I’m writing this 37,000 feet in the air en route from New York City to Hong Kong. I’m sitting in business class on Cathay Pacific with my wife next to me. I have so much room to type this. The bed lays down flat. I have a huge TV screen in front of me to keep me busy for the 15 hour flight. I’m so full from all the food. We’ll stay in Hong Kong for two nights then a couple days later we’re going to continue to Taipei, Taiwan and stay for four months.
I didn’t have to think twice about doing this. I didn’t have to ask a boss for permission for time off. I didn’t even pay more than $300 for these business class ticket.
I don’t share this to brag. I’m sharing to show you what is possible when you take 100% responsibility for your life.
All this didn’t happen by accident. I wasn’t handed this on a silver platter. I’m not an overnight success either. What I did was take control of my life and planned it to be this way. Was it easy? Not all the time. Was it worth it? Absolutely.
What was important was a change in how I perceived this dream. Instead of being jealous of other people’s lives, I thought “if they can do it, why not me?” Before I would think it wasn’t fair. Why were they happy and I wasn’t? Complaining to no one in particular never helped. It only dug me deeper into a hole of self pity.
So I changed how I looked at them. I understood that there were other people doing what I wanted to do. That’s why I knew it was possible. There were just regular people too. They weren’t rich. They didn’t have connections or knew exactly what they were going to do in life right out of college. These people early on were people like Pat Flynn and Chris Guillebeau for me. These were ordinary guys who I could relate to and were living their lives doing what they wanted and with much more freedom.
I always knew that I had more to me than what I had done. I know many of you feel the same way because you email me and tell me that.
What was missing was being so determined to make it a reality. I was waiting for a miracle. I was hoping someone would tell me exactly what to do and how to do it. I had this unrealistic imagination that I’d wake up one day with sudden clarity for my future.
After wasting most of my adult life feeling stuck, I wasn’t going to let anything get in my way in late 2010. Not even the pain of being a beginner, self doubt, failures, and impatience.
Over four years since I wrote a letter to myself to wake up and get busy living and I feel proud because I took 100% responsibility for my life and am enjoying the results from it.
Your dreams might be different, and that’s completely fine. What you and I have in common is a desire to enjoy life more. We want to do work that’s fulfilling. We want more excitement. We want more freedom.
“This is it. This is my manifesto. This is when I start to make changes to the life I want. It starts now. Stop wasting time. It’s been more than five years since you’ve wanted to find a new career. You need to start doing it now. Today. Tomorrow and every day until you reach your desired lifestyle. Life is too short to be unhappy when not working. You deserve the best. You deserve to be happy. You deserve to have all the money in the world to go along with happiness. Start working hard every day to find your passion and reach your goals. Focus. Focus. Focus. Open your mind and allow it to attract great ideas and answers to your questions.”
121 words that came from the heart. I wrote that in October 2010. It’s still taped on my wall right above my stand up desk.
It came from being tired about how my life was at that point. I came home after a long day at a job I so badly wanted to leave for so long. It was busy that night, and I was mentally and physical tired. I drove home staring at the road. It was 11pm, so there were not many cars on the road, there was only a truck from the Shiply company full of cars ready to get delivered. The music was on and really sound great with the Pioneer DJ deck. I was just alone with my thoughts. The drive home and those feelings were ones I had experienced thousands of times, but something about that night was different. I don’t know why. Was this my breaking point finally? It must have been because I came home and did something I hadn’t done before.
I typed a message to myself. I called it my manifesto because I was making a declaration.
I just typed whatever was on my mind and finished. I didn’t go back to change anything. I wasn’t angry at myself though I could have easily laced that letter with expletives. At that time, I was too exhausted from a long night at work and just at life in general. The manifesto was there to lift me up and not put me down. So I think that’s why it didn’t feel as angry.
I still have this taped on my wall as a reminder of how far I have come. When I typed it, I didn’t know what was going to be the outcome, but I just knew it would be better than what I had up to that point. I was so determined to make it so.
In today’s blog post, I wanted to analyze what I wrote and why I wrote those particular words at that time.
This is it
The first words I summed it. I was tired of wanting a better life. I was tired of not doing work that made me happy. I was tired of so many things. I had tried and stopped countless times. No more excuses. No more waiting until next year to start again. It was time to change. No more half assed attempts.
