Sunday, January 3, 2010

Conditioning Our Body and Mind to Procrastinate

Why do we keep on delaying our most important task? Why do we balk at the thought of hard work? Why do we prefer to indulge in bad habits to the point of addiction rather than doing the tasks that we have set out ourselves to do? For starters, we are asking the wrong question. The reasons that we procrastinate despite all the sheer will power that we invested in not doing so becomes crystal clear once we realize how we have conditioned our body and mind to procrastinate. For procrastination is simply our Pavlovian conditioning upon our unrealistic beliefs of what success and hard work are supposed to feel like.

Pavlov's dogs

Before we go further, let's clarify what is Pavlovian conditioning. Pavlovian conditioning, also known as mental conditioning, classical conditioning, and respondent conditioning is a form of associative learning where the subject is conditioned to feel and respond in a certain way towards an event or object.

The most famous Pavlovian conditioning is probably the "Pavlov's dogs" experiment conducted by Ivan Pavlov, the scientist who this process is named after. In this experiment, Pavlov’s would ring a bell while serving his dogs food during feeding time. After a few days, Pavlov’s would just ring the bell without serving any food during non-feeding time. Yet his dogs would be salivating and sitting on the serving area expecting food to be served. Thus, Pavlov had trained his dogs to associate the sound of bell ringing with food and feeding time. Note that the conditional responds that Pavlov’s dogs experiences in present in both mental and physical form. Mentally, Pavlov's dogs have associated the sound of bell ringing with feeding time, thus the dogs are present in the feeding areas. Physically, the dogs are salivating, even if those dogs were not hungry.

As human being, we are easily subjected to mental and physical conditioning. One most common example is advertisements found in television. What television advertisement are trying to do is to associate the product advertised when humor, happiness, love, beauty, and sex. Thru prolonged exposure of advertisements; we are conditioned to evoke whatever feeling that those advertisements are designed to give us. Then, when we are at the supermarket aisle, we are more likely to buy the advertised product.

Reality is Unrealistic

The second component in procrastination is our unrealistic belief of what success and hard work are. Simply, success means happiness. Success means feeling good. Success means feel-good hormones such as endorphin and dopamines are flowing in our system. Same goes for hard work.

In actuality, success is obtained only after a long period of hard work. Real life hard work experience is nothing like the hard work experience that we encounter in fiction. Real life hard work is full of stress, frustrations, disappointments, anxiety, and fatigue; with none little to none of those feel-good feelings. Real life hard work does not produce a lot of endorphin and dopamine.

Sure, when we complete a task, there is a feeling of personal satisfaction. However, that feel-good feeling only lasted for a while. Even major victories and personal gains like promotions, birth of a child, requited love, and purchase of a brand new asset only produce feel-good feelings that last for a few days. After that, it's back to gritty greasy grumpy hard work.

Another unrealistic belief of success that unsuccessful people adopt is that success is certain. This means that if we were to work hard enough in life, we are bound to be successful. The truth is life is full of uncertainties. Even if we were to give our best in everything we do, that will only increase our chances of obtaining what we want. In other words, even if we were to give our 100% effort to our goals, the chances of success is 50/50. That's how uncertain life is.

Yet another belief is that success is a linear process. In order to be successful at achieving our goals, we need to do task A, then task B, then task C, ad infinitum There is a linear path to success and we just didn't know it yet. In practical, when we don't actually know the whole process of achieving our goals, the process becomes non-linear to us. Consequently, our efforts are riddled with fake information, false starts, death ends, sudden appearance of opportunities, and sudden needs for new skills.

The source of our unrealistic beliefs

As mentioned, our unrealistic beliefs of success and hard work come from the unrealistic portrayal of success found in television soap operas, drama series, and comedies; movies; video games; and just about any other media where success are portrayed.  Below are a few examples of these sources of hazardous brainwashing:

Successful people in fiction

In any movies or drama series, the successful people spend 90% of their time interacting with other people, engaging in petty grudge and revenge, and falling in love. The protagonist usually never move up in the social status unless for comedic reasons. The protagonist usually belongs to middle upper class and remains so for the rest of the show. Our protagonist doesn't need to worry about money unless the plot requires this.

