Tag Archives: goals

How to Master Anything

We often times consider ourselves to be good students. We can read a book or an article, watch a YouTube video, or take a class, and for the most part, we feel like we can learn the things we need to learn to be better.

Then we can go and actually try to do the things we just learned about. We try to fix that leaky pipe from the YouTube video or we try that next parenting trick on our kids, that we read in some book and again, we get a little bit better.

photo cred: Sharon McCutcheon

We repeat this cycle with almost everything that we do in most of our lives. We learn and then we try, we learn, then we try, and this is actually a pretty good method. I mean, it’s how we are raised from the time we enter school until we become adults and it gets us to where we need to go for the most part.

Even when we get into our jobs and professions, we start out as students and then we are trained by our peers and we practice on what we’ve learned and soon enough we’ve got it down.

There is though.. another level. A level beyond just learning and doing. A level that can take us to that Next Level. That level is teaching.

When we start to teach something we take on a new perspective. We are now no longer asking questions but are stating what we believe are facts. We are saying, “This is how you should do it.”

What scares a lot of people away from making this next step is the potential to be wrong. The chance that a student or another teacher comes along and says, “no you are teaching this wrong” and so we’re afraid to fail as teachers, and so often times, we don’t teach.

But teaching is so incredibly valuable to becoming a better student that by avoiding that failure we are limiting our chances of getting to the Next Level. Teaching allows us to put to test the things we’ve learned and practiced. It let’s us validate if what we learned and how we learned it, is any good in the first place.

photo cred: Austin Distel

Most of us tend to take something we’ve learned the first time and that becomes the way we know how to do it. We learn it once, and it becomes the end all. I see so many people who learn something from one person, one source, and they believe it to be factual for the rest of their lives. They become completely unwilling to change because it isn’t the idea they were taught the first time.

Don’t be like those people, instead, you should take what you have learned and go teach someone else. Validate your ideas and see if it can work for someone else.

Along the way you will start to learn even more than you did as a student. You will start to see the things that really do work and the parts that really don’t. You will start to become better at whatever it is you are teaching and be that much closer to going from student to teacher to Master.

The Next Level

How do you get to the Next Level?

How do you take yourself, your life, your goals… how do you take them and move them to the Next Level?

It’s a question I had been asking myself over-and-over-and-over… how do I do more? How do I find more success? How do I find more happiness? How do I get more out of life in general? I just couldn’t figure it out.

I literally went round-and-round trying to figure out how to reach the Next Level. And there have been times in my life where I actually went to the Next Level. Where I earned a promotion, or where I landed a new job, where I met a milestone, or managed to achieve some goal.

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The thing was though… the thing that I learned… was that none of those were actually getting to the Next Level. They were the consequences of already being at the Next Level. Take minute to re-read that. The promotions, the milestones, the achievements. Those were all just the consequences of already being at the Next Level.

That’s the thing about The Next Level. It isn’t a goal. It’s not an endpoint. It’s not somewhere you get to and then you hang your hat up because you’re done. The Next Level is in the choices you make on a daily basis. The Next Level is how you live every hour of every day.

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Want to get to the Next Level in your career? Start practicing, reading, and learning the skills for that career, everyday.

Want to get to the Next Level in your fitness and diet? Start eating one more healthy thing than you did the day before. Workout for one more rep than you did the day before.

Want to get to the Next Level in your relationships? Start doing one more selfless thing for another person than you did the day before.

Want to get to the Next Level in your business? Start working one minute longer than you did the day before.

Often times we want the rewards of being at the Next Level but we don’t want to actually do the work required at the Next Level. Then we get upset, and we get down about ourselves because we didn’t get the reward we wanted.

photo cred: Greyson Joralemon

When really, this is fair. Life is giving you the exact reward that matches the level you are on. If you want a Next Level reward you have to put in the Next Level of work.

And it doesn’t happen in a day.

Life doesn’t reward you with a multi-million dollar business because you went to the Next Level for a few days.

Life doesn’t reward you with a better marriage or relationship with your kids because you tried harder for a week.