Stop wasting time
All I did when I had free time was waste time. I was doing things that weren’t getting me any closer to where I wanted to be. Instead, I was doing things that distracted me from real life. I had lots of free time. Working in the restaurant business meant I didn’t have to wake up early. I did have days off and even a break in the middle of the day. I had so much free time but used it instead to watch TV and get on the computer for no reason at all.
Not only did I need to stop wasting time doing stupid stuff, but I needed to stop wasting time hoping and waiting for change to happen. I needed to do something about it.
It’s time to look back and reflect on 2014. I’ve done this for the past two years now. The reason I started doing it was because I never did it. If I wanted to get different results in life, I needed to do different things. An annual review seemed like a great idea because I could review what went well and what didn’t go as well.
Therefore the next, I could continue to do more of what was working well and less of what wasn’t.
If you’ve never done one before, I encourage you to answer those two questions.
If you want to go more in depth in your year in review, I’ve created a free worksheet that has questions to help you review your year and plan for the next. By filling it out, you will learn a lot about yourself.
Download it, print it out and find a quiet time to complete it. Don’t rush through it. These questions will really make you think. Be honest with your answers. These are just for yourself.
If you find it that you don’t have much to write down, then next year make sure you consciously do more. It could be because you’re in your comfort zone too much. Make it a goal for next year to be stretch yourself and take more risks.
If you’ve never done a year in review, try it this year. You’ll learn more about yourself. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Don’t just fill this out and put it away. I encourage you to put it in a place where you can access it and refer back to it throughout the year. Because you need to remember the parts of your life you said you needed to eliminate or improve.
This was the first time in my life I began and ended this year as an online entrepreneur. I didn’t realize that until I began writing this.
That’s a huge accomplishment for me and a dream I’ve had since probably 2005. It’s a great feeling to know that I did that. Last year was the beginning of this new chapter.
In June 2013, I quit my full time job finally and went all in with my online business. It was scary to take that leap before I was financially ready, but I just could not take wasting my time doing a job I hated. It was scary and went through some low points before finally seeing the results of the hard work pay off at the end of 2013.
That momentum carried in 2014 and this year has been my best year yet.
Being my own boss is great but it also means that I need to get myself to do the work. I don’t have anyone telling me what I should be doing. For the most part I’ve done a pretty good job of that this year. The results have shown that.
One of the reasons I’ve always wanted to have my own online business is to be able to travel when I wanted. This year I took full advantage of that.
Last year, my wife and I didn’t travel much after June because I wasn’t getting a steady paycheck anymore and living off savings until the online income went up. So we cut back on spending in many areas of our life, including travel.
We hated that because we love traveling, but we had to.
This year we made up for it.
Febuary started off with a trip to London and Paris thanks to a mistake fare that was published a few months before. We were able to get roundtrip tickets for $400 per person. A bargain we could not turn down especially we had been dreaming about going to those cities.
We stayed two weeks total and used a combination of hotel points, cash, and Airbnb for our hotels.
On the way back we stopped in New York City for three nights. Got to try out the tallest hotel in North America which recently opened. I booked one night with points and one night with cash.
Got upgraded to a corner room with a priceless view of Central Park.
After that the traveling continued.
April – Long Beach to visit family
April to June – Taipei
July – Portland for World Domination Summit
July – Las Vegas for my birthday
August – Dallas for Podcasting Movement
September – Chicago to play tourist
September – Denver to watch a Broncos game
October – Jamaica for our three year anniversary
November – I didn’t go anywhere but my wife went to New York for a week to meet a friend who visited from Taiwan
December – Amtrak ride from Denver to San Francisco. Then flew to Minneapolis to see the Mall of America
What helped us save so much money this year was having the Southwest companion pass which I earned in early 2014. What that allows is when I book a ticket, my wife flies almost for free! She has to pay like $5 for fee but that’s it. That’s why we decided to go to so many places this year.
Early 2015 is the best time to get the companion pass. Why? Because when you qualify for it, Southwest gives it to you the rest of the year and then next year. So my companion pass was good for this year and all of 2015! And Southwest now flies internationally and the pass can be used for that too. That’s why we went to Jamaica for our anniversary.
