“It was a hot July afternoon, most likely a Friday, or a Sunday. I know because I would always drink the night before, and damn would I feel terrible the next day. However, those were my two days. I would drink, smoke some pot, and either play video games or go out on the town with a buddy or two. It was the same repetitive cycle over and over, and I did it for close to 8 years. I wasn’t a total loser. I have had several accomplishments under my belt. I graduated from University with a high GPA, I had a girlfriend, whom I thought at the time cared for me, I had loving parents that loved me, and I even attained a black belt at a famous Tae Kwon Do dojo in Los Angeles, some 10 years prior. All in all, comparatively, I wasn’t doing so bad. Yet why did I choose to hide my sorrows and create problems for myself at the bottom of a bottle? I went to the gym during the week, then at the end of the week, chose to impede all my progress. Why? Well, as I came to realize, it was that something was just missing.
Many of you out there may be reading this and thinking, wow this is me. I take care of what I need to do, then I hit the bottle or a joint, and I feel like I’ve taken my body and mind years back. I know its destructive yet I repeat the process. Many times I told myself this was it, this was the last time I would drink, at most a month would go by, I would convince myself that I have made some progress, that I deserved to treat myself, and then go right back to it.
So how did I get out of this vicious cycle? I would see people my age or younger doing so much better than me, and I felt a sense of jealousy and remorse. Jealousy that I have not attained some sort of success, and remorse that I have wasted my 20’s doing the same damaging, repetitive, actions with detrimental consequences to my health, and well-being.
The one day that changed my life:
I was listening to an episode of the Joe Rogan experience, and on it was a man named Jocko Willink. Now, for those of you who have heard of him, great. I won’t need to give you an introduction. However, for those who don’t, allow me give you a brief summary of who he is.
Jocko Willink was a United States Navy Seal commander who led the infamous Task Force Unit Bruiser. When United States soldiers were taking casualties in Afghanistan at an almost daily this man turned things completely around, to the point where casualties were unexpected rather than commonplace. What he taught was unbridled, unwavering, discipline. In fact his famous mantra to this day, is discipline equals freedom and you can follow him on twitter to see his 4:30 a.m wake up time, every single day for the last several years. How can discipline equal freedom? What I’ve learned from this mantra is that no matter how tough life gets, you want to be so disciplined and so prepared, that the hard times feels like the easy. That to run a marathon is so easy for you because you’ve been training for it and preparing for it for years. So I implemented this into my life.
What do I mean by this?
Well for one, I stopped making excuses. You have no time to work out before work? Wake up an hour and a half earlier. You have no time for family? Wake up earlier and do everything you need to do during the day so that you’re free at night. Every single one of us has 24 hours in a day. According to a leading expert on sleep and the author of “Why we sleep”, Matthew Walker. We only truly need 7-8 hours of sleep (and actually anything less can lead to alzheimer’s and dementia as evidenced most famously in Reagan, and Thatcher – two staunch advocates of way too little sleep). What you choose to do with those other 16 is entirely up to you. You have a 2 hour commute to work? Get an audible subscription and read on the way. You’re picking up the kids from school? Enroll them in an after school activity for an hour and hit the gym before picking them up. Jocko is an advocate of no excuses and I took this lesson to heart.
To learn more about Jocko, check out his podcast here.
The change I made in my life.
I started waking up at 5:30, I ran to the gym, worked out for an hour, ran back. I them made a healthy breakfast and went to work. I got off work and went straight to the gym. I ate a healthy dinner, and read, and improved myself. I did this every single day besides Sunday, for 6 months. I felt better, I looked better, people started responding to me differently. I ran with this newfound success and decided that I was going to start a website that would help people. I have created this website today which you are on, and am happy with the accomplishments I have achieved, but I refuse to stop. I want to see success stories from people. I want to be able to help others and mentor them because I know that if I had a mentor, or truly held myself accountable with unbridled discipline. I would be much better off in my life. This applies to you too my friends. If you have any questions about steps to take, or initiatives to start on. Don’t hesitate to send us an email here at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will respond to everyone eventually. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and coming soon YouTube. I look forward to watching everyone grow!
My final piece of advice:
Create structured discipline in your life. Wake up early. It sucks at first, but your body is extremely pliable and adaptable. Workout, eat a healthier diet with little to no alcohol, no sugar, and processed foods. Try this for a year. Read as much as you can. When people are partying you are working on yourself, to be a better person and to create that which you’ve wanted to for years. You will see a change you didn’t expect, whether you are more focused, your vocabulary has improved or you are making friends easier. I believe discipline, and the ability to create goals and not make excuses in achieving them is imperative for a happy healthy life. Humans were designed this way. Now is the time! Workout, eat right, and read!