__MAIN_TEXT__

Page 1


GO GET IT 10 STRAIGHT FORWARD GUIDELINES TO HELP GET YOUR SH*T TOGETHER


Copyright © 2020 by Mhood Design Design & illustration copyright © by Mhood Design All rights reserved. No portion of this book may be reproduced—mechanically, electronically, or by any other means, including photocopying—without written permission of the publisher. Published by Mhood Design Studio.

For further details on this work or more information about Mhood Design, you may visit the web address below or send an email to info@mhooddesign.com

www.mhooddesign.com


What This Is All About

Introduction

“I have met many p

years, and in my o found that people a everywhere. They fears, shed similar many years.� 2


Go Get It

Introduction

people over the opinion, I have are the same have the same r tears, die in so CURTIS MAYFIELD 3


What This Is All About

Introduction

“

4

Life

Design is so simple,


Go Get It

Introduction

that is why it’s so complicated.

Paul Rand

5


What This Is All About

T Introduction

his book is a compilation of themes observed, ideas and philosophies studied and lessons learned from others through life thus far. The guidelines set forth are based around failures and triumphs on the road of life and what was taken away from all of those trials. Initially, this book was intended for the “pure� creatives for lack of a better word, meaning; the artists, the designers, musicians to help ignite their drive and direction, but then I thought, well what about everyone else? Most of the people I know and individuals I have met were creative in some aspect, and I personally feel creativity is not exclusive to the traditional arts. This book is written for the creative which lives in all of us; that creative capacity to make, shape, and mold things as a human being, with one of the main projects being our lives. We all possess some of the magic we refer to as creativity, and more importantly, we all share the commonality of human beings working our ways through life while figuring it out, and this book is for all of us. This book is not long by design as the key points are intended to land home by carefully and intentionally reducing any extemporaneous writing or unneeded fluff, focusing only on key ideas and touchpoints on how to live a

6


Go Get It

better, more purposefully designed life. There also seems to be enough fluff in this social media induced world already, so with this in mind, the following work is purposefully short, precise, and sweet (more on social media in guideline 8).

I also know in great detail what it’s like to be direction-less myself. I know what its like to bomb at things, to lose loved ones early, to ruin love, to be exposed to constant seeping negative influences within people and within environment, and facing certain defeats of the mind, body, and spirit that life tends to dish out. We all face similar experiences related to human hardships as they are inevitable to happen at some point. The items in this 7

Introduction

Furthermore, this book is intended to be used as a guide to help get you going on your course in life because I know and understand that at times life can be hard and grow difficult in both our personal and professional settings, and that struggling to find a solid direction and footing is a common issue for many human beings. I know that sometimes certain things feel like they may never change, and we often feel that we don’t possess the capacities to tackle certain obstacles or make a beneficial shift in our circumstances.


What This Is All About

Introduction

work are meant to help get through some of the rough spots and more importantly, equip you in handling them a bit better. The guidelines that follow are based off philosophy, psychology, design, and seemingly universal truths within life itself. At the core of all of these subjects, this work is largely a synopsis of observations on our human nature tied around personal experiences and analysis, breaking down these experiences and seeing what seemed to work positively for myself as well as others. Afterwards, forming them into certain ideas and practices based around these observations. This book is part spiritual, a tiny bit of theory, a small portion scientific, but overall an account on what I’ve learned on this earth through watching and analyzing people and situations I’ve came in contact with from my professional and personal life. The content in this is meant to act more as a guiding light than as hard and fast advice, because at the end of the day, a bulk of the work is figuring out what works for oneself, and not taking everything from one source and calling it your truth. A large part in all of this is continuous design and discovery of yourself, but this will be covered in the upcoming text.

8


Go Get It

Continue Onward 9

Introduction

It is my hope that after reading this, you take your capacities, your talents, and your unique essence no matter your level of creativity or skills, and use them to the best of your ability. Use this work as an item to spark your thinking and from there, begin to design and build the life you really want by figuring out where you truly want to go and what makes you tick. The ideas shared here are meant to jump-start you in figuring these things out. I believe we all have these special inherent gifts that we come stock with, sometimes we just need a small kick in the right direction to begin uncovering and utilizing them. Here is your gentle kick in the ass. Enjoy.


What We Have In Here

Contents

PILE OF CONTENTS

10


Go Get It

Take Full Responsibility

p. 12-21

02

Find Your Truth

p. 22-29

03

Keep Yourself Level

p. 30-41

04

Maintain Your Inner Child

p. 42-51

05

Strive For Better

p. 52-61

06

Build Strong Work Habits

p. 62-71

07

Check In With Yourself

p. 72-83

08

Value Your Time

p. 84-93

09

Only Compare You to You

p. 94-103

10

Get There Your Own Way

p. 104 -115 11

Contents

01


Take Full Responsibility

GUIDELINE 1

Guideline 1

TAKE FULL RESPONSIBILITY

12


Go Get It

Guideline 1

13


Take Full Responsibility

Guideline 1

L

ife in and of itself has consistent themes, morals and values that weave into each other and this first guideline follows that concept. This guideline is arguably the most important as it sets the foundation and tone for much of the content that follows. Once you come to grips with where you are in your life, that is the point you can start to move forward with more clarity or shape up and move forward or even rebuild if necessary. As doctors need to diagnose the exact problem at hand before they can provide treatment, you need to take responsibility for your life and everything in it before you can shift into a better direction. Once you do this, you can then begin designing and moving forward from this stance of clear understanding and accountability. This includes really figuring out who you are (Guideline 2) so you can grow from that core understanding. Putting in the work it takes to get there (Guideline 6) to build up to where you want to be and continuing to progress even further after that. Taking responsibility for your emotions and reactions (Guideline 3), and taking holistic responsibility for where you want to go, guiding yourself on your new direction or venture, whatever that may be for you. This step up of personal responsibility acts as the foundational bedrock to build off to move onward and upward. As this 14


Go Get It

“The man who complains about the way the ball bounces, is likely the one who dropped it.” — Lou Holtz

guideline is crucial and holds tremendous weight, it shouldn’t be overlooked or unimplemented on your journey.

Not taking responsibility and neglecting to truly face oneself applies to not stepping up in any area of our lives where we know we should, avoiding work, goals and making excuses left and right for why we can’t do certain things. The reality is, doing this is crucial and a major part of mature growth in life whether it be personal or professional. Taking this step is absolutely necessary if you want to build and move forward. When you 15

Guideline 1

Taking true responsibility is a large undertaking. The reason why fully adopting this idea is so difficult is because it challenges our ego and entire idea we have of ourselves; who we really are, our capabilities, everything. As human beings, It is difficult to look in the mirror and say honestly, I was wrong, I messed up, something is wrong in my life, or more bluntly, I really f***** up, or I am f***** up. Your circumstances may not be as dire but it still rings true that most of the time we’d rather comfort ourselves than turn and face what’s wrong, for the simple fact that it's the easier way out.


Take Full Responsibility

Guideline 1

relentlessly hold yourself accountable for your life, it removes any tinge of a victim mentality you may have, and gives you the power to take your life back into your own hands instead of blaming anything or anyone else. The writing is on the wall; you are the master builder, or the ruthless destroyer of your life from where you stand. You and only you. You Are Your Choices Our lives as human beings on this earth can be analyzed in many ways and on many levels depending on what intellectual, philosopher or person is doing the analyzing. There are always multiple angles to look at things from. But one of the most accurate descriptions of our lives and where we are in them is that our lives are a current sum of our previous choices. Simple as that.

“If it’s never our fault, we can’t take responsibility for it. If we can’t take responsibility for it, we’ll always be its victim.” — Les Brown

16

Where you are now is based off of choices you made in your near and distant past that compounded over time and throughout your life, bringing you right where you are now. Period. For most of us, this is a hard pill to swallow because it is easier to blame


Go Get It

Guideline 1

17


Take Full Responsibility

Guideline 1

things on someone else or any outside circumstances for where we may be at this moment. Of course, there are some circumstances within our lives that are out of our control, but at the end of the day, you always have a multitude of choices you make constantly. Some of which or maybe most you aren’t even aware you making, and you are a sum of all them. To begin pulling the control you have back into your court, take an honest account of where you are and go from there. What better choices could you be making? Do you have anything you’re avoiding or neglecting? What are some goals or activities you’ve put on the back burner or have made constant excuses about? Maybe you’re really shy but you know you can do better to meet and talk to more people. Maybe you feel you’re lazy and if you just had the gusto and drive to get off your ass you could get out there and make something of yourself. Maybe you bombed badly in some area in your past: you blew an important relationship, you shirked your work, you had a substance abuse problem, you lost all your money, you went through a divorce, or any other not-so-great decision we all make from time to time. It’s all good, as long as you take responsibility that the current circumstance is the reality, that is your past and you are now ready to move on, grow and 18


Go Get It

get better which there is always room to do. Like spilling the milk, instead of crying about it and how you wish things went different, go get the paper towels instead and clean it up. Remember, life is a marathon, not a sprint.

