The Kaizen Newsletter #67 (13/10/2020) - How to stop killing your future self
A lesson learned from 75 Hard and thoughts reality manifestation and creating value
"FUCK!" I shouted in the apartment.
In July 2020, I started 75 Hard, a mental toughness challenge, where you have to exercise twice a day (1.5h in total), drink 4L of water, read 10 pages of a book, follow a diet of your choice and no alcohol for 75 days straight. If you miss even one of these, you have to restart the whole challenge.
Right when I was about to go brush my teeth and prepare for sleep, I remembered that I had only walked 30 min that day. This meant I still had an hour of exercise to do to complete my daily challenge!
My body stopped moving, but this is how it looked like in my head.
It was a big battle against myself.
I had to choose to either complete my challenge or go to bed.
At that specific moment, I had a huge choice to make.
For the longest time, I've always considered myself as someone that would start things, but would never be able to complete them. I would always abandon something very early in the process and for once, I was seeing the finish line for 75 Hard.
My mind was set on completing it and I told myself that I wouldn't let anyone or anything prevent me from doing so.
But at that very moment, I was THIS close to letting go.
I just drove 6h in total (we just came back from Toronto), I was exhausted, I had an early meeting the next day, it was already 11PM and I had already done more than half of the program!
I had all the excuses in the world to just tell myself, "It's okay, Alex. You'll just re-start tomorrow."
At this moment, I had the opportunity to go to sleep, but in the process, I would be killing someone.
James Clear, author of Atomic Habits, refers to these choices as decisive moments. Every day, you will have a few key moments that, depending on your decision, will determine if your day was good or bad.
But this decisive moment was particularly important because it would not impact just my day, but possibly the rest of my life.
By choosing to sleep right away, I would remain Alexander, the guy who abandons what he starts. And in the process, I would be killing my future self: Alexander, the guy that says he will do something and then does it.
Time and time again, I’ve seen this scenario play out. And every time it ends up with my future self losing.
This time, I decided it would be different.
Maybe it’s because I was tired of my present self. Maybe it’s because I didn’t want to disappoint my friend Danny, who already completed 75 hard previously and who I promised that I would complete it as well. Maybe it’s because I just wanted to prove to myself that for once, I was able to finish something.
In the end, I don’t know exactly the reason why. But I do know that I pushed myself.
After a few seconds of internal battles, which truth be told, seemed like an hour, I said "Fuck, it! Let's walk."
So I turned around, put my shoes on and headed out the door for my one hour walk.
And let me tell you - even though I knew I'd be tired in the morning, I crawled into bed with a huge smile on my face. It was one of the best nights of sleep I've ever had.
While this was my most vivid memory of 75 Hard, this is what it felt like throughout the entire program.
For 75 days, you had to consistently win all of your mental battles. Every. Single. Day.
Tired because you had a hard day at work? Get up and take a walk.
You're at your best friend's birthday party, and everyone is drinking? Grab a glass of water instead.
You're about to go to sleep, but still missing 1L of water? Chug it and wake up 2-3 times that night to pee (true story).
And that's what's hard about the challenge. It's pushing yourself to take action despite your circumstances.
But the more you’re able to take action, the more you’re going to create change and the more you’ll become your future self.
Because if you think of it, your present self and the person you want to become (your future self) are a lot closer than you think. Both selves are separated by a few decisive moments during your day.
And depending on your decision, it's either one step forward (to become your future self) or one step backwards (to remain your present self). The more you're able to make the right decision during those key moments, the more steps you will take towards your future self.
So in which direction will you take your step?
🌓Thoughts on Reality Manifestation
Some people call it reality manifestation. Some people call it the law of attraction. But the gist of it is that I believe that you can bend reality to make your dreams come true.
You think I'm crazy?
Well maybe I am, but what if I told you that people such as Steve Jobs, Kobe Bryant, Connor McGregor, Muhammad Ali and Kanye West all used some form of reality manifestation to be the best in the world in their respective categories.
And if you want to use more "realistic" examples, my friend KP used manifestation to get his dream job at On Deck, Tej Dosa was able to make 33K profit days and Charlie Rocket, Two Chainz's ex-manager who weighed 300lbs, became a Nike athlete and had a commercial with Serena Williams and LeBron James.
All you have to do is the following:
Set an intention
Enter the state of knowing (or as Tej calls it, God-consciousness)
Take small forward actions
Give up control and surrender to life.
And the main reason why I believe in this. Is that even if it doesn't work? Well, I lose nothing. Zero downside and infinite upside? Sign me up, please!
If you want more practical advice, I'd suggest checking out the original mini-course created by Tej Dosa where he explains how he was able to manifest 33K+ profit days.
If not, you can always check my tweet-storm on the subject where I try to summarize it in 10 lessons.
✍️ Thoughts on Giving Value
This past Sunday, I sent out a mega tweet-storm that incorporated a mix of free and paid resources copywriting resources.
To my surprise, this generated 25+ retweets, 200 likes and 18K+ impressions making it my best performing tweet ever.
I know it seems like I'm flexing, but in all honesty, I was super surprised by the results of this tweet because it was very unexpected.
So to better understand why it did so well, I thought it would be interesting to break down the elements in which I believe made my tweet perform so well.
Give based on interest
The main reason why I made this tweet is because when I announced that I would be starting my 100-day copywriting challenge, I received a lot of DMs asking me about copywriting and how I was going to tackle it. This showed me that there was some interest in copywriting among my audience. So I knew that if I would make a thread on the subject, it would most likely be received pretty well.
Tailor the content to your audience
It’s no secret that the more value you provide, the better your content will be received. But I want to emphasize that the content should be tailored to your audience. I knew that my most of the people who follow me don’t do copywriting for a living. Most either don’t care or are relatively new to copywriting. That's why I made sure to list free or low-cost resources (such as books) to learn more about the subject.
Provide actionable tips
If someone starts following the Twitter accounts, watches some Youtube videos and maybe even buys a book, I also want to provide them with ways on how they can use their new-found knowledge right away. Which is why I made sure to provide actionable tips for those people.
Give without expecting anything in return
I believe this is the most important one. Usually, whenever I post a big tweet thread, I would usually link my Substack so that people can subscribe (as some of you did) if they enjoyed the tweets. I don't necessarily think it's bad, but this time I really just wanted to provide value without expecting anything in return.
I definitely don't think I did anything special regarding this tweet, but I do believe that it’s the combination of these 4 principles that made this super popular.
The more you're able to see things on a long-term lens, the better it is for you.
We don't lack information. We lack accountability.
Mood after LeBron won his 4th ring this past Sunday.
Shoutout to the On Deck crew for making the best onboarding/kick-off in any program I've ever been in! It's not even been a week yet and have already had great interactions with other fellows! Excited for the weeks to come 💪.
👋 End Note
If you want to know what I'm up to now, you can check it on my website here.
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