How the richest man in the world spends his mornings

So you can spend $10,000,000 a day for the next 40-years and still have change left over — how would you spend your mornings?

How about waking up early after 8-hours of sleep, doing some reading (newspapers included) and then having breakfast with you kids before your first meeting no earlier than 10 o’clock?

Well, that’s exactly what you would do if you were Amazon Founder & CEO Jeff Bezos.

‘I like to putter in the mornings, it’s important to me.’

You’d think being in control of a 500,000+ people company, mornings would be a little more hectic.

Alright. Alright. So what can we learn from the $147 Billion USD (at time of writing) man?

 

Sleep

‘I get 8-hours of sleep, I prioritise it.’

This one might seem surprising. Sleep deprivation has been worn as a badge of honour in the past.

We’ve all heard that person say they can function off less than ideal sleep.

They may be right too. Functioning, sure, but how well?

‘I need 8-hours of sleep, I think better, I have more energy, my mood is better.’

Sure, there will be times when ideal sleep isn’t a possibility, with things like timezone changes and deadlines. But for the majority of cases, best to take on your biggest challenges well rested.


Nutrition

‘I like to have breakfast with my kids before taking them to school.’

Bezos doesn’t mention what he eats of a morning but after Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods, you can probably guess what kind of meal it is.

If you’re going to eat in the morning, especially if it’s with your kids, start the day off right with some quality food. And if you don’t know where to start, remind yourself of the company Amazon recently bought. You don’t have to shop there but eating whole foods (fruits, vegetables, meats, nuts) is your best option.

 

What matters

If you’ve heard Bezos speak in the past, you’ve probably heard of his regret minimisation framework.

If not, its another of saying, choose your actions by imagining yourself 20-years in the future with no regrets about the past.

Back to the breakfast quote.

‘I like to have breakfast with my kids before they go to school.’

Can you imagine a 20-year future Bezos saying to himself, ‘I wish I spent more time responding to those emails instead having breakfast with my kids so often.’

I can’t.

Of course, I’m using an extreme example. But that’s where the most value is.

Create your own regret minimisation framework and stick to it. Your future self will thank you.


Future focused

‘None of the people who report to me should really be focused on the current quarter.’

Bezos continues on discussing how Wall Street loves the results of the current quarter, ‘those results actually came from the preparation done years ago.’

‘Right now, I’m working on a quarter that’s going to reveal itself in 2021 sometime.’

Amazon are focused on the future.

They’re in the business of putting themselves out of business. Why? Because if they don’t someone else will.

The best step you took this year isn’t your most important. It’s your next. Where do you want to be 2-3 years from now? Work towards that.

 

Decision-making

‘I like to do my high-IQ meetings before lunch,’ Bezos says, ‘anything that’s going to be really intellectually challenging, that’s a 10 o’clock meeting.’

If you wake up close to sunrise, your brain is most active a couple of hours after. And brain activity slowly tapers off towards the end of the day.

So it makes sense when Jeff says, ‘By 5 o’clock, I’m like, “I can’t think about that today.”’

If you have a list of things to do for the day. Do the hardest one first.

What would Bezos do? 

It’s clear much of Bezos’ effort is directed towards making better decisions.

‘If I make 3 good decisions a day, that’s enough.’

Of course, there will be times when more is inevitable, like when you’re in startup mode and your company of 4 employees is trying to grow.

But ideally, the shift should be towards less.

Less but better.

Bezos is setting an example we can all learn from. Looking after his health, spending time with family and attempting to build a brighter future.

So the next time someone tells you to sacrifice sleep or your health to work more, remember to ask yourself, ‘what would Bezos do?’

 You won’t ever look this cool without working hard AND taking of your health.

You won’t ever look this cool without working hard AND taking of your health.

PS you can watch the video that inspired this article here

All Wars Are Pointless (except this one)

Have you seen this?

IMG_0273.jpg

The US military budget is higher than the nine other biggest military budgets in the world.

And spending is increasing.

But why?

They already have a great military.

Why keep spending money on it?

Basic dog psychology.

If you’ve seen the movie Point Break (1991) you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.

If not, let me explain.

Johnny Utah is an FBI agent. He knows he has to arrest Bodhi but their friendship is getting in the way. Plus, Bodhi and his crew have Tyler, Johnny’s girl, locked up. There’s always the girl.