I knew about Teespring in 2013 but didn’t understand how it could turn into a business until earlier this year when I learned that people were making lots of money. I decided to try it out because I’ve always wanted to design t-shirts. I can remember reading the 4 Hour Work week in 2007 and the idea of buying a printing machine and doing it in my garage crossed my mind. Just seemed too much to invest upfront and I had no idea how to get people to see my shirt.
Now that dream is possible thanks to Teespring and Facebook. At the end of this year I’ve been paid out by Teespring $195,000+.
It’s given me more confidence that I can do even more in life. Now I’m thinking bigger
In December when we went to San Francisco, I was able to stop by the Teespring offices to get a tour and meet some of the amazing people behind it.
Launched the podcast
Last year I was disappointed I didn’t launch the Get Busy Living podcast. I had wanted to but put it aside in order to focus on making money. I’m glad I did because I now realize how much time goes into podcasting. This year though I wanted to finally launch it.
Since I did in January I’ve had 195,000 downloads! I was featured in New and Noteworthy and climbed as high as #56 overall in the whole iTunes podcast section and #4 in the self help category. Even more important was getting feedback about how much you enjoy it.
I thought it’d be easy to just hit record and talk. It was the second episode that I realized it wasn’t. That episode took hours to finish. I kept messing up with sentences so I’d have to stop, delete what I just recorded and do it again. I almost wanted to give up. I was sweating and just tired. So the next few episodes I typed out every single word I would say. I read those episodes to sound as natural as possible.
I don’t know when the shift began but now when I record an episode I don’t have to read every single words and feel more comfortable talking in front of a mic. That just came from practice.
It’s an important lesson to remember that you’re going to be a beginner when you start and it’s going to be ugly. You’ll get better when repetition.
This was a complete surprise.
Not only was I surprised that I ended up on FOX News, but I was surprised how fast it happened.
You can read the whole story here. but this is how it looked on live TV. It’s an experience I’ll never forget. And I’m still shocked that she thought my game and Candy Crush looked similar.
What didn’t go so well
Unfortunately this is a repeat of last year. Last year I put writing aside because I was spending most of my free time on reskinning apps. This year I’ve been selling on Teespring and podcasting. I knew something had to go and it was writing.
I hate that it’s not in the section above because I didn’t do a better job of making it a priority. Could I have made more time for it? Of course. Even 30 minutes a day was possible, but I think the problem was that it wasn’t made a regular part of my day like brushing my teeth.
When I had free time, I would do something else. Instead I need to do my writing at the same time every day. That way I have a routine.
I’m going to do a better job and find a way to get this into the section above one year from now. Two years in a row in this section is not good.
I had to put podcasting in the corner as well. I started off great and in a rhythm with one episode a week. Then Teespring came along and took up a lot of my time. Then a new episode would come out once every two weeks maybe. I didn’t have a set schedule and I feel bad about that. That’s not what the top podcasters do.
If I’m serious about it, I have to treat it more than just a hobby.
What will I do in 2015 to improve? I’m thinking of choosing a day and making it my podcast day. So I know every week on that day it’s time to record. Also being a few episodes ahead is important.
Gonna improve so podcasting will not be in this section next year.
I’ve been up and down with my level of fittnes year. Most of the year has been down. With all the traveling came a lot of eating and not much exercising. The negatives I’ve seen of it have been occassional headaches and disappointment in how I feel. It’s not the number on the scale mainly but more of how I feel.
I did do a 21 day cleanse after we came back from London, Paris and NYC. I had enough of eating too much and feeling like crap. The 21 days were tough, but I did it. I felt amazing. I felt lighter. I had more confidence. Clothes were looser. I felt great, but slowly I went back to old habits.
I’d love to be more consistent with it but the problem is that I love to eat too much. I know I have to control how much I eat, but that can be hard when traveling.
This is going to be a challenge in 2015, but I don’t want to feel this same way.
Though my results were amazing this year, I know I could have done more. I didn’t track it but I bet I wasted a lot of time by multitasking, checking email, and having interruptions. But at the same time, it shows that I’m not perfect but was still able to have a great year.
In fact, I just went off and did ten other things before I realized I was in the middle of writing this section. Crazy! It’s second nature to me and I’m sure many of you.
