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naveen jain tommy baker

5 Lessons Learned From Billionaire Naveen Jain

By | Entrepreneurship, Lists
Reading Time: 5 minutes

These lessons were extracted from a conversation we had with Naveen Jain on the Resist Average Academy podcast, which you can access through the link above.

5 Lessons Learned From Billionaire Naveen Jain

There’s a certain weight that comes with the “b” in billionaire —and recently I had the pleasure of spending 40 minutes with one of them. Naveen Jain is a serial entrepreneur, moonshot thinker and all-around genius of creation. I first saw and met Naveen at Thrive, an annual event put on by Cole Hatter —and a few months later we hosted him on the Academy.

I wanted to share some of the key lessons I learned from this time with him because what I learned went above and beyond the words he said. During the conversation, he was enthusiastic, present and used empowering language. He spoke of solving the world’s most messy problems —including healthcare, our shrinking resources and even traveling to the moon and beyond.

There is no doubt this time spent with him opened my world. I recognized the places I’m limiting myself, and how the greatest thinkers of all time are obsessed with possibility and wonder. It reminded me to tap into my inner child —and to look up in a world where everyone looks down at digital devices.

Here are the 5 lessons I learned from billionaire Naveen Jain you can start applying to your life and business today.

Lesson 1: Energy Creates Value

“Naveen! Are you there?”

“Tommy, Tommy, I’m here! Ready”.

The first lesson I learned from Naveen was about raw enthusiasm and energy for life. Because here’s the truth: my platform is small, and Naveen has been featured on the biggest media outlets in the world. He has all the cash he needs and is one of the most successful entrepreneurs and visionaries on the planet.

And yet, here he is radiating enthusiasm for an interview he’s likely done over and over. Make no mistake: our energy and enthusiasm for our mission and life will dictate the level of value we’re able to create. Because, as I’ve said on the Resist Average Academy Podcast: big dreams require big energy.

Waking up to a mundane corporate gig to do the minimum work required doesn’t require a ton of energy. Aimlessly drifting through life doesn’t require much energy. But building a life around a mighty mission is going to require physical, mental and emotional bandwidth to endure long term.

ACTION STEP: What is your level of energy and enthusiasm for your current life and purpose, and what can you do to level it up?

 

Lesson 2: Never Lose Your Curiosity

Naveen told me a story about being raptured by the moon as a young child —knowing he wanted to go there. But the moon is only the first stop: his curiosity wants to take him to bigger and bolder places.

Curiosity, then, is the spark required to bring our vision to life. Naveen’s work all comes from being obsessively curious: about space, exploration, education, health care and much, much more. You and I don’t need to find our curiosity: it is our natural state. However, as we’ve grown up most of us have lost the unquenchable thirst of curiosity we used to have as other people told us to “get real”.

When this happens, we become less enthusiastic about our lives and we shun a part of ourselves that has always been with us. Often in interviews, people will ask me about finding their purpose. The place I start is simple: pull at the strings of what already makes you curious, and everything will change.

“The day you stop being intellectually curious is the day you die.”

ACTION STEP: What is one topic, interest or activity you used to be deeply curious about and lost?

 

Lesson 3: Billionaires Think Differently

The number one difference between someone like you and I and Naveen Jain is about one thing only: the way we see the world and think about it. Because this determines everything else.

What I learned from our riveting conversation was simply how differently he thinks —especially about challenges and adversity. Even someone who’s primed in positive psychology would struggle with the sheer optimism Naveen brings to the table. For example, he sees every industry crisis as a real-world opportunity to step in a deliver value. When someone tells him “no” —he truly believes he’s closer to a bolder yes.

When we’re looking to create results, we tend to focus on the external: tactics, mechanics and strategy. Instead, we should be focusing on the deep level thinking we’re bringing to the table: this will impact everything we do. And if it’s off, or small-minded —there’s no amount of tactics capable of overcoming this type of thinking.

For most people I coach and train in life and business, their biggest issue has nothing to do with knowledge and everything to do with the way they’re currently thinking about those mechanics. Once we create transformation in their thinking, everything changes.

“If we believe something is impossible, then it becomes impossible to achieve.”

ACTION STEP: A recent time you were thinking small was _____ and the results were _____. How could you have changed your thinking for a better result?

 

Lesson 4: Language Represents Belief

What if?
Imagine.
Possibility.

Early on during our conversation, I noticed the use of his language and how it always came from an empowering place. He must have said imagine 9 times in the first 10 minutes.

I’ve always been fascinated by language, as it pulls the curtains back on our deeply held beliefs and worldview. For example, in my programs and coaching —we specifically don’t use words like “try” “maybe” “I guess” or anything else which may be deemed disempowering or vague.

Here’s why: your spoken word is a creative declaration to the world around you. If you can’t own this inherent part of our reality —it represents a misalignment. A belief is not serving you, or you’re thinking you’re not capable.

You can tell very quickly if someone has confidence based on the language they’re using. As a student of NLP, I’ve recognized the importance of our language: the words we choose, the tone we inflect and body language. Collectively, these determine how we see the world and our place in it.

ACTION STEP: Examine your language for the next 24 hours and identify 3 words you can delete or shift.

 

Lesson 5: If They Don’t Call You Crazy, You’re Doing It Wrong

Have you ever had a bold idea, knowing it was right for you, got excited and told someone close to you —and they shot you down immediately?

We’ve all been there, and it’s why we must be incredibly careful about who we’re seeking feedback from. Because sometimes the people closest to us can shoot down our dreams the quickest. To me, the greatest tragedy is having a spark of enthusiasm over a creative idea, business or endeavor…only to watch it fade when declared to someone else.

This is where the last lesson learned from Naveen Jain comes in: if people don’t call you crazy, you’re doing it wrong. If you’re out there living your best life and pushing the throttle on growth, people will doubt you. If you’re shipping a message near and dear to your heart, the critics will come. Make no mistake, this is part of the game.

“Find something you’re willing to die for and live for it.”

ACTION STEP: Take inventory of your inner circle. Do they support and expand you or contract you?

 

5 Lessons Learned From Billionaire Naveen Jain

So, there you have it. A short conversation led to a complete perspective shift —and I wanted to share these lessons with you to ensure you apply them in your own life and business. If you’re here, it’s because you’re meant for something big and bold, and the pain of untapped potential is something you want no part of.

Which of these lessons connected with you? I’d love to hear it!

tommy baker leap of your life

How To Take The Leap Of Your Life

By | Books, Entrepreneurship, News
Reading Time: 9 minutes

How To Take The Leap Of Your Life

This is not working.

Waiting, hoping and wishing ‘someday’ it’s all going to happen for you. The reason I know it’s not working is simple: I’ve been exactly where you are, and it left me nowhere except: stuck, alone and frustrated. Now I am consistently in conversations with those who feel they same.

And yet, nothing changes —except for one crucial thing: they start to lose their belief in themselves of bringing their deepest desires to life.

Today’s post is an excerpt from my upcoming book, The Leap of Your Life: How to Redefine Risk, Quit Waiting For ‘Someday,’ and Live Boldly.

The portion included is part of the introduction, and I couldn’t be more excited to share this with you. If you’re ready to pre-order and claim massive bonuses, head over to LeapOfYourLife.com and grab yours today. You can also simply head to Amazon or Barnes & Noble here.

I wrote this book for you. The person out there who hears the whispers come during the quiet pockets of life and knows there’s something greater for you. You know it’s in there, somewhere…but you’re stuck. And the Leap Of Your Life is designed to give you permission.

Because if you give yourself permission, you’ll never be the same.

leap of your life tommy baker

The Leap Of Your Life Introduction

What are you waiting for?

There’s a leap in your life you’ve been putting off, and it’s killing you. Maybe not literally, but it’s killing your spirit. It’s killing your belief, your enthusiasm and the thrill of this one experience we call life. It’s killing your energy, vitality and hope for the future. When those are gone, you might as well be the walking dead.

It’s draining your life force, and every day you put it off, you’re reminded of how it hasn’t happened for you yet. And now you’re questioning if it ever will.

The consequences of not taking your leap are real, and they stare back at you every morning in the mirror. They’re reflected in bank statements. They’re felt in your body language during time with the people you love. They’re wrapped on long exhales as you aim to keep it all together.

The consequences of not taking your leap are real, and they stare back at you every morning in the mirror.

But worst of all, they’re reflected in this tireless voice in the back of your head that won’t shut up, asking:

“Is this it? Is this all that’s meant for me?”

Now, does this mean I’m certain your life isn’t working? No, not at all. Our lives can be working, and we can still have a leap we know we must take. Sometimes, this can be the most precarious circumstance of all: we have everything we’ve been told we should want, yet something is still missing.

And I’m here to tell you what’s missing is the leap of your life. But before we get into it all, let’s define what a leap is.

leap of your life tommy bakerThe Leap Of Your Life Ingredients

You may be wondering: what exactly constitutes a leap? You may be thinking it’s abandoning western life and moving to an ashram in the Himalayas, quitting your accounting gig, launching the new app or parachuting out of a perfectly good airplane at 15,000 feet.

While all of those sound like fun to me and could be leaps, they don’t have to be yours.

Sometimes, the leap we have to take seems inconsequential to others and yet leads to a bold moment of no return: reaching out to a recruiter with the hopes of transitioning out of our job, having the tough conversation with our partner, launching the side hustle or finally clicking record and spreading a message with the world.

What matters, then is not necessarily the magnitude of the leap. It’s simply that it matters to you, and includes the following:

You feel a pull. You can’t explain it, but you feel pulled towards your leap. Much like a magnetic charge, you can try to avoid it, but it comes back stronger than ever.

There’s a decision. Your leap involves a decision you’ve been putting off and will require you to make a bold one.

The stakes are high. Your leap There are real consequences to not making it. There’s also endless possibility by stepping into it.

