I'm going to be 100% real with you guys here and tell you that a lot of articles I write are based on my own personal experiences in life.
I will also tell you that a lot of articles I write are based on what I'm going through myself at any given point in time.
This article is about having a competitive mindset outside of the gym, and establishing goals that make life more meaningful.
Sometimes it's difficult to see a clear path in life.
It's as if we want to get ahead in life, but we don't know what for. We also may not realize what really gets us ahead in life, and what becomes nothing more than a simple distraction.
Oftentimes we see short term gains as a means of getting ahead and winning, when in reality what we thought were short-term gains actually became pitfalls and distractions.
I was born in America myself, and I've never lived anyplace outside of America.
Sure, I've visited a couple other countries before, but the way I was raised and everything I've been taught has been based on the “American Dream”.
I'm going to let you all in on a little secret right now: the “American Dream” is nothing more than a fallacy.
We are all working longer and harder trying to chase the American Dream, but we don't even know what that dream is anymore.
Everything that is embedded into our heads as part of westernized culture has taught us to attain, attain, and attain some more.
When more isn't enough, you are taught that you need to work more because you do not have enough yet!
Your home isn't big enough, your car isn't expensive enough, and people are not looking at your materialistic shit as much as you'd like them to, in order to feel better about yourself.
I believe that in order to live a fulfilling life you have to first ask yourself what is making your life better and what isn't.
Sometimes the things we chase to make life better actually become nothing more than an added headache and eventually we can become confused on what it is we are chasing in the first place.
Losers will only chase the short-term goals, those fast attainable things that they know they can get quick.
For example, look at the difference between a regular car dealership and a “buy here, pay here” car dealership. One takes more financial commitment than the other, but the other takes advantage of people who have no money at all.
By no means am I saying that you shouldn't work towards nicer things in life, but there comes a point where you have to realize what it is you are working towards.
Working towards a nice car shouldn't mean you are making a purchase as a status symbol; you should be making a purchase towards something that is going to make life easier because you'll own something safe and reliable. A monthly payment that you cannot afford isn't going to make you feel good mentally.
Some people are addicted to work, and some people are addicted to money.
The two often go hand in hand. But when does it become unhealthy? It becomes unhealthy when things you work towards begin destroying your family or yourself.
I have a good friend who owns the best of everything; he has a giant yacht, a Lamborghini, multiple businesses, and eats at 5 star restaurants more than most people eat fast food. He has worked his ass off for almost everything he owns. As an outsider looking in, this guy has the perfect life.
Last year his teenage daughter tried to commit suicide. I wasn't surprised.
He is never around and he rarely even goes to the gym anymore. He has plenty of status symbols but at what point do accomplishments become detrimental? When the fuck do you finally wake up and realize that money controls you, and you have absolutely no handle on life?
We all know the guy who makes a ton of money but is an alcoholic. That same guy will drive by someone who is a homeless drunk and laugh.
The only real difference is perception. The alcoholic with money looks accomplished and the homeless man looks like a failure. It's all perception though, and the two may be more similar than they think.
So how do we even define what we want out of life?
I'll be honest with you guys, I couldn't give you a clear explanation…UNTIL NOW
Life is like a bodybuilding competition.
When you're getting ready for a bodybuilding competition, you are putting 100% into your training.
This 100% is in working out, eating, recovering, posing, tanning, and anything else that comes with trying to be your best.
Ask yourselves what you could accomplish in life if you looked at life the same way?
How many times do we sit around when we could accomplish so much in so little time?
So back to what I was saying before: how do we define what we even want out of life?
Easy…the definition comes with the action.
What we want out of life is knowing we gave it 100% EVERY FUCKING DAY.
With that 100% every day, you are working for the right reasons.
All of a sudden, driving a new Ferrari doesn't become a status symbol, it becomes a direct reflection of your actions, your character, and your willingness to COMPETE WITH YOURSELF TO BE YOUR BEST.
By the time you reach this point, there is nobody left to impress, and by “this point” I'm speaking in terms of your defined character, not your car.
When you began working out, there was no way you could have had a clear vision of EXACTLY how you wanted to look. That wasn't possible, because you didn't know what you had in you until you went through an ass-load of hard work and dedication.
Well if you haven't gone through an ass-load of hard work and dedication outside of the gym, then how can you have a clear vision of what life's accomplishments actually are? Those fast and easily attainable things most of us want are nothing more than distractions.
We are only holding back from what we are truly capable of achieving, and by “achieving”, ultimately what I'm speaking of is freedom of mind and peace…self-fulfillment.
That self-fulfillment will only come with knowing you gave it 100%.
If you're walking around feeling edgy and miserable, if you feel like your life is a mess, maybe it's because you know deep down that you're not giving life 100%. This begins with self accountability.
It's hardest to point the finger back at ourselves and admit that we have been lazy, and although we've been putting 100% in one area of life, maybe we haven't been putting anything into another area.
So how do we turn it all around? Well, it starts with small steps and quickly turns into giant leaps.
I want you to live life as if it's training for a competition.
Every time you feel lazy about doing something I want you to tell yourself that someone is working harder than you are in order to beat your ass at the competition.
10 Steps To Get Ahead In Life RIGHT NOW!
1) Begin by picking up after yourself, that is a great start.
How fast is it to put a new roll of toilet paper on the roller when it's empty? How easy is it to rinse the toothpaste or hair out of the sink after brushing or shaving? How hard is it to wash a plate and put it back after you eat?