In real life, we spend 90% of our time alone, working on our projects and tasks. 10% of our time is used to socialize with our family and friends and to fall in love. Petty grudge and revenge are really time wasting and emotional exhausting, so we don't do those stuffs if we can control ourselves. Financial needs occupy the top or second top agenda in our lives. Worrying about our financial is something beneficial that we need to do regularly in order for us to plan our earnings, spending, and saving properly.

In fiction, people who are portrayed as workaholics usually have strained and dysfunctional family relationships. In reality, anyone, workaholics or unemployed people, are susceptible to strained family relationships if they don't spend enough quality time with their families. Workaholics are usually smart people who have some notion of what time management and work life balance are; and are genre-savvy enough to avoid this issue.

Love in fiction

In fiction, the rate of success of hooking up for the protagonist is 100%. If the protagonist is attracted to a girl, the girl is usually single and is about to break up with her current boyfriend. If the story is anything other than tragic, the protagonist is bound to end up with a girl by the end of the show.

In reality, where we are the protagonist of our own story, the success rate is more like 1/30. 90% of all attractive girls are not single and a majority of them are content with their current partner. There is also no certainty that you will end up happily hooked up with the girl that you like at the end of your life. There are no guarantees.

Normal Health in fiction

In fiction, most man do not exercise unless they are action heroes or sport athletes. If the people in fiction have "normal build", they have higher priority than putting on their running shoes.

In reality, majorities of actors that portrayed people of "normal build" exercise regularly. Maintaining good physic and good skin care are, you know, requirements to be an actor.

Progress in Fiction

The most unrealistic portrayal of the progress to success happens in video games. Progress in video games is relatively easy at the beginning of the game and is the hardest at the end of the game. In reality, the inverse is true. The beginning is usually the hardest. Take for example being a soldier. You will have to spend a couple of years in boot camp, then a few more years being a grunt. If you are lucky to survive further, only then are you promoted. The more promotion you get, the less likely that you are going to be injured and killed. Progress actually gets easier the further you are promoted.

How to brainwash yourself to procrastinate

The act of sitting down, relaxing, not exerting any force, being comfortable, while being entertain stimulate our body to release feel-good hormones in our system. These feel-good hormones are the bell that triggers us:
* To accept that unrealistic portrayal of success in fiction is valid (mental conditioning)
* To remain idle (physical respond of our body)

Therefore, there are two layer of brainwashing that causes us to procrastinate. The first one is our mental conditioning. Since our brain believes that working hard equals feeling good and real life hard work does not produces this sort of experience, our brain does not want us to engage in those kind of work. On the other hand, sitting on your couch watching television or sitting on your chair surfing the internet does produces the kind of good feeling that your brain have associated hard work with. Ergo, you should spend your time watching television and surfing the internet.

The second layer of brainwashing is our conditioned physical respond. Once we have all those feel-good feelings flowing thru our nervous system, our body respond by being idle. That's right, when we are feeling good and happy; our body responds by refusing to do any work. That's because we have associated feel-good experience to being idle. Note that our conditioned physical respond is not something we can control easily with our conscious mind.


The complete cessation of the use of television, movies, and internet is not possible for most of us. Real life hard work produces stress. The use of television, movies, and internet provides entertainment that reduces stress.  We will need to strive for a balance between our entertainments need and our work while, in the same time, preventing our entertainment from conditioning us to procrastinate.

#1 Realize how unrealistic fictional portrayals of success and hard work are

Each time we watch television, note down how unrealistic the movies are. Note that films and television programs are produce under constraint that does not adhere to real life. A good source of these unrealistic issue are addressed at

The down side to this solution is that, by noting the unrealistic elements in fiction, our enjoyment of said media will also decrease. This is unfortunately, a price we need to pay in order to prevent fictional works from intoxicating us with silly beliefs of how real life works.

#2 Set limits

Determine beforehand how many hours of entertainment you are going to need each week. My limits are 10 hours on non-productive internet surfing per week. Track down the amount of entertainment that you use on a piece of paper.

Note that just because you set a limit, it doesn’t mean that you will adhere to it. You are only motivated to change your bad habits if you have a strong sense of purpose. (See my Rules of Motivation for more information).

#3 Shut it off

If you have a television, shut it off. If you have a computer, disable your internet connection and close your internet browser. The point is to make it hard for yourself to use the entertainment that makes your procrastinate in the first place. Over time, you will associate back entertainment with good old-fashioned hard work, which is a good thing. Making it hard to access your entertainment will also make it easier for you to come to your sense and limiting the use of those entertainments.