There’s an element of risk. Your leap has degree of risk, and for now you’ve chosen to play it ‘safe’ at the expense of your own fulfillment.

Not doing it will hurt more than doing it. Lastly, even though you haven’t taken your leap yet – not doing so hurts more than any consequence or perceived failure of taking it.

So, again what are you waiting for?

Because if you’re here, I already know you’re waiting for something.

Every day you put it off, a part of you withers away, knowing your dreams are on hold as you attempt to live someone else’s life. (I use the word attempt deliberately, because no matter how hard we try, it’ll never quite pan out.)

leap of your life tommy baker

Playing It Safe Means a Lifetime of Regret

As we begin this adventure, I want you to treat it as such. I’m going to take a wild guess you’ve read books with similar themes, but you haven’t read this one. Finishing the leap of your life will drive you towards a decision, which won’t only be shared between you and me.

There are a few reasons why you may be here right now, and I’m going to tell you why you should stick around:

First, you feel a calling for something bolder and bigger for your life — and you believe it may be possible, but you’re finding yourself stuck.

Second, you know if you continue on the same path you’re on today, you’re going to look back and feel the sinking feeling of regret.

Third, you’re tired of playing everyone else’s game. For too long, you’ve done what others told you to do and ignored a part of you that knew without question what was right.

Lastly, there’s a voice whispering to you during the silent pockets of life slowly begging you to put yourself on the line and do it now.

This voice comes to you when the intensity of life has slowed down. When it can no longer be drowned out in noise, bills and an unrelenting breaking news cycle, it comes to you. Sometimes it whispers on those long car rides where you’re running on auto-pilot and have the ability to (truly) think.

During those early mornings right before the chaos of the inbox hits. Or when you’re in those in between moments on the airplane and the perspective of being at 37,000 feet invites some deeper questions.

As long as you fit one, two or all of those descriptions — you’ve come to the right place.

By the end of our time together, one of two things will happen:

You’ll think everything I said sounded nice, but you won’t make the commitment I’m daring you to make — so this may as well be a video game. Except there’s no fantasy lands, and I’m not nearly as entertaining.

Or, you’ll have the spark, the insight, the push required to create something so powerful, the current version of yourself can’t imagine it. You’ll be brought to your knees (except this time, in a is-this-really-happening way.)

You’ll finally take the Leap of Your Life and you’ll never be the same.

But I’ve Already Taken a Leap…Is This For Me?

You may be saying to yourself: but I’ve already taken the leap. You launched your business, you moved cross country, you took the big chance. This can’t be for you, right?

Wrong. The fastest way to slide back to mediocrity is to believe life and business are about one leap. The truth is: life and business are a series of leaps and micro leaps as you continue to expand on your journey. Most assume if they already did a leap, they’ll be better prepared for the next one, right?

What I’ve found is the opposite: with making bold choices in the past, they can feel just as stuck and in fear about their next leap. Often, those with something to lose are less likely to take a leap: taking a chance is easy when you don’t have much to lose, but what about when things are working (to a certain degree)?

In working with countless thought leaders, industry trailblazers, and entrepreneurs who have made bold decisions in the past, I’ve noticed they need a constant reminder and push towards their next leap.

Otherwise, they slide back to mediocrity, the passion and challenge they once had fizzles and what once felt like a riveting life – has now vanished and become mechanical.

leap of your life tommy bakerThe Greatest Risk (Is Not Taking One)

Starting your own business is risky.

Moving cross country with no plan is risky.

Asking him or her out before you’re ready is risky.

Taking a bold chance on your dreams is risky.

Right?

But what if we’re wrong – what if the real risk is putting our dreams on hold, placing them under a box labeled ‘someday’?

We’ve been told to play it safe, to stay in line – and to not dream too big, or else we may fail. Follow the secure path, and you’ll be handsomely rewarded. Not only will you be rewarded with the markers of success, we’ll take care of you.

Since those around you have also bought into this narrative, they’ll support you. You’ll fit in, and your life’s path will be etched in certainty.

And yet, so often –we find ourselves on someone else’s path, living someone else’s dream, to live up to the expectations (and approval) of others. We trade in our calling for our ceiling, our purpose for a paycheck, and our enthusiasm for exhaustion.

You wake up one day, only to realize you’re in the wrong movie wondering how the hell you got there.

Our inability to tolerate even the smallest of risks, has led us to live an unfulfilled life. The illusion of security has drained our life force. The calling you felt deep within you started as a wildfire and is now nothing but ashes. What once a 6-lane open highway of possibility has now become a cemetery where dreams go to die.

Our inability to tolerate even the smallest of risks, has led us to live an unfulfilled life

Reading the leap of your life book will challenge you to have an open mind, no matter if you consider yourself a brazen risk taker with an entrepreneurial mindset, or your definition of risk is passing someone on the right-hand side of your local freeway at a brisk 66 MPH.

The problem with our perception of risk is simple: we don’t take chances during the low stakes moments of life, so we’ll never take them during the high stakes moments. Which means every single day we’re wiring ourselves to not listen to what we know we have to do but are unwilling to face it.

And through that process, we miss facing ourselves.

Pre-Order The Leap Of Your Life and Claim Bonuses Now!

So there you have it: I wanted to share the introduction of the book with you, to see if it resonates and connects with you. Like I’ve said earlier: this is the book etched into my spirit, and was created because of two main reasons:

1. It’s the book I wish I had.

When I was waiting, wishing and hoping —I wish I had this book. I needed someone to help me give my dreams permission, otherwise I’d stay stuck and wake up with a sinking feeling of regret.

I felt alone, I felt fear…and there was a chance I’d come home with my tail between my legs. I hated where I lived and I was on the wrong trajectory. I wish I had this material to lean on and go all in on myself and my deepest desires.

2. It’s the book I wish I could give out when I have conversations with people.

These days, I’m constantly in conversations with clients, potential clients, people at live events and even at grocery stores or in the Uber coming home about their dreams and what’s in the way. As a trainer and speaker, I’m paid to notice patterns in human behavior and create solutions to those. The biggest pattern is simply the illusion that “someday” we’re going to figure it out.

But the truth is: every day you wait, you lose a fraction of your belief and spirit of making it happen —until it’s all gone.

To learn more about the core themes of The Leap Of Your life, watch the official trailer below:

If this message connects with you, this book can and will change your life. I don’t say that lightly, and I mean it —my life has been transformed by hearing the right message at the right time and making the bold decision in front of me.

During the pre-order phase, you can head to LeapOfYourLife.com to claim massive bonuses including workbooks, video trainings, and even coaching sessions and gifts from our incredible sponsors.

Once you place your order, email team@resistaverageacademy.com and we’ll send you the bonuses on the pre-order page!

Thank you for all of your support, there’s no way this comes to life without you.

tommy baker leap of your life

Don’t Start (The Power Of Playing The Long Game)

By | Advice, Entrepreneurship
Reading Time: 7 minutes

Don’t Start (The Power Of Playing The Long Game)

Don’t start a podcast.

(There are 630,000 of them already.)

Don’t write a book.

(There are 1,052,803 published…every year.)

Don’t launch a business.

(There are 550,000 new entrepreneurs…monthly.)

Here’s the deal:

Don’t do any of these, unless of course —you’re doing it for the right reasons.

Because I’m here to tell you:

The odds are not stocked in your favor unless your idea of success is putting your entire net worth on Red 27 at the roulette table. In today’s post, I’m going to reveal a crucial concept (and centering question) to ensure you don’t wind up being another statistic.

Because if you’re doing what you’re doing for the right reasons, the worst thing you can do is start with a half-hearted approach. But if you do it right and play the long game, not only can you experience the deep fulfillment that comes with sharing your work with the world…

You can experience world class results and be part of the 5% who seek their goals to completion and never, ever look back wondering where they fell short.

tommy baker long gameAnyone Can Get Started, Few Can Endure

I remember standing in a crowd of people in Killington, VT at 4:30AM as thousands of athletes got prepared to attack the Spartan Ultra Beast.

As it sounds, this is the most intense race the Spartan brand puts on:

Around 30 miles of hiking the steepest double black mountains in Vermont for two days and one bone-chilling night. And yet, at the start of the race —the energy was palpable. It was also crowded, the music was blaring, and everyone felt amazing.

This is normal for what happens at the start of any endeavor:

Lots of enthusiasm and excitement, but the truth is:

When you look to your left, and you look to your right —two out of the three (including possibly you) won’t be there at the end of the race. This is true for the Spartan Beast (the pass rate at the time of my race was 15%) and mostly anything else in business and life. As Angela Duckworth, author of Grit says:

“Enthusiasm is common. Endurance is rare.”

So, what does this mean to you?

Don’t waste all of your energy on starting —and don’t celebrate too much. Sure, there is power in making a decision and having the courage to get in the game…

But it’s only the start of what’s going to be a long, hilly and unpredictable path.

Because after you start, you quickly hit the place where 99% of people give up: the messy middle.

Rookies waste all of their energy on starting, while the professional plays the long game.

The Messy Middle Of The Long Game

It hit me at Mile 7 as I wiped another bead of sweat off my face and thought to myself:

This is going to be a grind.

Of course, I already knew this —you can’t have a 15% pass rate on any race and think it’s going to be a walk in the park. Especially knowing how curated the signups are: this isn’t your local 5K.

At Mile 7, the enthusiasm of the early morning fist-bumping EDM music was now a distant and forgotten memory:

I was officially in the messy middle.

Of course I’m using the race as a metaphor, but all of your endeavors will have the point in time you hit the messy middle.

This is where 99% of dreams go to die, and the realization is all the same:

This is going to be hard. Like really hard —like I-don’t-know-if-it’s-worth-it hard.

So, what’s the messy middle look like in different projects, businesses and endeavors?

It’s episode 29 of your podcast when you’re having the worst time trying to make another edit.

It’s 9,200 words in of your book when you’re finding yourself off course with no clarity in sight.

