How To Light A Fire Under Your Own Ass When You’re Not “Feeling It”. (And 29 Days To Liftoff)

IMG_7859So you’ve set the goal for yourself and you’ve started working towards it.

But most of the time “you’re not feeling it”. It’s not “clicking”.

You do the bare minimum to sense some sort of progress, and to feel good about yourself, and then that’s that.

When you have no deadline, it’s all still an abstract project. And sure, while there’s no real risk of failure or giving up, there is absolutely no sense of urgency. No extra propellant to drive you to go the extra mile.

Let me give you an example from my own life.

When I first started trying to make money online, I had the abstract idea that “some time during 2014” I wanted to be making at least 1000$ per month. And I’ve got to be honest. It became an excuse. I felt like I had “all the time in the world” and whenever I had a minor success, I felt comfortable just putting my feet up and tapping myself on the shoulder for a job well done.

My parents are too nice and polite to tell me to get my ass in gear, I have to do it myself. And just standing in front of a mirror telling myself “man you need to get your ass in gear” never seemed to do the trick for me. The only thing it invoked was a feeling of guilt.

So here’s what to do instead:

Set An Unavoidable Deadline And Get Specific

Whether it’s a plane ticket, notifying your landlord that you’re going to move out, or telling your boss you’re leaving at a certain date, an unavoidable deadline gives you something tangible to work towards. It also forces you to think pragmatically about how you’re going to make the deadline, helping you eliminate endeavors that won’t be helpful in the short term. Continue reading

Give Yourself The Chance You Need To Succeed

success
If you had a new year’s resolution this year, by now you’ve probably hit your first rough patch. (If not, hats off to you!)

The first difficult part of the journey to lose weight, make more money, get more freedom, or whatever your goal is.

You might even have given up and stopped trying.

And that’s fine.

But it’s time to get going again.

Failing is simply part of life for anyone who strives to do better. To be better.

We all have our ups and downs, sometimes so many downs in a row that it’s discouraging, and sometimes so many ups in a row that it’s downright awe inspiring. But to have any chance of getting where you want to go, you have to actually keep going no matter the weather.

So place one foot in front of the other, and repeat indefinitely. Although that’s not all there is to it, it’s a good start.

Give Yourself As Many Chances As You Need

You only ever truly fail when you give up. When you stop trying.

So what if you had an accidental binge day, or you skipped your daily workout once, or had a terrible week and everything went to shit. Continue reading

Week Of Superhuman Productivity

Super human productivityThe seemingly unattainable pipe dream for many who get involved in personal development: Superhuman productivity. Is it possible? Well there are many examples of people who achieve more in any given day than we would think of as normal. And some of them even admit to being relatively easy going and lazy. Over the next couple of months I’m going to find a balance of priority that allows me to do the same.

I’m partly doing this because I haven’t been productive enough for the last two months or so. So in an effort to force myself to recommit I’m going to attempt to be as productive as I possibly can for first one week now leading up to Christmas, and then because of Christmas Eve and and Christmas Day, and what’s known as “romjulen” in Norway, I’ll probably take a break for a few days and then keep going.

Long Term Plan

Once I’ve finished this week, I’ll take a look at how well I did and use it as a sort of baseline. Then in 2014, I’ll first repeat once or twice to see if continued commitment is all it really takes to increase your productivity.

Then I’ll repeat the weeks of superhuman productivity following different suggested principles. I’m going to read Getting Things Done, and try to follow that to the verge of perfection. I’m also going to try the 2 day fast and see if that increases productivity. (Suggest any techniques or principles or ideas I should test out in the comments.)

Initial Goals:

  • No TV or Netflix or Youtube or reddit
  • Avoid unnecessary indecision on trivial daily dilemmas
  • Complete all menial tasks that take 5 minuets or less.
  • Reach out to at least 10 potential clients per day.
  • Reply to as many interesting job ads as there are.
  • Write 2000 words per day.
  • Make healthy meals for myself and family every day.
  • One post about a time saver each day on my own blog.
  • Submit at least one guest post/guest post idea to a blog per day.
  • Work out at least one hour per day. (Not focusing on the same muscle groups obviously.)
  • Get more than enough rest.
  • Master one new song on the piano throughout the week.
  • Study Chinese for at least 30 minutes per day
  • Learn to do at least simple self introductions, some simple conversation.(Chi)
  • Maintain Japanese skills by at least 1 hour of studying throughout the week.
  • Start preparing for Christmas Cleaning so it’s less of a hazzle.
  • Read 100 pages per day of a book relevant to what I want to achieve.
  • Keep track of what I’m able to achieve.
  • Personally show up to get connections that could lead to relevant work or experience.