Constant Practice This act of taking responsibility along with all of the other guidelines in this book requires the discipline of constant practice. In the same fashion 19

Guideline 1

This way of honest accountability applies to many other areas in your life as well. If you are on a team at work and you all don’t perform well on your project, do you take responsibility? Is there something you knew you could have potentially done better and didn’t? Was there an area you knew you could have stepped up to the plate on, but didn’t? Do you always pass the buck and blame it on someone or something else? This concept even flows into your personal life and relationships, do you own up to the things maybe you could have done better, or is it always the other person’s fault? Do you blame everything that’s wrong in your life on everyone and everything outside of yourself ? If so, it may be time to take a step back and re-evaluate, because you do have a lot of control right in front of you. It’s likely that you just can’t see it yet.


Guideline 1

Take Full Responsibility

that exercising and eating well will get you into shape, once you finally reach the shape or weight you desire, the work needs to continue onward. Otherwise you will eventually slide right back to where you were. This idea as it applies to responsibility is no different, you have to constantly face yourself and challenge yourself if you want to make a change and more importantly, maintain that positive change. After the choice is made, the practice needs to become a habit in order to maintain that change. The bulk of the work is in the maintenance of the good stuff maybe even more so than the big change itself. As a society we still somewhat hold onto the quick fix and rapid change mindset behind everything. We want things done yesterday and generally don’t want to put too much effort in to extract results. But the absolute truth is taking responsibility and action in one’s life is hard work. Just like anything else worth gaining, it is going to take consistent action and efforts. That is the un-sugar-coated truth that most people whether they be self-help gurus or life coaches tend to skim over. Hard Work. Hard work is a foundational principle in life and it is also required in this step of taking responsibility and accountability for

“The price of greatness is responsibility.” — Winston Churchill

20


Go Get It

oneself on a disciplined, constant basis. There really is no other way around it. Hard work and consistency will be two keys in helping you get where you want to go, or anything else out of life.

So, take it upon yourself to take responsibility for your life and everything in it that you have control over. Be a consistent pusher, not a here and there dabbler. Compounded over time, your diligence and your efforts will begin to bear fruits much richer than anything dabbled in. And the key after that is the same, keep responsibility in your hands and continue pushing to run the best marathon you can.* *Choice always has to do what you have immediate control over, not the things you don’t. These include: your parents, your upbringing, your ethnicity, world events and so forth. Focus on the things you have immediate control over; which is a lot when you begin to peel back the curtain and see it.

Continue Onward 21

Guideline 1

These themes of constant practice, and overall consistency are ideas repeated often in this book, due to their value as a strong, foundational principles in life. Nothing is achieved through dabbling. Efforts and projects that are dabbled in, get the same results; dabbled, scattered and likely won't amount to anything of any serious value. The same applies to this concept of responsibility for your life and you path.


Discover Your Truth

Guideline 2

GUIDELINE 2

DISCOVER YOUR TRUTH

22


Go Get It

Guideline 2

23


Discover Your Truth

Guideline 2

S

ometimes in life you have to trip over and stumble through a few things you don’t like or aren’t into in order to find some of the things you like and enjoy. The primary areas this idea relates to are within your career, relationships, and hobbies (which can turn into careers). There are certain things that you will come across in life that will simply make your soul sing. These people, places, occupations or things will resonate with you from a deep place within your heart and soul. When you get that feeling, follow it. This is something of the divine, helping guide you to places a better part of you knows you want to go. The key is to follow that. Some of these may be something you tried and never thought you would be into but it brings you a strange sense of natural joy. Again, follow that. These are part of your naturally given gifts and curiosities that you came equipped with out of the box. They come stock in all of us, and each one of us has a different set of these inborn talents, strengths and gifts. The idea is to figure out yours. Concerning your professional or working life, a part of you knows when you are working at a job that just doesn’t quite do it for you. Nobody has to tell you; you simply have a deep gut and intuitive feeling that its not a good 24


Go Get It

fit for what type of person you are. But regardless, you show up every day just going through the motions. All the while you have the itching feeling that you should be doing something else. You only feel half fulfilled about the work you’re doing, if that, and you feel like an animal in the wrong part of the jungle; completely out of your element and not happy in the situation. It is not advocated to quit your job without a plan, but it is advocated that once you have a plan and a direction, you should leave asap. Staying in environments like this is only rob you of your energy and talents that would likely be of better use elsewhere. But back to the chapter title, sometimes you have to trip over these things to find the good stuff.

“Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself.” — Coco Chanel

25

Guideline 2

Pay Attention Paying attention to oneself is vital in discovering your truth. If you’re in the beginning steps of a career change, a new route in life or simply want to become a better version of yourself, begin to watch how your time is spent throughout the days and weeks. And just as important, pay attention to what you focus on in your mind. Maybe when you are at work, all you can think about is your passion for singing, acting, fly fishing, stand-up comedy,


Guideline 2

Discover Your Truth

26


Go Get It

skeet shooting, helping people or whatever activities vibe with you. There are gems to be uncovered here. When you start to look at yourself as an object of study, you begin to uncover these small nuances within you which come in the form of actions or thoughts that you weren’t fully aware of.

27

Guideline 2

Paying attention to oneself also involves removing some of the nonessential things that are not necessarily helping you out; the noise in your life. There is a lot of noise in this world today that can easily distract you from figuring out where your real power and strengths lie. Stay off social media for a little while, keep your phone at bay for extended periods of time and let your mind wander and dream a bit. Tune all of that noise out and pay attention to self for a while. Eventually, answers from different angles will start coming to you once you begin exploring “A person who knows who they and trying new things. You’ll begin are lives a simple life by collecting pieces from things that interest eliminating from their orbit you and putting together your own puzzle. anything that does not align with his or her overriding purpose A good starting point in finding buried and values.” passions and truths comes from your — Kilroy J. Oldster childhood; around ages 6-10, before too


Discover Your Truth

Guideline 2

much outside influence got to you and blurred your vision. What were you into and passionate about then? What did you want to be when you grew up back then? There are priceless bits of information in the answers to these questions. Though what you really want to do may not be the direct translation, the fields of interest you had as a child have a lot of material to work with in discovering what you really want to do and what you are naturally drawn too; and more than likely naturally good at. Give Yourself An Audit We don’t take a step back from ourselves often enough to view our lives objectively or from a different angle or perspective. But doing so can provide you with a lot of answers to getting closer to living your truth than you may suspect. Take some time out and look at yourself like you are your own experiment (which you are in some sense). Ask yourself; who am I? What do I like to do? What resonates with me? What comes to me naturally? What are my strengths? What are my weaknesses? What type of people do I get along with best? Who are my friends and what are they like? Write all of this down. Then once you have everything, begin comparing, contrasting and 28


Go Get It

combining themes and concepts and things that make you, you. Getting a deeper sense of who you are will help you in finding your individual truth.

Finding your truth and living it in all aspects will bring a new richness to your life, living on the path that you lay out for yourself that you know to be authentic for you. Nobody else can do this for you. Begin putting your pieces together.

Keep Rolling 29

Guideline 2

“Stay far from timid, only make moves when you’re hearts in it” As the Notorious BIG so eloquently put it, that lyric hits the nail on the head about pursuing things meaningful to you as an individual in life, or in other words, your personal truth. If you find yourself doing things for an ulterior motive, such as money, fame, recognition or anything aside from love or passion for the craft at hand, your road to get that will be that much harder because you don’t have that purity of intent. Once you become in sync with what’s true for you, your life and your work will flow through you like a calm stream as you will be more aligned with your authenticity and the truth in direction you create.


Keep Yourself Level

GUIDELINE 3

Guideline 3

KEEP YOURSELF LEVEL

30


Go Get It

Guideline 2

31


Keep Yourself Level

Guideline 3

Y

our boss yelled at you today, you just had a fight with someone close to you, you recently had a bad breakup, you just received some harsh feedback by a colleague or higher up, you just lost some sort of investment money, or any of the infinite amount of things that could go wrong with your day, things didn’t go as planned. Your initial reaction will undoubtedly be the most emotional based; anger may cause you to take out that frustration on someone who didn’t deserve it. Anxiety may cause you to freeze up and not take action, and fear may cause you to shut down completely, causing you to tailspin even further into the negative. We deal with circumstances on a daily basis that have the ability to bring these types of reactions out of us. You would think the size of the problem is relative to the size of the reaction, but a lot of times we overreact even to the small things. We let one small instance in time bother us for an extended period and let our emotions and reactions to situations stress us out to the point of it affecting our health and our lives. We human beings naturally tend to focus in more on these negative experiences, outcomes, situations and emotions as opposed to the positive ones. This inherent action is not directly our conscious fault. We are in our 32


Go Get It

For example, after your boss yells at you, you replay that moment over and over again. Anticipating when will be the next time this happens or what will happen now; will you get fired? How will this end? Another example in a similar vein is when you venture into the unknown, whether that be a business, professional or physical venture, you will likely feel a strong sense of fear and anxiety, because you don’t know what to expect. There could be danger there, there could some sort of unknown harm there. So instead of facing it, you avoid it, as you know this way will certainly keep you out of 33

Guideline 2

primal form emotional creatures, and this “Whatever thought that tendency we have to let these dis-empowering activates a negative mood in emotions or small stress events completely your life, absolutely doesn’t control our lives is because we are hardwired deserve a single moment in biologically to avoid danger; which often your mind.” comes in the form of uncertainty, which — Edmond Mbiaka leads to these mental replays and the continuous worry. But from this biological standpoint, acting on the premise that things may cause harm to us or turn out negative keeps us safe and out of trouble. The problem is when some small stress event happens, we hold onto it and reuse it rather than going through it then letting it go.


