Attention is the currency of life! Be stingy with it.
Attention is being paid every second of our lives. We wake up and “our life” begins. But our life isn’t really our life: It’s a set of routines and habits that we go by that were most likely formed by someone else who has vested interest in keeping us hooked that way and the only thing those believes are hanging onto is a simple “We have to” that never gets questioned (speaking from experience). The first thing you need to do to begin your journey out of the ordinary life is to begin paying attention to your attention:
“1 hour of planning is worth 4 hours of doing.”
What do you spend your time on? Make a personal evaluation of the things you are proud of doing and deep inside you know will help you and the ones that are bullshit and deep inside you know are a waste of time. What steals your attention? What makes you get off track and leave behind the things that you really want to do? In all honesty I’m as lazy as the laziest person you know (if not more). I love shortcuts and back roads.I don’t like time management. It sound too serious and boring. But there is something that I got into the habit of doing which works for me every time. It’s asking myself: “What is the best way to spend my time right now” every time I look at a watch or just feel like I’m shifting back to mediocre activity. If you could look trough my eyes at a watch or a clock it would look something like this:
Everything around you wants you to pay with your life attention: Internet, TV, magazines, ads, people, family, friends, politics, your boss, your job and career, your boy/girlfriend, church & religion, bars, parties… you name it. They are all silently saying: “Come get some – we matter the most!” and you hardly have any time to focus on yourself and that which truly matters to you.
I am not saying that your parent or your friends or gf/bf are evil and you shouldn’t spend time with them. They probably have all the best intentions and yet may very well be innocently hindering your chances for greater personal successes. I know my parents try to all the time. Not because they don’t want the best for me but because they want to protect me from danger. They have the “better live like a coward than die like a man” mentality and what you and I are looking for is exactly the opposite. Simply make sure that you have enough ‘ME’ time and don’t substitute it for anyone.
Don’t fall for the easy stuff
“Don’t wish it were easier, wish you were better.”
— Jim Rohn
Some are more successful in convincing us to pay the price of life attention. You are paying me attention right this very second. My job, of course, is to make sure that you get more than what you are paying for. There are certain factors that exist in the battle for attention that will tip the scale of human judgement towards one instead of the other:
- Irresistible and tempting will always win over avoidable and discouraging,
- exciting will always win over boring,
- mysterious wins over obvious,
- challenging yet fun wins over unstimulating and too serious,
- sexy and attractive wins over ugly, non-attractive,
- “peace of cake” with high reward wins over extremely difficult with no reward,
- pleasure wins over pain.
All of these are not necessarily bad. They can be used very positively for good purposes. The problem is when you can’t see them for what they are and get caught in the closed loop of your ego of wanting more, better, intensified. Your task is to become resistant to bullshit. You need to be able to create an inner radar or compass for useless and time consuming activities. It’s not easy. The temptation to give up is greater than you may think. Your failure pattern is just a thought away: “I don’t have to take the hard way; I like my life just the way it is; I don’t need to change… no one around me does it so why should I?” The best way to spot useless knowledge is to begin to trust yourself more. Your intuition is like a muscle – the more you use it the stronger it gets. Ask yourself : “Do I really need this?” You’ll soon find that you’ll become very natural at spotting uneducated, ignorant, quick-fix-based ideas that do not solve real life problems and have no practical application but are merely designed to make someone else rich or make you dumber and more ignorant.
Institutions will fail you
“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.”
— Jim Rohn
The one question that I was asking myself when I first began seeking answers was: “Where can I get the best value for least life attention?” In our society the usual answer is supposed to come from some sort of institution. And they all come with a price tag too. They are also interconnected so you mustn’t stop midway if you want to win the grand price!
- Kinder-garden – 4 yrs
- Elementary school – 6 yrs
- High school – 4 yrs
- Collage – 4 yrs
- Masters – 2 yrs
- Job – 5-10 yrs
- Career – 30-40 yrs
- Ta-Daaa! – Retirement
The so called “System” is designed so that in perfect conditions you can get to a point where you completely specialize in a certain area and spend 8 hrs a day of your life attention on a job you may or may not particularly like and you get to spend the rest 8 hrs of your day (+weekends off) on whatever “you choose”.(provided you get 8 hrs of sleep) And odds are you’ll choose to watch TV, politics and sports, take it easy, drink a beer and relax, go out to party and eat out at a restaurant, take vacation, satisfy desire etc. If this is the life you’ve always dreamed of stop reading, go do your homework, get back to work and work even harder.
Fear is the mind killer
The system’s fuel is fear and insecurity. Fear of not being secure. This false sense of security is one of the most valued believes that the majority of people fall for. In reality security doesn’t really exist. It’s a mental construct that exists as a believe system only in the minds of people who got sold on it for the steep price of enslavement and got rewarded with the false good feeling of “I’m doing the right thing because that’s what everyone I know is doing”.
“What has happened is the factory, the system, the industrial age has fallen apart. It doesn’t work anymore. Because anybody who does what they are told is under pressure of doing it faster and cheaper. There is a race to the bottom. And the reason the race to the bottom is a problem is ‘cos you’ll lose the race to the bottom unless you win it which means you lose anyway.”
— Seth Godin
“We are currently preparing students for jobs that don’t yet exist, using technologies that haven’t been invented in order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet.”
“…for students starting four year college, half of what they learn in their first year, will be outdated by their third year.”