Life doesn’t reward you with a better body and longer life because you went to the gym a couple of days.

Life doesn’t reward you with more money because you went above and beyond that one time at work.

Life rewards you with what you deserve.

photo cred: Martin Sanchez

My advice would be to stop worrying about the next reward. Instead, start focusing on how you’re getting to the Next Level every, single, day.

7 Tips to Achieving your Fitness Goals

I’ve recently started sharing daily tips on reaching your fitness goals. Here’s a weekly recap on those tips. If you want to get them every morning keep up with us on Instagram and Facebook!

Day 1: Just Show Up!

Day 2: Little Victories

Day 3: Powerful Why’s

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Day 4: No Rest For the Wicked

Day 5: Why You Don’t Have Enough Time

Day 6: Do What You Want To Do

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Day 7: Compete

The Workout That Works

Day 1: How to make Working Out, Workout

“Service to others,

is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth.”

 — Muhammad Ali

There is soooooo much information out there on exercising, fitness, and health. And it’s so much of the same, over-and-over…

There are literally thousands of workout programs, some you see on tv and in ads, some you see on Instagram or YouTube. There’s people selling new equipment, new programs, bikes, weights, bands… it just goes on and on and on…

And how many of those new programs or new pieces of equipment have stuck with you day in and day out? How many of them have you started and you’re still doing to this day? How many of them were life changing?

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If you answered none, that’s okay. None were life changing for me either. I’ve tried the programs, I’ve tried the equipment, I’ve done the things… and while I still had success when doing them, eventually… I stopped doing all of them.

But what if you could do something different? What if instead of being sold a new program or being sold a new piece of equipment… what if instead… someone actually shared some advice on how to make ANY work out program stick? What if I told you that you could pick any work out, from any source, and make it stick? You know, actually reach your fitness goal?

That’s what I’m offering. A new way to look at fitness, diet, and exercise. There’s nothing to buy, I won’t try to sell you a video or $300 dollar machine. I won’t tell you to do 500 pushups or to try and run a marathon. I won’t ask you to spend 4 hours a day at the gym to get the results you want.

What I’m offering is information that will help you take any workout program and make it work. Any system, any style, any type of training… and make it work. Not for a day, not for a week, but for good.

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And you can do it with any life style. I know because I’m doing it working full-time, with 3 kids and a dog, while writing this blog, and still getting to the gym.

So if you’re interested in finally making a change. If you’re tired of promising yourself that January 1st is ‘going to be a new you‘ and you don’t want to relive another 2020 then come check out my first piece of advice:

Day 1: How to make Working Out, Workout

The 3 Key First Steps to Accomplishing Any Goal

Accomplishing our goals is tricky business. It’s actually really tricky business. So tricky that it’s eluded me for years. I’ve spent a good solid chunk of my lifetime trying to figure out the best ways to accomplish my goals. And I always had all kinds of goals. I wanted to do something with my health or tackle this with my fitness. I wanted to start some business or do this project. I wanted to pickup this hobby or try out this new thing. I wanted to be this type of father to my kids or this type of husband to my wife.

But to accomplish all of these things I knew I needed a good game plan. I knew I needed a solid strategy to get there. And so I read, and read, and read. Book after book, online article after online article, trying to figure out what the secret sauce was.

And O…M…G… was it a pain in the ass… I could not find the right answers on anything I wanted to accomplish. I would read one piece of material that would offer suggestions on how to accomplish your goals. I’d try it, it would work for a little while. While my motivation was really high. And then as soon as I had a rough day or something threw me off track. It was game over…

photo cred: Sigmund
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And every piece of advice or material I read was the same. The system would be different, the tricks would be new, but as soon as I hit a little bit of adversity. As soon as I got punched in the mouth by life. I would be right back where I started. It was such a sickening cycle…

So I set out to do some research of my own. Instead of reading about research someone else had done, I went out and did my own. I found other highly successful people who were already doing the things I wanted to do and I nailed down what it was they were doing. And I figured out a pattern…

These other highly successful people were doing two things that were setting them apart from the rest of the world.