It’s 13 months into your business when you’ve had to fire your first employee —and cash flow is tight.

This is the messy middle, and what you choose next will decide your fate. Because here is where the dabblers and quitters move on to the next idea, project and endeavor.

Only to have the cycle repeat itself.

This is the messy middle, and what you choose next will decide your fate.

Most Success Stories Skip The Messy Middle

I love going to events, and hearing people’s stories of starting, encountering the messy middle —and then experiencing breakthrough. It’s one of the common themes on the podcast: leaning into the guests challenges, doubts and moments of deep questioning.

Except too often at the events I attend, people skip over most of what really matters: the messy middle. Of course, there’s great reason for this: in an 18 minute talk, you can’t possibly explain to the audience what’s really going to happen during the messy middle.

You do your best, of course —but the truth is much more complex than a polished talk could ever create.

And what this narrative does is simplify the messy middle and create an expectation in people’s hearts and minds that it won’t last too long.

But it’s not true, because most of your time in any endeavor will be spent in the thick of your own personal messy middle.

Starting is 5%, the messy middle is 90% and your breakthrough (or achievement) will be around 5%.

Let’s go back to how your fate will be decided.

The Messy Middle Is Hard, And Beautiful

So you may be thinking to yourself: why would I ever want to endure through the messy middle?

In a nutshell: this is where all the magic happens. Specifically, this is where you gain the confidence, skillset and belief that will transcend any “making it” moment on top of the mountaintop.

Most importantly: this is when you discover who you really are.

And trust me: there’s no amount of cold hard cash or shiny toys that will hold a candle to this feeling.

(And you don’t have to trust me, because the research is clear and obvious on what this does for your level of purpose and fulfillment.)

You’re also going to experience all types of breakthroughs during your messy middle: small wins, life-changing ones and everything in between.

So, how do you navigate this crucial aspect of your path? Let’s dig into the four tools designed to help you navigate this part of the path —and make sure you don’t get lost along the way.

Tool #1: Focus On Today’s Step

During the Spartan Beast, there were exhausted bodies everywhere. Men and Women sprawled out and ready to give up. For me, it was very easy to focus on them, and want to rest or slow down.

The first tool is to focus on what you can control today. Often, that’s the most important work in front of you —this step, and the next one.

Personally, as a writer —when I’m in the messy middle of a book, distraction is at its most tempting. It’s easy to focus on anything except the words. But these are the moments that make or break the work, and I focus on my 1,000 words for the day.

In your life, project or goal, what is the one thing you can focus on?

Tool #2: Keep Your North Star In Mind

The second tool is to remember where you’re headed —and why. This is the power of clarity: having a North Star you’re going after. I wrote about this in The 1% Rule: we all must have a North Star to guide us during the tough moments.

All we need are small reminders along the way of the what and the why. If you’ve done the work to know what these are, you’ll be in a great spot during your messy middle.

Every single day, remind yourself of your North Star for at least a few minutes. If you have time to scroll through Instagram, you have time do this.

Tool #3: Smile Through The Process

The third tool to help you navigate your goals and stay committed to the long game is to fall in love with the pursuit. I know this sounds like an Instagram quote, but it’s true:

Playing the long game means you’re going to have to love the process as much as the outcomes, checkpoints and breakthroughs.

Personally and with my clients, I work very hard to shift into a state of gratitude when things get really hard. I remind them that this is when most people quit, and every step they’re taking is cementing their belief, confidence and power.

Remember: there are people who would write you a blank check today to experience the challenges you’re going through. Never, ever forget the power of perspective and gratitude along as you play the long game.

Tool #4: Recharge and Refuel Along The Way

Lastly, it becomes impossible to endure during the long game if you’re not taking care of yourself. What I teach in my programs and coaching is to live at both ends of the spectrum: intense, focused work and plenty of open white space.

If you don’t recover, recharge and re-fuel along the way —you won’t last. We all need a radical self care routine: time for ourselves, being outside, walks, massages, reading a great book, meditating, floating and anything that re-centers us.

Often, this is the last stuff we do until it’s too late. Instead, ensure you are scheduling this work and making it a priority in your calendar.

It’s Time To Get Honest

Before you get started with anything, it’s time to get honest by asking:

Are you committed to this, or are you merely interested? Make no mistake: there is a vast chasm between these two, and 90% of people who start anything are not committed.

Because the average podcast lasts 6 episodes before they fold up shop.

(Don’t let this be you.)

The average book sells less than 300 copies during its entire lifetime.

(Don’t let this be you.)

Most businesses fail to ever get off the ground, and 90% fold up shop.

(Don’t let this be you.)

Are you committed to the long game? I’d love to hear it.

The Leap Of Your Life Available For Pre-Order!

tommy baker leap of your life

There’s a bold decision in your life you’ve been putting off…and every day that passes by is another chance of waking up wondering what could have been.

If you’re wanting to get clear about your bold decision and ensure you don’t wake up with regret 1, 3, 5 or 10 years down the line, my new book The Leap of Your Life: How to Redefine Risk, Quit Waiting For ‘Someday,’ and Live Boldly is your trusted companion.

The book is available at all major retailers and you can pre-order to claim some amazing bonuses at the link above or go to Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

You’ll never be the same, and that’s a great thing.

tommy baker coaching

How to Hire a Coach, Mentor or Program Pt. III

By | Advice, Entrepreneurship
Reading Time: 9 minutes

How to Hire a Coach, Mentor or Program Pt. III

This is a continuation of a series around How To Hire a Coach, Mentor or Program. If you missed Part I, go here and for Part II, click here.

YOU HIRED A COACH, NOW SUCCESS IS YOURS…RIGHT?

You did it.

You put your dreams on the line and chose to stack the chips and go all in by hiring a coach, mentor or program.

The first time you do this is special —and the transformative energy of writing your dreams a check is palpable.

Right before this moment, there’s fear, doubts and really wondering what the hell you’re doing. But the moment you finish writing the check or paying the invoice —a tsunami of emotions comes through you and you realize what you’ve gone:

You’ve gotten off the sidelines of life where 95% of people are.

You are in the game, you’re not only dreaming big…but acting big. Make no mistake: this is huge, and you should be proud of yourself.

And now it’s only a matter of time before you’re making it rain with stacks of cash in your bank, fueled by purpose and commitment like never before, right?

Possibly, but not always. During Part III, I really wanted to peel back the curtains and give you an inside look at how to maximize your experience.

Because while everything we’ve covered to this point is powerful —not every coaching experience comes with 100% success rate. This may seem obvious, but even with the best experiences that come with proven results, there are people who don’t get out of their own way.

They may have paid, but they stay comfortable.
They may have committed, but they don’t follow through.
They may have made a bold decision once, but don’t repeat those.

For myself, I’ve been part of nearly every type of experience imaginable —including masterminds, virtual programs, one day seminars, 7 day seminars, online courses, Facebook groups, etc. I’ve also run nearly of these and leading people on the other side through my own work.

It’s time to discover how to make your coaching experience an undeniable success by reviewing the rules of engagement I use with my clients. Before any experience, I share this and have each client commit to them, and now they’re yours, too.

Let’s dig in.

tommy baker coaching

Rule #1: Drop The Ego

The number one obstacle in the way of your growth, my growth and everyone else’s is simple: our egos. This isn’t debatable, it’s reality.

Because your ego wants to keep you small. It wants to keep you exactly where you are today. It wants to ensure every part of itself stays in tact, and it doesn’t want to let go.

Letting go to the ego is a form of death —and it can and will do anything to avoid this vulnerable state.

Because I’ve seen people pay tens of thousands of dollars, declare how bad they want or need a program or coach —and then let the ego win. We are not dealing with something simple here: the ego is creative, relentless and stubborn.

So, how do you actually drop the ego?

First, it starts with being aware. If you picked the right coaching experience —you’re going to be challenged and pushed to your edge. Simply signing up means you’re asking for help, which the ego already hates. But during your experience, the ego will look for ways to:

Prove you’re right.
Talk you out of big decisions.
Make excuses to let you off the hook.

Remember: each of these are designed to keep you exactly where you are —and you must be hyper aware of this in real time.

Secondly, you have to keep your eyes on the prize and remember why you started in the first place. Because the ego thrives on the short term, you must remember your North Star vision and deep rooted ‘why.’ Without this, it becomes easy to listen to the voices of the ego and start to believe its false narratives.

Lastly, when your ego is being challenged and you feel emotionally triggered —see this as growth in real time. This is not bad, it’s not a time to quit…it’s a time to lean in to the discomfort and find the gift on the other side.

ACTION: Dropping the ego is not a one time decision. On the path of your growth —it’s a daily one.

Rule #2: Trust the Process

NOTE: This is a small excerpt from my new book, The Leap Of Your Life which is available for early pre-order on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other retailers.

“I don’t know if I can keep going, man. This is hard.”

I’m sitting three fourths of the way of from my favorite hike in Phoenix, one I’ve done 117 times in less than 3 years. My client flew in from Los Angeles for a one day intensive to create a game-plan for every part of his business and life.

But I don’t start in a conference room at my office, we’re on the mountain and it’s a brisk 103 degrees. It’s July. Steve is 44 years old. He made $200,000 in personal income last year. He’s got 3 kids. And he’s here with me in the sweltering heat, carrying an enormous rock on his shoulders. It hurts. And oh yeah, he paid me to do this.

“You’re focusing on the pain, and that’s why it hurts. Start identifying what the rock means to you, and why you’re carrying it. Let’s go, you’re playing small.”

And the path continues. He grimaces every step of the way. The rock is uncomfortable by design: no matter how one carries it, it restricts breathing. The mountain is hard enough, the rock makes it harsher. This is part of how I help clients experience radical clarity, leading to transformation and results.

Rule number two is about one thing and one thing only: trusting the process of your coaching, mentoring or program experience. It’s about knowing someone else is in charge and has your best interests in mind —and being okay with this.