Guideline 3

Keep Yourself Level

34


Go Get It

trouble. This initial reaction of fear keeps us from getting hurt in a survival sense, but if left unchecked it can prevent us from achieving anything of new or of higher significance. The challenge is to override this by training yourself to not go below neutral (and yes this is very much training), in other words, no matter what happens, keep your emotional state from sinking into the negative such as fear, anger, depression or any variation of negative feelings.

Think about what happened leading up to this; you were yelled at by someone, you woke up groggy, you have a troublesome client or any myriad of things. Then think is it really worth it to let this person, place or thing 35

Guideline 2

Take a Step Back One major key to keeping yourself above neutral is to take a step back from your emotions and think before you react from the first emotion you feel (which is a large but beneficial task), whether that be fear, anxiety, doubt, anger, or any emotion within the negative realm. When you get fired up or feel any sort of emotional reaction begin to bubble up, take a step back and think, why am I feeling like this, and is this reaction really worth it.


Keep Yourself Level

Guideline 3

“When you react, you let other people and circumstances control you. When you respond, you are in control.” — Bodhi Sanders

shake me up that bad? Once you begin stepping back and creating a space between reactions, you’ll quickly realize 99% of the time, the worry and nonsense you put yourself through is never even close to being worth it.

Every time we overreact or let something get to us in our lives, at the time it may seem like a huge deal or the thing or event may ruin us depending on what it was. But when you give yourself that distance, you are able to see things with more clarity, thus helping reveal them for what they really are. And believe me, most things are not that big of a deal to get upset over, nonetheless letting these things ruin your day, week, month, year, or your life. Most things in life, you can handle. But you will need that clear, neutral head to do so. There is a book entitled “Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers” that relates to this idea of stress, overreacting and keeping it above neutral. The main premise of the book is that zebras are stress free most of the time, despite the fact they live in an environment as prey with animals that want to kill them and 36


Go Get It

Breath Taking a deep breath once in a while is a highly underrated practice. We never really think about our breath consciously throughout the day because it is so natural that we don’t have to. But when we are stressed or in a tough situation, our whole body tightens up subconsciously. Our breath follows suit with the rest of our body and also constricts, becoming shorter and more rapid. The change in breath can be subtle enough we don’t notice until it gets out of control, but that shorter breathing due to stress is one of 37

Guideline 2

eat them alive. Though this reality exists for them, they only worry when there is actually a serious threat or danger e.g. when a lion or predator is chasing them. But at the end of the event, once the chase is over and they don’t get their asses chewed off, everything is ok and they go back to living as usual. Zebras, unlike the human animal, don’t torture themselves playing stressful events over and over in their mind again, they go back to neutral. It happened, now everything is ok. Humans on the other hand tend to stress all day long, sometimes we even let stress carry on through a few days, a whole week or even longer if not properly checked. So why torture ourselves all of the time with unneeded stress and anxiety when most of the time everything is fine in our lives as well? We can learn a lot from zebras.


Keep Yourself Level

Guideline 3

the things that makes you feel even more stressed in the moment. This leads into you reacting from a survival standpoint instead of thinking a situation through a bit more rationally. So do yourself a huge favor, next time you feel any of those strong, negative emotions, take a step back, and take 3 big, deep, thoughtful breaths. After that, assess the situation from a clear standpoint (if you haven’t already forgotten how irrelevant it was). If you continue to do this and keep it up, you’ll be amazed at how much it helps. It’s these little things that can make a big difference. Build Up Your Gratitude As the pace of life quickens, this act of counting your blessings can fall by the wayside, but implementing this can alleviate much worry as being grateful keep you in check and helps you avoid being overwhelmed in certain moments. Maybe you’re not “where you want to be” in life, or you had a bad day at work, or are just tired of how things are going in general. Whatever the case may be, when your mind and your thinking begin to take a turn toward the negative, think about all of the good things you do have. I’m sure you have some. Maybe you are healthy despite everything, maybe you have a good group of friends that you can always rely on, or a good household and family structure. 38


Go Get It

The main point being, when things begin to go south in your thinking or attitude in the moment, that tends to overshadow everything else. In these moments of brief stress we tend to forget the good things we have in our lives when these negative emotions and thinking hit. Always remember to take account of the good stuff, as that focus far outweighs any of the nonsense and worry.

“If you aren’t the one who is controlling your own thoughts, feelings, and emotions then you are one who is being controlled.” — Clyde Lee Dennis

39

Guideline 2

Keeping your emotional state above neutral will take practice because a lot of how you currently think is made up of ingrained patterns repeated over your life. Naturally, it will take effort to unweave them. It takes time to get yourself straightened out, and there is no shame in that. The key is that you’re taking a step in the right direction of controlling your emotions and your mind by not letting them control you all of the time. In addition, realize you are not your mind, no more than you are not your arm. Your mind is simply a tool; a piece of you that makes up the whole, just like your arm, your heart or anything else. Use this tool of the mind in a positive manner to shape what you want as opposed to letting it negatively effect you by letting thoughts and reactions break you down.


Keep Yourself Level

Guideline 3

Once you start believing this and getting better at this practice, other things will start to shift, things simply won’t rattle you or bother you as much. With this new, steady frame of mind, you will be able to address things in your life with better zeal. This practice will have a positive effect which will aid you in dealing with difficult people and difficult situations much better as you’ll have the tools and mindset to face them with a clear head, rather than a flustered or upset one. The main takeaway from all of this is to learn to be the designer of your mind and your thoughts. On paper it seems like new age nonsense, but it is absolutely true that you can control your thoughts and emotions. As stated earlier, you are not your mind, it is simply a tool we are equipped with that we can use to either help or inhibit ourselves. Use it to do the former. But like anything else, it takes constant work. As the apprentice needs to practice to learn the proper way to use his tools, you must constantly practice ways to tame and use your mind. The rewards you will reap from this, are far worth the effort. Achieving clarity of mind and purity of thought will have positive benefits across everything in your life. From consistently doing this practice things will inevitably change; your 40


Go Get It

work, your relationships with others, and your overall stronger disposition will be nothing but a new positive habit added to your life. So, from now on, practice keeping it above neutral.*

Guideline 2

*Of course there are events that happen in life that will inevitably beat you down hard: deaths, breakups, truly devastating events, and in these times it is best to let emotions flow and go through any relevant grieving process, and then get back on the horse. But most things we get worked up about on a more daily basis, are not a big deal. Nobody is chasing you and wants to eat you while your heart is beating so you need to relax.

On To the Next 41


Maintain Your Inner Child

GUIDELINE 4

Guideline 4

MAINTAIN YOUR INNER CHILD

42


Go Get It

Guideline 4

43


Maintain Your Inner Child

Guideline 4

I

am sure that at some point in your life you have had the opportunity to observe kids playing. If not, make a point to do so because it really is a remarkable thing. It is an amusing, educational and self-reflective experience watching young ones play because they are essentially human beings in raw form; fresh, unscathed and un-scarred by life’s inescapable ills and harsh lessons we learn along the way. Kids are still largely unexposed and unaware of many if not all negative ideas, systems, ways of behaviors and ideals marketed to us, which allows them to live and act freely, not yet knowing fear or limitations. As adults, a part of us knows this, and that’s why we get joy out of watching kids. We see many lost pieces of ourselves in these little humans that they still possess; maybe some of our lost potential, maybe some of our forgotten happiness, or another piece of ourselves which we may have lost a long time ago or simply forgot we had. We watch how they move through life with such vigorous energy and curiosity and one can’t help but to be a bit envious of their raw, youthful spirit. Along with their vibrant energy and overall positive attitudes, children for the most part come stock with fearlessness. They have an endless

44


Go Get It

Losing that inner magic usually happens incrementally over the course of our lives. A friend makes a demeaning comment here, a family member who you look up to criticizes you there, you compare yourself to others around you (see Guideline 9), and you expose yourself to garbage content constantly from social media and various outlets. The world we live in can easily make you feel less than, stripping out any youthful individuality you once had and before you know it, most, if not all of that

“Children have neither past nor future; they enjoy the present, which very few of us do.� — Jean de la Bruyere

45

Guideline 4

imagination along with a natural disposition for curiosity and wonder. They say whatever comes to mind, do whatever they like to do in the moment, and are constantly pushing their boundaries to see what they can do and what they can get away with. This applies to testing their parents and seeing what limits they can push against within their world. Of course, some of these characteristics have their downside, but overall the fearlessness, gusto and magic that kids have, is something all of us can use a little more of. Life is almost undefeated in beating these positive traits out of us as more and more time passes. So, the question should be asked; When did you lose some of yours?


