6 Habits You MUST Boot (+ how to get rid of them)

6 Habits You MUST Boot (+ how to get rid of them)

These are addictions that are HOLDING YOU BACK in your personal development. These are toxic and can be hard to get rid of because they are so widespread in society.

Most of these you know you shouldn’t be doing (at least on a conscious level), and that’s OK. I’m not here to say “you shouldn’t do this.” This is just a wakeup call.

First Habit: Unhealthy eating

Yes, this one was obvious. But the truth is a lot of people struggle with this. But chances are that if you do do personal development, you are also into health and wellness.

The problem is that everyone KNOWS they shouldn’t be eating crap, but it’s a hard addiction to break. Also the fact that there are so many loud people claiming that their diet is the Holy Grail of all of them makes the process that much harder.

I’m not trying to be one of those people, but for those of you that need a boost, here are a few tips to get started:

  • cut out soda, energy drinks, alcohol, fruit juices, and eventually caffeine (drink only water or tea)
  • cut out chemicals, sugars and processed foods
  • eat LOTS of vegetables

The other factors such as meat, dairy, and grains are all subjective. I suggest that after you get these first things down you play around with the ratios of these 3. Remember that everyone’s body is different and runs better on different fuels. Go with what feels right to you.

 

Second habit: Smoking and drugs

Do you really want reasons for this one?

I know most people in the States don’t smoke, but here in Europe where I live, it is widespread (well over half of adults in France do).

Not smoking is more common sense than anything else.

Drugs on the other hand is much more subjective. Disclaimer: I have never used drugs even though I’ve already been offered some.

The main reasons I don’t do drugs is a) health and b) it is my philosophy that if you need a stimulant like a drug in order for you to be happy, then you’re not playing the game of life the right way. You need to reevaluate your strategy.

 

Third Habit: News, TV, movies, social media

This one should get a good reaction 🙂

Before you protest, let me state my reasons.

First about the news. The news is a constant source of stimulation, and so many people watch it because it’s so easy to just turn on and plug is since it’s always there.

But here’s the problem: the media targets the part of the brain responsible for scanning for danger, the reticular activating system. And when you’re constantly bombarded by negativity, it’s very hard to stay positive and happy and create and extraordinary life for yourself. This is because the compass of the unconscious mind will deviate to where it’s been magnetized the most, which is in this case, negativity.

Other problems include the fact that it caters to people’s need for certainty, it gives a skewed view of the world, and it sucks away time that should go towards personal development. Or spending time on your business, with your family, your hobby, whatever.

So what about the others sources of stimulation like movies and TV shows? Well, I’ve got news for you, they aren’t much better. A few reasons for this are that most require a very low level of consciousness, they suck time out of your day, and they distract you from introspecting if you’re constantly plugged into something. They also subconsciously instill values in you that you have no awareness of or control over (yes, they brainwash you). The example that comes to my mind is many people’s Disney-fied beliefs of true love.

Now, some movies are good because they are true pieces of art. I’m thinking of Citizen Kane, Lincoln, you know, movies that will go down in history as great. Documentaries are also OK because they’re educational. But the blockbuster action movies or comedies, stay away from.

Btw, I strongly suggest getting rid of video games for all the same reasons. Netflix I stay away from because it’s always there and too easy to plug into. YouTube can be a great educational resource, but don’t spend hours watching fail videos or music videos.

Finally, social media. This one is tough because EVERYONE is doing it. It’s too easy to get on and stay for hours. But it comes with all the problems listed above, and more. Have you ever noticed the pang of jealousy you have when you see your friends having a great time at a party or and event, or feel guilty because you see a fitness post and haven’t worked out in 3 days? Yeah that’s why I quit social media. I still use Messenger to communicate with friends and my parkour group, but really that’s it.

The best way to boot the social media habit? Become aware of how it makes you feel. When you feel jealousy at a friend’s post, notice it. When you feel jealous she has more likes than you do, just notice it. Eventually you won’t even want to go on Facebook anymore, you’ll be too conscious (which is a GOOD thing).

 

Fourth Habit: Multitasking

Raise your hand if you’re guilty of this one ✋.

Yeah, I used to do this a lot. Listening to music while writing, listening to podcasts while eating breakfast. Running around like a squirrel on crack.

The issue here is that, again, it distracts you from all the important things in your life by filling up every little bit of attention you possess.

I also find that multitasking really takes the pleasure out of certain things. Enjoying warm oatmeal in the morning is hard to do if you have to stop to take notes every 5 seconds on the podcast you’re listening to.