Bodhi and his crew dress up and rob banks wearing ex-president masks. They take guns in and dance around on the counters but never hurt anyone.

They’re in and out of the bank in 90-seconds.

Now Johnny has to help with the next robbery. If he doesn’t, Tyler’s dead.

Johnny isn’t having any of it. He’s torn. Between upholding the law and going along with it to save Tyler.

Bodhi can sense it. He’s seen it before. And knows what happens when people are in two minds.

‘All I’m asking for is 90-seconds of your time Johnny, that’s it.’

‘You see, it’s basic dog psychology,’ says Bodhi, ‘if you scare them and get them peeing down their leg, they submit. And if you project weakness, you draw aggression, that’s how people get hurt.’

‘You see, fear causes hesitation and hesitation will cause your worst fears to come true,’ Bodhi continues.

‘So it’s simple, you project strength to avoid conflict.’

‘Peace through superior firepower!’ Roach chimes in.

Then they go rob the bank. But things don’t go according to plan. They never touch the vault. But this time they did.

Bodhi hesitated. One of his friends gets shot. And the other shoots a cop.

Not a good time.

Enough spoilers.

How does this relate back to the US military?

It’s the same as why nightclub bouncers are often big, scary looking dudes.

If you’re a scrawny 21-year-old, you don’t think twice about taking on the bouncer. You stick to your business to yourself and enjoy the night. Otherwise, you get your ass handed to you on the way out of the club.

The US military maintains their strength and power by doing exactly that. They keep the peace by being the big, scary looking nightclub bouncer of the world.

Is this the right way to go about things? I don’t know.

But it seems to be working. Despite what you see on the news, the world is in a good place compared to the past.

Any history book will tell you this.

‘Okay Daniel, how does all this matter to someone in their twenties?’

Alright, alright.

A lot happens in the twenties. I’d know. I’m 25.

  • You come of age.

  • You finish college.

  • You get that job.

  • You get married.

  • You go to that place.

  • You start making more decisions on your own.

A lot of great things. But it can be tough.

  • You think you know everything. But you don’t.

  • You take that job. But it wasn’t what you really wanted.

  • You’re not really that good at anything.

  • The relationship you’re in is toxic but you stay there anyway because you don’t think you’ll find anyone else.

  • The friends you had from school are into their own things.

  • Everyone you see online seems 10x happier than you.

Hold on. Weren’t the twenties supposed to be the golden years?

‘These are the best years of your life!’ You hear people say.

‘If these are supposed to be the best? And everything sucks,’ you think, ‘then what’s next?’

Aghhhhhh.

Alright. Alright.

We can fix this.

Scroll back up and reread what our friend Bodhi said.

Got it?

The line I’m talking about is, ‘You see, fear causes hesitation and hesitation will cause your worst fears to come true.’

Remember what happened when Bodhi hesitated? He went for the vault when they never go for the vault. Then everything went to shit. His worst fears came true.

You hesitate about the things you want to do because of fear.

You want to learn to dance but you’re scared of what people will think.

You’ve got a dozen blog posts thought of but never share them because ‘who am I to say these things?’

You want to quit your job and go on a freelancing adventure around the world. But having no steady income? Yikes.

Some big fears.

Some smaller.

Like walking up to that girl on the street. ‘Hi.’

Whatever they are. It’s all the same.

Hesitations snowball. And eventually, you’re under an avalanche of your own worst fears.

The next time you get that feeling. You know the one. Bugs in your stomach. A little hollowness in the front of your head.

Don’t let it take over.

‘If you project weakness, you draw aggression, that’s how people get hurt.’

Take the same quote and face it inward.

‘When I project weakness, I’m aggressive on myself, that’s when I feel hurt.’

The US spend big to always be prepared. Prepared for war.

But the real war is in the mind.

The war between you and the you on the other side of fear.

All the others are pointless.

Fear is like the ocean. You can’t control it.

But you can learn to surf.

IMG_0268.jpg

This post originally appeared on Quora as an answer to ‘What should you not waste time on in your twenties?’

Source: http://qr.ae/TUGZNY

The New You Has To Let The Old You Die

‘We’re looking to sponsor 3-4 videos in your channel,’ she said.

I took a screenshot and sent it to my brothers and friend Dave.

