook now for months and I didn’t realize how big of a distraction it was until I was off. What a massive waste of time.
A few months ago, I made a mind map of everything I did often – the places i ate, the websites i frequent, habits i have, etc. I started slashing things that didn’t work in my favor and were actually highly distracting my productivity. You have to be honest with yourself here. It’s very easy to write off your bad habits, but good luck being focused.
Step 4: Make a To-Do List
Take a sheet of paper out or use Work Flowy. Each day start with writing what you need to do. Don’t put more than 5 things each day. As you get things done cross them off. Anything you don’t get done, start a new list for the next day.
The biggest thing with a To-Do list, is your need to get momentum. Don’t put 5 hard things you know you will never get done. Be realistic. If you want to get more hardcore into this I recommend David Allen’s Getting Things Done.
Step 5: Take Supplements
I had an intense workload over the summer. I began to search for my version of NZT (from the movie Limitless). In reality these supplements are known as Nootropics. I don’t have much time to go into massive detail, but twice a day I took:
These supplements gave me 4 hours of pure focus like i can not explain. I did all kinds of research online when I came up with taking these 4 together. I was also inspired by reading Younger You by Eric Braverman & The UltraMind Solution by Mark Hyman.
Step 6: Read Books and Listen to Eckhart Tolle
I listen to Tolle every day. A little much? You don’t understand and neither do I because there is nothing to understand. Stop searching for the answers and live in the present moment. Listen to all of Eckhart Tolle’s audio books and your life will change in ways that are unexplainable. You will see things / people for the first time again, even though they have always been there. When you can put your full focus in the now you won’t have a problem with your attention span, trust me. All your thoughts, past and present worries go out the window when you just let go. Tolle will get you there.
Also, read books on what you are interested in. If you don’t read, start with a few pages a day and then gain momentum. What does this have to do with staying focused? Well if you can put your focus on reading a book for a period of time, you can likely put your focus on anything. Why do you think companies hire people who have degrees? Mostly it has nothing to do with what they learned (a few obvious exceptions). They hire people with degrees because they know how to focus and have an attention span to spend that much time doing something without getting distracted. That quality is an asset to any company.
Step 7: Change How You See Things
Perception is reality. Start responding instead of re-acting to everything that is going on in your life. The more you react, the more unfocused you will be. Instead of looking at the task you have to do as easy or hard – just look at it for what it is and then DO IT. Stop telling yourself mental stories about the things that need to be done, people that need to be attended to, and so on. You’ll be surprised when your productivity skyrockets just from this small change.
In health, business, friends, etc you can take two paths…
Path 1 -> Same (easy, not risky, comfortable) = Staying the same
Path 2 -> Different (hard, risky, stressful) = Growing
If you take path 2 eventually it will turn into path 1 and you will have to make your choice again. Will you chose to grow or stay the same?
Some people go to school to learn while other people read books about topics that interest them. Some people go on facebook to learn about their (now wide) social circle’s happenings and all the drama that goes with it. It’s so nice to just sit back and let our minds be consumed, it’s so damn easy. I’ll admit, sometime’s I like it as well. We live a comfortable life because men and women of action did things while others minds were being consumed by endless knowledge and stimulation. They took action, they held opinions.
In the Earth, there are so many wonderful treasures.
And if you know where to dig, you will find gold, diamonds, all kinds of treasures.
But if you don’t know where to dig, all you will find is rocks and dirt.
He can show you where to dig, and what to dig for, but the digging you must do yourself.
Knowledge is Not Power
In fact there would be no knowledge, no book, no understanding of anything if someone didn’t first take action. Action. I read books by people who have done things, because mainly I don’t have time to read stuff from some grown person who sits in a high chair spewing shit at me they have never even done.
What I Now Realize
Anything that isn’t an action, even if it’s just a small action, is largely a waste of time. That mean’s if you are reading a business book to improve your business, you better damn well have an action plan in a notebook after you are done. Someone who makes millions more a year than you writes a book that you purchase for $10, you better damn well get something actionable out of it.
When you are doing anything social or spiritual you should be free of your mind. There should be no agenda or to-do list. This, however, doesn’t mean you aren’t taking action When you have fun and are out of your mind it is just a flow of actions with no thought. It’s actually a state of pure ecstasy.
Separate Logical & Emotional Actions
Logical action: Working on business
Emotional action: Hanging out with girlfriend
In the first example, working on business stuff, I will be using my mind. Thinking. This is a logical action. I know if i think too much and don’t take any real action, nothing gets done. In the second example, hanging out with girlfriend, this is more of an emotional action. This is what i refer to as flow above. I’m just out of my head having a great time, enjoying her feminine energy.
More to come.