#4 Exercise regularly and take up some sort of sports

Exercises and sports are forms of leisure that doesn't inflict unrealistic belief of hard work onto your mind. These activities require you to move your muscle instead of remaining idle. These activities will cause you to feel pain and tired while at the same time producing endorphin hormones that makes you feel good. Purge your body of the years of physical conditioning that had your body believed that in order to feel good, you need to stay idle.

End Note

I hope that you are satisfied with my explanation the process that we had used to condition our mind and body to procrastinate. The gradual Pavlovian conditioning that we have inflicted on ourselves thru years of exposure to television programs, video games, and movies had caused us to lose connection with what actual success and hard work feels like. The sooner we take steps to purge this conditioning, the sooner we can enjoy a fuller, meaningful, and productive life.

Further Read
  •  "Classical conditioning - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia." Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 Jan. 2010. .
  • Fredholm, Lotta, and Science Journalist. "Pavlov's Dog." N.p., n.d. Web. 3 Jan. 2010. .


Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Art of Just Do It (JDI)

You heard about the Just-Do-It method numerous of time. Countless of gurus and non-gurus had mentioned this simple yet magical method of getting things done. No doubt, you might have implemented this method with varying degree of success. Then, somehow, along the way, something happened. You don't think that JDI is just a simple one-step method anymore. There is something more complex, deep, and philosophical about JDI. This simple and profound method failed to work for you because you don't grasp it true meaning. Right? RIGHT!?

The truth is the phrase "Just Do It" is rather vague. This means different people can define different meaning to this word. Below are a few examples of what JDI may mean:

  • Do the first thing that comes into your mind
  • No prior planning / Plan as you go
  • If you don’t have the necessary resources to complete the task, improvised and use workarounds.
  • Mind like water / React to the current situation and needs
  • Do the task regardless of failure or success
  • Ignore your emotion resistance / Do the task regardless of your current mood
  •  Do the task until you have completed it even if the quality does not met your expectations / Sacrifice perfection for completion / Finish what you started
  • Do the task now / There is no appropriate time to do the task
  • If you can't predict the outcome, don't worry about the outcome until it happens / Don't cross the bridge until you have come to it

Which of the above is the true meaning of JDI? The answer is "All of the above”. You see, JDI is not so much a method as it is a philosophy - an inadequately-defined philosophy. Don't worry; I will try to define this philosophy to its utmost completion in this article.

The JDI philosophy

There are three components of JDI: The creative process and The Drive to Completion and The Warm-up. We can also categorize the virtues above into these three components.

The JDI components

The Creative Process

Our brain is split into two hemispheres: right and left hemisphere. Generally, one side of our brain specialized in linear thinking while the other side specializes in abstract thinking. In any task completion endeavor, we generally have to use both sides of our brain in order to get the best results that we can from ourselves.

When it comes to planning and strategizing, we rely more on our linear thinking capability. Planning is a highly linear, logical, and proactive process, provided that we know how to use the appropriate planning tools. Our options and choices are evaluated objectively; least we made the wrong choices. The consequence of our actions, and futures threats are made provision for.

When it comes to actual execution of our plan, we rely more on our abstract thinking capability. Generally, our plan contains milestones and objectives that we need to achieve but lack the step-by-step information on how to achieve our objectives. Thus, our abstract reasoning, lateral thinking, creativity, and reactive nature are relied upon to provide the instructions and solutions that our linear thinking cannot provided.

Following the JDI philosophy means using our creativity to provide the instructions for our task. However, JDI should only kicks in when we are dealing with the process of executing our plan. Planning still comes first.

The process flow showing how JDI plays into task completion

The Drive to Completion

The process of completing a task doesn't just involve planning and plan executing. There is a human condition called emotional resistance. Generally, emotional resistance happens when you don't feel like doing what you are supposed to do without a valid justification. In other words, you are not "in the mood" of doing the things that you plan to do or consider important to do.

There are many causes for emotional resistance. Below are some which you may recognize:
  • Financial anxieties - debts, bankruptcy, lack of money
  • Relationships issues - broke ups, divorces, infatuations
  • Job issues - lack of progress, late starters, lost of opportunities
  • Too much happiness issue - sudden increase in wealth, requited love, promotions

As you had read from above, our emotional resistance towards our current task doesn't necessary originate from bad events in our life? It can originate from good events too. Heck, it can be anything. Therefore, it is (usually) a waste of time to overcome our emotional resistance thru root-cause analysis and root-cause treatment. It is easier and faster to overcome our emotional resistance thru good-old fashion discipline and drive.