As the days go on I will adjust this if it turns out it’s not enough or too much. If it’s not enough I will adjust up on the next day, but if it feels like it’s too much I’ll wait until the third day before I downsize.

Long Term Goals

  • Increase productivity
  • Develop better ability to focus
  • Become more organized
  • Completely crush the idea I sometimes have about me just being lazy
  • Develop somewhat of a habit for learning new and useful skills

Habits I’m going to avoid:

  • TV
  • Pointless postponing

Habits I’m going to focus on and nurture

  • Reading and piano (substitute for TV during downtime)
  • Daily checklists
  • Daily writing
  • Daily learning
  • Daily workouts
  • Daily walks
  • Daily progress

(Anyone else love the new WordPress dashboard interface? I am a sucker for flat designs. I even removed the rounded corners from this new theme to make it look flatter. Anyone else notice how flatness seems to be a trend for website design lately? Youtube’s new design is quite flat, and now WordPress. And then many of the most popular blog themes, especially the premium ones are flat.)

Thoughts And/Or Suggestions?

Have any thoughts you’d like to share? Suggestions? Please let me know!

The statue in the picture is of Ganesha, the patron of arts and sciences and the deva of intellect and wisdom. As the god of beginnings, he is honored at the start of rituals and ceremonies. Ganesha is also invoked as patron of letters and learning during writing sessions. Also has 4 arms and an elephant’s head, and is all-round badass.

Picture by Swami Stream

Month To Make A Difference : Not Your Standard 30 Day Experiment!

If you don’t want to watch the video, here’s a written explanation:

I originally wanted to upload this on Canada’s thanksgiving yesterday because I thought it was fitting, I ended up just barely not making it in time though.. but here’s the video I made.

For my new 30 day experiment, I’ve chosen not to tackle the traditional things.. like building muscle or confidence. I’ve instead chosen to invest 30 days to try to change the world a little for the better. I also want to see how this will affect me as a person and my level of happiness and self-worth, because I think it’s very relevant if there is any correlation between helping others and mental well-being.

I also want to inspire other people who like me, up to this point have followed the sort of futility concept, that no matter what you try to do, nothing will improve for the better. Just leave that behind for one month and try to make small differences wherever you can. If I am able to create a platform for more inspiring people than me, people willing to make much greater sacrifices to help the greater good.. I think that would be a awesome.

I invite anyone that chooses to participate, even if you’re already volunteering, to contribute content about your progress in video or text format to the website monthtomakeadifference.com.

After my 30 days are up, I will give up my role as administrator and will hopefully never have to step in and make content again. My goal is to reach at least 6 months, and depending on the circumstances, if we get to 4 or 5 months and there is no replacement, I will consider doing another month.

It’s not about self promotion, and I will at no point mention my name or link to another site than monthtomakeadifference or charities that I choose to help. I’m not inviting or taking personal donations, I want you to contribute in a way that is meaningful to you.. and commit to doing so for 30 days.

Want To Contribute?
If you’re going to participate and want to contribute content throughout November, contact me at admin@monthtomakeadifference.com, or use the form here. Or even if you want to help design the logo, or point out spelling errors on the site, or translate the message to another language, feel free to reach out.

In general if this just inspires you a little bit to make a tiny positive impact on the world around you, I would consider it to be a success.

I guess the other way you can help me is by helping me create a small buzz around this, any shoutout or participation would be appreciated and I will make sure to thank any of the early contributers that really help get the ball rolling.. in person if possible, if not in a google hangout or just on camera.

Regardless of what you choose to do, I hope you have a great week and month.

P.S. Leave comments with your thoughts on what I can do/should to to improve my project/site/videos.. I want to make as big of a small impact as I can.