Guideline 4

Maintain Your Inner Child

46


Go Get It

natural magic you had as a kid is lost. Then, the little you have left is buttoned to tightly under your pressed shirt, slacks and tie you don’t want to wear. Usually by the time we reach high school or college, most of us have completely lost our inner child; the sense of curiosity, the sense of wonder and imagination our lives used to hold. You may be lucky if you carry that youthful essence into our mid-twenties, never mind into our 30s and beyond. Even if you lost some of that vigor, not all is lost, and there are ways to recover that magic essence of youth. So how do we get it back?

47

Guideline 4

Why So Serious The idea and act of being serious gets pounded into your head the older you get; “You need to be more serious” “Take things more seriously”. Pull your 5-year-old to the side and try teaching him the concept of seriousness and telling them they need to take it into consideration, good luck with that. On the whole, adults tend to take life way too seriously. This is one of our main problems. We rush, we stress, we get frustrated, we overthink way too far into the future or the past and over certain situations, and because of this, we don’t get to enjoy life or what we are doing. Part of us simply do things to get it over with and then onto the next thing which leads to a constant cycle of mundane, unenthusiastic living. Kids on the other hand,


Maintain Your Inner Child

Guideline 4

enjoy every minute of whatever activity they have at hand. They are fully immersed in their projects and activities until it’s time to move on to the next one. They aren't concerned with what will happen 5 minutes from now, nevermind tomorrow as kids are natural practitioners of being in the present, always. There is something to be taken from that fact. Being serious about certain matters in life is good thing. And it is not suggested in this guideline to shirk all of your adult responsibilities and mess around all of the time as of course that is part of being a responsible adult. “Don’t you know that it’s worth Being serious has it's place and is a necessity every treasure on earth To be in adult life, but when it is a constant state young at heart. For as rich as you are, it’s much better by far for you, it quickly becomes a problem and can rob you of any joy you had the chance To be young at heart.” to experience in your life. Take a cue from — Frank Sinatra kids, learn to live life under your feet and in the present; enjoying things as they are and taking life as it comes. So the next time you find yourself overreacting or taking yourself too seriously, put yourself in timeout and come out when you have a more joyous, youthful attitude and more positive disposition. 48


Go Get It

The key here is to start small and start from wherever you are (more in Guideline 5). If you know making a piece of art, doing a speech, starting a business, or anything on your dream list will get you where you’re looking to go but have no experience, begin exploring there. Take an art class, take a class on speaking, speak in front of a small group, open a business checking account then move from there or whatever that smalls step is for you in your desired goal. This type of slow and steady action and growth will also give you a good foundation to build from. Rather that throwing yourself to the wolves too soon in a new endeavor, you’ll develop a solid 49

Guideline 4

Exploration Children, coming naturally equipped with their fearless attitude are never shy of exploration. They explore your cabinet, will make instruments out of anything, and will try to eat any object that can occupy space in a mouth. They tinker, they fall, they try and try again, and they cease to explore. They have no sense of limits yet so they push them every chance they get. So, you need to ask yourself, where are your limits? Where is your true edge? What are you afraid of exploring or trying? Things you know you should do but haven’t yet due to any sort of fear you may have. Find these limits and start pushing them.


Maintain Your Inner Child

Guideline 4

foundation of growth and understanding for what you’re learning. Then from there, continue to step your game up. Inside the same vein of exploration, travel is highly recommended. As you know, kids will explore your whole house, the yard, the neighbors yard, the toilet and everything in between. As should you within your adult world (sans the toilet). As an adult, traveling and exploring is one of the most rewarding things you can do. It opens up your mind but humbles you at the same time. You get to see various people, cultures, food and ways of doing things. This further unlocks you from whatever ideals you may have had by simply seeing there are many ways to do this thing called life. Traveling gives you the opportunity to meet new people from highly diverse backgrounds and cultures. After meeting people from different places, you quickly realize that how different we are chopped up to be and how we are all categorized as different people by the media and the likes. But under the human umbrella, we are all very much the same. Kids seem to understand this naturally, they will hang out with anyone who’s company they enjoy. Us adults sometimes tend to forget this people principle.

50


Go Get It

Even if you’re just beginning exploration, a good place to start may be going to a part of your own city or state you’ve never been to, venture out. After traveling to new places and absorbing new things and experiences, your view of the world won’t be the same, your view will have a fresh new glow to it, similar to your first time exploring under the kitchen sink.

*This subject is meant to be taken with a grain of salt, as children of course are far from perfect. Though the negative side of children is not delved into. The negative traits in children are obvious and don’t need deep explanation in this case. The main point here is to take the positive attributes that kids possess and utilizing in your life as an adult. So no need to wear your batman underwear and cry over candy in public.

Keep Moving 51

Guideline 4

Recapturing that inner enthusiasm, curiosity and essence you once had as a young buck, will help bring a new energy and outlook into your life. Implementing this vigor for life will help you carry yourself with a more energetic spirit as kids do, taking things as they come and enjoying the moment, stripping away any unnecessary worry and nonsense from your life. Move forward, recapture your inner kid, and dive in.*


Strive To Be Better

GUIDELINE 5

Guideline 5

STRIVE TO BE BETTER

52


Go Get It

Guideline 5

53


Strive To Be Better

Guideline 5

M

onday morning rolls around and you wake up at an exact, random time (something like 6:48am) so that you can do the least amount possible to get ready for work and your day ahead. You sort of brush your teeth, whip the comforter over the bed to cover up the scrambled mess of blankets and sheets. You then eat something quick or maybe nothing at all, and if you do eat, you don’t take the time nor have it to clean up your mess, then you’re out the door so you can make it to work in just enough time to not be late. Does this routine look vaguely familiar? It possibly does now or might take you back to a time in your earlier years to a similar fashion in which you operated. Does this morning routine look like that of someone who has their act together? This type of disorganized, unintentional, sloppy start has the tendency to set the tone for your whole day. There is much truth in the adage that the little things make a big difference; and yes, they do add up. Your routine and what you do on a daily basis beginning from when you get up in the morning is one of those circumstances. By doing just enough to get by on the smaller things or disregarding them completely, how do you expect to accomplish anything of larger significance using these same “just enough” efforts and actions you put into everything else? 54


Go Get It

If you don’t have the small things together in your life, then those need to be taken care of first before you can move onto the bigger challenges. It seems today everyone wants to change the world but we have yet to even change ourselves. It seems foolish and naive to have such an ambition when we neglect doing the laundry or folding our clothes or any other micro thing within your life we do half-heartedly.

We All Start small That mighty tree was once only a seedling and that phenomenal athlete was once playing little league. What you want to accomplish or get better at 55

Guideline 5

It is fantastic that the ambition is there, but if you lack the drive to change the small things within yourself, how can you extend that discipline or lack-thereof to the bigger tasks? To build a mansion, you need to start with one small brick. Then comes the next brick and the next, and eventually you will have the building you desire. That is always where you start; those smaller items, that first brick. It’s fine if you’re starting at the ground level because the most important part is that you’re starting, and this is the foundational level to begin. The key is to start small and continually build up to larger obstacles and challenges to tackle on the road to betterment.


Guideline 5

Strive To Be Better

56


Go Get It

Getting better or striving to be better in any area always starts with the small things. There is no way to circumvent that. You must learn to crawl before you can walk, and walk before you can jog, and before you know it, you’ll be sprinting. But it all starts with those smaller incremental steps. 57

Guideline 5

in life will work the same way. It begins with small incremental changes which over time will get easier and easier and in turn, you will become better and better at what you are pursuing. One of the hardest parts in all of this is getting started and changing whatever bad habit we have and forming a stronger, more positive one to take its place. It is said to take between 18 days to 2 months to change or develop a new habit (depending on which research you read), it’s true the more ingrained certain habits are in you, “Good, better, best. Never let it the more time and effort they will take to rest. ‘Til your good is better change or weed out. This is due to the and your better is best.” pattern being wired so deeply in you from — Saint Jerome doing them over and over for months or years on end. If this is the case, it will simply take a little while longer to untangle everything and begin making new connections, and that’s ok. Just start doing the unwiring.