Our drive for task completion regardless of our emotional resistance is the other vital component in JDI philosophy. The drive to completion comprises of our willingness to sacrifice our short term-comfort, and to work hard and long in order to met our objective regardless of the odds, the circumstances, the venue, the available resources, the time of the day, our moods, our disability, our predicaments, our emotions, and our expertise. Lastly, the drive for completion stresses that completion takes priority before perfection.

The Warm-Up

There is a quasi-component of JDI which is called the Warm-up. This component shares a lot of similarities with The Creative Process thus why I called the Warm-Up a quasi-component. We engage in our Creative Process throughout of our effort to complete tasks as outlined in our plan while we only engage in the Warm-Up prior to sufficient planning.

In real life situation, our mind more often than not tends to become blank whenever we engage in planning processes. By blank, I mean that our mind totally cannot think or output any meaningful thoughts for the current plan. This peculiar human condition may seem counter-intuitive at first. However, this condition is actually your brain trying to tell you that it doesn't have any good ideas and your own brain is currently not the best source of information for plan creation.

This is the part where we need to engage in some mental warm-up for our brain. By warm-up, I mean that we should seek out relevant external information and inspiration for our plans. Try not to engage in resources intensive warm-up (don't spend too much money or time) for the warm-up process. This is because the Warm-Up process is riddled with false starts. Without proper planning and analysis, false starts are just inevitable.

 The Warm-Up process flow

Limitations of JDI

Now that I have covered all the three components of JDI, it's time to describe the limitation of JDI and what JDI is not about.

#1 JDI is not the be-all-end-all

If your goals are anything more complicated than a pre-school project, a plan is mandatory. You need the best plan that your brain can produce in order to achieve your goals.
 A lot of people would mistaken believe that JDI means not needing a plan because they stumble upon the Warm-Up component which takes places prior to proper planning. However, without a plan, your resources would not be managed properly and you will never be able to produce the best outcome possible to you.

Most people would think that JDI is the be-all-end-all of goal achievements. However, this is only true for simple goals where false starts and wasted resources are easily waived. It would be suicidal to just do it if you cannot afford to lose the resources that you are about to invests in the tasks.

#2 JDI does not come with priorities steering

JDI is the workhorse of task completion and the use of JDI should be limited to such. Any issue involving conflicting priorities of two tasks or two goals should be deal with proper priorities steering techniques (see Principle of Least Importance on how to do so). You can't "just choose it" when it comes to priorities.

#3 JDI does not come with emotion management

The Drive to Completion of JDI philosophy may cause harm to your emotional well-being in long term unless you know how to manage your emotions. I will leave emotional management to another topic. For now, just know that suppressing your emotions doesn't necessary erase those emotions. The suppressed emotion may come back to haunt you a hundredfold.

End Note

JDI is used the minute task-to-task completion activity and it is useful to generate ideas for our plans, combat our emotional resistance, and drive us to complete our tasks. I hope that I had explained in a satisfactory manner on what JDI philosophy is actually about.
Let me know if I have missed out anything. In the meantime, stay focus and stay happy.


Sunday, December 27, 2009

The Purpose of Life: One Size Fits All Answer

“Begin at the beginning. Go until the end and then stop.”

So where is the beginning? Obviously, the beginning starts at you yourself. If so, which part? The purpose, of course. All actions start with an intent (or a reaction). All intents come from desires. Then, where does our desire comes from? There are several of sources, actually. Below are some:
  • Lacking – What want what we lack.
  • Upbringing – What we are thought when we are small shapes our ambitions and dreams significantly.
  • Envy – We want to be better than other people.
  • Sustainability– We want things that would improve our live and ensure our longevity

Let me make it clear, the beginning of our action does not start from having a purpose. Our actions start from what we want. The better we are at understanding what our body and mind want, the better we can align our actions to our want.

So, why is the title of this article is about purpose then? Where does purpose fits into our life? Am I saying that your desire matters more than your purpose in life does not matter?


