Never Settle. This Is How You Live A Life With No Regrets.
Would you rather be something of nothing or nothing of something?
The three “Never Settle” categories remains my go-to when it comes to making sure I’m not settling. This easy to use strategy continues to work and I continue to use it.
There’s a pitfall. Knowledge does not equal action. While I might know what I like, I could very well still go after what I don’t like. By myself, with the help of nobody, I could make myself continue to go after things or people I absolutely don’t admire. And, this happens everyday in the lives of millions of people, millions of sane, healthy, everyday people with families — which is absolutely bizzarre.
Paint The Picture:
Simple test: Have you ever answered “yes” to something you know you should have answered “no” to?
We could justify away the different scenarios where that is advantageous and preferred, which ends up making the point.
In order to understand how to not settle in life. We have to review why some people settle in life.
Picture this — Sean, down the street, wants to be a motivational speaker. This does not pay the bills, not for the first few years. But this is what Sean wants.
Now, almost 5 years ago, I learned from David Deida that “money has never stopped a man who really wanted to do something but provides an excuse for someone who isn’t committed”.
However, all Sean knows is that at the end of every month, He has bills that don’t “simply” go away. So Sean, goes down the street, gets a job and shelves his life long aspiration.
While this example might be regarded a cliche today based on the huge amount of people who model a similar life, I’ve come to find out a person’s mind has a whole lot to do with this outcome (putting what we want on backburners as we go after what we don’t want) than the “need to pay bills”.
I’ve had it all wrong for so long. Maybe you have too. I thought the mind existed for the pleasure of the body, but instead the body exists simply for the pleasure of the mind. And since the mind cannot be physically disciplined, the body suffers the whooping meant for the mind.
People take actions that would become “settling” because at the time of the action, their mind considered the decision to be the best possible decision, based on the options available at that moment.
Your mind is the ultimate master. Let’s agree on certain truths:
- At any given moment, whatever action you’re partaking in, has been approved by your mind as the best course of action — from a list of prescreened possible actions. Yes, you’re reading this and continue to read this because your mind thinks it’s better to read this next word and continue to read and read and read instead of skipping to the next line. These decisions are made in less than milliseconds, that is how powerful and fast the mind is when it comes to decision making. It would be no surprise that many people never ignite one third of the potential of their mind. There is a powerhouse inside of you.
- At any given moment, you know exactly what you’re doing. Even when you’re heavily intoxicated or sensually deprived. Each conscious action, regardless of “your state” is ordered by your mind.
- Your mind is the architect, director and dictator of your life. Your body is merely at the mercy of the instructions received from your mind.
- If your body is the sniper, your mind is the rich oil guy who’s financing the war.
- The mind changes, but the body (a person’s physical self) does not. (Gabriella remains recognizable as Gabriella but the mind controlling the physical Gabriella can change.)
- The mind does not need the physical world to feel alive, the body cannot dwell in the world made up by the mind, the body needs the physical world to flourish.
About three years ago, Viktor Frankl helped me understand that no one, no matter how powerful they might be, they could never place a dent on your mind. Yes, they could greatly inconvenience a person’s body, which is unfortunate, but they can never take away how a mind chooses to perceive the body’s circumstance. In further education I have since learned that the only way (known to me) a mind could be broken is by isolation — absolute lack of human contact, worse when confined to a very limited living space. Trauma could affect a mind, drugs however could damage the body and destroy the mind.
A broken mind, or an uneducated mind, even a suffering mind is a terrible master for any “body” to have, rarely does the person survive a broken mind. However, an uneducated or suffering mind could heal.
As a people, we have it all wrong. Backwards even. The world is heavily focused on the body. It is a 100 billion dollar industry + another 532 billion dollars + another 2.5 trillion dollars. The amount of dollars spent each year on the miseducation of the mind could easily be worth much more than the amount budgeted for the education of the mind.
At this point, it seems a fact that the beautification of the body is also worth more than the education of the mind. The average plastic surgeon makes $393k while teachers make 60k. That is a 600% difference.
This is only sad because the body is nothing without the mind. A beautiful rubbish. It would seem, to sane people, that education should be priority. An educated mind, inevitably produces a balanced life and a healthy body.
The picture has been painted, let’s dig deep on how to make sure you never settle in life. What should I put in place to make sure I do not settle?
- Have a type of life you look up to — There is a person that lives a life you admire. Listen to their interviews. Read their books. Speak to them when you can. Recently, Tony Robbins taught me the reason I get upset is because what’s happened does not match what I expect of myself. Which makes it simpler to navigate. Your happiness is based on you doing things that match what you expect of yourself. You first have to know what to expect, hence learning from those you admire.
Then you have to remind yourself these are your expectations, by writing it down and continuously reading it over the years.
Then take action, however easy or tough it is for you, take actions that match those expectations.