Strive To Be Better

Guideline 5

Take our initial example for starters on ways to get better. There are many ways a person like this can begin to take charge of their morning. A bunch of small bad habits changed over the course of time can have a huge effect on your life. Overtime, these habits and changes compound on one another and in a few year’s time, you can be a more refined version of you, constantly striving to be better. Write Things Down I’m sure this whole goal setting idea is as cliché as the advice to find and marry your soulmate by now, but the reason it’s everywhere, including this book, is because it works. Consistently writing down your goals, observations, and anything you’d like to keep fresh in your mind with a pen and paper will have a profound impact on your progress and mission in life. It allows you the ability to literally go back and audit your life; how you felt, your scheduling, your attitude and everything else you include. Writing things down whether it be your goals, your “A man who views the world the schedule, what you want to do, or all of the same at 50 as he did at 20 has above will begin to turn the wheels in your wasted 30 years of his life.” head. The more you write things down, the — Muhammad Ali more accountable you will tend to hold 58


Go Get It

yourself to your written items. Any sort of writing whether it be digital or physical is better than none, but I find physically writing with an oldfashioned pen or pencil and notebook work best, but whatever is comfortable for you, get the ball rolling.

When beginning this, it is ok to be a bit more vague in the details but as you keep doing it, refine it and sharpen it and watch how much your process and progress changes, whether it be a work related or personal item you wrote down. Once you get used to the activity of writing, take it to the next 59

Guideline 5

Again, beginning small and starting with a micro approach, maybe you want to plan your morning. Write it down in as much detail as you can, and continuously refine this as each day, week, month passes. For example: Write down what time you want to get up, write down what you want to accomplish in the morning, including time-frames in which you would like to finish them in, write down when you’ll take an extended break or lunch, and finish this scheduling and writing for the entire course of your day. Then at night, reflect on what went well and what didn’t. What could you have done better for that day in terms of productivity, your thinking, your actions, your use of time, or anything else beneficial for you.


Strive To Be Better

Guideline 5

level and start a full-on journal for yourself (more in guideline 7). Let this flow into all the small activities that you do and track yourself while constantly leveling up on micro levels first. When you put this concept of improvement into practice you will find it cascades across everything else in your life. When you begin to improve yourself incrementally and put yourself in a better place mentally, physically, emotionally, financially, you will be better equipped to help others do the same. You need to patch yourself up first before you can help anyone else. And it is much more rewarding for you, your life and everyone else in it, when you choose to push your life forward instead of staying the same, or worse, going backwards. The little things we do in life, whether positive or negative are all pieces of the whole we create and they all matter. They create our life of actions, habits and overall way of living. Quantum leaps of progress are going to require quantum efforts in work and refinement. There is no magic pill to circumvent that system of input and return. So, no matter where you are in your journey, today is the perfect day to start striving for better. Starting this today, will soon change all of your tomorrows. 60


Go Get It

Guideline 5

S PAC E

Proceed Forward 61


Build Strong Work Habits

GUIDELINE 6

Guideline 6

BUILD STRONG WORK HABITS

62


Go Get It

Guideline 6

63


Build Strong Work Habits

Guideline 6

H

umans are always looking for that ever evasive final completion of items in our life, especially when it comes to work. We say to ourselves “After I do that or finish this thing, everything will be ok, I will be done and I can just relax�. But then what happens after that? We hold this sense of a Disney like ending where once we accomplish or complete something, the screen fades to black, not having to worry about anything after the curtain closes. Nothing could be further from the truth. Sure the chapter ends, the project ends, or the goal is accomplished, but there will always be more to aim for, more to accomplish and get better at. To be more straightforward, there will always be more work to do. That is where the beauty lies. Learning to love the process is where the richest fruits are harvested from your work and from your life. Being on a constant mission of betterment and improvement within the work you’re involved in is one of the most fulfilling tasks you can partake in. And like everything else, it will take effort. As it relates to the subject of working efforts and accomplishments, we still seem to live in a society that believes in and relentlessly markets overnight success and magic pills. We want to achieve our goals, personal successes, and all of our dreams by putting in as little effort as possible while getting 64


Go Get It

maximum results; Get 6-pack abs in two weeks, make six figures blogging in one month, become a real estate millionaire within 1 year, make $100,000 working 10 hours a week and the list goes on. This idea sells and always will sell because the easy, quick way out will always be more appealing that the truth; The truth that any lasting success, change or anything you are going after will take time, a clear direction, perseverance and consistent work.

65

Guideline 6

It is a law of the universe that something must be given up in order for something to be gained. In this case, work needs to be put in to get any sort of returns you desire. Those returns you receive will be equivalent to the efforts you put forth. Once you begin developing better ethics around your work, “Plans are only good intentions you will begin to uncover the tremendous unless they immediately amount of satisfaction knowing that you degenerate into hard work.� put your full efforts into your work, — Peter Drucker activities you are involved in and all items you care about in your life. This development of healthy, strong work habits helps build up some of the most beneficial traits one can possess: patience, strength, humility, resilience, temperance, discipline and a myriad of others. After putting in the work time and time again, you may eventually reach a


Build Strong Work Habits

Guideline 6

point where you have solid systems in place, in which you may not have to work as hard anymore, but the bottom line remains, somewhere along the line work is going to have to be put in. It’s one of those things in life, sometimes we may be kicking and screaming in the process of a difficult project or endeavor, but when we do finally get to the finish line, we look back and see those “Without labor, nothing prospers.” trials and tribulations as the part that sticks out the most. A big chunk of the reward is — Sophocles within the work itself, maybe even more so than the completion, where then its time to tackle the next obstacle. Of course, one of the objectives in this is to find work you enjoy doing (as discussed in Guideline 2) But while you may be in the transition phase, or working on your passion project, the way you approach your work still applies. The following items are a few ways to help get you on the course to be a bit more effective in your work. When You Work, Work Deeply The idea that there is no substitute for hard work (written by Thomas Edison, the Rock, Heather Bresch, and various others according to the 66


Go Get It

There is a fantastic book by a Cal Newport entitled “Deep Work”. He writes about the value of working deeply and the benefits of doing so. The main point made is that there is a large difference between what he calls “shallow work” which is basically busy work that is highly non-productive (email checking, slack messaging back and forth, shallow meetings, jumping from one thing to another, dibbling etc.) and what he advocates for, which is 67

Guideline 6

Internet) is as age old adage that still holds “Without ambition one starts its weight today. There is simply no way of nothing. Without work one skirting the work to get anything or go finishes nothing. The prize will anywhere, and then expecting a result. How not be sent to you. You have to you approach work and your overall attitude win it.” towards it is a large determining factor in — Ralph Waldo Emerson your ability to complete anything that requires effort. Which almost anything of substantial value is going to take just that; hard work and effort. Though hard work is highly valued, where that work is directed and how well it is utilized plays a large determining factor. Working for 4 hours haphazardly or not fully focused on the task will not be nearly as effective as 2 hours deeply immersed in the work, whatever the project or task may be.


Guideline 6

Build Strong Work Habits

68


Go Get It

“deep work�; long focused attention on one important task at a time devoid of all distraction. Unfortunately in today’s world, the shallow, distracted, unfocused work is more the norm, but to break free from this terrible working style, implementation of deeper focus is the only way to extract the best results from the limited time you have.

Better Work Habits Beginning this journey to develop strong work habits or building on whatever work habits you may have is a continuous process. If you are starting from ground zero and do not possess strong or focused work habits 69

Guideline 6

I have yet to see anyone get substantial work done while checking their phone and email every 5 minutes. That is equivalent of trying to drive down the highway and stopping every 5 minutes, you kill all of your momentum. Mr. Newport goes into this much better than I but this is the main idea to be taken away; When you are working, no matter what you do, shut down all of your distractions. That means your phone, any sound notifications on your software, everything that takes you off task. This along with beefing up your working habits will help you discontinue stopping in the middle of the highway in your work.


Build Strong Work Habits

yet, don’t worry, as stated earlier, implementing anything into your life including better work habits can be achieved, just start small within your chosen capacity. At first, begin to work focused and effectively for 30 minutes minimum on a side project or whichever endeavor you’d like to pursue. Do this for one week, every working day; Monday-Friday, using the weekend to relax and unwind fully. Then the following week, bump up your time by 15 minutes, focusing on whatever is important to you for 45 minutes. Rinse, wash and repeat this process week by week and you’ll be amazed at how much you can get done simply by building upon these small chunks of time. Remember, building a skyscraper starts with a setting one piece of steel, begin laying your course.

Guideline 6

“Striving for success of any kind without hard work is like trying to harvest where you haven’t planted anything.” — David Bly

Prioritize Your Work There are certain tasks and items within your work (and your life) that clearly rank higher than others in importance to you and your mission. To be effective and efficient in your work and where you’d like to go, identifying these higher return tasks will be of incredible benefit. A more 70


Go Get It

broad but good starting point is to write out your tasks and goals you’d like to achieve on a piece of paper. Don’t be bashful, write out all of them. Then once you have a good list going, ask yourself, which of these tasks if I focused most of my time, my attention and my working efforts on, would have the highest positive effect, or get me closer to where I’d like to be? Then number these goals and items accordingly. Then start on number 1, and only number 1, and begin working to accomplish that task. All the rest can wait for later.