Okay, here’s the one size fits all answer to the purpose of life, the question of why you exist in this world. There is no purpose. Specifically, there is no pre-defined purpose for you to exist in this world. Your existent may as well be a coincidence.

Let me tell you this. Until the day you die, God (or saintly representatives of God) will not talk to you. The is no divine being that is going to tell you what you should or have to do in this world. The only people who will tell you about what you need to do or have to do are other people who claim to have been made contact with God.

Now, I am not saying that I don’t believe in God. I just don’t believe that God will ever give me a purpose in this life. Think about it, if God really wanted me to perform certain type of role in life, then God should have cometh to me at an earlier stage, preferable, during my adolescent years. But did God do that? Nope, nada, zit. Ergo, God have given me a free a reign.

So what is life anyway? What is the point of life anyway? An intermission to heaven? A dream? An endless drift of unfortunate events?

A vacation trip. Life is like a going to a vacation trip to somewhere where you don’t particularly like (like Thailand). You are stuck on this trip and you can’t just end it. However, even if you can’t do anything about it, you might as well enjoy it. You might as well sample the local cuisine, learn one or two things about the local culture, and visit some of the local attractions. The main thing is to learn to enjoy yourself rather than being stuck in the hotel room until the day you die check out.

So then, how am I supposed to know what I am supposed to do in this life? So what role am I going to be performing for the rest of my life? What great feats am I supposed to be capable of?

This isn’t a very hard question to answer. What you want to do in life depends a lot on your upbringing. Your life dreams and purpose can be trace back to your childhood. What inspires (or scars) you when you are a kid will define what you want to do with your life.

Still can decide on a purpose? No sweat, there are only three categories to choose from. Those categories are:
  • Making money – Being a filthy rich entrepreneur or business mogul.
  • Being famous – Being a artist that can sing, dance, act, paint, escape, joke or any a combination of those stated. 
  • Being intelligent – Being an expert in something and getting recognized by it. Don’t forget your PhD.

Okay, maybe it’s too late for you to plan ahead for your life dreams now.  Maybe you are too old or too tied up with obligations. Then your life dream might as well be being ordinary - having a family of 2.3 kids, a house, a car, a stable job, and enough money for retirement.

That’s it. There is no sin to be

ordinary. If you choose to be “ordinary”, then that’s all you need to think about. That’s all that you need to focus all your energy and time on.

Have fun with your life. Stay happy and stay focused. Peace out.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

3 Thinking Myths: Thinking too much make you crazy

Using our brain to think, plan, and strategy is important. In the process of evolution, animals lose features that are not used. So why does human being carry around a huge brain? Why to use it, of course. Our brain is the nexus for our survival this cut-throat human civilization.

Those who are able to use their brain well will progress thru life. Those who does not will face extinction. However, there always about of people in this world who would discourage others from thinking. Or at least mislead them into thinking differently. Below are three common thinking myths:

#1. Thinking too much will makes you crazy.

As a kid, I used to hear that thinking too much will make you crazy. Crazy as in having mental illness and being confined in a mental institution. It's was hard for me to deny this belief especially when it came from my parents. It's really does discourage me from thinking.

But is thinking too much really does cause you to go crazy?

There are many causes to mental illness but thinking is not one of them. See WebMD LLC for more information. Link:

There is probably some basis in what my parents have advised me. Mental illness can be caused by anxiety, depression, paranoia and the inability to "move on" in your life. I rephrase what my parents have taught into:

"Thinking long and hard is okay as long as you have the capability to cope with traumatic and abusive past or current experiences in your life."

#2. Thinking doesn't consume much energy

As a kid (again), I heard from one of my teachers that thinking consume little to no energy at all. If Albert Einstein were to go to work, where he would think all day long, the amount of energy he needs can be replenish by eating a small bean.

This is utterly not true. When idle, our brain consume 20% of our energy while only consist of 2% of our weight. When we think, our brain consume much more energy.

There is such thing as mental exhaustion. Our brain is a muscle and just like any other muscle in our body, sufficient rest is need in order for our brain to perform in peak condition.

Therefore, when you in an intensive thinking session, take short intermission of rest. Clear your mind and meditate. This greatly prolong your thinking session.

#3. You only uses 10% of your brain. Genius uses up to 100% of their brain.

While studying, I attended a motivational course where the instructor for that course states that only 10% of our brain is being used. That is like using only 1 out of 10 of our fingers. The rest of the motivational course is about learning how to tap into our sub-conscious and unconscious mind in order to maximize our brain usage.