- Educate my mind — one of the reasons why we know right but choose wrong is because the mind is unlearned (in the ability to choose what it wants/knows). The healthier my mind becomes, the better my overall quality of life. The smarter my mind becomes, the better direction it can give my body. Feed your mind. Feed your mind good things. Watching uneducated barely dressed people fight and throw drinks on each other is not education. Watching a documentary on how someone found failure and pulled out success is education. Your mind can be trained. Leave it by itself and the ruin of the body is inevitable.
- Provide credible options — your mind will make a decision, good or bad, happy or sad. Your mind makes 35,000 decisions a day. That is 245,000 decisions a week and over 1,000,000 decisions a month. Your mind is a top level executive dealing with uncountable prompts for decision making, it’s only normal that some decisions would be wrong, regardless of the outcome, it sure would make and continue to make decisions. The better the options, the higher the chance that you choose right. To not settle, have good options.
- Disengage. In simple terms, stop. Choose quality over quantity. This is a very old adage. But remains true. In order to have better decision making energy, you have to have periods of no (very limited) decision making. You could take a nap, I’ve come to find taking a shower helps, but it’s always better to take a nap. Sit still. Shut up. You could also lay on the floor, on your back, with eyes closed but stay awake. Your mind has an activity that makes it quiet down, find it.
- Your body is older than your mind but your mind could accumulate knowledge older than your body — your body was never introduced to you. You’ve always known you as you. Yet, the advanced tier of your mind wasn’t always there. Get to know your mind. This is simple really, and the simple things are often the toughest. Determine what you want answered — like what do I like or what makes me smile, then listen to what comes in. Remember, the adult mind is only limited to the knowledge poured into it by the adult. Meaning, there are certain things that might not be expressed to you simply because your mind does not know the vocabulary to express that. Asking your mind to give you an answer in Portuguese would return nothing if you havent taught yourself Portuguese. Likewise, your mind would only return to you what it likes out of the options you’ve previously known about — from reading about others or experienced.
- Just the same, as you get older you would find that your mind knows what your mind will someday no longer know. It is not uncommon for me to glance over a writing I wrote years back and realize I’ve completely forgotten the time saving gems I wrote down. My current (hopefully more advanced) mind in order to grow had to leave out certain non recently used knowledge. Reading writings from my younger self reminds me of mistakes to avoid and principles to hold on to. In most cases, we take actions that are contrary to our expectations because our minds did not remember the expectation. You have to write things down. “What you forget, you will repeat”. Another aged adage.
- Accept failure on the path to mastery. Despise even the slightest hint of venturing into the path to destruction.
How do you make sure you do not settle in life? Have a path that you seek. In order to make sure it is a fruitful path worth seeking look to others in front of you. Those who seem to have reached this path you’re aiming for, if they look miserable, find another path.
After knowing which path you want, teach your mind to choose right.
This means making yourself do (positive) things you have to do, even if you don’t want to. Spend more on things you don’t see than on things you do see.
This means knowledge from books you read is highly valuable over the food you eat. And I expect you know the food you eat is much more valuable than the shoes you wear. That shows you even how valuable knowledge is. For everything else is wasted, if the mind is not trained.
Give your mind valuable options. Your mind’s primary goal is to make decisions. So find good options. Recognizing good options comes from gaining knowledge and/or following knowledge given to you by someone who has knowledge.
With training your mind to recognize what you want from what you don’t want. And, training your mind to control your body to do positive things you have to do, even if you don’t want to — on the day a big life altering decision comes your way, you would have the knowledge and prowess to decipher and choose the right choice.
Manage the outcomes of the decisions you’ve made. This is where you would spend majority of your lifetime. Most of your life decisions would happen in the blink of a light bulb. However, the rest of your life could be used to manage the outcome of that decision. Ask any parent, it took a blink of an eye to make a child, nine months to come to terms with what you’ve done and a life time to manage the outcome.
So learn to manage properly. Steer in the direction of where you want to be (overall) in life. You will make mistakes and that is exciting — as long as you are on your path to destiny — making mistakes going downhill is utterly stupid and a complete waste of your time and your life, so do your best to not be stupid. Don’t be a super hero. If drugs ruin the lives of others and you can clearly see that, don’t think you would be the one person who would do drugs and not be affected by it. That is a stupid expectation. Instead, freaking run from it. Those who are chained by a downhill spiral, seek help and begin to crawl to the light.
Ray Dalio shared with me that “failure on the path to destiny is worthwhile”, and I’m sharing with you that you have to make sure you are on your path to destiny. It’s ok to fail, it’s not ok to be stupid.
When you’re aged and your days spent, you will look back on your life, proud and happy knowing you did not settle because your most powerful weapon, your mind, navigated tough waters to bring you to victory.
Your mind is a very powerful advantage that has no immediate limitation. There is almost nothing the human mind can not solve and that is how powerful your mind could be. In fact it is not so surprising to think we might never fully understand the magnitude of what our minds are capable of accomplishing. Those are the attributes of a healthy mind. And, a healthy mind makes better decisions. If you don’t want to settle in life, pursue and maintain a healthy mind.