A Senior Marketing Manager from Coursera reached out to me last Friday. She saw one of my videos of me doing a course on their platform.

Now we’re spinning ideas together to see what can come next.

It might work out, it might not.

Last year, I would’ve never received that email.


‘What are you doing here?’ she asked.

‘Driving.’

‘Why?’

‘It pays for my studies.’

‘But you’re too hot to be an Uber driver.’

Her friends were encouraging her to get my phone number. She kissed me on the cheek when she got out.

Uber was fun. It gave me cash to pay for the courses I was doing online.

The best part was meeting new people every 10-minutes. Everyone has a story. I made it my mission to find it out.

Then I got a fine for driving in the wrong place one night. So I quit driving the next day.

I’ve been studying Machine Learning online for the past 18-months. I got a job as an Engineer two weeks after saying to myself ‘I’m not driving Uber anymore.’

Along the way, I turned into a human frozen yoghurt machine. But with content instead of yoghurt. Sometimes my output isn’t as sweet but at least it lasts forever.

Anyway, I make videos about what I get up to. And I’d been doing a course on Coursera so I made a video about it.

And then the email came. Even if it falls through, its changed my life forever.


So what’s the trick?

People will tell you there is no trick.

Or that the trick can’t be taught.

They’re right. And so are all the other platitudes. But their words aren’t useful.

The trick is to do more things that might not work.

I’ve been listening to a lot of rap lately. I love the punchiness behind the bars.

When a rapper makes it, all their songs talk about is how they struggled to make it.

All the times they were broke and eating nothing but driven by the vision. You know the songs.

There’s a lesson there. Your truth is best story you’ll ever tell.

Out of every 1 rapper who makes it, there’s probably 10,000 who don’t. But they all have one thing in common, doing something that might not work.


The old version of me was a fragile caterpillar.

  • Afraid to create things and share them with others

  • ‘I can learn that’ attitude

  • ‘Who can I blame for this?’ type operator

  • No specific vision because being specific meant a defined point of failure

  • Dishonest with myself

  • Not in love with myself

Now I’m a butterfly.

  • I let the ideas out of the jail of my mind

  • Everything is my fault, no blaming others

  • I can learn anything with enough time, dedication and purpose

  • Ambitious specific visions

  • Honest with myself

  • More in love with myself

  • And I flutter around

Why a butterfly?

Because most butterfly’s have a short lifespan. Two weeks or less.

You know the saying. Life is short.

But it’s also the longest thing you’ll ever do.

I’m going to live past 150.

2018 has changed my life forever because I started following the trick.

I’m convincing myself to try more things that might not work.

The first butterfly was once a catepillar who asked the question, ‘I wonder what will happen if I try this for a while?’.

To become a butterfly, the catepillar had to die.

The old me was scared to make videos. So he had to die. You can’t really live until you’ve died a little. The 2018 version of me will die in 2019 too.

137 YouTube videos later, I might be getting paid for one. If not, I’ll do 237 more.

See you in 2143.

Source: http://qr.ae/TUGPtk

A first-principles approach to life

When something isn't going your way in life, what are the first things you think of?

It should be the foundational pillars.

Health

How has your sleep been?

How has your nutrition been?

Have you been moving your body around enough?

Are you getting enough sex?

How’s your mental health?

Relationships

Who are you spending the most time with?

How have the conversations with yourself been going?

Are you a part of the right tribe?

Meaning

Are you working towards or on something that excites you?

What's your reason for getting up in the morning?

Are you developing or progressing a skillset?

Wealth

Do you have enough money for next weeks rent?

Do you really need to get that new thing?

What kind of finances do you need to get towards your next step?

If things aren't going your way, these are the kind of questions you should be asking yourself.

Some will mean more than others at different stages of life. But that doesn't mean they should be disregarded.

Even if you have a great answer for all of them you can still be in a tough spot. If that's the case, don't forget, you're not alone. We're all in this together.

It's hard to build a tall building without a solid foundation. Life is the same.

The best $250 I've ever spent

‘Do you have a Queensland driver's licence?'

'Yes,' I replied.

'Well, you should know you're not supposed to stop at bus stops,' he continued, 'you'll be getting a fine in a couple of days.'

'Okay, thank you,' I wound up the window and drove off.