Firstly, the fact is, we utilize our entire brain. We just don't use 100% of it at any given time. The fact that we only use 10% of it doesn't have anything to do with our mental capacity. Remember where I talk about our brain using 20% of our energy while idle? If we were to use 50% of our brain cells, we probably deprive of energy to the rest of the body.

Then, there is the issue of all those heat generated. The reason why there is massive amount of blood flowing into our head is not just to transfer oxygen for the brain. Our blood also transfer head from our brain. Clearly, there is a physically limit to how many percentage of our brain that we can utilize at any given time.

End Note

There are a lot of other brain myth that I don't talk about. However, I am only interested in those myth that prevent us from thinking hard and strategizing like our very life depends on it. I hope this article helps you to understand more about your thinking capability.

Do you have any thinking myth you will like to share?

Sunday, December 6, 2009

How to be a Writer

I am a writer. It's in my soul to write. How did I know that I am a writer? Well, for starters, I liked to convey my ideas, philosophy, and inspiration. If I were to convey those stuffs, the best way to do it is thru the internet by HTML protocol. That means writing. And the easiest way to publish my writings to thru blogging.

Touch typing

Touch typing refers to the ability to type without looking at your keyboard. I can touch type reasonable well. It's a requirement in my day job to type lines of codes after lines of codes. Do you know how to touch type?

It's is surprisingly easy to learn how to touch type. Just follow the rules below:
* No thinking
* No memorizing

What? What the batshit insane stuff am I smoking?

Calm down. Let me explain this further. It's all about muscle memory. It's like riding a bike or driving a car. You don't need to be thinking about moving your fingers in order to move your fingers. You don't need memorize the layout of the letters. Thinking and trying to recall from your memory would just slow down your typing speed. If you really want to know how to type, just put your fingers on the keyboard and think of a character. Your fingers would automatically move in order to type the character.

Of course, your finger would not get it right the first time. When you hit the wrong key, just back space and try again. Try hitting the correct key for five times. If you still failed, only then look at the keyboard to find the correct key. Remember that we are training our finger mucles here and not our brain.

You just have to type a lot. Don't worry about using which fingers to hit which key because those corrections can be made latter. The first thing you need to have is the confidence that you can actually touch type. Then, you can re-learn touch typing thru the "correct way". Then, you could worry about your typing speed.


Being a writer means you have to read a lot too. Reading is a requirement. You ought to spend as much time reading as you are writing. There are a few reasons why you need to do so. Reading other people’s writing:
·         Exposes you to new ideas
·         Keeps you update with the latest news and trends
·         Helps you in developing your own writing style.
·         Helps with your grammar and vocabulary.

Thankful, there is the internet. So, you can just log on and browse thru the several thousands of blogs that are related to your topic of interest.

I don’t think many writers have problem in reading to increasing their knowledge. The knowledge of grammar and the ability to write in an engaging way should be main concern when reading. When you start out, you will have to spend for quite some time (a year, perhaps) before your writing style mature. You will have to spend that much time too before you are able to write an article of decent length.


Writing is a compulsion or it is nothing. You are either obsessed to write or you don't write at all. Without a strong and persistence interest in writing, you would not ever complete any writing that you start.

So, what topics am I writing about? The general rule is that I write about things that I know, things that I am good at, and things that I am familiar with; which are motivation and productivity. Other than that, I write about stuffs that I came across thru my personal life. Experience, observations, and useful insights.

How do I get the ideas for what I am writing? The general rule that I adopt is that I write the first thing that came into my mind. Unless the first idea that I thought of is really inappropriate, my policy with coming out with ideas is to "just say yes".

Of course, starting a topic is the easiest part. What really counts is the completion of your final published article. To quote the words of St. Jobs of Cupertino: “Real artist ships”. Thus, my personal rule #2 is that I "complete whatever topic that I am writing".

End note

So, if you want to become a writer (or a blogger, author, columnist, whatever), I hope that what I have written is useful to your. If you have any of your own ideas on how to become a better writer, let me know.

In a future article, I will share with you the process that I take to create an article.

Friday, November 27, 2009

You don't need passion

What is the passion of your life? What is the one thing you love to do more than anything else?