One of the biggest downfalls of your coaching experience will come with not trusting the short term process. For myself and my clients —I prepare deeply and intensely, creating all types of ways to help them achieve clarity and step into their power.

If they didn’t trust the process, they wouldn’t be standing in the middle of a mountain as I pushed them —holding a rock. They wouldn’t persist in the middle of a coaching session where we’re digging into an anchor from the past that has now become an excuse.

If you can’t trust the process, you can’t expect results.

ACTION: Trusting the process means trusting yourself. Stay present and understand your coach or mentor knows what they’re doing and why.

If you can’t trust the process, you can’t expect results.

tommy baker coaching

Rule #3: Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

The third rule to maximize your success with your coaching experience is to get comfortable being uncomfortable. I know this sounds obvious —but it amazes me how many people will commit to something and then not be willing to get uncomfortable.

All four types of coaching experiences will require you to get uncomfortable in a variety of ways. For example:

The informational coaching experience will require you to cross the threshold from “thinking” to doing.

The motivational coaching experience will have you drop your addiction to low emotional states and tap into your peak energy and vitality.

The inspirational coaching experience will have you get rid of the armor, the convenient layers you’ve created and are using as anchors —to remember who you really are.

Lastly, the transformational coaching experience will be a mix of all of the above and will take you to some dark caves —plunging you into the depths of who you are to bring you back as the most powerful, grounded and purposeful self.

If your coaching experience is making you at least slightly uncomfortable, something is missing. To achieve a result you don’t currently have is going to require you to shed old beliefs, ways of operating, habits, rituals and mindsets. Part of this, naturally —means discomfort.

ACTION: Be willing to get uncomfortable and see this for what it represents: your growth, and ultimately results.

Rule #4: Be Radically Honest

There was a time in my life where I needed to get out. I needed to leave my environment, and I’d built a business I now hated. I felt alone, disconnected and started to resent myself for not taking action.

But there was one core reason all of these feelings were bottled up: I wasn’t getting radically honest. No one knew about my predicament, because I chose to hide it.

Being a positive and energetic person —I chose to keep it to myself.

Until I no longer could, and I remember being on a mastermind call and declaring all of the above. My initial expectation was for people to laugh at me and mock me —and of course, that didn’t happen.

They agreed with me and validated my feelings.

Whew.

I let out the biggest exhale ever —and remembered the power of sharing our truth.

Your coaching experience will demand you get radically honest if you want to achieve your biggest breakthroughs. It sounds obvious, but we’re so skilled at building facades with ourselves —it can be a massive challenge to even know what to get honest about.

So, what do you need to be radically honest about?

Where you find yourself today. Your level of fulfillment in all areas of life. What’s not working and how it makes you feel. What you really want to be doing, and why.

Without this crucial piece, you’ll miss out on life-changing breakthroughs, insights and results.

ACTION: Before you start your experience, put all of your deeper truths on paper. Journal why you’re really in the program, and get radically honest.

 Rule #5: No Weak Language

“Maybe.”
“I’ll try.”
“I guess.”
“We’ll see.”

No, not here. The last and final rule of my coaching experiences (and ones you should adopt no matter who you choose to work with) is simply no weak language.

Weak language allows for excuses to come in, ensure you play small and can kill an otherwise transformative experience.

Here’s why this matters: our language provides a behind-the-scenes look at our closely held beliefs, and even more importantly —the level of belief and self trust we have with ourselves.

In my programs, we have a rule where we’re allowed to interrupt anyone at anytime (including me, of course) when they’re using weak or half hearted language.

One of the amazing things that happen when you become aware of your own weak language is how much you see it in other people. You overhear a conversation at your local Starbucks —and you’ll be amazed at how often we use these words that don’t mean anything.

Not here. Instead, when you speak —own it and declare it with everything you’ve got. Be willing to put yourself on the line.

ACTION: Eradicate all weak language, and start catching yourself in the process. Ask others to call you out, too.

tommy baker 1% rule

So, What Are You Waiting For?

We’ve come a long way. I wanted to create this resource, which is nearly 6,000 words —to help you step into a coaching or mentoring experience for one reason and one reason only:

They can, and they will —change every part of your life.

Sure, I’m biased, but I can say with definitive clarity that I would not be where I am today if I had not made that bold decision to go all in on myself.

My story is definitely extreme, but it’s what I needed at the time. Because if I don’t make that bold choice, I don’t have a $55,000 day in business, I don’t move cross country when I knew I needed to, I don’t meet my soul mate and I may be living a completely different life.

So as we finish this experience together, all I have is one question for you:

What are you waiting for? 

I’m often having conversations with people who know it’s time, and yet don’t take action. Each day they put it off —they begin to lose a fraction of their belief and energy to create something new. Until one day, it’s gone for good.

How to Hire a Coach, Mentor or Program Pt. III

I’ll be adding a special Part IV bonus section to this piece, and will link it here once it’s out. But for now, you have all you need.

To go back to Part I, click here. To review Part II, click here. And of course, if you’re wanting to work together in some capacity, let me know.

As of January 2019, these are the experiences I offer:

3P Experience. This is for you if you’re making less than $100K, control your financial destiny (i.e. entrepreneur, solopreneur or wanting to be one) and need to deepen your purpose, power and profit.

Breakthrough Mastermind. The Mastermind is for those making at least $200K and are at a ‘comfortable’ level but leaving so much on the table. You’re wanting to get to the next level and 5X every area of your life.

Private Coaching / Intensive. The last one is a fully customized experience where you come to Scottsdale, AZ and spend a day with me and/or enroll in a 100 day private coaching experience with me.

Fill out an application here, or simply email me at tommy@resistaverageacademy.com and we’ll take it from there.

I’d love to hear from you in comments, especially if you have any questions.

The 5 Myths Of Clarity (Holding You Back)

By | Advice, Entrepreneurship
Reading Time: 4 minutes

The 5 Myths Of Clarity (Holding You Back)

I found myself in yet another conversation with someone about what they’re being held back by, and they told me in desperation:

“Tommy…if I only knew what to doI’d be on fire and making all my dreams come true.”

And while it sounded great on paper, I told them the truth:

“That’s a brilliant excuse, one I’ve used personally —but it’s not true.”

In the personal development, growth, and seven-easy-steps-to-success world, I’m noticing an unhealthy obsession and reliance on clarity.

And I understand I speak of clarity all the time too —on the Resist Average Academy podcast, my books and endless social media posts.

But I’m tired of people using lack of clarity as an excuse to not get started and to sit on the sidelines.

I’ve compiled these myths into what I call the 5 Myths Of Clarity most people use as a convenient excuse to stay stuck…

….and not do the tough and messy work required to face themselves every day and move their life and business forward.

Don’t let these hold you back from creating incredible results this year and in 2019.

Let’s dig in and release them once and for all.

Myth 1: Clarity Is a Destination

The number one clarity myth is the belief that clarity is an end-all, be-all destination. This couldn’t be further from the truth, and yet it’s so common to believe.

Because believing this myth places tremendous pressure on achieving clarity —and people will spend years or decades searching for it.

They may spend time in Himalayan ashrams, or be on an endless loop of information binging their favorite personal development guru and still never find it.

Why?

Because clarity is a process and evolution based on your growth.

Your clarity and mine will change based on who we are today, tomorrow and during the rest of our experience in this game called life.

Release the pressure, and instead —fall in love with the daily pursuit of clarity. Understand clarity increases with capacity, meaning you’ll achieve more clarity as you grow and experience results in life.

(This is why the homeless person on the street doesn’t create vision boards —the clarity they need is how to get their next sandwich.)

Myth 2: Clarity Is Needed to Get Started

“Once I know what to do, I’ll start.”

“I need some more information and planning.”

“Next year once I have my certification, I’ll launch.”

While some clarity is important to start —most people think they need all the answers today. Again, this keeps countless people on the sidelines of life and business, waiting for clarity to get started.

This becomes an endless cycle of wanting to start, getting overwhelmed and then repeating the pattern over and over until you give up.

Here’s the deal: while some clarity is important to get started, it’s overrated.

Because when you execute, you’ll find much more clarity than you ever would thinking and pondering for 6 months.

Myth 3: You Need Clarity On The “How”

I wrote about this deeply in The 1% Rule, and I said the “how” is where dreams go to die.

So often, I’ll be in a client session or having a conversation with someone and I notice how inspired they get about their vision (the what) and their purpose behind doing it (the why.)

But then, I slowly see their body language start to change —and that’s when I know they’re thinking about the gap.

The gap, or the “how” —is connecting the dots between the vision and the messy middle.

But contrary to what most people believe, you don’t need to have clarity around the “how.”

Because when you’re crystal clear on the what, and the why —the how starts to reveal itself.

The only clarity you need is on your first few steps to get started. I’m literally talking about those first 3 action steps you can do this week, and the following 3 you can do the week after.

Everything else becomes a chance to be riddled with fear.

Myth 4: No Such Thing as Having Too Much Clarity

For some people, having too much clarity can actually create so much pressure —they do nothing.

I know, I know…it sounds weird and you’re probably thinking:

“What!? How can too much clarity be a bad thing?”

Let me explain with a personal example. Once every 6 months, I sit back and nerd out with a marker in hand —and put my entire business and life on a massive whiteboard.

(I do this with my clients, too.)

This past year when I completed it —I took a step back and thought to myself:

“Wow….this is amazing. But if you showed me this a year ago, I’d be overwhelmed.”

The lesson is simple: while clarity can be amazing, too much can send people into paralysis by analysis or complete and total shutdown.

Furthermore, as we mentioned above —this constant pursuit of clarity can become an avoidance mechanism for doing what really matters: getting started.

Myth 5: Clarity Guarantees Massive Results

Once you have clarity in life and business —you’re going to make it rain, Oprah’s going to be calling your cell phone and you’ll be on TV, right?

Good luck with that.

While clarity can be a powerful pre-cursor to massive results, it doesn’t guarantee anything.