'That sucks man, that guy was a dick,' my passengers felt sorry for me.

'It's alright, these things happen, how was your night?'

We chatted for the next 30-minutes or so.

'Do you think I should see go on another date with her?' He showed me a photo of his latest Tinder match.

'She's not my type,' I said, 'not enough hair for me.'

The girl in the photo had a shaved head.

'Yeah you're right, it's different, but I think I like it,' he got out of the car, 'thanks, mate!'

I ended the trip. We had a good conversation so I rated them 5-stars.

There was no one on the highway. Pure open road. Driving at 3 am has its perks. Plenty of time to think.

'I'm not driving Uber anymore,' I thought to myself.

I parked the car, went inside and into bed.

More thinking.

'I won't have an income for a while, how will I pay for things?'

'I'll figure it out.'

The fine came a couple days later. It was $250. 6-hours driving and I made -$37.


The next day I peeled myself out of bed. Waking up was always an effort after going to sleep at 4 am.

My schedule for the past year had been, study Monday-Friday and drive Uber Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday.

It was Saturday. I was supposed to be driving Uber later that night.

I remembered what I said to myself before going to bed. All of a sudden it seemed a lot harder.

Driving Uber was the easy option. I loved meeting new people every trip. But it wasn't for me anymore.

'Well Daniel, better do something about it,' is probably what someone would've said if I told them my dilemma.

'You're right,' is what I would've replied.


I went to the cafe and posted on LinkedIn.

'Hey data science community, I'm looking to get involved in the field and would love your recommendations on who I should follow.'

The past year, I'd been studying my own Artificial Intelligence Masters Degree. It wasn't an official Masters Degree but I gave it that name for the placebo effect.

The post got lots of replies. People were commenting and tagging other people.

I spent the next couple of hours messaging every single one of them.

Ben_Taylor_Screen_Shot.png

Ben told me to become an expert in my field.

'How could I be an expert, I've only been studying for a year?'

I figured instead claiming to be an expert, I could share what I've been up to.

So I did.


A couple of days later, Ashlee sent me a message.

'Hey, Daniel, bit of a random thought but would you be interested in an internship opportunity?'

We talked some more.

'Mike will catch up with you to find out more about what you've done and what you are interested in so they can position you,' she said.

'Okay, where should I meet him?' I asked.

The next week Mike and I met at Brew cafe.

'How did you find the float tank?'

I read an article on his LinkedIn where he told a story about going into a sensory deprivation tank. I'd been in one too.

'It was spectacular, you fade away into nothing,' Mike said.

I agreed.

If you haven't yet, go in one.

'What are you looking for?' Mike asked.

I didn't really know. I'd been studying online but hadn't had any experience putting what I had been learning into practice.

'Experience,' I replied, 'online courses are great but I'd like to contribute to something tangible.'

'The crossover of technology and health is what interests me most,' I continued.

'If you get in front of someone, you'll get a job,' Mike went on, 'I think you should meet my friend Cam.'

I'd been thinking of moving to the US to get a role in tech.

'What do you think about the US?' I asked Mike.

'It's the holy grail for this stuff, but Brisbane is good too, I think it would be good if you got some experience before heading over.'

'Good idea.'

Mike paid for the coffees.

'I'm off to an interview at Code Camp, thank you for this morning.'

'No problems, talk soon.'

Mike and I shook hands.

I walked down the street and up to the Code Camp offices. Charlie offered me a job as a teaching assistant for school kids learning to code on their holidays. I said yes. But it wasn't anything long term.


Two days later, I booked a one-way ticket to the US.

I had no plans but to get on the ground and meet people. Then maybe someone would like me enough to offer me a job.

My thought pattern was, 'If you want to learn French, go to France.'

I wanted to learn the latest in technology innovations so I was going to Silicon Valley.

That was the good reason. The reason I told everyone why I booked it.

But the real reason was I didn't think I had it in me to get a job in my hometown. So I decided to run away. To the other side of the world.

It was 99-days until I'd fly out.

Then Mike messaged me introducing me to Cam.

'How about we meet up on Monday?' Cam asked.

I had no commitments set in stone since I was creating my own study schedule.

'Sure,' I replied.

Our chat went much the same as with Mike.

Health, technology. Health and technology. A little writing and creative work. These are the only things I talk about.

