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Habit Review for 2015

Tomorrow 2015 will be over.

I remember January 1st as if it was yesterday.

Interesting theory:

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:

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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?

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3 People, 3 Stories & 3 Ways To Break Bad Habits (Which Type Are You?)

“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.

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The Spartan Solution – A 4-step system to increase willpower every day

Are you as disciplined as you’d like to be?

No?

Do you want to toughen up?

Have that twinkle in your eye that says: “Life, if you punch me in the face, you know I’ll just grit my teeth and fight back even harder.”

Oh you do? Sure, who wouldn’t.

That’s why I spent all of last week pondering how to help you do just that, and create a framework for it.

Here’s what I came up with.

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The Groundhog Solution – how to wake up early in 2 steps

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.

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(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.

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The “MIT” solution – How to identify the one key task each day to make consistent progress

Do you sometimes not want to start your day when you look at your to-do list in the morning?

Do you see 34 tasks, 33 of which you either dread or don’t see the point in?

You have to walk the dog.
Write a blog post.
Answer emails.

Then you’re supposed to walk the dog again.
File some papers.
Call a prospective client.

I get it. To-do lists can be a burden. Not too long ago, I had the same problem. Read More

Using the ONE GOAL strategy to set goals once and then constantly focus on them

Update: This post is now available as a 1-hour video class on Skillshare, chunked into 20 bite-sized, easy-to-digest, follow-along video lessons. You can sign up for free and get one month of full access to 16,000+ other classes on top. If you want to implement this strategy in one hour flat, join here.

On September 12th last year I felt pretty good about myself. My Bachelor’s thesis was all done, I had a month to prepare for the presentation and my first website was done, all shiny and new.

4 weeks earlier I had decided that a) I was going to take a year off before eventually starting a Master’s and b) I was going to use that year to become my own boss and stop living off my parents’ money.

All I wanted was to make $500 a month, so I could pay for rent and food.

Since I had spent 2 semesters studying abroad, and friends kept asking me to review their English papers, I thought I’d do a great job at translating between English and German.

That day I had just put the finishing touches on the intro video.

Fast forward to mid October, one month later. I had just sent out 50+ emails to former customers of translation agencies, trying to collect information about why they had hired a translator, what results they had hoped for and how they found who they were looking for.

The results after over a month of work: $0.

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Brain Foods – The Art Of Brain Hacking: An Introduction To Nootropics

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!

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