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Do the “Thing” Now

The “thing” is the task that’s been on the back of your mind. It’s been there for a while now. For Days? Weeks? Months? Years?

For me, the “thing” is getting to training on time and drilling. It’s also writing this blog, getting my sleep schedule back on track, and going back and compiling all of my book notes.

We all know what we should be doing, but we rationalize and push it back in favor of more urgent, but ultimately trivial matters like responding to email, doing favors, and running errands.

The “thing” tends to be important, but not urgent.

That’s why it’s so easy to let it slide for another day, which turns into another week, which turns into a month, which turns into years. The next thing you know, you’ve lived your whole life without ever doing the “thing.”

Start doing the “thing” now. Otherwise, you might never do it at all.

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Life Does Not Wait

Life does not begin when we’ve become successful.

It does not begin when you’ve achieved an ideal body. It does not start once you’ve gotten into Harvard, landed that dream job, or have met the perfect man or woman. It cannot be put on hold until we’ve built our businesses, or raised our families, of have become financially secure.

Life does not wait, it just goes and goes and goes, until it doesn’t.

So, just for a second, let’s STOP.
Stop thinking about our goals, school, work, relationships and so on.
Stop dreaming about the grand future we will build.
Stop thinking about what’s wrong, or what we want, or what could be better.

Stop, and take it all in.
We are already living life right now.

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No More Zero Days

A zero day is a day when you don’t make any progress towards your goals, or dreams, or whatever it is that you want to achieve.

It’s a day where you’re coasting through work, skipping your workout, and then maybe going home to watch some Game of Thrones before bed.

I get that sometimes you need to shut your brain off and watch Khaleesi ride dragons for a few hours. Sometimes, you physically can’t muster the energy to write a blog post or get a workout in after work. Sometimes you just need to rest.

Rest is important, and it’s not that there’s something morally wrong with having a zero day, but if your goals are even a little important to you, you have no excuse ever to have a zero day.

*Let me stop here and say that this doesn’t apply to you if you’re totally happy with where you’re at right now. If you’ve accomplished all your goals,and have everything you’ve ever wanted, go ahead and queue up another show on Netflix. I recommend Better Caul Saul or season 2 of Daredevil.

(Also, contact me at josebbaikblog@gmail.com because you definitely know something I don’t and I want to learn from you)

Here’s how to never have a zero day again. Do ONE thing that moves you closer to your goal every day. Rain, sleet, shine, or hurricane, it doesn’t matter — get the ONE thing in.

Physically worn out?

Do ONE pushup. ONE sit-up. Go for a walk for ONE minute.

Mentally fatigued?

Write ONE sentence, ONE email. Read ONE page of a book or your favorite blog. Draw ONE quick sketch. Put a TEDtalk on for ONE minute.

If life is a long, winding flight of stairs with your dreams at the top, doing one thing is the equivalent of taking a single step up those stairs.

Most days, you’ll probably be able to do more than just ONE thing towards your goals. This post is for that odd day or week when you feel like you can’t. It’s for those times when you’re “off.”

On those days, whatever you do, don’t go to bed while still at zero. Doing a single pushup seems insignificant, but it’s less about the actual effect of the ONE thing you do, and more about the practice of making progress.

All of those ONE’s add up. A month later, you’ll look back and find yourself way ahead of where you once were.

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No One Cares About Your Goals

No one cares about your goals.

Is that too bold of a statement? Okay, let me back track a little.

Of course I’m not blind to the fact that there are certain people out there who do care about your goals. In my opinion, they are the minority, a precious few — and if you’re someone who’s fortunate enough have even one person like this in your life, go thank them right now.

People like this are worth their weight in gold.

Many people will pretend to care and offer their support because it’s the nice thing to do. These people will flake you as soon as it comes time to put some skin in the game

The vast majority people don’t care about your goals. It’s not that they don’t like you or that they’re bad people, they’re just busy with their own stuff.

Setting a goal is like planting a seed. You need to tend to it periodically for it to grow. How often you have to “water” your goal will depend on the kind of goal it is. Like plants, different goals need different things. Some need daily work while others are better off with weekly care.

Plants and goals are even more similar when you consider how people respond when you tell them that you’re growing one.They might nod and say encouraging words, they might even give you tips on taking care of it, but no one’s going come to your house and water your plant for you (at least not all the time, forever). They have their own goals to tend to.

If you want your plant (or goal) to grow, you will have to water it yourself.

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The First Step to Mastery

When was the last time you were a beginner at something? Let me be specific, there’s a difference between a beginner and a non-practitioner.

The English language doesn’t have a word for a person who does not do something. Actually, in most cases, we tend to call those people “beginners.” This, in my opinion, is inaccurate.

The difference between a non-practitioner (or NP) and a beginner is like the difference between zero and one. Let’s use the example of “cooking an omelette” to illustrate this difference:

Tim and Dave are twins. Neither of the two have ever made omelettes. One morning, Dave gets tired of waiting for mom to make him breakfast and decides to have a go at it himself. Tim is also tired of waiting for salty omelettes, but instead opts for a bowl of Captain Crunch.

Dave’s first omelette is terrible. It’s bland and full of eggshells. The next day he makes another omelette, which ends up a little less crunchy than before.

Let’s pause the story here. The cliche is to trace Dave’s progress all the way until he masters the omelette. If this were a movie, there would probably be a compilation of Dave working hard to perfect his cooking. However, that isn’t the point.

The point is that Dave is actually making omelettes. Even if he never becomes an expert at cooking omelettes, he’s still miles ahead of everyone who just “doesn’t make omelettes.”

To become a master in any field, skill, or craft, you have to first become a beginner. To become a beginner, you have to actually start.

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