Instead of focusing on earning money we’re going to shift to saving time. This will not only improve your money making abilities long-term but will also improve your health and well-being. By saving time and improving your mood, success will be easier to come by since you’ll efficiently work through your day. It’s unlikely that all of these improvements will be made instantly, instead, we recommend referring to them any time a basic premise is broken.
Social / Mental
#1 Don’t Try to Change People: Yes we know the irony here. We’re writing an opinion related blog. That said, we’re referring to people who never asked for an opinion. Unless a person specifically asks you for advice you’re essentially digging your own grave. When you meet a person they will generally think they know everything about: 1) health, 2) fitness, 3) money, 4) dating and of course 5) sports – since it’s all they watch. Instead of trying to help someone “move in the right direction” you’ll end up creating an enemy. As an example, we laugh when people try to help “strangers” in the gym (even if they are blatantly working our incorrectly) because they are not going to listen. Instead, operate similar to this blog and only write for people who are interested. Don’t bother seeking to change people.
The good news here is that you *can* help people if and only if you are asked. If you’re a good volley ball player that plays on weekends, it’s likely that other people on the team will ask for tips. This is 100% fine. Give legitimate and real advice. There is no reason to give them bad advice, give them legitimate information since only 1% of them will actually execute on it despite your advice. Notice how odd this is. Even the people who explicitly ask you for advice won’t execute! For anyone in their 30s/40s they will confirm this fact and remember their 20s. At a younger age, if people asked for advice the assumption was that they would execute on it. This is clearly not the case.
#2 No Arguments With Strangers: This is excruciatingly difficult to master. Arguing with strangers on any topic is not worth your time. If you argue with them all you are doing is making regular people trust you less. Remember that the president of the United States has a ~50% approval rating so there is no way that 50%+ of people will agree with you. If the most powerful people in the world have half the population fighting against them… this means the percentages are lower for everyone else.
If you avoid arguments with strangers you’ll also protect your reputation. If someone attempts to attack your reputation you have two choices: 1) point to a proof point or 2) ignore. Ignore is usually the best option since the attacker unlikely has any influence. If a homeless man decides to call you a liar, no one would bother responding because they have no social weight. Similarly, if an average guy who makes $150K a year does the same, your best course of action is to ignore. The one time you can choose the flight response is if the person has weight. If they have more influence than you do, take the time to prove them wrong with facts and take the credibility away from them. This increases your influence and offers no downside since he’ll never like you in the future anyway.
#3 Go for Low Hanging Fruit: This is applicable to business and friendships. If someone doesn’t want to buy your product and says no two different times, don’t bother. You’re better off starting fresh with a new person since it is unlikely you’ll take someone who said no twice into a yes. The only time you’ll go back to the people who said no are if 1) they reach out, 2) it is a major account that you want to penetrate later and 3) if you have run out of new people to call for the day. This is a good way to avoid calling the same “no” person over and over again. This is also no different for dating. No sane male would go back to the same girl desperately looking for her affection if she wasn’t interested the first time around. There are billions of people in the world and it shouldn’t be worth your time.
This means you’re going for low hanging fruit first. A basic economics terms which says you should grab the easiest items of value first. Notice, this does not mean you take the path of “least resistance” at all times. It means your first course of action is to go after the easiest targets before moving on. This is similar to a time-based test. If there are 100 questions on a test you want to answer the easiest ones first since they are weighted equally in value. So when you look at the ways to generate revenue for the day, go for the highest revenue vs. time items. Then you can work on the harder projects.
#4 Realize 99% of Worries Are Fake: While consequences are real, the chances of a current worry is likely small. We realize this won’t work for 99% of the population. But. Try to think of everything in logical terms. It is highly unlikely that you would die in an airplane crash which makes “flight fright” illogical. Similarly, even if you were to get laid off from your current position, the unemployment rate is just 4% and the chances of being unemployed for more than a year is closer to 1% assuming you’re working hard to get another position (you will likely come out profitable!). While these are two extremely different fears, we can logically walk through them and realize the worry is not worth your brain power.
A good way to see if your worry has merit is to calculate the impact and percentage chances. Quick math is a savior. While it is true that you’re likely to suffer some small physical injury at some point in time (break a leg or arm) and it is true that you’ll likely lose a stream of income at least 1-2x in your life, this is par for the course. Look around and realize that if you’re in the top 5% of the population there is just no way you’ll be stuck in a bad situation for long. After all, average people offer mediocre performance across the board in every sub-segment of their life and yet they end up living till 85-87 with a comfortable living standard.
#5 Only Compare to Yourself: While we have used comparisons to help get through worries there is a clear line in the sand. There is no point in comparing yourself to other people. We use averages to figure out if something is likely or not (eliminates worry) and then use the rest of our time operating on the only metric that matters: personal happiness/utility. At the end of the day, it is unlikely that you’ll be number one in any specific item. This could be a sport, making money or winning beauty competitions. The math just doesn’t work. There is however a 100% chance that you can improve every year!