The truth is lots of people have clarity that they’re on the path to lung cancer if they keep smoking and yet choose to do nothing.

It is my belief most people know what to do next, yet are riddled by fear and lack the courage to take the next step in their lives.

So, remember: clarity is a launchpad, but it’s what you do after that determines your (real) success.

Now, What?

So, there you have it —I wanted to share these with you in the hopes you don’t get stuck thinking you need all the clarity in the world.

These are some of the most common themes I see holding people back from actually having clarity, and most importantly:

Doing something with that clarity—what I call integration.

(This is why I created The Integration Experience audio training, which you can download for free on the front page of the site.)

As we wrap up another year, take the time and energy to get clear —but don’t let yourself fall into one of these myths and instead use your clarity to integrate every area of your life for 2019.

I’d love to hear from you on these myths of clarity in comments and if you have anything to add or share, post below and share please!

The Best Self Development, Business and Personal Growth Books of 2018

By | Advice, Entrepreneurship, Writing
Reading Time: 12 minutes

The Best Self Development, Business and Personal Growth Books of 2018

Ahhhhh, the nerd inside me loves nothing more than to shut off the world and go deep into books. If you’ve ever followed my Instagram, you’d know I’m a little obsessive.

Okay, totally obsessive is more like it. Here’s why:

The knowledge, wisdom and reflective aspect of reading has transformed my life — and Barnes and Noble is my version of a delicious slice of heaven.

At the end of every year, I like to reflect and think back to the books I read and how they impacted me. On any given year, I’ll read between 50-100 books —depending on what I’m working on and which season of my life and business I may be in.

In other words, I read quite a lot. By the way, remember the 10 pages a day rule: if you read ten pages every single day, you’ll read around 12-20 books per year.

Start small, and watch what happens.

According to the Washington Post, only 19 percent of adults read for leisure these days. One of the best parts about reading books is what you don’t do when you make the decision to read: less television, social media and distraction.

So, what were my favorite books of 2018? This is a personal list I choose to share with you, and is not based on anything except my level of learning, enjoyment and connection to the material. This is not a list about literary genius, and all of these works are non-fiction.

These are in no particular order, and few of these authors have been on the Academy podcast which I’ll link to under each section.

Let’s dive in, shall we?

21 Lessons For The 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari

best books 2018What is happening in the world today?
Who can we trust for objective information?
Are things as bad as people say they are?

These are all questions I’ve asked, and been frustrated in trying to answer. Part of me wants to ignore it altogether, and the other part wants to dive deep and see how I can contribute to a solution. But awareness is always the first step.

Enter Professor Yuval Noah Harari —author of Sapiens and Homo Deus, two bestselling and thrilling books examining where we came from and where we’re going.

In 21 Lessons For The 21st Century, he deep dives into where we are today to paint a clear picture and how today’s choices will shift us going forward. I love this work, because it makes me think. It challenges me. Nothing is off the table here, including the dominance of Big Data, AI, Religion and the future of life and work.

If you’re someone who feels lost in finding objective sources of information and want at least some clarity about where we are (and how that may impact you) —don’t miss out on this one.

In a world divulged by irrelevant information, clarity is power – Yuval Noah Harari

READ THIS IF:

You want an objective view of what’s happening in today’s world and want to spend time thinking about the world’s greatest problems and opportunities.

The Courage To Be Disliked by Ichiro Kishimi

best books 2018I heard Tucker Max speak glowingly of The Courage To Be Disliked on the James Altucher podcast, and I had to get it. The title alone grabbed me, and I realized this book had already been a sensation in Japan.

Told through a conversation between a young Man and a aged philosopher, it’s a refreshing format on the topics of change, transformation, courage, relationships and finding joy in life. It speaks about what gets in the way of our growth and how to navigate our lives.

The backbone of the book’s philosophy comes from Adlerian philosophy, which was something I’d never heard of. A colleague of Freud, Alfred Adler believed in developing oneself individually while balancing the holistic nature of a connected community.

Looking back, I’m realizing I need to read this again: it’s a deep read, but the way it’s told allows it to be a fast one. There’s a lot of wisdom within each sentence. It’s a philosophy mets self development type of book, and absolutely worth reading.

The courage to be happy also includes the courage to be disliked. When you have gained that courage, your interpersonal relationships will all at once change into things of lightness. – Ichiro Kishimi

READ THIS IF:

You’re looking for a refreshing take on change, courage and navigating the complexities of life.

12 Rules For Life by Jordan Peterson

best books 2018

Jordan Peterson has become an online sensation —and for many, can be quite polarizing. While I’m not here to discuss the politics around him, there is no doubt he is smart, studied and produces great work that makes you think.

12 rules For Life is a blend of philosophy, history and advice strikes a chord for its simplicity and great examples to drive the point home. Chapter titles include “Treat Yourself Like Someone You Are Responsible for Helping” and “Set Your House in Perfect Order Before You Criticize the World”.

What I love about his work is how simple it truly is. However, as humans…we tend to complicate everything. Peterson’s advice that changing the world starts with cleaning our room may seem obvious, but is it really? I don’t think so: self-reliance is always the first step in authentic leadership. So many people want to change the world, but what about starting with the person in the mirror?

Strengthen the individual. Start with yourself. Take care with yourself. Define who you are. Refine your personality. Choose your destination and articulate your being. – Jordan Peterson

READ THIS IF:

You want a blend of life advice with philosophy, history and all types of examples told in a meaningful way.

The Third Door by Alex Banayan

best books 2018I was standing there in Barnes and Noble (which is kind of my second home to be honest) when I saw the Third Door. And then I couldn’t put it down. Alex Banayan, who’s been on the show —has an incredible story of taking chances and putting himself on the line.

This allowed him to meet Bill Gates, Lady Gaga, Steve Wozniak and countless others to distill the best advice on getting started with a career and a dream.

What caught me with this book was the powerful storytelling —combined with the raw enthusiasm jumping off the page. The premise is simple: in life, there are a few ways to operate:

One, we can do what everyone else does: waiting in line.
Two, we can be high rollers and VIP’s: we pay to skip the line.

But there’s also a third way: we can ditch the line altogether, reinvent the rules and play our own game to get what we want. This is the mindset of rebels, trailblazers and industry titans who chose to carve their own path, and The Third Door will inspire you to do the same.

If you actually want to make a difference in the world, if you want to live a life of inspiration, adventure, and wild success—you need to grab on to that exponential life—and hold on to it with all you’ve got. – Alex Banayan

READ THIS IF:

You’re wanting a page-turning adventure full of advice from some of the world’s best minds.

The Motivation Myth by Jeff Haden

best books 2018If we want to launch a business, we need more motivation — right?
If we want to make more money, we need more motivation — right?
If we want to thrive in relationships, we need more motivation — right?

Wrong. This myth holds so many people back as they “wait” to feel like doing something, and if they’re not motivated…

They quit. This is why I loved The Motivation Myth by Jeff Haden: we need more people who are dishing out the real advice around what it takes to succeed. Way too common is those who are relying on extrinsic motivation instead of choosing to create it every single day. Motivational videos are a dime a dozen, but can you execute on the days you want to stay in bed?

This core message is deeply in line with my work, and how I help people achieve results long term. Because if you think you always need motivation, you’ll miss out on the power of growing when you don’t feel like it.

The problem with waiting for motivation to strike is that it almost never comes with enough voltage to get you started. – Jeff Haden

READ THIS IF:

You’ve felt stuck relying on motivation to achieve your goals and dreams and need to get your power back.

Audience Of One by Srivinas Rao

best books 2018When we’re creating something —a message, our platform or any type of endeavor, we can get caught up in doing it for the wrong reasons. We can think we’re being selfless when we’re creating for others —but in Audience Of One, Srinivas Rao takes a different approach.

Using great stories of artists such as David Bowie, the book creates a compelling argument around creating for one person: ourselves. In other words, true creativity is found when we’re able to detach from others expectations and pour our heart and souls into the work.

One of the reasons I loved this book (along with his first one, How To Be Unmistakable) —the way the book is packaged and presented makes it an easy read.

The second half of the book acts like a “how to” on getting our creative work done in an ever distracted world. I was writing my next book when I read this and it helped me focus and re-center on what matters —and will do the same for you.

This includes great tips for focused work, using our environment and habits to shape our creativity and releasing the noise and pressure we so often put on ourselves.

We must learn to let go of our attachments and expectations if we’re going to derive satisfaction from our work and create art that we’re proud to put our signature on. – Srivinas Rao

READ THIS IF:

You’re feeling stuck creatively and spinning your wheels and/or can’t find the time to do the work you care about.

WILD Habits by Tara Mackey

best books 2018

Tara Mackey’s story is incredible: one of resilience, and overcoming adversity against all odds—including being put on 14 prescription drugs and choosing one day to quit.

Cold turkey.

Her podcast episode blew me away because of how she overcame a deeply troubling childhood to now inspire and empower women all over the world as a successful entrepreneur, author and CEO.

I’m always amazed at what people can create coming form having their back up against the wall. This is why I love bringing people on the Academy to dig into their stories, and show you it’s possible no matter what has happened.

Her second book, WILD Habits —is all about how to build this foundation for ourselves and step into who we really are. WILD stands for: willingness, intuition, love, and discipline.

In my coaching, I’ve found this acronym to be essential for not only achievement —but feeling inner freedom, peace and clarity. I especially love the inclusion of discipline which many people get wrong, to me it’s always been about not breaking promises to ourselves (and others.)

In short, your habits will determine the quality of your life, and if you and I can stack more powerful habits into our lives —the more likely we are to love our lives.

My habits used to get me in trouble, now my habits are building blocks that have shaped my life and helped me grow —responsible for every business achievement and my personal health and mental well being. – Tara Mackey

READ THIS IF:

You’re ready to get back to a place of deep alignment…and stop feeling stuck and like nothing is ever working.