'What do you think of the US?' I asked.

'It's great,' Cam said.

'I've been thinking of going.'

'You can always go, it will always be there.'

I didn't tell him I already had a flight booked.

I was secretly hoping he'd tell me to go. I was scared of going on my own decision, I wanted someone else to back me up.

We kept talking.

'What are you after?' Cam asked.

Mike told me to be specific. He was right. Everyone's time is valuable, always be specific.

'Experience in the real world,' I said, 'I've been learning these skills online and I believe I can help your team.'

'What's your week like?', Cam asked, 'can you come in on Thursday?'

'I'll be there.'


Thursday came around.

I was scared again.

Then I remembered someone telling me being scared uses the same hormones as being excited. I flipped the switch in my mind.

I was excited. And I should've been. I'd be given a chance at an internship.

So I made a video about it.

When I first walked in it was so quiet. 'I can't work here,' I said to myself.

'This isn't me.'

I like talking to people. A lot. The quietness wasn't my jam.

Then the day went on, and I realised it was quiet because people were working. Working hard on difficult things. That's what I wanted to be doing.

'Oh, so this is how it works,' I thought.

When I was at Apple, there was never a quiet moment. Lots of busy work rather than deep work.

I went home.

It went better than expected. As always. Everything turns out better than expected.

The next two Thursday's went the same. I was working with Athon and Conor manipulating some data.

'Dan, Athon, how about we go for a walk,' Nick, the CEO, said.

We went to the coffee shop down the road.

'I'm all for them, I'm not a fan of driving,' I said.

We talked about self-driving cars for 30-minutes. Then it died off.

'So, how have you been liking it?' Nick asked.

'It's been incredible, I've been learning so much.'

'You've been doing some great work,' Athon added.

Athon was the machine learning team lead. Hearing that made me feel good.

'How would you like to come on board,' Nick asked, 'into a paid position?'

I wasn't being paid for the internship. Which was fine. The experience was payment enough.

'Let's do it,' I said.

'Okay, sweet, well we'll get an offer together and get it to you by Monday.'

We shook hands and went back to the office.


Around the same time, I was talking with Sal. He was the founder of another company.

Mike introduced me to him as well.

Sal and I were having coffee.

'We'd like someone like you on board to help build a community around what we're working on,' Sal said.

Sal had checked out the work I had been doing online.

I was making YouTube videos about what I was learning as well as plenty of posts elsewhere, LinkedIn, Medium, GitHub.

I'd turned into a human frozen yoghurt machine. All output.

'How about you come in on Friday and meet the team?'

'I'll be there.'

I went in on Friday evening and met the team. They were great.

'Thanks for tonight,' I said.

'No worries,' Sal said, 'I'll be in touch on Monday.'

Monday was the day Nick was going to call me with an offer.


Monday came.

I missed Nick's first call. My phone was on Do Not Disturb. It's set automatically every morning until 12 pm so I can study without being distracted. Probably not the best move when you're expecting a job offer call.

I called back.

'Morning mate, how was the weekend?' Nick asked.

I told him and asked about his.

'We'd like to bring you on as a junior developer at $X per hour,' he said.

'Wow, that's awesome,' I was stoked. Then I remembered someone told me you can always negotiate the first offer.

'I'm definitely interested, but how much wiggle room is there on the rate?'

'What were you thinking?'

'I know I can help your team, with what I've been learning in media as well as artificial intelligence, so I was thinking somewhere around $X.'

The key with counter-offering is to make it about the other person. Instead of what they can do for you, what can you do for them?

My counter offer was 30% higher than the original.

'Okay, I'll discuss it with the others and see what we can do, then get back to you this afternoon.'

'Sounds great! Talk soon,' I said.

We hung up.

My heart was racing. I'd never negotiated pay before. Especially before even having a role.

I knew I would've regretted if I didn't. So I had too. If it scares me, I have to do it.

Nick called back.

'Hey Daniel, we've thought about your offer and would like to meet you halfway at $X.'

The new offer was 15% higher than the original.

'Done. I'm in.'

'Can you come in on Wednesday?'

'Yep, see you then.'


I went in on Wednesday. I was nervous (excited) again.

It was happening. I was starting the role I had been studying for. All much faster than I thought.

I made a video about it.

My first day was April 25. 6-weeks before I was supposed to be jet-setting.