This is where we focus. Each year you can choose a few items to focus on. Given the target audience we think focusing on money in your early 20s is the right choice (we are biased). After that you’re essentially set for life and can move onto other items. If you disagree that’s great, it worked for us and that’s what we recommend. Going forward you then focus on specific items you hope to improve. If you’re rich and unhappy it is likely that either 1) health or 2) relationships have failed. If both of these work then we’re calling your bluff and saying you’re not unhappy if you’re rich, healthy and love your friends/dating life. The great thing about life is that all three of these things, money, health and relationships can improve every year. Choose one of them to focus on each year and make notes to see if you’re progressing or not. In less than 5 years you’ll laugh at all the problems you had in the past since we underestimate how quickly we can improve.
#1 Waking Up: If you’re a night person you struggle here. Instead of trying to drink a ton of coffee in the morning which creates dependence we would recommend a concentration exercise. This can range from math problems to playing a complex game such as chess. We don’t have a clean recommendation since we’re unsure what you enjoy doing but we have a clear answer. The answer is to wake up with a high cognitive activity. Instead of trying to chug caffeine wake up and do a task that requires you to be alert. Ideas include: 1) cross word puzzles, 2) chess, 3) a phone video game, 4) an IQ test etc. Choose any activity that requires you to think and ideally requires faster reflexes (create time constraints for the games you are playing or the test you are taking).
The second rule here is to avoid looking at emails. If it does not require fast reflexes and cognitive effort it is not going to jump start your brain. This is also why it is common to wake up, flip through twitter and fall asleep again. The task did not require your brain to work so it never had to wake up from the morning fog. As an additional boost, we’d recommend a citrus drink such as lemons or limes.
#2 Add Meditation: Some people enjoy meditation in the morning. This causes many people to fall asleep and we think it is directed to morning people. Instead we think meditation in the middle of the day works the best. Since you’ll wake up and get working on your first task, we would put time aside for meditation once your first task is officially complete. You’ll be somewhat tired but alert. This is the perfect time to reset your brain for the next part of the day or next task at hand.
The type of meditation is largely irrelevant. The tricky part is being able to hold zero thoughts. This is not easy particularly during the day when you’re officially awake. This is also beneficial. If you’re able to meditate when your brain is supposed to be alert, it’ll give your mind a much needed quick break and you don’t risk falling asleep (which likely occurs if you attempt this at night or in the morning).
#3 Sleep Consistency: Depending on your age you will eventually jump into a normal sleeping pattern that adjusts naturally for moderate jet lag. For what it is worth we think 6 hours of sleep is enough for someone who is 21-26 or so then it ratchets up to 7 hours for 27-31 and then stabilizes at around 7-8 hours after that. Surprisingly we don’t think it’s really necessary to sleep exactly 8 hours particularly if your life is in order. This is probably due to higher dopamine levels. If you are the road to success you’re happy to wake up and have more energy (which is another reason why success is a self-fulfilling prophecy once you clear your first $1M or so).
We’re making this clear since younger readers tend to worry about “health” too much while people in their 30s worry about it too little. As usual do the opposite. People in their 20s who worry about 80 hour work weeks are largely soft people who won’t succeed. There are millions of people who have done the exact same thing and the standard 99.99% see no health deterioration since they put the work in at a young age. Funny enough the same people who complain that working hard is bad for their health are found at terrible dive bars drinking low quality alcohol consuming Hamburgers and French fries. The rough numbers for sleep we gave are a good guideline and consistency is most important (falling asleep at the same time 6 days a week with a typical longer night out once a week).
#4 Find the Right Foods: We have no proof. All we have is experience. From what we have noticed some people will respond differently to specific types of vegetables. While Spinach and Kale may have similar properties, it can cause stomach issues for one person while the other person sees an increase in energy. This is important to us since your body is essentially telling you which ones are most impactful. Below we provide a quick strategy to figuring this out.
The first step is always the hardest. Do a significant cleanse where you eat no manufactured sugar for about a month. This means nothing but veggies, fruit, fish and a ton of water. We doubt you’ll get through a full month perfectly but once you your body adapts you then start focusing on each food group. Generally speaking: citrus is for alertness, greens are for your brain and carrots/tomatoes are for skin. Go through each food group and see if one works better than the other. One person may prefer Kale, Lemons and carrots while another will react better to spinach/broccoli, limes and beets. The only person who will know is you. This is not a debatable item, since your health is going to allow you to live longer and look younger. A major status symbol particularly past age 35-40.
#5 Work Out Consistency: Similar to sleep, if you’re under 30 years old, working out too much is largely a myth. Anyone who has real experience at a high level athletically knows that top athletes at that age train for 6-8 hours a day. If you want evidence of this just look at the bios of some of the top athletes in the world .After age 30 you can then start looking into timing out workouts so that you’re in the gym for about 4-5 days a week. A good rule of thumb is that three days will allow you to maintain your current physique while 4.5 days a week is needed to improve.