The 1% Rule by Tommy Baker

best books 2018 tommy bakerWait, you’re going to promote your own book on this post!? Of course, because I believe in it. The 1% Rule was written for those who were tired of setting life-changing goals only to wake up a few weeks later with nothing to show for it but wasted enthusiasm.

Furthermore, I wanted to give people their power back. At the end of the day, the process is what makes you who you are, not the outcome. Any big outcome in life is momentary (and surprisingly anti-climatic.)

When you put something out into the world, you never know what’s going to happen. It’s been incredible to watch The 1% Rule impact so many people around the world and give them a blueprint to reverse engineer their success and believe in themselves and their dreams again.

When the what and the why are vivid, the how starts to reveal itself. – The 1% Rule

READ THIS IF:

You’re able to create a bold vision or goal(s) for your life —but lose all hope when you think of “HOW” to make those happen.

Atomic Habits by James Clear

When looking to change our behavior, we should stack a bunch of success habits on top of one another —right? Kind of. The problem with this approach is habit change takes time, and since our brains are wired for extreme efficiency —it becomes easy to revert back to normal.

best books 2018I consider Atomic Habits to be a more academic version of The 1% Rule, as we cover very similar topics. James Clear is a great writer and researcher who simplifies the complexities of behavioral change with topics such as making habits ridiculously easy, shifting your environment for success, and much more.

I loved the audio version of the book and finished it in a day. The book became a quick New York Times Bestseller, so that should tell you something.

What I love about it is the simplicity of say, tiny habits —why aiming to do 10 push-ups a day is better to create a fitness routine than starting CrossFit and doing 5 workouts a week.

You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems. – James Clear

READ THIS IF:

You want to put most of your successful decisions on auto-pilot and finally stick to behaviors long term.

A Tribe Called Bliss by Lori Harder

best books 2018One of the things I love doing is reading books intended for different target audiences. Why? Because I get to connect with other people who I seemingly have little in common with, and yet realize that’s not true at all.

This year, I’ve read more books intended for women than any other year: because I want to deepen my understanding of the unique challenges they go through, so I can do better too.

This includes how competitive women can be with one another, and feel isolated in their pursuits. Lori Harder flipped the script and in A Tribe Called Bliss, talks about why the old model isn’t working. It leaves women alone, frustrated and always in scarcity mode.

Recent research has shown the key to a successful marriage or partnership is each person has significant same-sex relationships they can lean on to share a safe space of trust and support. I’ve found this in my own life by surrounding myself with Men on similar paths.

No matter how much hope and validation you put on someone’s approval or a destination —those are not bliss. If bliss means getting things, permission, validation or reaching a destination, you’ll miss a lifetime full of it. – Lori Harder

READ THIS IF:

You’re feeling disconnected from having a support system or tribe and want to feel the power that comes from having a community of people who have your back.

This Is Marketing by Seth Godin

best books 2018Marketing. This vast world can be overwhelming, confusing and downright frightening —I know from experience of working with the biggest brands during my copywriting career. And if I’m being honest with you: I’m still trying to figure it all out.

Here’s the deal, though: marketing is the lifeblood of any business. You can be the best in the world —but if people don’t know about you, it’s going to be a matter of time until you’re forced to close up shop.

Enter Seth Godin, someone who has transformed my business life and view of marketing. His ideas, his thoughtful words and the way he challenges me to think deeper —are a complete gift. Classic books such as Tribes, Purple Cow and Linchpin are constantly on my must read lists.

This Is Marketing is another brilliant read, designed to empower you (instead of confuse you) to think bigger about your brand, product or service.

Marketers make change. We change people from one emotional state to another. We take people on a journey; we help them become the person they’ve dreamed of becoming, a little bit at a time. – Seth Godin

READ THIS IF:

You want to be empowered to understand marketing, influence and sharing your gifts with the world in an unconventional manner.

Living With The Monks by Jesse Itzler

best books 2018In a non-stop, microwavable, breaking news world —when do we ever stop? Everyone’s busy, you’ll rarely ask someone how they’re doing without them telling you about it. And yet, our personal satisfaction and connection seems to be at an all time low. Our obsession with smartphones means we’re connected externally, yet lacking something much deeper.

Enter Jesse Itzler, trailblazer, entrepreneur and full immersion author who felt burned out and chose to do something about it. But instead of taking a one day digital detox, he went to live with monks in upstate New York for two weeks. His writing is entertaining, fun and informative: it invites questions about our current routines and 24/7 connected culture.

I don’t know about you, but there are days I want to unplug. Living With The Monks becomes a trusted guide and reminder of what really matters —and how the world won’t end if you and I don’t check Instagram 47 times a day.

The power and temptations of the outside world are great. Train yourself from the distractions. They are the enemies of your goals. Learn to move past the distractions, and you will succeed. – Jesse Itzler

READ THIS IF:

You need a funny, riveting reminder of the power of unplugging —and know you need to create some space for yourself.

When by Daniel Pink

best books 2018Daniel Pink is one of my favorite authors on the topic of motivation and why we do what we do —and this is where When: The Scientific Secrets Of Perfect Timing comes in, his latest book.

Once I started reading, I couldn’t put it down: it breaks down why timing matters more than we think, and how to use this as leverage for our behavior.

For example, the book breaks down daily timing —when you and I should be doing our most important tasks. Pink’s example of your chances of parole being much, much higher in the morning, than say —before lunch is fascinating. For me personally, it was a reminder to not be so hard on myself and maximize my focused time (with ruthless boundaries.)

I have incredible energy to start my day and choose to use it wisely on things like focused work, writing and what I call big rocks in business. But around 2PM, I start to feel an intense dip —this book reminded me this is normal, and what to do during this time.

It also reminded me of the power of taking intentional breaks to re-charge, as opposed to say, checking email and Instagram, why naps are amazing for us and why niners (29, 39, 49) are more likely to make life changing decisions before a new decade.

Afternoons are the Bermuda Triangles of our days. Across many domains, the trough represents a danger zone for productivity, ethics, and health. – Daniel Pink

READ THIS IF:

You’re having trouble getting your most important work done and want to learn how to leverage timing for big results in life and business.

The Best Self Development, Business and Personal Growth Books of 2018

There’s something for everyone in here, and that’s the point: sometimes, we need a book to spark a creative insight —and sometimes we simply need to be woken up.

If you weren’t able to read a ton this year, don’t fret. Start in 2019 with 10 pages a day, and use Audible and audiobooks to help you learn while on the road.

I’d love to hear from you: which books impacted you the most in 2018?

Ditch The Runway, It’s Time To Fly

By | Advice, Entrepreneurship
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Ditch The Runway, It’s Time To Fly

There’s time we should all be spending on the runway of life: accumulating knowledge, wisdom, practice and repetition. This is where we put our preparation in: the pre-flight checklist, the security measures, the analysis of weather patterns.

And then we start to accelerate. This is where momentum grows, and we’re gathering all the tools we’ll need along our path.

But at some point, if we don’t take off —we will either be forced to abort our dreams or be involved in a fiery crash of epic proportions.

Neither is enticing, and yet how often do we spend our entire lives on the tarmac and runway of our dreams:

Chasing the next certification.
Chasing someone else’s permission.
Chasing a ‘someday’ moment in the future.
Chasing society’s approval to give us the nod to fly.

We’ve all been there, and it never seems to be enough. Once we cross off one checkpoint, we add another.

There has to be a better way —or else our dreams will stay grounded forever.

The Best Time To Start Was Yesterday

We’re on the runway, gaining speed, about to take off —and then we stop. We tell ourselves things like:

“I need more time to research.”
“I need another degree, or certification.”
“I’ll do it when life slows down and I have space.”

And so we start to believe these narratives —and we convince ourselves that one day we’ll make it happen.

Except we won’t, because one day and someday are illusions cut from the cloth of fear and procrastination.

And if we aren’t careful, we’ll live our entire lives on the runway.

We’ll watch other planes with more courage and tenacity take off on their dreams, while we stay safely cradled on the ground as the days, months and years pass by.

So the best time for you to start was yesterday.

Regardless of your current skill level —everything we set out to do will require more work, persistence and overcoming obstacles.

So you might as well start now.

Or else, you’ll get stuck in paralysis by analysis much like I did when picking up a new sport recently.

I Wanted All The Gear Before I Started

Recently, I moved into a new home in Arizona, gloriously tucked away in the mountains with unlimited access to some of the best trails around.

So I chose to pick up Mountain Biking —not really a big think in New York or CT, so I was completely new.

And yet, I found myself on the runway: finding a (used) bike, getting all the gear and spending countless hours studying how to get started.

But I wasn’t actually getting started.

Because I can read all the reviews on the latest gear, but everything will pale in comparison to getting out on the trail and having a split second near-collision with a cactus as I fall in a blaze of glory.

This is what most of us do with our dreams: we waste all our time and energy on preparation —when nothing could prepare us for being in the game.

And then we simply miss out on what really matters:

Experiencing the thrill and gift of life that only comes when we’re flying high above the clouds on our unique voyage:

We’re chasing our dreams, living our truths and taking the call to adventure we all deeply crave.

Not for anyone else, but for the Man or Woman in the mirror.

This unquenchable thrill for life can’t be found in blueprints, spreadsheets and P&L statements.

It happens when we take off, and never look back.

What Are You Waiting For?

Is there a time to harness skills, experience life and gain a level of competency?

Of course.

But way too often this becomes a crutch, a convenient excuse to keep our dreams grounded.

(And a brilliant one at that, because we don’t have face the raw and vulnerable feeling of putting ourselves out there.)

So, what are you waiting for?

Because I know one thing to be true:

Regret will gnaw at our spirits, until one day it has consumed every part of our lives.

You won’t regret giving it a shot.
You won’t regret taking a chance.
You won’t regret betting on you.

But you will regret staying grounded, living a life for other people who don’t have to pay the price of your decisions.