“The top 10 in demand jobs in 2010 did not exist in 2004.”
— Richard Riley (Secretary of Education)
“The key to success is to focus our conscious mind on things we desire not things we fear.”
— Brian Tracy
“Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school.”
— Albert Einstein
Keep on going – happiness is right around the corner (Yeah… right?)
Here is a diagram to help you illustrate why are you selling yourself short (big time) every time you choose to invest effort and time in what you have been taught is the only way to do “it”. The highway is not for everyone. It has minimum speed of 40 MPH and the maximum speed is much faster than that of the dirt road. The reward is a much smoother, safer and faster ride from A to B (and there are no traffic lights)
The system is a slowly moving train doomed to derail
If you jump off of the moving train you are forever a renegade. Because you find out the truth: that you can hop on and off the train anytime you want because its moving slower than a walking person. Once you learn this trick you can outrun the train and see that it’s about to derail. So your mission in life shifts a little. You are no longer concerned about the affairs of the train. You are now concerned about getting more people to jump off of it before it derails and cause more damage (not everyone… just those who listen to you ). I’m not proposing that you should quit your day job tomorrow but rather stop leaning on it for security and start taking more responsibility. If you jump off the train before you learn how to walk you are very likely to get stuck on the ground and the slowly moving train will leave you behind (and you have to get back on it). All I’m saying is learn to walk while on the train.
Take action now
Spend your free time on yourself instead of maintaining your rat-race social life. Read something that will change you in the direction you choose to go instead of watching that funny viral video or that ‘awesome’ show that every one of your friends is talking about.
“It’s difficult to soar with the eagles, when you are scratching with the turkeys!”
Stop socializing with people who make you feel good about yourself and keep you in your comfort zone; who drag you down every time you do something worthy with yourself. Find people who will motivate you; who inspire you; who will help you push yourself to the limit; who are happy about your successes and who won’t sabotage you or criticise you just to feel good about themselves.
“Your job is to become one of the most knowledgeable and skilled people in your field and to get away from the people who are not equally committed to moving in that same direction.”
— Brian Tracy
How ofter do you get someone to come to you and say:
- I think you are great although you haven’t done anything.
- I think you are very talented although you don’t know what your talents are yourself.
- I want to help you become successful and you don’t have to change or do anything.
Perhaps you’ve seen it in a movie or in one of those get-rich-quick-schemes but in real life things are slightly different. If you don’t go for it and give 120% of yourself no one will give it to you, leave alone for free. (Even when you go for it people won’t give it to you easy)
The cost of being less than truly world-class are growing as are the rewards of being geniunly great! There is more to life than work and there is more to be good at than your job. Being good at whatever we want to do: play a violin, running a race, painting a picture, leading a group of people, is among the deepest sources of fulfillment we will ever know.
— Geoff Colvin (Talent it Overrated)
It’s a holistic world
“Information is just bits of data. Knowledge is putting them together. Wisdom is transcending them.”
— Ram Dass
Our whole world is build on holons (A holon is something that is simultaneously a whole and a part.)
Atoms are the bulding blocks of molecules > molecules are the building blocks of organic cells > cells are the building blocks of organs > organs of body etc. Zero and ones are the building blocks of machine code > machine code is the building blocks of programming languages > programming languages are the building blocks of user software etc. In the same way data is the building blocks of information >information of knowledge > knowledge of wisdom.
Go directly for the wisdom
The cool thing about wisdom is that it contains real life solutions to real life problems. Wisdom steps on knowledge but transcends it. The whole is greater than the sum of it’s parts. You see… it would be ridiculous if someone was programming a user software using zeros and ones. Although in the computer everything is zeros and ones It’s much faster to use an already organized system of zeros and ones. In exactly the same way wisdom transcends all the previous platform which it’s build upon and gives you the essence of the matter. Its like the “moral of the story”.
Our collective world wisdom is basically the top most layer of knowledge processed by men and women who asked themselves: What am I really here for? Why is this (life on Earth in a human body) happening to me? What is the best way to move through it? What’s really real? Who am I really? What are the limits of my potential?
Most of what we want to do is hard. That’s life. Encountering problems, discouragement and disappointment is inevitable. So any knowledge about what makes us better at the things that we want to do, real knowledge (not myth or conjecture), can be used not just to make us richer but to make us happier
— Geoff Colvin (Talent it Overrated)
There is a sort of fair play. You’ve been told from the cradle that the deck is stacked against you —fall of man, original sin, and so on and so on— its bullshit. Its absolute bullshit.
There is a sort of fair play, and if you can get in touch with that in your life, if you can have that perception, the world will begin to work for you, it will begin to move toward you… Nature loves courage, and it shows you that loves courage because it will remove obstacles.
You make the commitment, and nature will respond to that commitment by removing impossible obstacles. Dream the impossible dream, and the world will not grind you under, it will lift you up. This is the trick! This is what all these teachers and philosophers who really counted, who really touched the alchemical gold, this is what they understood, this is the shamanic dance in the waterfall, this is how magic is done: it’s done by hurling yourself into the abyss, and discovering that it’s a feather bed. There’s no other way to do it.
— Terence McKenna (Unfolding the Stone)
The moral of the story – Deal with the raw data and trust yourself! Take responsibility for what you think and what you do!
Thanks for reading my very firs blog post.