My flight to the US was booked for July 6.

I told Sal I took a role at Max Kelsen.

'All the best Daniel!'

I didn't cancel the flight because I wasn't sure whether I'd stay.

I was in two minds.

One part of me wanted to see where the new role would take me.

The other part of me didn't want to be 43 and saying, 'I really should've gone to the US when I had the chance.'

Now I'm writing this from a cafe in San Francisco.

I didn't cancel the flight. I rescheduled it to September 12. And booked a return flight.

And then yesterday, I visited LinkedIn's San Francisco Headquarters. What an epic place.

LinkedIn_Offices.png

I'll be touring around the US for a couple weeks before heading back to Brisbane to work on a new project we've got at Max Kelsen.

We're going to be using artificial intelligence and genome data to try and predict the outcome of immunotherapy treatment in cancer patients. The project is called Immunotherapy Outcome Prediction or IOP for short.

The crossover of health and technology. Exactly where I want to be.


I had three job offers and a new job within four days of deciding I was going to stop driving Uber. Then a new job within three weeks.

How did this happen?

I have no idea.

Well no, I have a bit of an idea. But I'll never be able to explain it for sure.

When I made the decision to stop driving Uber, I devoted everything towards finding a different role.

I was posting on LinkedIn every day. Reaching out to people multiple times per day.

But it wasn't this alone which helped.

The past year I had been studying hard and sharing my work online. I hadn't been paid a cent for the articles I wrote, the videos I made.

I knew the way I was studying wasn't conventional. I wasn't going to end up with an official Masters Degree. So I needed a way to differentiate myself.

That's when the human frozen yoghurt machine began.

Instead of consuming, I began creating. Every day, I had to create something otherwise I would feel sick.

Someone smarter than me told me, 'It's not what you know, it's who you know.'

Then someone else said 'It's not who you know, it's who knows you.'

So I needed a way for people to know me. And the internet provided it.

The light bulb moment was when I realised I could use platforms I was already browsing every day to create the life I was after.

But the thing is, no one calls you up and tells you this.

YouTube is there but the CEO isn't going to call you and ask you to make videos.

LinkedIn is there but the hiring manager of your favourite company isn't going to say, 'Hey you should be posting more often, it could end up in you getting a job here.'

Everyone can blog but no one is going to tell you to write about what interests you.

You have to choose yourself.

I chose myself.

People had a way of finding out who I was.

Then instead of being a resume in a pile, I was a person.

People relate better to people. It's hard to make a connection to a piece of paper with a name and a list of credentials.

A year ago, the web startup we built failed. So I decided to start learning machine learning.

I had no job and university was too expensive so I wrote my own curriculum.

I worked through it Monday-Friday and drove Uber on weekends to pay for courses. And repeated this week in, week out.

Until one day I grabbed my balls and decided it was time to stop driving Uber and chase after what I really wanted.

And then the other day, I received these.

Max_Kelsen_Business_Cards.png

I began reaching out to people on LinkedIn because I didn't know what to do. So I asked for advice.

I asked Cam and Mike what they thought about the US because I was unsure of how it would turn out.

Now I'm in the US and more excited for the future than ever. But I still don't know how it will work out.

Well, what's next?

I don't know. I don't think too far ahead.

Instead, I try make every day a good day.

A good day involves learning something, creating something, moving my body and talking to the people I love.

String enough good days together and you've got a good week. A few good weeks makes a good month. A dozen good months equals a good year. Enough good years and you'll end up living a good life.

Doing the things you set out to do always feels good. And even if you fail, you'll have a good story.

Choose yourself for a year. The whole universe will get behind you. And you'll be surprised where you end up.And if it's in San Francisco, I recommend Blue Bottle Coffee.

Getting that parking fine is the best thing that's happened to me all year.

Source: http://qr.ae/TUN3oh

All you have to do is reach for the next rock (and not let go)

We were rock climbing the other night. I was up to the purple rocks.

There was this one path I kept falling off. You hold on with your left hand, and both your feet then your right hand reaches out. That’s when I’d fall.

I’d grab the rock with my fingertips. Get it with a good hold. Then my feet would fall off and I’d hit the mat.

So I gave up for a bit. Then went and climbed some other rocks. And made it to the top a few times. Making it to the top boosts your confidence.

