I looked at his journal entry and it hit me like a brick to the head. Finally! The missing piece in the “how to break bad habits puzzle”.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Back up a bit with me, will you?
Tomorrow 2015 will be over.
I remember January 1st as if it was yesterday.
The reason each year seems to fly by faster than the last is that as you age, each year represents a smaller portion of your life.
Here’s a visual example:
If you’re 1 year old, one year is your entire life. If you’re 14 years old, one year is only 7% of your life.
And so on.
That means at 42 years old, a year is only 2% of the time you’re alive, and it gets less with every year!
Seems to be true for me, and while I always ponder about the happenings of the last 12 months during those last few days of the year, I thought I’d take those ponderings public this time.
Since this is a blog about habits, why not make it a habit review?
“Ha, that’ll never work! I know a better way.”
Rick thought he was smarter than the rest. Yet again. But we’ll get to it.
Today I want to introduce you to three old college friends of mine.
Just like you and me, they struggle with bad habits.
Recently, however, all three of them successfully broke a bad habit.
Even though the habits were very similar, each of them used a very different approach to breaking their habit.
Letting go of bad habits is not a straightforward task, and the process looks different for everyone.
You and I can learn a lot from how my three friends did it, so I asked them to share their story with me.
Here’s what they told me.
You know waking up early is a great habit, right? You’ve heard it dozens of times: all successful people get up early.
Tim Cook (4:30 am), Benjamin Franklin (5:00 am), Michelle Obama (4:30 am), Warren Buffett (6:45), the list goes on and on.
But what turned into a nightmare for Bill Murray in Groundhog Day – waking up at 6 am sharp every day that is – seems like a distant dream for you.
(it’s Groundhog Day – again)
What if I told you that there were only 2 steps you have to get right, in order to wake up early every day?
Even more so, that neither of them has anything to do with your morning.
You’d be shocked, right? You’d probably tell me: You’re crazy Nik, and I don’t believe you.
I try to live as drug-free as possible. I never smoked cigarettes or marihuana, never took any hardcore drugs. I quit alcohol about a year ago and today is my 101st day without caffeine (although I might re-introduce that at some point, there’s just something ritual about brewing coffee, the steam rising from the cup in the morning /sidetrack). Ever since watching the movie Limitless though, smart drugs have had my curiosity.
Tim Ferriss has experimented with Desmopressin nasal spray to ace his Chinese character tests, Dave Asprey openly admits to taking Provigil, so there must be something about these brain foods worth exploring. Luckily, my friend Moe from LifestyleApex has taken it upon himself to explore the depths of using nootropics for focus and will share his findings in this guest post, thus saving me the trouble. Take it away Moe!
I have been eating mainly Paleo for quite some time now. A friend introduced me to it and it has worked well for me. I was not strict about it though, so I would on occasion eat something made from grains, e.g. at restaurants or on special occasions.
Naturally, I had a tough time wrapping my head around the concept of Veganism, as this group is right on the other side of the spectrum of Paleo. But one day I came across this quote:
— Bryan Harris (@Harris_Bryan) November 11, 2014
Since I hate to leave great advice go by, I thought a 1-week Vegan challenge won’t hurt. And it didn’t. To the contrary, it greatly improved my knowledge about food and nutrition and actually had a major influence on my future diet.
Remember I told you I was on a 1-week Vegan challenge, way back in October? Yeah, I’m way behind on the results, sorry about that. I’m not gonna make excuses saying I didn’t have time – I don’t believe in ‘having time’ (see below).
Something else I don’t believe in, is diets. At least not in what we call diets these days. If you look up where the word diet comes from, Google shows you this:
See the last line? Greek – ‘diaita’. A way of life. This is, in a nutshell, the reason why all these powders, pills, belly- and waistbands, electric power plates and magazine diets that are re-named and re-promoted year after year, don’t work.
Around 9 am I always need a second breakfast, since my first breakfast at 6:30 am won’t last. Usually it consists of a pretzel with butter, but as I’m on a 1-week Vegan challenge right now, that’s off the menu. Fruits and nuts it is!
Over the week I most often chose an apple or a banana with some nuts. I got used to it so quickly that today I thought I had to stir things up a bit – how can I make this uncomfortable? As if eating Vegan for a week wasn’t uncomfortable enough, right?
So today, I’d like to propose a comfort zone challenge to you: Eat an entire lemon!
When I checked the fridge, I spotted a few lemons sitting at the bottom, and before I could finish wondering whether you could eat lemons whole, like you do with oranges, I found myself next to a bowl with 4 big, peeled, chopped up lemon slices ready to go.
Here’s me eating one:
I finished the whole thing. I’ve had more pleasurable experiences with fruit, goes without saying. But here’s what I learned:
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