Stephen Alter was born and raised in the Himalayas, where he and his wife, Ameeta, continue to make their home. He is the author of more than fifteen books of fiction and non-fiction, including Sacred Waters: A Pilgrimage to the Many Sources of the Ganga. For ten years, he was a writer-in-residence at MIT and before that, director of the writing program at the American University in Cairo.
His honors include a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Fulbright Research Grant and an honorary degree from Wesleyan University, where he studied as an undergraduate. He is founding director of the Mussoorie Writers’ Mountain Festival, which brings together writers, mountaineers, filmmakers, artists and musicians from around the world to celebrate the heritage of the Himalayas.
1. Live to Fight Another Day
Throughout your life and your own personal journey you will face a number of incredible challenges where you will be faced with two choices: 1) Stand and fight or 2) Live to fight another day.
As masculine and macho as perseverance and facing down impossible odds may sound, it is often wiser to know when to fold. This does not mean quitting. It means pausing, reassessing the situation, and deciding where to move from a place of greater clarity and knowledge
When faced with a huge obstacle in business or finances, you can continue banging your head against a wall that won’t budge. Or you can do the wiser thing. You can momentarily retreat, lick your wounds and come back later with a greater sense of purpose.
2. Understand That You Are a Small Part of a Whole
One of the many benefits of being out in nature, is that you begin to realize just how small you are. The world is full of 7 billion people and trillions of other organisms all fighting to survive. You realize that you are not important.
As depressing as this may sound. It is actually a cause for excitement because it means that you have free reign to dare boldly. No one cares enough about you for failure to be final. People are so caught up in their own concerns that they have very little time to worry about you as well.
This means you are free from the worry of judgement of others. Live life the way you want and don’t worry about what people think. You are a tiny part of a giant universe and at the end of the day it is better to dare boldly, and fail greatly than never to try at all.
3. Use Your Pain as Fuel for Your Story
Everyone suffers some kind of pain in this life. A break up or divorce, loss of a loved one, business failure, personal or moral failure; everyone has something in their life that causes great pain.
Instead of dwelling on this pain and wallowing in self pity, use it. Use your pain as fuel to create the greatest life possible and to share your story so others can avoid your misfortune.
The greatest way to cope with pain is to turn it into a triumph, if you can use it as a way to help others and better the world, not only will you relieve the pain you have felt, but you will save others from ever experiencing it as well.
4. Get in Nature
Spending time out in nature is one of the quickest ways to reconnect you with the earth and with yourself. There is a sense of peace that comes from sitting and meditating beside a quiet stream that is difficult to duplicate.
Some of you may live in a big city with very little immediate access to mountains or the ocean, but even getting outside for 30 minutes a day and walking in the park can be an extremely therapeutic and rejuvenating experience.
5. Seize the Moment
Too often, we focus on seizing the day, the week, the year with little to no thought about the present moment. Be present, intentionally set moments to memory. Live in the present and stay out of your head. Let tomorrow worry about itself.
Jonathan Levi is an experienced entrepreneur, angel investor, and lifehacker from Silicon Valley. After successfully selling his Inc 5,000 rated startup in April of 2011, Levi packed up for Israel to gain experience in the Venture Capital industry.
Levi has been featured in such publications and programs as the Wall Street Journal, Nana10 Television, The Silicon Valley Business Journal, Bimmer Magazine, BMW Blog, and Donna Fenn’s latest book, Upstarts! How GenY Entrepreneurs are Rocking the World of Business and 8 Ways You Can Profit from Their Success, among others.
“The greatest happiness in life is that we are loved. Loved for ourselves or loved in spite of ourselves.”~Victor Hugo
1. Learn to Properly Delegate
Chances are, living the life of your dreams involves you doing a lot more of what you enjoy and a helluva lot less of the things that you don’t. Determine activities in your life that are neither enjoyable nor particularly profitable and delegate them to others.