Picking up after yourself is just good practice anyway, but it's a small step to grasp the real concept of time management. As soon as you see how easy it is to do more, it'll become more natural to take it further and further.
2) Eliminate people who do not matter.
How many of those people do we know who only keep in contact with us for personal gain or boredom? This is actually most people where I come from.
Do these people exist for any other reason other than to distract me or gain a favor from me? Absolutely not!
Eliminate contact and FUCK BEING NICE! So what if they lift weights like you do? Actually most people in life who ever fucked me over were other bodybuilders anyway.
3) Start carrying yourself better if you want people to treat you better.
This doesn't necessarily come solely in the form of fashion or a smile, it's how you treat yourself! If you take yourself seriously, so will everyone else.
If you take yourself like a joke with nothing going for him and no potential, then others will pass you off as nothing more than a joke.
For every Arnold Schwarzenegger who was taken seriously, there were 1,000 other “meat-heads” who were laughed at and mocked. Remember that!
4) Never stop learning.
Continue to learn….everything you can. Keep your face in literature and books, and if books aren't for you, then read up on something online that interests you.
When you stay in a learning environment and continue to acquire new information, it keeps your mind fresh. This keeps you sharper, mentally stronger, and gains respect.
People who act intelligent are treated as such and people who talk and act like scumbags are passed off as such. Money or no money, you can still be a scumbag
5) Keep an open mind to new ideas.
You may find that things you once made fun of were actually challenging and enjoyable once you try them. Ignore the derogatory comments and do what makes you feel good.
I had a window full of people who knew me at the gym watching me take a yoga class one time, and laughing at my attempts to do the stretches.
But what they couldn't see was the new pain threshold I had developed from holding the stretches and positions and how that transpired into bodybuilding.
They couldn't see the improved range of motion and even the muscle-building results that yoga gave me. I once made fun of yoga, then one day I opened up and gave it a shot!
6) Eliminate bad habits and only reward yourself at the end of the day when you actually deserve it.
Look, I'm not saying that it's not alright to have a couple beers at night, but it's not alright when you sat on your ass all day doing nothing!
That is not a reward or a time for you to wind down, that is just being a scumbag who is weak. Sometimes bad habits are hard to eliminate.
I had an addiction to dipping for quite some time. Yea, that nasty little habit where you pack a dip in your jaw and spit into a bottle, that was me and it was worse during diet time.
I finally broke that habit when I told myself that I'd only reward myself at the end of the day if I deserved it.
What happened was I eventually lost the tolerance for it and it started to smell and taste awful. Because it was no longer on the regular, it was no longer a habit, and I finally kicked it.
Does this mean you cannot have a vodka and tonic or a cigar if you view it as a reward and not a habit? Absolutely not!
All I'm saying is make sure you earn that shit! If you didn't give it 100% that day, then you didn't earn it!
7) Look at your one day a week to relax like your cheat day!
If you've busted ass all week long and made shit happen, then there isn't anything wrong with a day to have fun or relax.
When I started looking at my day to relax like a cheat day in the same manner I looked at clean eating all week vs. a cheat day, I got more accomplished.
What's surprising about this is that you start feeling so much better about giving it 100% in all areas outside of just the gym, that sometimes you still want to make things happen on your off day as well.
But don't forget what it's like to have fun…life is short!
8) Work isn't limited only from 8 am – 5 pm.
Work is all the time unless it's time spent with your family or time spent relaxing because you had earned the right to relax that day.
Your break from work is only with family, when you sleep, or on your day off the regimen (your cheat day).
How do you find the drive to work more than 8-10 hours a day? Easy…you do something that interests you and thus your work stops being a grueling task.
I'm writing this article on Sunday and on a holiday weekend. I'm writing because I enjoy helping people and this is normal to me.
9) Start preparing yourself the day before.
If you have trouble getting to work on time, then why would you continue to shave your face in the mornings? Wouldn't it be wiser to do that the night before?
This falls directly in line with being punctual. Being punctual is so important to me and I absolutely can't stand when I'm not someplace on time.
How many flakes are there nowadays who can't get their ass someplace on time if their lives depended on it?
I'd say 90% of people I come across who are under 50 years of age will be late meeting me at a specific time, and out of that 90% who cannot make it on time, 50% won't even let me know. See Rule #2
10) Do not be afraid of speaking.
When you start treating yourself better and giving life 100% on the regular, this actually comes easier naturally.
You will discover that most forms of social anxiety and fear go away, and chances are the other person you are speaking with will immediately feel submissive to you, based on how you carry yourself (specifically women!).
When I say not to be afraid of speaking to people, I'm talking about a lot of things here. This could be anything from business networking to a possible date, or just learning something new in general.
Some people are just interesting people to talk to and you can learn a lot.
See rule #4, NEVER STOP LEARNING! After speaking to that person you may want to revert back to rule #2 as well. Use your best intuition!
If you feel as if something is missing from your life, then maybe you aren't giving life everything you have.
If acquiring new things only makes your life a headache, then maybe you know deep down that you're gaining for the wrong reasons.
One thing that we never hear about anymore is acquiring a sense of inner peace and a life of fulfillment.
A life of fulfillment starts with the willingness to do your best every single day….in any situation in life!
I know how easy it is to put 100% into one area of life, at one given time, and then move on to the next project. I'm telling you to put that 100% into everything you do!
You will soon see that life will come together faster for you than you ever thought possible.
When I finally began looking at life itself like contest prep, shit started happening fast…shit happened in days that would have otherwise taken me months.
You never know what you're truly capable of if you don't try.
Train hard….at everything!