I messed up spectacularly a bunch of times in my 20s. But I’ve also done a lot right, and I’m glad I figured out some of the “right” stuff that produces massive success and happiness. Some of the “secrets” that the happiest, most successful, most fulfilled people in the world know.
But one of the best investments of time I ever made was making it a habit of studying and hanging out with the most successful people I could find.
For example, in the past few months alone I wanted to upgrade my social circle, like I frequently suggest many of you do if you want to take your life to the next level. I wanted to hang out with people who were crushing it, or who would be crushing it. People with a huge fire to improve their lives like I have.
The result just a few short months later? 75% of the time, the only people I’m texting, emailing, and hanging out with are people earning $200k+/year in their own businesses or ventures.
And let me tell you – they think WAY differently from most of us. From the average person.
But there’s one thing in particular that all successful people have, that I’ve noticed.
There’s ONE overarching principle that allows them to have epic levels of fulfillment, happiness, finances, health, relationships and a lot more.
They live life deliberately.
The truly successful people, not just the financially successful, think about everything and their own vision of the future.
It’s the exact opposite of how the average person lives – constantly waking up in a life they didn’t want.
Constantly wondering “how the hell did I get here?”
I get hundreds of the same types of emails – I woke up in this life somehow. I don’t know how I got here, but I don’t want to be here any longer.
It doesn’t matter if the person is talking about their health going to shit, their relationship failing, not having enough money, or just plain waking up in an extremely boring, mediocre life.
The origin is always the same: failing to live an examined life. Failing to take time to figure out what you want. Failing to learn the daily action steps that will help you get to where you want to be.
The solution is always the same: live life deliberately.
“Yea yea yea I’ve heard this before”
You’ve heard Thoreau before:
“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms.”
Living a deliberate life means you’ve thought shit out.
It means you think about WHAT YOU WANT regularly, and how you can get there. This is directly contrary to how most of us live.
Think about it.
Your job. How’d you get it? And why? Because it was your major or related to it? Because it was what you’re good at? Because it’s just what “Men or women in the Johnson family do?” Because daddy or mommy wanted you to be a particular profession? Because you’re scared of poverty? Because you crave feelings of power and admiration?
Romantic partners. I once sat in a cafe thinking about how strange some couples are.
Sometimes there is a huge mismatch in looks, personality or just compatibility.
Sometimes that’s just because billy bob and cindy lou hoo just happen to be the only two people that keep running into each other, and are slightly compatible on one tiny thing.
Sometimes they just happen to “be there” when the biological clock is ticking and we want to settle down.
Where you live. The majority of people choose two options: Option A: Close to home and family. Option B: Far away from home and family. So we choose to live in places not because they match our interests, hobbies, career opportunities, etc. but because it’s “just where our parents are” or because “we’re trying to get as far away as possible.”
Neither of these are “examined” decisions.
How we spend our lives.
Think about your daily routine, and the routine of most of your parents or elders. Work, bowling at night, American Idol on TV, the same family gatherings, not using your vacation time, movies on the weekends, etc.
There’s nothing wrong with it – but is that really what you want to be doing? Or have you never thought about what you’d rather really be doing?
Most of our life is lived by default – where your parents are, what you majored in, what people around you do, or going against what the people around you do.
And as a result, you end up living a life that’s unexamined. That’s fine – nothing wrong with it – but if you’re like me, you want MORE from life. You want *THE* life, and I can assure you, it’s possible.
So What’s The Fix?
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