For example, you can hire a maid to come and clean your house, do your laundry, and even cook your meals for between $20-$50/hour. If you are earning even $5 more per hour by doing this, than you are enhancing your productivity and your dollar per output. It’s a win win for everyone.
2. Do an 80/20 Analysis
Around 20% of what you do in every area of your life will account for 80% of the results that you see. To live a fulfilling and meaningful life, you must determine the things that you are content being in the 80th percentile for, and those that you are willing to invest the extra time into.
Do you want to be a top level bodybuilder, or just be lean and healthy? Do you want to be a Forbes list entrepreneur making millions a year, or just have the income to live life on your terms?
There’s no right or wrong, you simply have to decide what it is you want and allocate your resources properly.
3. Apply the Productivity Mindset to Your Personal Life
Seek to use the productivity mindset in all areas of your life, especially social. For example if you have the choice between going to an entrepreneurs mastermind or going to a club and getting hammered, it’s pretty clear which option will lead to greater results.
Enjoy yourself, party, live life, but make sure that you are filling your life with high caliber social activities as well.
5. Speed Reading Tips
5. Sleep The Every Man Schedule
Sleep 6 hours at night and then take a half hour nap in the middle of the day. This will save you a few hours each day, leave you feeling refreshed and is more congruent with your evolutionary programming.
6. Passive Income is About Freedom
The holy grail of finances is passive income. To be making money while you sleep. What you must realize is that this goal is about freedom and having the options to do what you want. Never forsake options for a paycheck, you can always make more money, but once time leaves, it never comes back.
Danny Flood is an entrepreneur, world traveler, adventure seeker, and author of the new book; Buy Your Own Island. For years Danny has been traveling the world, creating businesses to fund his lifestyle and seeking out ridiculous adventures. Danny is a life long student speaking 5 languages and reading hundreds of books each year and teaching others how to live the lives of their dreams.
Danny is currently traveling around the world enjoying a well earned break after the publication of his new book.
“There are many who find a good alibi far more attractive than an achievement. For an achievement does not settle anything permanently. We still have to prove our worth anew each day; we have to prove that we are as good today as we were yesterday. But when we have a valid alibi for not achieving anything we are fixed, so to speak, for life.” ~Eric Hoffer
1. Be Real About Your Goals
All to often we find ourselves pursuing goals because it is what other people what for our lives. We go to medical school because our parents said we should, we take that promotion because all of our friends told us to, but we rarely stop and ask what we want.
If you want to live a fulfilling life, an inspiring life, a life worth writing about, you must break out of the standards and the mold that society has set for you and you must do your own thing.
Pursue your own goals and dreams because it is what makes you happy. Don’t live your life for someone else
2. You Need to Get Out of Your Normal Environment
“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone”~Neale
One of the best ways to grow as a man is to experience new and exciting things outside of your comfort zone. Travel, try new foods, learn new instruments; expand your horizons and don’t be afraid of the unknown.
When you get out of your normal environment, you are forced to pause and reflect on the life that you are leading, danger and adventure cause you to pause and ponder questions to life you may have been too afraid to ask.
Don’t fight this, accept it and use what you learn. Get out there, get uncomfortable, and be better because of it.
3. Discover What Works For You
Don’t do anything because it is what you “should” do. If something doesn’t work for you then scrap it and find a new way. Our society has tried to put everyone into a cookie cutter mold of how people should learn, what they should pursue and what they can and can’t do.
Break out of this and do what works for you.
Do you learn best by total immersion or by osmosis(watching others)? Then do that. Are you most productive in the morning or at night? Do the brunt of your work then. Life is not a one size fits all adventure, so get out there and find the things that work for you and discard the rest.
4. Look At Your Problems as Ways to Improve Your Life
Some of the greatest innovations of our time have come from people asking the question “how can I fix this problem?” In your life, there is nothing more powerful than asking questions that force you to innovate and try new things.