Get Going 71

Guideline 6

In summary, When it comes to life and your work, there is no way out but through. You must do the work to get to the other end. That includes work on all levels, whether they be internal or external; your attitude, your emotions, your job, your relationships, physical health, your lifestyle and the likes. Changes in any of these areas need sustained work to evolve and will require maintenance work then after. Building a better attitude and relationship towards your work and developing better habits compounds on the idea of a focused working style and will further help push these changes forward and keep you there. Pack a lunch, and get to work.


Check In With Yourself

GUIDELINE 7

Guideline 7

CHECK IN WITH YOURSELF

72


Go Get It

Guideline 7

73


Check In With Yourself

Guideline 7

Y

our phone and laptop ping every few minutes with a new notification vying for your attention. More traditional media and advertising also reach for a slot of time and attention out of your life at every angle. And with the new emergence and popularity of podcasts and various streaming services as more outlets looking to snatch your attention, when was the last time you had a true 5 minutes to yourself ? And I mean just yourself with yourself; no tv, no phone, no big party or gathering, just you, hanging out by yourself collecting your thoughts, maybe even staring off thinking about nothing (which it turns out is good for you). This activity or lack thereof may even be thought of as a weird idea, just sitting there by yourself with your thoughts just letting things flow. But in reality, this quietness, this space, this time period of peace of mind is when the good stuff comes to you, or you can at least take a load off and rest your brain for a moment. The importance of these self-check ins is not something to be overlooked, as it plays an important role in keeping yourself in balance. Imagine eating all day long and not stopping. Do you think that would be healthy for you? You would get no time for proper absorption or digestion as you’re just 74


Go Get It

piling one thing on top of another. That is essentially what we do when we don’t slow down and simply take a break to check in; to refresh, rejuvenate, and simply absorb the things in your life and where you’re going. When we never slow down, we overload our brains, piling more and more information on top of it or not giving ourselves proper time to let it rest. This concept of checking in with yourself is a thoughtful process of downshifting, so when appropriate, you can kick back into high gear again rejuvenated, refreshed and not burnt out from all of the mental overeating.

75

Guideline 7

We seem to live in a culture that is constantly selling us on the idea that we need to constantly be doing something. There should be absolutely no idle time in our days, otherwise you are just wasting your time away. Many of the “success gurus” (not sure what else to even call them) will tell you to work, work, work, and don’t stop for anything. Don’t sleep, neglect your family and friends, and work until you collapse. In my opinion, this type of lifestyle and thinking will eventually catch up to you, likely leading to an intense burn out or simply hating your life.

“Just when you feel you have no time to relax, know that this is the moment you most need to make time to relax.” — Matt Haig,


Check In With Yourself

Guideline 7

This Wolf of Wall Street type advice, if you want to even call it advice, neglects the fact that the time off from work and activity, refreshes you for the next activity or work session. This nonsense needs to stop, as life encompasses a lot more than just working until you kick the bucket. The time aside of work for the other things we enjoy makes the fruit of the labor all the more enjoyable. With this sheer amount of unhealthy advice on working styles, along with mass accessibility to information available in the world to keep you distracted, coupled with our constant feeling that we must be doing something of monetary or work related value, there is no better time than now to begin implementing these self-check ins. There is no point in speeding through life or being so distracted all the time. A large part of life is taking time to refresh and enjoying the scenery along the way. When you check in with yourself, it allows you to slow things down for a little to see where you’re at and evaluate. How was your week? Are you heading where you want to head at the moment, or have you been distracted by other things? Are you surrounding yourself with people, places and things, that help you or inhibit you? At the very least, use this 76


Go Get It

Guideline 7

77


Check In With Yourself

Guideline 7

personal check-in time to unwind and let your mind rest, maybe stare at the leaves on a tree. Besides turning everything off, and taking quiet time for oneself, there are other beneficial ways to check-in that have a similar healing, rejuvenating effect. Family & Friends As much as we like to think of ourselves as highly evolved beings because we carry glowing rectangles in our pockets and know how to bang on buttons and compose emails, we are still fairly simple creatures with foundational needs. We have a need to belong and be a part of a tribe; your tribe being your group of family and friends (and if you’re lucky a good group of co-workers). Having a great tribe and spending time with them, is a great way to check in with oneself as it provides a sense of community and belonging that we need as social beings. And I’m sorry to tell you, no social media platform, will ever take the place of natural, in person, face to face, human contact. One 5 minute verbal, face to face conversation will always outweigh any amount of surface level text messages, tweets, posts, threads or anything of that nature. So opt for the real deal and always keep in touch with your tribe.

78


Go Get It

If you’re skeptical of this, simply try not going outside or taking these walk breaks for one week. Then check in with yourself and see overall how you felt that week. Then, the following week, take these short walks, everyday throughout the day and see how you feel. The times that work best for many people are in the morning, after eating lunch, and after dinner in the evening, but whatever times work for you, as long as you get out there. You may be amazed at how much a simple walk can help clear your head. 79

Guideline 7

Nature From our biological baseline as human beings, we are people of the earth, and being in or around nature has incredible relaxing and healing benefits. If you work in an office all day long, it is even more important to get outdoors “Solitude is where I place my throughout the day if you can. Get outside chaos to rest and awaken my and take a walk to re-energize and re-check inner peace.” in with yourself. Even a short 10-15 minute — Nikki Rowe walk at different points throughout the day has a huge impact on your state and productivity (look it up). That short break in action and refreshment, helps you through your next chunk of work or next part of your day that may require deeper focus or energy.


S PAC E

80


IS

S U B STANC E

ALAN FLETCHER

81


Guideline 7

Check In With Yourself

Journal Starting a journal (as briefly mentioned in Guideline 2) can have profound benefits on your life as it relates to checking in with yourself and personal progress. You are not limited to what you write about as it is your journal, but one of the most beneficial methods is writing as it relates to reflection on your days/weeks on your life, goals and work. Identifying what you did well, and not so well in terms of your time, your efforts, your thoughts and attitude. Writing and reflecting on these items are a great way to keep tabs on yourself. Once you begin amassing a journal, you can look back through some of your writing and will be amazed at your attitude from that time period whether it was good or bad. You will literally see where you were mentally, in terms of your goals, and how your overall thinking was at that point in your life. You can also see how you reached your goals or how they changed slightly over time, getting more and more refined and aligned with where you really want to go. Just start this. Begin writing about your day in sort of a documentary style to get a feel for the process and get your feet wet. After some time, begin to 82


Go Get It

refine this writing and documenting, tracking your work efforts, how you spend your time and continue documenting your thoughts, feelings, energy, or whatever else you’d like to include. Over time you will begin to see patterns in yourself that are uncovered through your writing that you may have never consciously realized. Make changes accordingly from there and no matter what you do, continuously check in with you, so you can discover and further design and refine for the better.

Keep On Keeping On 83

Guideline 7

Some of the advice in this specific section may seem hokey, new age, or many other adjectives to describe it as irrelevant or stupid. I thought so myself for a number of years. But once you begin doing all of these things, your attitude may completely change. Writing down and documenting your days every day, making more of an effort to check in with your family and friends and getting outdoors more will have a positive effect. So, pick up a pencil, pick up the phone to call your friend, and take yourself for a walk, consistently rinse, wash, repeat and check in with your positive progress along the way.


Value Your Time

GUIDELINE 8

Guideline 8

VALUE YOUR TIME

84


Go Get It

Guideline 8

85


Value Your Time

Guideline 8

O

ur concept and value of time seems to get overlooked and undervalued, but it is hands down our most precious resource as once time is spent, it can never be recovered. Every time I pressed a key to type this book up, that was a piece of my life being whisked away, moments of time I cannot get back. This along with every other action or activity I take part in (or don’t) on a daily basis is a block of time compounded on others that essentially build out what my life consists of, as does yours. Every time you do something you don’t like, every time you complain, every time you waste away sulking or doing anything of negative value, you are giving up precious moments of time. Why do we take it so for granted?

We sleep in too much, we spend days or weekends hungover or doing things that aren’t at our best. We let people waste our time and we let opportunities slip through our fingers. We squander our talents and then make excuses for doing so. We push things off until tomorrow, but tomorrow always remains a day away. We tend to have this sense of living forever or feeling that the clock won’t run out, living only for today and not thinking about tomorrow. We have the tendency to disregard the fact that the time we spend now will

“Time isn’t the main thing. It’s the only thing.” — Miles Davis

86


Go Get It

soon effect our future. The fact of the matter is, time is never going to stop, nor is it going to slow down to wait for you to be ready. Time will eventually run out for all of us. We need to take this into account and live with purpose and intent, rather than with passivity and negligence. There are a bunch of things that negatively consume our time which will be defined simply as activities that eat up time without giving back much positive benefit in return. These following items seem to be of the larger majority of problems most of us face.