How to find your passion

I think if you need to read a guide on how to find your passion, then you don't really have one in the first place. True passion comes from your stomach, not your brain. That's because you need to hunger for it. True passion comes from within. Some the people won't admit what their passions are because they don't think it's appropriate. Some don't know how to make money out their passion. And that stops them right on their track.

The main point is that you should already know what your passion are or you don't have one. If you have a passion, then try to make money out of it. If you don't have any passion, adopt one that can potential earn you some money.

It takes more than passion to be successful in wealth creation getting rich is a long road. A long, arduous, and lonely road. If you want succeed in getting rich and in making it big in this world, then you will need more than passion.

You need persistence.

Everything begins with a want. What you want is what motivates you. Then you form a plan. The first plan that you form is going to be bad. At least it will get you started. Then you just have to keep on going. Whether you are stuck in a rut or you don't know what do, keep on going. Even if you think you are going to fail, keep on going. Even if the world ends tomorrow, never give up.

It takes skills and competencies

Knowing is half the battle. You probably heard about this a lot. But do you know that planning is only 10% of the battle? The 40% of the battle involves learning new skills and gaining competencies.

I'm probably pointing out the obvious when I say that you will always start out without the majority of the skills that you need to finish achieve your endeavors. So learning is a major part of succeeding. You must learn and you must master what you have learned. If there is any passion that you need, that would be the passion for learning.

Yet, to say that you must have passion to learn is underestimating what you need to do. Not only do you need to learn the fun stuffs, you will need to learn all the boring stuffs as well. In the end, learning still boils down to your persistence.

Don't stop until you have reach the end

Whatever it is that you are going to do, you have to do it fast and in the most efficient way that you can possible think out. In addition, you need to stay focus on the task until it is completed.

Keep on going. Improvise when you don't have enough. Skip all the unnecessary stuff. Be objective oriented and do whatever it takes to achieve your objective. Don't stop until you have either completed your task or the task is no longer worth doing anymore.

For all the solo endeavors that you are going to partake in your life, the trick is to plan as you go along. Lots of improvising and lots of creativity gets the job done faster than logistic and planning. You’ll need to think fast on your two feet.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Persisting in Your Life

Are you running out of stream? Do you feel like giving up? All hope’s gone?
Here’s an amazing 3-phases method to restart your motivation engine.

Persistence is important. You and I know that whatever the situation is, you must persist. There is no turning back. Once the plan is set, all that’s left is execution.

However, once in a while, our motivation stops dead on the track. No matter what we try, we can seem to get back into the mode of pursuing what we need to achieve. We feel hopeless. We don’t want to wake up from our bed and couches. We became lost. We had forgotten our promises.

So, now you are in a rut. How do you get out of it? Here’s how:

Phase 1: Know your plan

Ask yourself these questions:
• What was my plan again?
• Is it a good plan?
• Is it the best plan that I can think of?

The primary problem with motivation is that you are having doubts regarding what you are trying to achieve in your life. When we do not see any significant results showing up from our hard work, we began to have second thoughts. It never crosses our mind that what we are trying to achieve are actually harder that we thought.

Stick with the original plan

You probably will be tempted to revise your plan. You might want to downgrade the goals. You probably is looking to do something else right know. Well, don’t. The grass is always greener on the other side. Other people plans always look better on the face value.

Unless your original plan is obviously downright bad, chances are it is still the best plan that you have. At the time when you devise your plan, you would have invested a lot of research and analysis into it. Choosing another route would mean going back to the original planning phase and doing additional research. The chances are high that you will end up with choosing back the same plan. Be original; don't get caught up with other people's idea.

Clear out all internal thoughts

Once you know what your plan is, stop everything that you are currently doing. Pull all breaks. Don’t do anything for the next five minutes. Empty your mind. Mediate if you have to. Get up and do some warm-up.

Tabula rasa; it means clean state. That’s what you mind is suppose to be now. It’s like waking up after a long sleep. Your mind is clear and you are slowing gaining memory of your identity, your life, and your goals and dreams. It’s like be another people with no relation to your past self.

Phase 2: Revise what you have done so far

Ask yourself these questions:
• Are what I am currently doing contributing to my plans and goals
• Are what I am doing effective?
• How can I do better?


Okay, you are probably haven’t been staying focus the whole time. You have probably done a few things that defeat the goals and objective in your life. You probably adopted a few bad habits in the progress of executing your plans.