It’s also hard to do things well while multitasking. Science has proven that in fact, it’s impossible for our brain to focus on more than one thing at a time! It just flits between the two things very quickly, resulting in neither of them having our attention for more than a few milliseconds. How do you want to do something well if you’re constantly being distracted?

The trick here is to wean yourself off things. For me I started by not listening to podcasts when I’m cooking or eating. Simple. Makes it a lot more enjoyable! Try it and see how you feel.

 

Fifth Habit: Procrastinating

This is a big one for a lot of people. Bizarrely, I never really had a problem with it, but I know a lot of people who do. Here are some suggestions:

  • Don’t beat yourself up for procrastinating. Accept that the resistance to doing the thing is there.
  • Unless it’s life-threatiningly important, don’t beat yourself into doing it. That’s neurotic.
  • Hold yourself accountable if it’s something you must get done. Make a bet with your friends that you’ll go to the gym 4 times a week for 4 weeks, and if you don’t you’ll give them each $100. There’s some motivation for you.
  • Make a reason for yourself to do it. Create a vision in your mind of what this could become. It could be the finished product of your business, or an image of your happily fixed marriage 3 years down the line. Get the image to drive you to take action.

 

Sixth Habit: Hanging around negative people

It is like watching the news all the time. Certain people do nothing but complain. I was at a dinner party with my parents the other night, and I couldn’t believe how much time they spent worrying about Donald Trump! Not that I want him to be president or anything, but it’s hard to take joy in complaining about how the world’s going to hell. Don’t let that negative influence rub off on you. Life is beautiful.

Complaining isn’t the only form of negativity I have in mind. I’m also thinking about judging people and situations, and resisting reality (using lots of “it should be this way” and “it shouldn’t be that way”), but these are topics that are too deep to cover here.

What about friends and family? Well, friends you can always find more of. Sometimes if you’ve evolved to a point they aren’t willing to follow you to, it’s time to let them out of your life. Family’s a bit harder. The best solution for me has been to limit the time I spend with them if I find them to be in a negative mood.

 

Hopefully this post woke you up as to how these habits are limiting your personal growth.

Remember that each of these is possible to break, no matter how far gone you think you are. There are many resources on all of them, and you can find groups or coaches near you that can help as well.

Also keep in mind that I’m not here to tell you what you “should” or “shouldn’t” do. Don’t neurotically force your way out of these traps only to fall back into them. It could take months to wean yourself off these things completely.

I suggest you get started on these because I will have another post coming soon on habits that will HELP instead of hinder your growth. It would also be wise to start now because I will go into other, deeper habits that you’re not even aware of, and that suck the happiness from your life.

Comment below which ones you most need to get rid of, and let me know if I forgot any!

-Keep Growing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real Personal Development: Rise from the Ashes

Personal development is about to get a lot more real for y’all.

Let me share a story from my life, which you may or may not relate to.

About 2 months ago, I broke up with my girlfriend. It wasn’t an ugly breakup or anything, but we both felt it wasn’t working and hadn’t been for about a month, even though we both really cared about each other.

So we broke up.

As you might guess, it wasn’t exactly my most emotionally healthy time.

But during that time, I was truly grateful I had started doing personal development. For a couple of reasons.

Firstly, I knew that it was my duty to take responsibility for the end of the relationship, and somehow that made me feel better about the situation and not get angry at her for it.

Secondly, I exercised and gained a TON of emotional awareness. This allowed me to not let this whole thing ruin a month of my life.

I also know that I gained a lot of knowledge from this breakup, about my psychology, relationships, and much more.

Thanks to personal development, this breakup was a lot smoother than I could have ever expected it to be.

Here’s the point I want to drive home:

This is why we do personal development. It’s in tough situations like these that it is useful and can save our asses. We can also learn more about ourselves in difficult situations than in any other setting. It lets us discover new things, and gauge our growth as people. 

But here’s the harsh truth: no one will do it for you. You are the only one who can grow yourself internally.

So use these hard times to push yourself. I look upon the me coming out of that breakup as a phoenix rising from the ashes.

So if you’re depressed, rise from the ashes.

Girlfriend cheated on you? Rise from the ashes.

Business went bankrupt? Rise from the ashes.

Use these failures as tools. Tools for learning and tools for motivation

And use PD as a set of  tools for not getting your ass handed to you by life.

This is what personal development is about. Not reading a bunch of books and never getting hurt. The most real times are the hardest.