87

Guideline 8

Time-Wasting Rectangles With the deeper implementation of smartphones in our lives and the compounding role that technology and social media is playing in our society, it is incredibly easy to get sucked down the funnel of mindlessly sinking your time into your devices and social media. I have been guilty of it as well. My highest usage of phone time came out close to 3 hours and 30 minutes a day. That is more than 1 day out the week I was on my phone and over the course of a year it’s close to 60 days. I had to let that one sink in for a minute; 60 days out of a year, out of my life, were essentially wasted playing on my phone. And being totally honest, most of my activity was on unproductive things, such as social media, excessive email checking,


Value Your Time

Guideline 8

and overall mindless app tapping and usage. Which based on observation, seems to be the case for most users of these smart (idiot) devices. What is your usage like? Though I have a mostly neutral stand on technology and social media, viewing them more as tools for communication, business and promotion, I can’t help to feel there is something wrong in the way these tools and products are purposefully designed to rob you of your time and attention. They are “It is not that we have a short time to live, but that we waste a designed to keep us on them, aimlessly reading, aimlessly looking at photo after lot of it.” photo, video after video to which we reach a — Seneca point where we look like a mindless zombie. Just sitting there aimlessly tapping and swiping, stacking our anxiety with every swipe, app close, reopen and touch. They help lead us to blindly investing hours upon hours worth of our priceless time into varied mindless activity. This only takes us further away from things that truly enrich our lives. The overall stance on these devices and the roles they play in our lives needs to be readjusted.

88


Go Get It

Guideline 8

89


Value Your Time

I am not advocating to get rid of your devices as they do have great positive benefits, but the amount of time and ways you use them, should be closely monitored and we need to be aware of the negatives just as much or maybe even more so than the positives. Take a step back and audit how you use your devices and social media and make decisions from there in better ways to proceed forward, allocating your time in a more beneficial way. Maybe some of the swiping, tapping and scanning helps you if you are reading, learning or researching something. On the other hand, if you are watching your 17th motivational video, and haven’t taken any real life steps in using all of that “motivation” you’ve accrued, it may be a good time to re-evaluate and stop finger tap dancing so much.

Guideline 8

“Lost wealth may be replaced by industry, lost knowledge by study, lost health by temperance or medicine, but lost time is gone forever.” — Samuel Smiles

Watch Out for the Fun Bus Partying is a double edge sword. On one side it can be fun and relaxing to get out and take the edge off a bit. But on that same edge, that act can become time consuming and even harmful if not properly checked. Again, there is nothing wrong with going out and having a good time or 90


Go Get It

celebrating your accomplishments. But it is a problem when you begin “celebrating� a bit too much or begin taking it to a reckless or irresponsible level. There is a very thin line and gray area where partying turns from being ok to not being ok, and it happens very quickly. If partying and staying out late is having a negative effect on where you want to go, and your overall clarity, that is a problem. If it starts to take more and more time away from you that you could be using more effectively elsewhere, then yes, it is a problem.

Make a Schedule and Stick To It A schedule can sometimes have this sort of restrictive feeling to it in the sense that everything needs to be completed at that exact moment and in that exact amount of time. Life itself is never that easy and usually never works out like that and neither should your schedule. Your schedule should 91

Guideline 8

I am not saying you should not have fun and let loose once in a while. But I am saying there are healthy and better ways to do this as opposed to drinking, partying and the likes. A whole book can be written on this subject and I’m sure there have been, but for this circumstance, it would be wise to audit your partying and consumption of party favors.


Value Your Time

Guideline 8

act as a guide to prioritize and fill in the work and tasks you need to achieve. Of course, things are going to come up you didn’t plan for. When this happens, you prioritize this new item and see how it fits into your overall schedule, if it’s less important than other tasks you have to do, let it wait, if it’s important and urgent, jump on it immediately. It’s all weighing your priorities and what is important for you that day or week. Schedules are meant to bring more structure to your life. A schedule should work more like a core trainer than a strait jacket, where flexibility is allowed, but it still keeps everything in order. Without a schedule, whether it be written down, on your laptop or in your head (preferably written down) you are susceptible to letting every small problem or minuscule task distract you from things that are of much higher importance. Make a schedule and stick to it but be flexible as needed with your approach and keeping you top priorities in mind. At the end of the day, we can all benefit from coming to grips with the fact that time is not stopping and coming to the inevitable conclusion that yes, this life thing will eventually come to a close. Taking that fact and using it to your advantage by using the time you have consciously and wisely, spending 92


Go Get It

Shake and Move 93

Guideline 8

it where it has a higher volume of return for you and your life. Hopefully in helping to get you where you want to go. Do you really want to continue wasting all of those hours rubbing your rectangle (Average Americans spend over 5 hours a day on their phones), binging on tv for hours on end, sleeping excessively, eating crap food, drinking too much, divulging in lazy thought and actions, or any not so great activities or habits you religiously participate in? Think of the value that time has and how and where it could be used elsewhere to build yourself a beautiful life. So, stop rubbing your rectangle, sign out of your social media. You have permission to turn the TV off and use the time you have left in your life clock to the highest of your capacities.


Only Compare You To You

GUIDELINE 9

Guideline 9

ONLY COMPARE YOU TO YOU

94


Go Get It

Guideline 9

95


Only Compare You To You

Y

Guideline 9

ou scroll through all of your social media accounts, you look at your friends, maybe some family members, celebrities, a bunch of random people you don’t know, and you compare. How do I measure up to these other people? This person is better than me in this area. That person has more money than me. This person had a better upbringing than me and the list goes on and on. We naturally compare ourselves to other people as it establishes where we are in the pecking order, which translates into how well equipped we are to survive on a social and biological level. We are hardwired this way, much like how we are hardwired to avoid danger and bad situations (as discussed in Guideline 3). But the more and more people you speak to, while you may be comparing yourself to them, they simultaneously are admiring qualities in you they wish they had. Overall, it’s a dead end, non-beneficial cycle and way of thinking about yourself in relation to others. There is only one person you should compare yourself to; You, yesterday. Focus on Your Mission This is the most effective way to stay in your lane and only compare you to yourself. Having a mission, or purpose keeps you directed and in line. Once 96


Go Get It

Everyone has unique mindsets, perspectives, life experiences, upbringings, personality nuances, natural abilities, temperaments, peccadilloes, and a mountain of other things that differentiate us in personality, ability and talents. How can you possibly compare yourself to someone who may not be like you in anyway? Never mind chalking them up to being better than you as a human being. What’s right for another, may not necessarily be right for you. 97

Guideline 9

you have a deep, undying purpose and “Personality begins where mission in life, what everyone else is doing, comparison leaves off. Be thinking, or saying becomes nearly obsolete. unique. Be memorable. Be This is not to say ignore everyone or not confident. Be proud.” aspire to be successful like anyone else, just — Shannon L. Adler don’t use another person as your measuring stick for your value or progress. It is great to be inspired and influenced by another’s talents or achievements, but where it becomes troublesome is when you compare your value as a person to them directly, thus feeling like you don’t measure up. Of course you don’t have what they have, you’re not them and they are not you. Your job is to use what’s unique to you and capitalize on it in your own way.


Only Compare You To You

Guideline 9

There are always multiple routes to get to the same place. And just because someone may have reached a position in life or achieved something before you, or at a more desired time, that truly has nothing to do with your personal path and trajectory. Establishing your mission and where you want to go will alleviate a lot if not all of the comparison to others. Take the route that is best suited for you, that includes diverting from the norm and making your own route along the way. Track Yourself In Guideline 7 the idea of thoughtful journaling and checking in with yourself was discussed. The journaling and documenting of oneself dovetails directly into the concept of tracking your progress with the intention of using the former you as your measuring stick other that someone else. What were you like last month, or last year? If you’ve been striving forward to make positive changes in your life, I am willing to bet you are not the same person and things have changed; your outlook, your attitude, maybe you landed a better job, maybe you got into shape, all of these things should be tallied on the win side for you.

“Can you remember who you were, before the world told you who you should be.” — Charles Bukowski

98


Go Get It

Guideline 9

99


Only Compare You To You

Guideline 9

We all have personal strengths and weaknesses, things we are good at and things we aren’t. The idea is to expand on your strengths as deeply as possible, and button up any weaknesses that may be related or beneficial to that strength or where you want to go. We will take the design profession as an example; as a designer, you may enjoy the design part of the process, getting your hands dirty and into the files working on stuff, making moodboards, doing the research and so forth. But also, as a designer, you need to be able to speak with clients and sell your work. It doesn’t matter how technically skilled you are, if you cannot explain your work and decisions with a bit of confidence and even authority, your pretty much dead in the water (This applies to many other professions and areas of life as well) and your clients and colleagues will likely not have too much confidence in you in return.

“You wouldn’t worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

100

You may not be so naturally skilled with the gift of gab, but this soft skill relates directly to your work and what you want within your profession in design. So, to patch up this weakness, you can read some books on


Go Get It

selling and just practice getting better talking to people in general about your work and ideas. Practicing this actually will make you a better wellrounded designer and professional, buttoning up the weak spot that has a relation to one of your strengths.