If you are broke, overweight, or terrible with women, see this as a challenge to be innovated out of. Find an approach that you can stick with and work it until you have the desired outcome.
5. You Have Nothing to Lose
Really, you have NOTHING to lose. You only get one shot at this life, don’t waste it fearing what might happen. What is scarier than a plane crash or financial ruin is a life that was never truly lived. Get out of your comfort zone, feel the fear and take action because of it.
6. Manage Energy Not Time
Many of the productivity gurus say to manage your time to get the most accomplished. However, 4 hours of half assed work is less valuable than 30 minutes of laser focused action. Learn to manage your energy and your focus before worrying about time.
7. Vietnamese Coffee is the Best
At least according to Danny hehe.
8. Step Back
Whenever life seems overwhelming, take a step back and reflect. Meditate, go to the mountains, get away from it all. Chances are after you remove yourself from your normal environment you will realize that what you have been stressed about is no where near as bad as it seemed.
9. Live a Life That is True to You
We live in a day and age of a much more sinister and insidious form of control than any dictatorship or monarchy in the past 100 years. We live in an age of media mind control.
Although likely not intentional (ie not a conspiracy theory) the media has sold you a certain story about what your life should be, about how things should workout and how you should live.
And we buy into it with out ever asking whether we want this story or not. Take time to ask yourself who you want to be, not who you are told to be, live life on your terms and in a way that is true to your authentic self.
Abel James is the founder and CEO of the Fat Burning Man podcast and blog, a brand committed to bringing people the no bs guide to getting the body of their dreams. Abel challenges all of the traditional wisdom around diet and exercise, challenging people to think outside of the box and do what actually works.
Abel is the author of “The Wild Diet” a cook book designed to help the average person cook incredibly healthy and delicious foods that will result in phenomenal results for your body and health. You can order a copy of Abel’s new book here
“Every kick in the ass is a step forward” ~Anonymous
1. Fat is Not the Enemy (it’s actually a friend)
One of the common misconceptions in the health and fitness industry is that fat is somehow unhealthy. It is processed fats that are unhealthy.
Due to the over processing of our foods, the increase in chemicals and the wide spread use of growth hormones, many of fats we receive from red meat and other previously organic sources are now basically just a slab of toxins.
However, eating organic, grass fed beef and other healthy fats such as avocado, coconut oil, and has actually been shown to help lower bad cholesterol, boost testosterone, and enhance cognitive function.
Long story short; get more healthy and natural fats in your diet.
2. Don’t Follow the Fads
The majority of diets nowadays are straight crap. If you want to look better, feel better, and live longer (and who doesn’t) keep it simple. Eat lots of fruits, veggies, and naturally raised meats. Period. Don’t complicate things unnecessarily. Remove processed sugars and eat organic whole foods.
3. Get Food as Close to The Source as Possible
Something many people do not realize is that the quality of your food is often more important than the food itself. If you are eating processed meats and veggies, filled with pesticides and antibiotics, you may as well be enjoying a pop tart for breakfast.
Read the label on your foods, always buy organic and natural, and if possible, shop at a local farmers market.
Not only will the food taste better, it will also be far richer in nutrients than any of the chemically processed alternatives/
4. Real Food is Cheaper Than Medical Bills
One of the most common excuses regarding healthy eating is that it’s expensive.
And it is. Sometimes, high quality organic meats and veggies are 5x more expensive than their processed alternatives. However, this should be seen as an investment in your health and quality of life, not as an expense.
Eating chemically rich and nutrient devoid foods has been shown to lead to diabetes, cancer, autoimmune diseases and an early death. Do yourself a favor and invest in some high quality food so you don’t have to “invest” in medical bills.
5. If You Really Want to Get What You Want You Must Decide What You Want
Too many people today wander around aimlessly, with little to no direction in life and wonder why they are not successful.
What they are not realizing is that to live an extraordinary life and achieve extraordinary things, you must decide exactly what you want. Set a vision and clear plans for your future, and then execute ruthlessly.