The best way to create consistency is to find someone who is better than you. Find a single person who is stronger than you in a couple of areas so you can be pushed in that specific region. Then begin your normal stretching and massage routines (this is for older people). If you’re consistently being pushed (at least 2x a week) while 2 days are for standard workouts, you’ll develop knots that need to be worked out. There is a reason why every single professional athlete requires a lot of deep tissue massages. They don’t do it for fun, they do it as “pre-habilitation” to make sure they are always at 100%. If someone thinks that muscles don’t need work, ask them why trainers and pro athletes all use these types of services. If they didn’t work they wouldn’t burn their valuable time with them.
#1 Changing Values: Remember that money is just a tool. Given the name of the blog people expect this to be about materialism but it really isn’t. It is about getting rich as fast as possible to then do exactly what you want to do. That part is none of our business. What is odd is seeing people who want to get rich and then have no reason why. If someone is incredibly boring and out of shape… what is the money for? Having a bank account with a high number doesn’t do much so make sure your values are in-line with where you’re spending your time.
If you need $XM to live your ideal life forever, spending your free time increasing this digit is simply illogical. As we mentioned it isn’t possible to win the money game for 7+ billion people so let someone else dedicate their life to that game. Take a good look at your values and remember that when you build your farm you eventually need to consume to crops to live. Otherwise what was the point?
#2 Avoid Unhappy and Unlucky: Every rich person will say they “worked hard” and got rich. The reality is that a lot of luck is still involved. If a tech expert was born in 1900, they would have a net worth of zero since none of their skills would be relevant. Similarly, a lot of ideas are great they just haven’t hit the market at the right time. I.E. Lady Luck.
The good news is that luck favors the same people. We have no idea why. But. It seems to be the case. To create more luck surround yourself with lucky people. This is a common theme in a book called the 48 laws of power and we agree. Another thing to remember is that if you’re a happy and low stress person you will likely attract these people. Why? Well if someone has a lot of good luck they are probably in a good mood and have little stress! So if you want to continue down this path just surround yourself with happy people and slowly fade away from the miserable ones.
#3 Fast Forward: A standard approach to saving time is to fast forward. Always look 10 years down the line and ask what will you regret? This is what you should be doing now before it is too late. If you want to combine number two and three you easily can. Why? Well people who have little regrets are typically… you guessed it… happy and lucky people.
Fast forwarding is done in two ways. First decide who you want to become. Second find someone who largely has what you have. We don’t even know who is reading this but if you’re working in an office we bet there is a 1% chance you want to be like anyone in the office. Remember. When you change places you have to live with all of their life choices and not “re-do” them. So it’s up to you to find someone who is a decade or so older than you and figure out how to follow a similar life arc with your own personal twist.
#4 Focus on Return: If you are not rich yet, this doesn’t apply. If you’re close to “making it” it’s time to transition. When you’re still building and accumulating you can work some positions you never wanted to do because you’re just not where you want to be yet. After that you have to look at how much time you use to generate money. As we tweeted out before it’s a lot better to see an income stream of $10K a year that only takes 1 hour a week than have an income stream of $100K that requires 40 hours a week. Most are glass half empty type people and think that you can’t work at all if you choose the $10K stream (which of course is illogical). Take a hard look at the “ROT” Return on Time. You’ll make significant adjustments and probably make more money. When you turn down income streams you’ll be surprised when people bid up the number when you didn’t even try to negotiate.
#5 Flexibility: Ideally, once you make it your schedule will now be more flexible. You’ll find yourself making some interesting economic decisions. While logically you should always choose the highest income stream this will no longer be the case if you’re bright. Is it better to make $500/hour or $400/hour? The natural answer is $500. But. We would then ask “when does the time occur?” If you can make $500/hour but are forced to be somewhere every single day on Saturday night from 9pm -1am… we’re going to say no. If the $400/hour can be completed at *any time*, that is a lot more attractive. Flexibility relative to the income is what matters and you should be on the look-out for these opportunities even if you can make a few more bucks doing something else. The key is time preference.
For the newer readers… if you’re interested in learning more about making money, staying in shape and doing so without choking off your personality (essentially the point of this post!)… You’ll probably like Efficiency, Get Rich Without Giving Up Your Life. The benefits include: 1) How to get into the top 10% physically with one hour a day of exercise; 2) How to eat correctly to be in the top 10%; 3) How to figure out what type of intelligence you have; 4) How to use this type of intelligence to choose a career and the *right* company: Wall Street, Technology or Sales; 5) How to start an online business and sell (the basics and all you need to start); 6) Clear outline of how to create and start an online product business with correct copywriting; 7) How to go into affiliate marketing if someone wants to take a stab at the competitive space; 8) Overview of how affiliate marketing operates and how to do it, 9) How to do all of this and maintain a normal social life (avoid choking off your personality). As a bonus you can read a success story by Clicking Here