Every single day, you have the opportunity to grow and make things better for yourself in whichever area you choose, whether that be your personal life, professional life, or hopefully a combination of both. When you compare yourself to others, you are judging yourself inaccurately. We all come from and start from different areas in our lives. And right where we are beginning from is perfectly fine. 101

Guideline 9

This idea is not mutually exclusive to design or any profession in particular. It can be used and implemented no matter what your profession. Maybe you are a salesman and can talk a dog off a meat truck, but you can’t write up a proposal to save your life and doing so may help you seal more deals. That should be an area to focus buttoning up. Maybe you are a photographer and you take incredible portraits, but you are terrible with talking to people, attempt to button up that small weakness the best way you can. Nothing but positive benefits will come from this.


Only Compare You To You

Guideline 9

If you walk away with anything from this, it is to focus on your best efforts and striving to the best of your capacities and capabilities without measuring yourself to anyone else; not your neighbor, not the top dog in your field, not The Jones’s, not anything or anyone outside of you, yesterday. Again, let these people inspire you to do better in your efforts, but do not compare your self worth or your skills and talents directly to anyone else. Always become a better person today than the one that you were yesterday.

102


Go Get It

Guideline 9

S PAC E

Start Getting It 103


Get There Your Own Way

GUIDELINE 10

Guideline 10

GET THERE YOUR OWN WAY

104


Go Get It

Guideline 10

105


Get There Your Own Way

Guideline 10

W

ithin our digitally, hyper-connected society today, we are bombarded with all sorts of “gurus, experts, and professionals” telling us how to live the best life, what we should do to be successful, what a successful life looks like, ways to be happy, and the list is endless. From overexposure to information everywhere and of every type imaginable, we have people telling you where to live, what makes a successful individual, what it definitively takes to be happy, and all of the other things marketed to you through these various outlets of information; social media, traditional media, podcasts, blogs, friends, family and acquaintances. Most of it has quite the tinge of personal biases and bullshit to it. Or they more than likely just want to sell you on something to grease their own pockets. End of story.

“Trying to be happy by accumulating possessions is like trying to satisfy hunger by taping sandwiches to your body.” — George Carlin

106

At some point in your life, you need to decide what’s right for your life and what works for you; what truly makes you happy and what doesn’t, and its almost a guarantee it won’t be any material item outside of yourself, especially some item or business some guru person is telling you will make


Go Get It

you happy if you acquire it. You have to take full accountability to discover what is right for you and have the confidence to move forward with the plan and ideals you lay out for yourself. You must do this despite what people say or try to sell you. Always remember that everything flows from within outwards.

Though learning and consuming information is good if the content is of positive substance, too much of it only leads to indecision and spinning your wheels while constantly second guessing yourself and where you should go. But the truth is, there is already a large part of you that knows where you want to go. You just need to uncover it by removing any junk and noise in your life so you can develop the mindset and the vision to see 107

Guideline 10

For a large part of my own life, I was always looking for someone or something to give me the answer. The next book, the next podcast, the next motivational video or the next person was going to give me my definitive answer or the mindset, attitude or direction I needed in life. Instead of going out and getting it myself, applying what I learned in the real world, I waited and procrastinated, waiting for the next thing to come along so my approach would be just right.


Get There Your Own Way

clearly, which some of the guidelines is this book are meant to help do. Once you do so, you will begin to see things from a different lens.

Guideline 10

At the end of the day, you are a unique individual and form. Never again will there be a person with your exact genetic combination, your unique gifts, your character, your style and your essence. There is also nobody who will truly know you better than yourself, but you will only find this if you are paying attention. The legitimate definition of success is: “The accomplishment of an aim or purpose�. Simple as that.* If you want to live on an island and build coconut huts for people, and you do it, you are a success. If you want to become the most famous painter who ever lived, and you do it, you are a success. If you really want to become a high-level exec and make 8 figures a year and you do it, you are a success. If you want to be a schoolteacher and help mold kids to be the best they can be, influencing future generations, and you do it, you are a success. Success is relative, and you get to determine the value of your success and where you go, nobody else can do that for you, ever. 108


Go Get It

Guideline 10

109


Get There Your Own Way

Guideline 10

“The main thing is t

education as you ca goals, decide what and work toward t 110


Go Get It

Guideline 10

to seek as much an get; form your at you want to be, that.� DONNY HATHAWAY 111


Get There Your Own Way

Guideline 10

There is no one way to live a good life, period. Everyone has their own developed set of values and what’s deeply important to them and their way of living. People have reached “success” in thousands of different ways, even the definition of success is arbitrary. Overall it is commonly or almost always associated with money or financial status, but I challenge you to begin to think for yourself, what is success to you? What path do you want to lead in your life? What are the things that make your soul sing? Once you know the terrain and where you want to go in life, how you get there is totally up to you, as it should be. None of us received an instruction booklet when we were born on how to live the perfect life, because “perfect” is purely a concept of something ideal to the individual. The guidelines in this book are designed to help you find your way in this life to live richly and fulfilled. In which after doing so, you will have the satisfaction knowing that you purposefully designed your circumstances and put it all in order yourself. You’ll find that most of these items in this work are so intertwined with one another, once you begin implementing some of these ideas, they will cascade into one another and through your whole life. If you continue your work and efforts, the changes and shift in your life 112


Go Get It

may be substantial. From your attitude, to how you think, act and feel, your life will shift for the better further helping you get where you’re looking to go and enriching your journey along the way.

Yes, deciding you want to change can happen in an instant, but the work to actually change, build, or grow is where the rubber needs to hit the road. You can’t necessarily think change into “There are many ways of going existence. The thought needs to be paired forward, but only one way of with consistent action day in and day out. standing still.” Otherwise, what you are doing is just a — Franklin D. Roosevelt form of mental masturbation; getting 113

Guideline 10

Note on Change Accompanying the idea of creating personal success in your life wherever you are, to put it all bluntly, true change, real growth and solid building of ones life takes time. I have read some of these self-help and success gurus say change can happen in an instant. This is partially true but omits the larger picture and practice that has the biggest effect; which is the consistent implementation of that change every single day in the form of repeated actions; every, single, day.


Get There Your Own Way

Guideline 10

pleasure from thinking about the positive change and result, without actually using your leverage to put the work in; the real work that reaps the fruit of the thought of change for the better. As stated repeatedly in this book, it is going to take work. But it’s all worth it. At the end of the day, these are observations and things that are meant to help you along your path. Are some of these things not meant for you? Maybe. Do you have to abide by everything in this book? Absolutely not. These are simply meant to help get you on the right track and even more importantly, to think. Think about where you’d truly like to go. Think about where your talents and potential lie. Think about how you would like to share your gifts with the world, starting within your personal life. And think about how you would really like to be as a human being. Ultimately, it is up to you to decide what you want to fully engage in and take to, and you may leave the other items in the box that you feel may not suit you. I wish you the best on the rest of your mission, and if I leave you with anything, it is: Go Get It.** *It could be argued that if you accomplish a bank robbery, you are successful. I am aiming all of this to a morally higher, righteous level, where true success doesn’t have a negative sum result for you or any party involved. If that wasn’t already obvious, the information in this book is meant to help you design and build in the positive, not destroy and delve into the negative.

114


Go Get It

Guideline 10

SU B STANCE

**I realize the irony in all this and that this piece of work is somewhat giving advice and telling you what to do,kind of, sort of doing the same and the criticized "gurus". But with all that, no amount of advice, guru, or motivational video will change the fact that at the end of the day, its all on you. You have to uncover the definitive answers in your life, nobody else. Once again, Go get it.

115


THE END

Mhood (mood) is an experience studio focused on holistic solutions through strategic approach, understanding, and implementation. Through our visual designs, speaking written words and materials. The goal is to promote thought, inspiration and connection through all of our mediums of our work. About the Author Beginning his working career in the construction industry at the age of 14, Matt carries that straight forward, blue collar work ethic and mindset into the creative work and processes for the studio. The first studio book “Go Get It� is focused around these ethics combined with philosophy, observations and other ideas designed to help the creative human being. Matt also runs lectures based off of the guidelines in the book, helping people to design their lives with deeper clarity and intent in personal and professional environments. He currently resides in Massachusetts while traveling, teaching and living the principals and ideas he writes about. For information on speaking engagements, lectures or general questions about the book or studio, you may visit the website at: www.mhooddesign.com or send and email to info@mhooddesign.com

116


Go Get It

FIN (NOW YOU MAY GET TO WORK)

117


01

Take Full Responsibility

02

Find Your Truth

03

Keep Yourself Level

04

Maintain Your Inner Child

05

Strive For Better

06

Build Strong Work Habits

07

Check In With Yourself

08

Value Your Time

09

Only Compare You to You

10

Get There Your Own Way

Profile for MHood

Go Get It: 10 Straightforward Guidelines to Help the Creative Human Being  

Go Get It is a collection of guidelines to help people go about their lives in a more purposeful, fulfilled manner. Taking everyday observat...

Go Get It: 10 Straightforward Guidelines to Help the Creative Human Being  

Go Get It is a collection of guidelines to help people go about their lives in a more purposeful, fulfilled manner. Taking everyday observat...

Profile for mhood7
Advertisement