It’s time to pull that throttle back.

It’s time to fly.

Because on the other side of lifting off is a life you can’t imagine.

(NOTE: This metaphor is not my own, I simply expanded on it —thank you to the incredible Liz Gilbert.)

33 Lessons From 33 Cycles Around The Sun

By | Advice, Entrepreneurship, Lists, Routines
Reading Time: 6 minutes

33 Lessons From 33 Cycles Around The Sun (Yearly Birthday Post)

Ahhhh, another ride around this beautiful, crazy, intense path we called life.

Birthdays for me (and likely you too) are deeply reflective.

Instead of crushing tequila, I’d much rather go on a hike and spend time thinking about the past 364 days.

Where I learned.

Where I fell short.

Where I created.

It’s a time to look back and ask some deep questions about where we are in life, what we’ve learned…

…and what truly matters.

Every year, I share some lessons —and here are 33 lessons from my time here.

I share these with you in hopes you will obtain some value, much like the intention I set with the Resist Average Academy podcast.

1. Sometimes the greatest form of knowledge and wisdom is forgetting what you (think) you know.

In other words: what got us here, won’t get us there. Letting go is hard, yet essential to get to the next level of growth and awareness.

2. We are all on a quest back to self love, appreciation and owning every part of ourselves.

This is how simple it all really is, and I’m always reminded of this core human driver.

3. The greatest quest we’ll ever go on is our own Hero’s journey —the jagged, uneven path to center, to return our gifts.

If you know every step of your path, it’s likely been created by someone else. Your path is yours, own it.

4. Life’s greatest moments are often not manufactured, and are more about allowing.

Take a step back and reflect on life’s greatest moments. Did you manufacture them with blueprints and spreadsheets, or did you allow them?

5. There is incredible power in contrast, the storms in our lives allow the beautiful sunset to taste that much sweeter.

The other day I was hiking in Arizona where we get 350+ days of sunshine a year, and there was an intense storm.

I looked up and thought: damn, that’s beautiful.

It was a reminder there is power in the contrast, and no matter what you’re going through —it will pass.

6. Urgency, and our mortality are beautiful motivators to remember the essential and go all in.

I call this the Cemetery Principle: remembering our own mortality is the best way to slice through the noise and make powerful decisions.

Because the truth is: it is a matter of life or death.

Once you get clear, there are countless ways to find time for what matters.

7. Waiting for an external result to feel fulfilled and at peace with ourselves will never, ever work out.

Start with your foundation, developing your inner power —or else you’ll achieve success and with a hollow and empty feeling.

8. The greatest communication skill is radical honesty —it releases the number one killer of relationships: assumptions.

Think about how assumptions have destroyed prior relationships —often, all we needed to do was have a real, transparent conversation.

9. The secret is you already have everything you need, and yet there’s always more to experience and grow from.

This is a beautiful paradox and makes our lives invigorating.

10. You know you’ve found your calling when you can’t not do it.

can’t not do what I do. If I had all the money, I’d still do it. If I had all the time, I’d still do it.

11. Our heads often block the most powerful parts of who we are: our hearts.

So many of the people I coach and consult with are stuck in their heads.

(I’ve been there, too.)

And yet, our heads take us away from what really matters: the deepest part of who we are.

12. Intuition will always trump logic, whiteboards and blueprints. Learn to listen to it.

Always trust the internal voice which always knows what to do.

It’s pure wisdom.

13. Go to the places that inspire you, and bring you to tears. Disconnect from the noise, to reconnect to what really matters.

Start here on your path to personal growth. For me, it’s nature —I literally packed my bags and moved cross country because it inspires me so much.

These days, I’m outside in nature 5-6 times per week and I always receive a gift.

What’s your inspiration?

14. Change something, anything! Don’t place yourself in a rigid box. Think you’re an introvert? Go to improv. Hate dancing? Sign up for Salsa.

I’m not a fan of personality tests. I believe they put you and I in boxes —keeping us stuck and rigid.

15. Every time you leave someone, ask yourself —if this was our last communication, would I be proud of how I showed up?

I use this often when speaking to parents or family.

16. The ego is always in the way of learning, growth, peace, acceptance —learn to dissolve it.

The first rule of all my programs is simple:

Drop the ego.

Without this, transformation is a pipe dream.

17. You are much more powerful than you give yourself credit for. And deep down, you know it. This scares you.

However, you’ve ignored the truth of who you are, we all have.

It’s time to get back into it and allow it back into the world.

18. There’s never a “right” time for anything. Dent the quantum field and create it now —book the trip, ask them out, launch the business and live out loud.

“When the kids are a little older.”

“When life slows down and I’m less busy.”

“When I have the money, I’ll invest in myself.

These are all excuses our minds use to keep us stuck, comfortable and playing small.

19. Distraction is a source of un-faced pain —usually in the form of lacking alignment with our purpose and vision.

The times in my life I was most lost, disconnected from purpose and lacking clarity were the times I was all in on fantasy sports, message boards, random entertainment, etc.

Distraction is a feedback mechanism.

20. Be yourself, and don’t apologize. I can be a very intense guy…for years, I tried to dim it —and then I presented myself.

Just be you. 

I’m intense, why would I fight it?

21. On that note, have way more fun. No one gets out of alive. Everyone’s naked anyway 😉

And yes, be yourself but also have a lot of fun along the way.

I’ve been practicing this more often and learning to spend time playing has nourished my spirit and creativity.

22. Fall in love with giving. You can give right now, even if you can’t pay your bills.

I call this the 2-for-1 principle: when you grab a protein bar at the gas station, get two. When you grab water, or drinks, or snacks, grab two. Then hand them out to people in need.

23. Positive psychology is (largely) ineffective. Your “bad” emotions aren’t —they’re a feedback mechanism. Let them be.

You’re human, act like it.

Don’t judge yourself for feeling sad, angry or triggered. Learn to understand your emotions instead of labeling them —and find ways to release them.

24. Clarity is a daily practice, and takes time. Don’t force it, but don’t use it as an excuse to not get started.

Every day, re-affirm your vision for at least 10 minutes.

25. If you wanted it bad enough, you’d find the time, money and energy. Seriously —this has never held a willing person back.

Just saying. A lot of people tell me they don’t have the time and energy. I’ve been broke, with overdrafts on all my accounts.

I still moved forward, because I was willing.

26. When was the last time you looked in the mirror and owned who you are? Do it today.

Tell yourself the truth: you are more powerful than you give yourself credit for.

27. Look up more than you look down. There are no answers in our phones, they all come from the curiosity and willingness to look up.

Be curious! Experience the zest of being alive. Ditch the phone for a weekend, take an adventure…live out loud.

28. Your breakdown can become your greatest breakthrough. Or, it can become your identity that you take to the grave.

Your choice —because playing the victim card leaves us power-less to change. It feels great for a minute, until it doesn’t anymore.

29. Don’t normalize extraordinary. Your heart is a miracle. Your brain is a mystery. This moment has magic.

To quote one of my favorite books, The Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman: there are no ordinary moments.

30. Don’t settle in relationships. Be patient and wait for someone that lights your world on fire.

I didn’t settle, and yet I was tempted to. Nourish the relationship with yourself, and watch what happens.

31. Fall in love with pain —it is the greatest focuser, and suffering because of it is always optional.

Pain is part of life and becomes a great focuser —suffering is the avoidance of pain.

32. Sprint until you can’t anymore. Smile deeper than you ever have. Cry louder so everyone can hear you. Raise the volume on your life!

Turn it up, turn it up, turn it up!

33. There are no ordinary moments (thanks, Dan Millman.)

As I reflect back on this year…

I want to say thank you to anyone who I’ve come in contact with —who supported me, challenged me and allowed me to be my best self.

Because today, everything changes again.

Thank you for being here, and here’s to the next.

31 Simple Ways To Level Up Your Business And Life, Create More Results…and Have More Fun

By | Advice, Entrepreneurship, Lists, Routines
Reading Time: 7 minutes

31 Simple Ways To Level Up Your Business And Life, Create More Results…and Have More Fun

Do you want to level up? Let’s define what that means first: for me, it means to live with more fulfillment and results across all the areas of life.

One of the ways I define success on the Resist Average Academy podcast is simple: creating a life I can’t wait to wake up for.

Does this mean every day is full of puppies and sunshine? Well, sunshine maybe (I do live in Arizona.)

But not always.

It means I’m excited to face both the opportunities and challenges along the way.

All while having an absolute blast through it all, and you can do the same.

1. Start and end your day on Airplane Mode — you don’t need to check Instagram for the 37th time.

This is my number one tip when people ask me the easiest habit with the most benefit.

Starting your day on Airplane Mode will give you insane levels of focus, peace and results.

2. Take 5 minutes every single day to reaffirm your vision and remind yourself of where you’re going.

This is your compass, your North Star. Without tuning in to your vision every single day, other people’s agendas and priorities will get in the way.

3. Clap when you wake up, especially if you’re not a morning person — this will anchor excitement to start your day.

I used to do this every day (my fiancee would kill me right now.)

But why did I?

I wanted to anchor in the habit of being a morning person —and while it took time, it worked.

4. Spend 20 minutes in the morning doing something you love and that increases a skill with focused work.

Without turning your phone on or checking email —spend time on the most important project of your business and life.

5. Have some type of routine…there’s a hundred options — pick one and stick with it.

The masters have routines, allowing them to save precious bandwidth and energy on the stuff that truly matters.

6. Say a simple “thank you” and remember over 100,000 die every day.

You woke up today, you’re playing with house money.

Remember —we’re on a spinning rock circling another big fiery rock, rotating around a massive cluster of rocks.

You’re here: embrace the miracle.

7. Do one new thing every single day. Take a different route home, send the message when you normally wouldn’t — break a pattern.

While routines and habits are powerful —Jesse  —, entrepreneur and New York Times Bestseller also taught me they can get us in a rut.