Not finishing a certain path over and over gets addictive, you know. We humans are hard wired to finish things we start. Even if it’s having negative effects on us. In psychology, they call it the sunk cost fallacy.

‘I can’t leave now,’ I said, ‘I can’t leave until I get it.’

Eddie was giving me helpful tips.

‘Use your feet Dan,’ he said, ‘keep your hips close to wall, once you get to this rock, you’ve got it.’

Easy.

I rubbed chalk on my hands. The chalk absorbs the sweat. My shirt and pants were covered in chalk.

I grabbed on. All four limbs on different rocks. Up, up, up. Right to the rock I’d fallen off before.

‘KRRKKKK,’ my fingers gripped on. Better than anytime before. It was skin on sandpaper.

My feet were gone but I wasn’t letting go.

Then I reached out to the final rock with my left hand. Another good hold.

All I had to do was meet my left hand with my right and I’d be done. I did it. Then I let go and fell to the mat.

I walked across to Athon and Eddie. We fist bumped.

What was different about this time?

I didn’t think. Like Nike, I just did it. I let it happen. I got out of my own way.

Eddie was right though. Rock climbing is a metaphor for life.

Don’t look down.

Use your legs.

Hold on tight.

Onto the next one.

You have to continually take the risk to fall. That’s where the value is.

You fall off and you try again. And again. And again.

Then it happens.

My hands are still stinging. It’s a good sting.

Go where it’s least crowded

The voice in your head you keep hearing.

The one that keeps telling you, ‘let’s do this.’

The one you keep ignoring.

It’s hard to listen to it. There’s so much noise.

Johnny wants you to do this, your parents want you to do that.

They all do it out of love. But it’s not you.

You’re tired because playing a character is tough. You’re playing hide and seek with yourself.

The person you are in reality isn’t the person you are in your mind.

It’s hard to line these two up but it’s worth it when you do.

Not the flashy car or the new job or the millions of followers. You know deep down these things don’t matter.

You’ll get there and realise peace of mind and the journey itself were the goals, not anything else.

Peace of mind. That’s real success.

Go to the place it’s least crowded. Then you’ll be able to hear yourself. Listen carefully.

Have an inconvenient vision

Remember that thing you didn’t really want to do. The inconvenient thing. But you knew you should. So you did it and felt good.

The inconvenient thing is usually the hard thing. And it’s usually the thing we avoid.

We can’t help it. We’ve evolved to conserve as much energy as possible. So we started creating a world which favours convenience.

More, more and more, for less.

I bought a jet ski with four credit cards because I didn’t want to wait for it. Not waiting was far more convenient than waiting. It turned out to be the best financial decision I ever made.

I avoided learning to code because I didn’t want to be bad at it. I was supposed to be an expert already. I’m still not an expert but I’m getting better.

It’s convenient to keep doing the same things. You know how to do them.

But if it’s change you seek, how well do you think the convenient things will work?

Better to chase the inconvenient things. The ones that require effort and discomfort. They’re what will move you from you are to where you want to be.

If your vision is convenient, it’s probably not too different from how things already are.

Having an inconvenient vision makes it unique. Once you’ve got an inconvenient vision, repeat it to yourself over and over. Yell it aloud.

After a while, you’ll find the inconvenient thing becomes the convenient thing. You’ll wonder how you ever thought differently. And when this happens, you’ll now it’s time to find the next inconvenient place to explore.

My inconvenient vision is to help the world eat better, move more and get after it.

The best way to see your vision into the world? Lead by example. People trust their eyes more than their ears.

How much time do you need?

Deadlines are a blessing and a curse.

Having one means you've got a goal to work towards. Not having one means you don't have that anxiety cloud hanging over your head.

Are you avoiding setting yourself a deadline because you don't need one? Or do you not want a set point of failure?

If you don't have a deadline, the work can take the time it needs. But if you do and you don't meet it, does that mean you failed? It depends on what the work requires.

A missed deadline is bad for planes. They've got a tight schedule. International travel is important. But the creative work you're thinking about likely doesn't have as a strict a timeline.

Try it out. Say to yourself, 'I'm going to do this by next Monday, the 13th.' Then stick to it.

You'll be surprised what happens.

PS you can change the date to suit your needs but keep it specific. Someday isn’t specific.