The invisible enemy that keeps you from realizing your potential

Have you ever decided to start eating healthy only to give up after a day? Signed up for a gym but just paid the whole year without going? Had a homework assignment made on the last second, vowed to never do that again, which of-course you have? Those are just a few of the crazy things that I have done before learning of the enemy that was sabotaging my life.

You probably don’t realize it, but there’s an enemy within you, this enemy is strong, this enemy is invisible, he’s sneaky, he’s persuasive, he can sound like your best friend, he’ll tell you what you want to hear, but most important of all this enemy is a liar!

He’s the one to tell you, it’s ok to rest now, you can do that tomorrow, it’s only one donut, you can work on that later, next week, next month, you’re too busy, you’re too young, you’re too old, you’re too stupid and the list goes on and on…

What’s the name of this enemy? Steven Pressfield in his book “War of Art” called it Resistance. I think it’s a perfect name. First of all if you don’t push against Resistance you remain stuck. Second, if you feel Resistance it means you’re going uphill and not downhill.

How to conquer Resistance?

If you came here for a quick hack or a solution I’m sorry to disappoint you. Conquering Resistance is a constant battle, it’s a campaign. Just when you think you’ve made it and won, it can sneak back on you and make you fall even stronger.

Your Excuses Are LIES

Taking from my own experience on what’s working for me is first of all recognizing that all the excuses that you say to yourself are L-I-E-S. I’m too tired to workout – LIE. I can’t program at this hour, my brain is dead – LIE. I have little kids, I can’t do that at this moment in life – LIE. All your excuses can sound reasonable and valid but they’re all LIES. Once you catch yourself lying to yourself it gets easier to push through the excuses and go after your goals anyway.

Use the power of goals

Goals, you’re probably sick and tired of hearing about goals. Every productivity article somewhere writes about the importance of goal-setting. Let me just tell you this from my own experience, goals can help you fight Resistance. If your goals have an emotional impact on you, if you create enough desire to achieve them, it can help you push through Resistance. It can motivate you (give you a motive, a reason) to push through all the lies and difficulties and do the right thing.

Think small

Start small and continue the momentum. If you ever pushed a heavy supermarket cart, you know that at first it’s really hard to push, but after you manage to get it moving it’s pretty easy keeping it going in the same direction. For example, you wish to get in shape but Resistance tells you that you don’t have time to workout. Start with a 2 minutes slow run, it’s harder to lie to yourself that you don’t have 2 minutes to run! Or even set a goal to put on your sport shoes. You’ll see that setting a small goal like that can help you create the momentum you need to start running, first it’ll be 2 minutes, then 5, then before you know it you’re running 4 times a week and increasing the pace/time you run.

Turn Shoulds into Musts

Turn your shoulds into musts. I heard Tony Robbins talk about it in a video clip on Youtube. My Ninjitsu teacher says “training is not an option”. When you treat something as a must and not a should it’ll always get DONE. You don’t say to yourself, I should pay the rent, you say to yourself I MUST pay the rent, that’s why the rent is paid. If you say to yourself I MUST workout instead of I SHOULD workout, then you WILL workout. This is true for everything and not just working out.

The good news about Resistance

There is something good about Resistance, it can point you in the right direction to where you want to be. You feel the strongest Resistance towards things that are really important to you. Use it as a compass to find the things that you really need to be doing. You can use Judu like technique and just DO exactly what Resistance tells you not to do, use its’ own force against it to create a better life for yourself.

Keep fighting, keep grinding, keep going in the right direction. If you fall off the horse, go back up, life is short, there’s no time. You can get everything your dream of. GET OFF THE COUCH!

How to find time to work full time, raise kids, workout and raise a side business

Time. The greatest equalizer of all. Everyone has the same 24 hours a day. So how come some people manage to do more with their time? How can you find the time to work full time, raise kids, workout and raise a side business all at the same time?

When I was younger, before I had children, I used to think that I was extremely busy. I worked full time (9-10 hours), commuted about 40 minutes each way. Came back home exhausted. Walked my dog. Ordered pizza because I was too tired to prepare anything and ate it in-front of the T.V, went to sleep, woke up for work, repeat.