Don’t sweat about it. It’s normal for human being to be led astray from their goals and belief. The more important thing is to make the correction once you realize that you are wrong.


If you were not giving your best before, decide now and here to do so. List out your errors and forgive yourself. Analyze your mistakes and set the appropriate corrective actions. Do what is required or necessary to get yourself back into your plan. Set more stringent goals and impose more discipline to your life.

Look at yourself in the mirror and ask yourself to make the necessary change. Changing is your ways of seeking forgiveness for your past sloth. Believe in change. Yes, you can!

Phase 3: Apply secret sauce of persistence

Ask yourself these questions:
• Do I deserve the best effort that I can give to myself?
• Do I have any valid reason to be lazy?
• Do I demand the best from myself?

Secret sauce ingredient #1: Don't care whether you succeed or fail

Once all decisions have been made and your plan has been finalized, it is time to get down dirty. Put faith in the decision that you make and the ability that you have. Stood up for what you believe in.

Enough with all the small talks. When it comes to execution there is only simple numero uno rule: Execute your best plan without caring whether you will succeed or fail. Throw whatever premature judgement that you have regarding your chances of succeeding. Regardless of how small the chances are, regardless of how impossible goal is, regardless of what other people’s opinions are, execute your plan.

Even if the world ends tomorrow, live your life to the fullest today.

It’s called the human struggle. To be human is to struggle and give your best. To be human meant not giving up. It’s in our gene. As human beings, it’s in our genes for us to give our best to ourselves, to the betterment of mankind, and to the universe. To be human means to break the boundary of what you can theoretically achieve.

Secret Sauce Ingredient #2: Don’t care whether the situation is too early or too Late

The truth about life is that there is never a correct time to do what you want to achieve. It’s either too early or too late or some other reason. Usually it’s too late. This is why you don’t want to do it.
Look, life is not a race. At least it is not strictly a competitive winner-takes-all race. It’s more like sandbox where your only concern is to improve yourself at your own pace. Therefore, it’s never too late. If the thing that you need to do is important, then it’s never too late.
If you think that it’s too late, then consider doing it before the situation gets worse. Even if you don’t gain as much as the early adopters, you still get what you need. And what you get if more important that what you did not get.

Secret Sauce Ingredient #3: Be hungry, be Very hungry

If you have a plan, then you have to want to execute it. You want to work hard to achieve the goals that you set out to in the first place. This desire is your hunger for success. It is not just enough to want something; you need to want it badly.

You know what gets you up in the morning?

You know what makes you work for butt day in, day out, all year long?

You know what difference make the differences?

There is no logic or thinking involved in the persistent execution of a solid plan. There is only hunger. If you can’t be obsesses with success, then you might as well just forget about it.

Secret Sauce Ingredient #4: Live a Busy life

If it can be done today, don't leave it until tomorrow. Load every moment of your life with something to do. Load your schedule full of tasks to do.

Believe yourself to be a busy person. Act busy all the time. Don’t give yourself anytime to doubt and worry. Don’t hem and haw over your failures. If you failed, then get over it promptly. Scurry on with your next task.

Keep on going even if you are tired. Get used to being tired and being busy all the time. Believe that you purpose in life (and your only purpose) is to work hard. Even if you end up waking like a zombie all the time and drink buck loads of coffee per day, do it. The only thing that is going to stop you from working hard is death. Even then, death is not going to reap your soul without a fight.

Secret sauce ingredient #5: Bad things will happen if you don’t work hard

This last ingredient is a personal belief of me, a belief that needs no proof nor demands any further explanation. Just like your superstitious belief that you will get bad luck if you walk under a ladder, I have this superstition that bad things will happen if you ever allow yourself to be lazy.

Maybe god is watching me; maybe there’s a boogieman around the corner that is going to get to me; may the wheel of karma is at work; regardless, if I were to snooze, bad things will happen to me.

So what is the bad thing that I am talking about? Well, I can’t tell you for sure, but I can guarantee you that it is going to very bad. So bad, that you will not like it. So bad that you would rather choose to try and fail rather than face this bad thing.


We have almost reached the end of this article. The main points of persistence are to know what you want, correct your actions as needed, and apply the three beliefs and two methods of the “secret sauce”. Demand the best from yourself because you want and need it. Live your life to the fullest and at least you will be a tad happier.