Do you want to be a superhero every day?
I promise you, it’s not impossible. It’s just about building habits that will ultimately make you richer, smarter, and more productive.
As a high-performance coach, I work on these every day with my clients, so pay attention:
Meditation is such a buzzword and trendy topic these days, but transcendental meditation has really transformed my life. I do it once in the morning after waking up, and once in the evening after work. The detachment that I now feel from the garbage that comes at me, from the stimulations and distractions that come our way almost constantly, is incredible. Rather than get involved in these things, I can just remain in my own center. I remain focused on what I’m working on and what I actually care about.
You can also just do it wherever you are. You don’t need anything or anybody else. Which is probably a great metaphor for life.
2. Surprise yourself
Let me explain:
I live in Santa Monica, so I have the privilege of having a beach and the ocean right by where I live. Every weekday morning, I wake up at 4.45 and run to the beach and jump in the cold water. The Pacific ocean is freezing!
Training myself to do something that’s surprising (you never get used to the cold) and fear-provoking every single morning has made me so much more resilient, mentally and physically, that I feel I can weather whatever the world throws at me.
There are other ways to do this, of course – you don’t have to live by a beach and wake up at the butt crack of dawn to train resilience: you can ask a different woman (or man) every day for their number, for example. Or send emails to editors because you have articles you want to be published, or lay down in the middle of the sidewalk for five minutes. Sounds ridiculous, but when you can train yourself to do the opposite of what your brain believes is “scary” and “threatening,” you will become more resilient.
The point is to push the boundaries of your fear. When you do, you’ll suddenly find yourself doing things you only imagined or dreamed about, or even wished you could do. But now, it’s your reality. It’s who you are.
Imagine what you could do next.
I know, this is predictable. But if you don’t exercise, it’s such a hard thing to start doing.
You don’t have to start off with intense HIIT workouts or lifting heavy-ass weights. It can be as simple and as easy as walking. That’s it.
We, humans, are designed to walk. That’s literally how we moved from the confines of Africa to the rest of the world. And, in 2017, it’s just such a cathartic way to remove yourself from what you’re doing and disconnect from all the technology – even if just for a few moments.
Going on a 5-minute walk can be like meditation if you treat it as such. It can help you feel less fatigued, it can help your digestive system, it can help you relax, along with a bunch of other benefits.
It’s made me a better person. Not because of the physical conditioning, but because of the separation from this technology-heavy world we’re in.
4. Deep work
Deep work means removing yourself from all distractions and working deeply, focusing deeply, and concentrating deeply on something that’s wildly important to you.
For me, much of 2016 was spent in deep work. Every morning, after I did my beach routine, I carved out two hours of time when I turned off the internet, had no phones around, and I committed to writing.
Carving out those 2 hours for pure writing enabled me to create the blueprint of a book, which then became the content for my blog and an online course. And it’s all because I carved out those two hours every single morning, where I was just in that project-production zone.
If you engage in deep work consistently, something will happen. Like… magic happens. Like… holy shit, I’m really showing up every day and doing it. And a lot of days I didn’t get anything done. A lot of days, those 2 hours were just me rereading the stuff that I’d written before. But showing up every day… it just compounds and compounds and compounds.
And it doesn’t have to be two hours. It can be twenty minutes. Whatever you can make happen for yourself. Just turn off the internet, turn off your phone, and whatever it is that you care about – whether it’s work-related, relationship-related, whatever – do the deep work.
5. Ship It
Do the work and then put it out there for other people to see (and judge) it.
Part of this whole experience as a creator, an entrepreneur, as a combination of the two, is feedback. First-time creatives or entrepreneurs often make the mistake of being really, really protective of their ideas while trying to reach perfection. They want to make it the best possible version with nothing missing whatsoever and they end up spending a year on it…and it doesn’t ever go anywhere.
That’s because they didn’t seek feedback.
Once you seek feedback and get it, the project or business or whatever you’re working on will take on a life of its own, because the feedback will probably be different than what you thought it might be. Feedback will shape your project or business or whatever you’re working on. To be an entrepreneur is to collaborate and essentially serve others. Feedback is key.
The point is this: your idea can’t exist alone inside your head. You can’t just work on something all by yourself, tell nobody, and then when you launch it expect millions of people to care (and buy).
Start small, as small as you can. Get feedback. Adjust.