Once in a while, break the pattern and do something you’ve never done.

8. Everytime you look in the mirror, hold space. Tell yourself how powerful you are and condition yourself for self appreciation.

When you look in the mirror, what do you see?

If it’s anything except someone who has greatness inside of them —you’ve got work to do.

(I call this the Cool Runnings effect, because I love that part in the movie.)

9. Change your work environment from time to time, we all need need scenery — go to a completely different part of town, or outside.

Don’t tell me you can’t. For my freelancers, solopreneurs and entrepreneurs: change your environment, and try something new.

This will spark your creativity, inspiration and perspective.

10. Spend several time blocks during your day with your phone off and unavailable. You’ll start to cultivate a rare and powerful focus.

Focus, focus, focus. There is no shortage of dreamers out there, but in a world of endless noise —focus becomes your competitive advantage.

11. There’s some stuff in your business or life you simply hate doing. Delegate cleaning your place, scheduling appointments or anything that crushes your energy.

Just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you should. Delegate the non-essential, and protect your most valuable resource liike your life depends on it.

Because it does.

12. Affirmations are largely ineffective — if you want to believe something, write it down 500 times.

I do this exercise at least once a week. If you follow me on social media, there is no doubt you have seen this.

13. Be honest with yourself — and don’t believe your excuses. Give yourself permission to tell yourself what you really want out of this life.

Do you buy your own bullshit? I don’t, and it’s why I not only surround myself with real friends (not enablers) but practice radical honesty with myself.

I encourage you to do the same.

14. Don’t buy anyone’s version of success — or else you’ll chase something that you never wanted, which is a sinking feeling.

Spend time defining and re-fining your definition of success —and ensure it’s based on what you really want.

For example, cars do absolutely nothing for me. I will never own a fleet of sports cars, because they don’t move the needle for me.

15. Add playing your favorite song to your morning routine. Rock out for a moment, and bonus points for air guitar.

Have more fun —be willing to look dumb, and feel alive while doing so.

16. Read ten pages every single morning. If you don’t touch a book the rest of the day, you’ve got 18 books read for the year and are in the 2%.

Ten pages. You have the time, and you know it.

This simple trick can lead you to read 15-20 books a year —enough to start to become an expert and thought leader in your field, or on your path to personal mastery.

17. Question everything and allow space for a new perspective, but don’t be a cynic. Cynics don’t allow space, they’ve already decided to see the worst…don’t be this person.

There’s a razor’s edge between these two —but you can feel a cynics energy from a mile away.

Be willing to question everything, but for the right reasons.

18. Listen to the hits of wisdom you get every single day — the trip, the business idea, the book…and execute like your hair’s on fire or else you’ll forget.

Your intuition is one of the most powerful sources of wisdom you’ll ever find. Learn to trust it, honor it and listen to it —even if it doesn’t make sense.

Especially if it doesn’t make sense.

19. Spend time learning something you’re terrible at every week. Guitar, salsa dancing, boxing, sharing a message on video…embrace being a beginner.

I love this one. I love being new. Why? Because it’s fun, and teaches you and I countless lessons.

20. Find creative ways to tell the person you love how much you appreciate them. A little effort, goes a long way.

Post it notes, flowers, random gifts —these go a long way to creating a lifetime of connection.

21. You already know the answer. Stop searching for the answer in other people’s content…create 80% of the time, and consume 20% of the time.

I get it —you’re consuming my content. But the truth is, I’m here to help you share the wisdom you have, too.

22. It’s never the right time to hire a coach to help unleash the most powerful version of who you are and set you on a powerful track. Instead of the vacation, invest in making your real life so awesome, it feels like one.

I believe there is no faster, more efficient and powerful way to transform our lives than to hire a coach.

We all have blind spots, including this guy.

Often, people are afraid to invest in themselves for the wrong reasons.

23. It’s never too late, but in life we have windows. Recognize your window, and take the leap that’s been calling you. What’s the worst that could happen?

You and I have windows of opportunity that come and go —and once the door closes, it’s gone forever.

What’s the worst that could happen?

Ask him or her out —okay, you feel the burn of a little rejection, but at least you know.

Quit the job and start the business —okay, you failed and then found a brand new opportunity.

Click recored and ship your message —okay, no one showed up, but you overcame resistance.

BONUS #1: There’s always another dead end job, stop being so grateful for the thing that’s sucking your spirit.

24. Don’t make daily passion a precursor to create. Understand creating and executing creates those feelings.

It’s time to break this cycle once and for all.

Want clarity? Execute.

Want motivation? Execute.

Want energy? Execute.

25. Consistency is everything and more important than intensity. Do something 7 days a week for 15 minutes, instead of 3 days a week for one hour.

Every single day, I write at least 500 words. When I’m in book writing mode, the bar is set at 2,000 words.

When I say every day —it includes Sundays, holidays, vacations and Tuesdays.

26. Book the trip. Ask him or her out. Talk to that stranger. Launch your business now. Regret fucking sucks.

Come on!

We all need a wake up call.

What are you waiting for?

BONUS #2: Fall in love with rejection…and understand for every ‘no’, there’s an incredible yes waiting.

27. Environment matters 10X more than most people believe. Ultimately, it’ll determine the rate of your growth.

If you want to transform your life with the least amount of friction —shift your environment.

28. Smile, it looks good on you.

Seriously, right now: smiling creates positive energy all around.

29. It’s too late to create space when you’re burned out. Bulletproof yourself by creating space every single day.

White space is essential, no matter who you are.

Create it in advance, or it will be created for you.

(Here’s a snapshot of mine, and no one can schedule anything here without approval.)

30. Make your daily, human interactions less robotic — they’re transactions, but they don’t have to be transactional. Be remembered.

Be that person who makes someone’s day. Tell the grocery store clerk how awesome she is at what she does, and you will be remembered.

BONUS #3: Be the leader in any interaction, people are waiting for someone to give them permission.

31. You can have a down hour, a down day, a down week. But don’t ever give up on yourself.

Please, don’t give up.

We all have moments where we want to give in, but allow yourself some grace and keep going.

Which of these resonated?

Pick a few, and commit to them for the next 30 days, and watch what happens.

I’d love to hear what connected in the comments, and if you have anything else to add.

The #1 Dream Killer (Why Distraction Is Crushing You)

By | Entrepreneurship, Routines
Reading Time: 3 minutes

The #1 Dream Killer (Why Distraction Is Crushing You)

You’re being robbed of your greatness.
You’re being ripped off from your creativity.
You’re being engulfed with lack of clarity.

(And so am I, at least on the days I don’t win.)

And all of these happen for one reason and one reason only:

Distraction.

I know, you’ve heard this before (dude we’re on a blog right now and my notifications are going wild) —I get it.

But the constant noise and desire for interruption and stimulus is the single greatest cost of bringing your dreams to life.

And it’s a slippery slope and battle that has to be managed, because it can’t be won.

(Unless you give up Western life and move to an ashram in the Himalayas —I’ve considered doing that.)

So, how do you do it?

Years ago I found myself in a perpetually distracted state, and I noticed there were key triggers that led me to seek those distractions.

The problem is: it’s now become our status quo, and Goldfish were found to have a greater attention span than us.

So, what to do?

Here’s how I’ve been able to re-wire the game, find peace, clarity, and insane levels of performance (all while running an online business, how ironic…)

And most importantly, how you can do the same.

I. SET YOUR COMPASS FOR THE DAY

Distraction, at its core —comes from an avoidance mechanism from our lack of purpose.

With this in mind, it’s easy to catch ourselves looking for the soothing benefit of being distracted: we can temporarily forget about our problems.

For 95% of people, their lack of clarity leads to endless distraction: if you don’t know what’s important, you’ll fill your day with the non-important.

This is why, every single morning—set your compass and refresh your vision, even if it’s for 5 minutes.

Take yourself to one year from today and what you want to be experiencing —the people, places, feelings and energy.

II. AIRPLANE MODE

Your ego thinks you’re that important, but you’re not: you don’t need to start the day on Twitter.

Starting the day on Airplane Mode has completely shifted my life, and the lives of thousands of clients and followers.

The benefits are endless:

Peace, clarity, some much needed you time, space to think, etc.

If you’re new to this, start with your first 30 minutes of the day without technology, and make yourself completely unavailable.

III. BUILD THE NEW ADDICTION

Years ago, I took a solo trip to Costa Rica for 9 days. On the way to the airport, my heart sunk:

I’d left my phone at home.

Frantic, I asked the driver to take us back.

(I was living in New York, and I knew I would never make it.)

So I took the trip without the phone and spent hours reading, daydreaming and connecting with the local community.

After a few painful days, I realized I didn’t want to touch my phone ever again. I had started to shift the addiction away from noise —to peace and presence.

If you catch yourself checking Instagram every three minutes —take it off your phone.

Turn off all notifications, pings, noises and sounds. You will start to build a new and powerful addiction.

IV. SET BOUNDARIES

“But…what if they need me?”

They don’t. What needs you is energy vampires, endless distractions, requests and other people’s agendas.

Make it work for you, but set boundaries and communicate with people who you know will reach out about what you’re doing and why.

When I owned my fitness business, I rented office space a mile away. My employees thought I was crazy —we had a 6500 square foot space after all.

They didn’t get “it” —I needed a place to work on the business, not in.

I don’t know about you, but thumping speakers playing Kanye West and barbells smashing on the ground isn’t the best environment for long term planning.

Start Today and Watch What Happens

I’m often asked for the one hack, the one tip to transform your life and business:

This is it.

Robin Sharma, leadership expert —sums it up perfectly:

“Addiction to distraction is the death of creative production.”

We’re not lacking dreamers, and those with big and bold ambitions in 2018.

What we’re lacking is a deep level of focus, and every day it gets a little harder to manage.

I’d love to hear about your relationship to noise, and how you manage it every single day in the comments.

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Written by Tommy Baker.
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