 

 

“The difference between people who grow stronger and
those who’ll be left behind is how they respond to the
pressure, the resistance, and the challenge of life. “ -Elliott Hulse

 

 

The 6 Pillars of Self-Esteem, Nathaniel Branden

The 6 Pillars of Self- Esteem, Nathaniel Branden

 

Category: getting to “by me”

The 6 Pillars of Self-Esteem is a true classic of personal growth. It’s called the “definitive work on self-esteem” for a reason!

Here’s Nathaniel Branden’s definition of self-esteem: “To trust one’s mind and to know that one is worthy of happiness is the essence of self-esteem.”

This is a pretty broad statement, but you’ll understand once you hear the 6 pillars.

What does low self-esteem look like? It is based on fear. Fear of reality, fear of emotions, fear of exposure, of loss, of humiliation, of responsibility, and believe it or not, a fear of success. Notice that these can be very subtle.

You must also know that low self-esteem is likely to entail self-sabotage. Your subconscious simply won’t let you succeed.

So what does healthy self-esteem look like? He says “healthy self-esteem is significantly correlated with rationality, realism, intuitiveness, creativity, independence, flexibility, ability to manage change, willingness to admit (and correct) mistakes, benevolence, and cooperativeness.” It is all based on self-efficacy and self-respect.

Here are the 6 Pillars:

  1. Living Consciously
  2. Self-Acceptance
  3. Self-Responsability
  4. Self-Assertiveness
  5. Living Purposefully
  6. Personal Integrity

Living consciously means being aware of what one is doing, thinking, and feeling, and what our values, beliefs, goals and purposes are. For example, you might unconsciously know that you’re not giving it your best at your job, but you don’t want to think about it. If you shun the problem, it doesn’t go away. Shine the light of awareness on it first, and you will no longer be a mystery to yourself.

Self-acceptance is the next step: while identifying these aspects of yourself, accept them! Accept that they are there. You don’t have to like them, and you can change them later, but by not accepting them, you deny reality. This step is necessary in order to change anything.

Self-responsability is understanding that your life and your happiness are in your hands. No knight in shining armor is going to save you. For you that might be your parents, the government, your spouse, your employees or a rich friend who bails you out. How’s that been working out for you? Is relying on others getting you what you want? Then understand that your life is in your hands.

Self-assertiveness is honoring your needs, wants and values, and expressing them. It means to stand up for yourself and your beliefs, and to live authentically.

Living purposefully is to use our powers for attaining goals we have consciously (note the recurrent use of that word) selected. Instead of being a cork floating on the sea, you have a compass.

Personal integrity means to live and behave in congruence with our values. This includes being honest in your opinion, being trustworthy, and not being hypocritical.

ALL of these pillars are internally-generated. No one else can raise your self-esteem for you. At least not in a lasting way.

These six pillars are the essence of self-esteem.

Believe it or not all that accounts for one-half of the book. The second half goes into a lot of detail talking self-esteem in a broader sense, such as in culture, in schools, in children, and so forth. This makes it into more than just a personal-development book, but also a comprehensive book on self-esteem as a whole.

One thing I really loved about the book was the different psychological exercises he gives, most notably stem sentences. They are sentences with the ends missing, and you have to generate 6-10 answers without filtering as fast as you can. This gives you and insight into your subconscious.

Here are some examples from the book:

If I am more accepting of my joy_____.

When I deny and disown my joy_____.

If I am willing to see what I see and know what I know_____.

There are no right or wrong answers.

This is a super versatile technique, and at every chapter he gives about 20 different ones. At the end he even has a 31-week program of these for raising self-esteem!

I have been doing the ones related to self-assertiveness since that’s one of my sticking points.

The last point I want to make about this book is that Nathaniel Branden can be stubborn about his definition and defense of self-esteem, and doesn’t understand the next stages of personal development. Just remember, this book is FANTASTIC for getting into “by me!” But recognize when you need to move forward.

 

Favorite quote:

 

“We can run not only from our dark side but also from our bright side—from anything that threatens to make us stand out or stand alone, or that calls for the awakening of the hero within us, or that asks that we break through to a higher level of consciousness and reach a higher ground of integrity. The greatest crime we commit against ourselves is not that we may deny and disown our shortcomings but that we deny and disown our greatness—because it frightens us. If a fully realized self-acceptance does not evade the worst within us, neither does it evade the best.”

 

The Verdict:

One of the great, comprehensive guide for the raising of self-esteem. Highly recommend for anyone in “to me” (but others may find it useful too!).