Life becomes a mess

Then, our first son was born, and I realized that there are more hours to the day(night) than I thought. I slept a LOT less, woke up 2-3 times in the middle of the night to take care of him (at least 15-20 minutes each time), then went to work (with red eyes), came back, took care of him till he went to sleep, I dozed off not long after. Repeat.

After 8 months of no life at all things started to relax, we all started to sleep better and I found some free time. Then, not long after (a little surprise), our second son was born! This time it took a whole year till we started to sleep better (more on that possibly in another post)

Like the Phoenix I rise

Now, when the sleep is continuous, I started to become a person again. I started to dream about bigger and better things. Most important of all, I started taking action towards those dreams, even though my time is still very limited, much more than it was before the kids. I work full-time, I take care of the kids till they fall asleep, I prepare a healthy dinner, I walk my dog, I workout, I read, I write, I start small businesses.

Time is a constant

What you have to realize first, is that time is a constant, you can’t really make more time. The only thing you can really ever do is replace one activity with another. For example, in my case I replaced 1-2 hours of sleep with working on my side business. I found out that I can function fine with only 6 hours of sleep. The 2 hours each day give me about 40 hours each month which is worth a whole work week!

Cheat: Try to combine mindless work with something productive. For example, I listen to books on audible while commuting or washing the dishes.

Challenge: Sleep 30 minutes less each day for a week. Use this time to do something productive (meaning don’t waste it on f*cken T.V)

Use the compounding interest effect

Compounding interest is one of the most important things you should learn in life. It’s the basis for all good economic decisions. Usually, we talk about CI with regards to money, but I want to speak about it in regards to time.

The idea is simple, ask yourself what can I do today that will save me time tomorrow. For example, if you usually commute to work during rush hour but can arrange it so that you can come earlier to work (maybe start/finish at home) you can save yourself a LOT of time. Lets say, you saved 30 minutes on commute time, the compounding effect of this small optimization means that you saved 2.5 hours each week! 10 hours each month! Over 32 years (remaining time till the pension kicks in on my case) that’s 3,840 free hours!!! almost half a year back, Just by rearranging your calendar.

Compounding interest can also work against you, if you waste an hour daily on social media, every 9 days you lose a day of work that you could have used to build your side business.

Cheat: Wash the dishes while something is cooking.

Challenge: Save 30 minutes each day, find a way to optimize your commute, your chores, your computer (learn keyboard shortcuts). Anything that you can do that will save you even 5 minutes a day (for example, don’t read your Facebook feed)

Be the tortoise not the hare

This story is one of Aesop’s Fables, about a Hare who ridicules a slow-moving Tortoise. Tired of the Hare’s arrogant behavior, the Tortoise challenges him to a race. The hare soon leaves the tortoise behind and, confident of winning, takes a nap midway through the race. When the Hare awakes however, he finds that his competitor, crawling slowly but steadily, has arrived before him.

My own interpretation to this story is that it’s better to go slowly but steadily towards your goals instead of going all in and then losing.

I started to workout many times in my life, always to stop not long after. Usually it started with a big plan and a big goal which was not long after forgotten. I noticed that if you start slow, and just keep going, it’s easier to achieve great things.

I started to run according to an EXTREMELY slow program. You start with 5 minutes 4 times a week, and increase it very slowly every couple of weeks. This way I was able to build a routine into my life that was acceptable by me and my family. When I was tired, I said to myself “it’s only 5 minutes”, when my wife said, “we must do X and Y and Z”, I said, “no problem, it’ll only take me 5 minutes and I’m back”.

Now it’s so part of my routine that I feel bad if I missed a workout and I MUST complete it in another day of the week.

Cheat: Having an extremely low goal like putting on your running clothes can greatly increase your chances or running.

Challenge: Choose any area in your life that you wish to improve and set the goal to work on it for just 2 minutes a day. Mark your successful days. Don’t work on it for more than 2 minutes (at least not before completing a full month). Don’t ever quit or break the chain – it’s only 2 minutes a day, even Trump can find 2 minutes a day.

Go After It!

I hope that you found something new and useful out of this article and I wish you a great life. Go reach your potential!