  1. They had Powerful Why’s
  2. They felt they HAD To Do It

Each one of the highly successful people I looked at, whether it was success in fitness… comedy… politics… money… was using these two techniques to get it done. Even if they didn’t realize they were doing it, which in most cases was true. For a lot of these highly successful people I found that they were doing these things without even realizing it.

Life had forced these habits on them. Because of their circumstances growing up, or where life had taken them, most of them were being driven by Powerful Why’s that life handed them and the other half were being driven by things they felt the HAD TO DO. Sometimes it was poverty, sometimes it was hardship, and sometimes it was for their families.

So how can you take these same drivers and apply them to your own life?

What’s the secret sauce?

This is the third key to the first two and it’s probably the most critical for you.

Write… It… Down…

WRITE IT DOWN!

photo cred: Aaron Burden
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I mean it. Sit down, pull out a piece of paper and write down your goals. Then for each of your goals, write down your Powerful Why’s. Try to think of why’s that are both selfish and selfless. Think of things that motivated you when you first thought of your goal. Maybe when you first started wanting to get in shape it was because someone made you feel bad. Write that down. Maybe you wanted to start that new business because you were inspired seeing someone else had done it. Write that down.

And once you’ve put together a nice long list of Why’s, set that piece of paper aside and grab a second. Now start writing out your HAVE TO List. Write down the things that you HAVE TO DO if you’re going to accomplish your goals on the other piece of paper. Write down not what you should do…. but what you HAVE TO DO, TODAY, to accomplish your goals. Write it down. And everyday you wake up, sit back down, and write down your HAVE TO DO List. Everyday. Write it down.

The reason this key is so important is because we tend to forget about the mission we’re on. We lose our motivation, we lose sight of our goal, the day-to-day distractions of life get in our way. By writing it down you give yourself two advantages. First, writing will help it stick in your mind better. Second, if you forget, you’ve already got it written down so that you can go back to it. So when I tell you this part is key, I mean it!

Write shit down!

What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up?

My mom used to ask me this all the time. “What do you want to be when you grow up?

Of course at a young age, you always wanted to be something cool right? A Police Officer, a Ninja, a Transformer… I can remember drawing pictures for school assignments that asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up.

And there were no boundaries… no limitations… if you wanted to be a Transformer when you grew up, you sure as shit could put it on the assignment and be good to go. In fact, teachers and parents encouraged children to dream big.

photo cred: Steve Libralon
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It’s interesting how while we are young and naïve and were asked this question we didn’t put any limitations on what we could be. We would dream up and imagine the greatest thing our young minds could think of. There was no limit.

And then we grow up and we realize we can’t be a Transformer… More than that though, we grow up and we stop dreaming. We recognize the foolishness of the idea of trying to be something that isn’t real but we take it a step farther and we start doing this in all parts of our lives.

We start believing that dreams are just that. Dreams… fiction… unobtainable. And so we stop dreaming. And what this does is it puts a cap on everything else that we do in life. Instead of shooting for the highest achievement we can, we start shooting for just good enough. We aim for comfortable and easily obtainable. We try to do things that are “realistic” in our lives.

We fill our time with movies and games, shopping and home remodels, chores and yard work. We start to settle into life, we get comfortable, and we stop dreaming.

photo cred: Johannes Plenio
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But no one whoever did anything great, did it without a dream. Martin Luther King Jr. literally spoke of how valuable having a dream was. For him, the dream was the driving force of where things could one day be. And at the time, thousands of people believed that his dream was just that, a dream. But these were those same people who had forgotten how to dream big.

But if not for his dream, what would he have accomplished?

So don’t get caught up in the day-to-day of life. Don’t get so comfortable with taking things easy, that you forget to dream. So many people have so much unfulfilled potential in the world. So much more that they could give back. So much more that they could accomplish. So much more that they could do.

So dream big, dream bigger than you ever did as a child. Aim so fucking high that when you talk about your dreams to other people, they think it’s unrealistic. And then ask yourself, “What do I have to do to achieve this dream? What work do I have to put in today, to make this dream a reality?”

Then go out there and do it!

And if you’re a parent, you should continue this tradition and ask your kids the very same question. “What do you want to be when you grow up?

How I’ve Managed to Stay Motivated Day After Day

Over the last few weeks I’ve been sharing a number of practices on how I’ve managed to stay motivated and focused towards my goals. From finding Selfless Why’s and Setting Deadlines to Being Hungry and Being a Closer.

All of these are big picture concepts that you HAVE To have if you’re going accomplish anything. These ideas focus on what it takes in the long run to get it done. BUT, we also need to have a way to keep ourselves going in the midst of the day-to-day chaos.

With 3 kids and a dog it sometimes feels like all my wife and I do are laundry, dishes, dinner, diapers, sports practice, homework, and more… In reality, each of these things usually only takes anywhere from a couple of minutes to half-hour.

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The crazy part of all of it is how it comes at you all at once from every angle. How we have to go right from cooking dinner to changing a diaper to doing the dishes to getting everyone in the bath to the next thing and the next thing and the next thing…

This makes it extremely difficult to stay focused on any thing really. It’s easy to be highly motivated when you don’t have life asking a hundred things from you but when life is coming at you at 100 mph it can become very easy to suffer from fatigue.

This happens for others in different ways too. I see it all the time in the workplace where people go hard from 8-to-5 doing as much as they can in as many places as they can. Work is coming at them at 100 mph and then we they do get off at 5 o’clock they’re hit with fatigue. The last thing they want to do is go do more work on any goals.

photo cred: Abbie Bernet

When we tend to start these goals for ourselves, I’ve found that they typically occur when we’ve got some extra free time on our hands. A Saturday afternoon where we’ve been able to get caught up on chores and we’ve got some extra time in the day. These seem to be the times we start to come up with those new workout plans or that next project we want to start. When we have that free time our motivation seems to be at it’s peak.

But that motivation that we had on Saturday afternoon when we had all that extra free time is suddenly gone when 5 PM Monday hits. Monday has a tendency to come in and kick our asses and after the day is over we look back and say, “man… I really wanted to work on my passion project but today kicked my ass. I deserver a little rest…

The truth is… you don’t need that rest. The truth is you need your motivation back. You need that same motivation and inspiration you had when you first started putting this idea together on that Saturday afternoon… And here’s how you get it back:

Portable Inspiration

Portable Inspiration is the number one daily trick I use to stay focused every single day… time-and-time again… over-and-over… For me, that Portable Inspiration comes from my headphones.

I have a short playlist of clips that are extremely motivating for me and whenever I find that I’m starting to get distracted, starting to get off course a bit, or caught up in the day-to-day of life. I put my headphones on, I put my playlist on, and it brings me right back to that moment when I first started this journey.

photo cred: Jason Leung

Think of your Portable Inspiration like your compass towards your goals. When you start to feel like you’re getting off track, when you feel like you’re starting to doubt yourself, or starting to make excuses you need to get back on course and your Portable Inspiration should be your tool to get it done.

So what can you use for your own personal Portable Inspiration? My strongest suggestion would be to pick something that is:

1) Portable

2) Emotionally Inspiring

For me it’s my playlist. For you, it might be a picture of your kids, it might be a picture of yourself at a time where you were unhappy, it could be a song, or a podcast. It could be a scene from a movie or a paragraph from a book.

Whatever it is, it needs to be something you can take with you wherever you go so that you can pull it out as many times a day as you need to. Portable.

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It also needs to be something that triggers an emotional response for you. If it doesn’t give you that feeling in the back of your throat where it feels like you’re swallowing your heart, then it’s NOT going to be powerful enough to motivate you and guide you back towards your goals. It HAS to be EMOTIONALLY INSPIRING. I wrote that in caps so you understand how important this piece is.

So go figure out what your Portable Inspiration is going to be and find a way to keep it with you every day all the time and then… use it. When you wake up, use it. When you go to lunch, use it. When you get off work, use it. When life is getting crazy, use it. When life is getting shitty, use it.

And before you lay your head down to start the next day, use it.