Finding ways to stay more focused and minimize distractions is important for me. That way I’ll have enough time for Teespring, writing, podcasting, and whatever else I work on in 2015.
What’s next for 2015?
To be honest, I don’t know yet. I’m going to continue with Teespring for sure. I don’t plan creating any new apps. I didn’t do any in 2014. I want to read more books too. Again it’s a thing I just have to make time for.
I’d love to self publish a book on Kindle so that’s a goal I’d love to say I did one year for now. In January, I’m going to set aside time and figure out what I want to prioritize in the year.
I always want to make the next year even better than the previous year. 2014 was my best year yet so I have a lot of work to do to achieve that. I do believe it’s possible though.
We will do as much traveling as we can in 2015. It’s the last year for the Southwest Companion pass so we want to use it. In February, we’re going back to Taipei. Book business class seats on Cathay Pacific. A few hundred dollars out of pocket only and the rest came from points collected from credit cards. Excited about that.
It’s not going to be all pleasure next year. I know if I want to keep this level of success, I’ve still go to put in the work.
I look forward to one year from now and doing an annual review and reflecting back on what a great year it was. 2014 was full of surprises so I’m looking forward to what good surprises 2015 has.
Thank you for following along in 2014.
What about you? What went well for you and what do you want to accomplish in 2015?
I saw something this weekend that shocked and upset me.
It’s been 2-3 months since I have checked my ratings and reviews in iTunes for the Get Busy Living podcast. Last time I checked, I had a good amount of five-star ratings and reviews (thank you to those who left one) and less than five one-star ratings.
Though even just one one-star rating hurt, I understood that maybe the podcast wasn’t for everyone. No negative reviews were left, just someone giving me one-star. So I didn’t know why someone didn’t like it. No big deal though. I would just keep focusing on the listeners that do enjoy it.
On Saturday night, I decided to check iTunes after I finished recording a new episode. I was shocked by what I saw.
Forty-one one-star ratings left! Forty-one??
I know I’m not a pro at this, but I don’t think I’m that bad to warrant that many one-star ratings.
I checked the most critical reviews, and they were left in August and September.
After doing some digging this is what I found:
Each called me amateur, which I found kind of odd that they use the same description. Their reviews were very amateurish though. I highly suspect fake names as well.
One account only reviewed my podcast.
One account only reviewed two podcasts (mine and the School of Greatness).
One account only reviewed four podcasts (I got one-star. The three others got five-stars).
One review said my interviews are recycled guests. Clearly this person hadn’t bothered to listen or look because I’ve only done four interviews and they aren’t guests you find on every single podcast. That’s why they were chosen.
One mentioned a podcast called the Art of Charm in the review, while another account left a five-star review for it.
One mentioned the School of Greatness in the review, while another account only reviewed only my podcast and that one.
First of all, I’m not sure why my podcast is being compared to The Art of Charm or the School of Greatness. The formats are different. Theirs are interview based. Out of twenty-eight episodes, I’ve only done four. I like to focus more on solo shows.
I’m sure they’re fine podcasts, cause they’re highly ranked, but I don’t listen to their podcasts so I don’t know how they are similar nor do I try to emulate them.
Those two podcasts are ranked in the top ten of the self-help category. At the time of this post I’m ranked 163. I’m a small fish. So why the comparisons? I don’t even think I’m in the same level as them. I’m certainly no threat to them.
There are many other solo show type self-help podcasts in top 200. Why not compare me to those? Why no reviews of one of those as well in addition to mine?
I clicked on other podcasts in the self-help category just to see if others had gotten this many one-star ratings. I didn’t click every single one, but in my research only four out of 200 had more than 30 one-star ratings. Most had ten or less one-star ratings. Some had zero. Some have been podcasting for years.
I started in January and already have 41 one-stars ratings.
(Note: When I say ratings, what I mean is that someone just has to click how many stars they want to give. 1-5 stars. That’s it. Completely anonymous. A review and rating must have the person logged into their iTunes account. Whatever is written will be shown along with their account name.)
Brendon Burchard’s podcast, The Charged Life, has 34 one-star ratings. However not a single person who gave it one-star left a review for it. When I filter for the “most critical” reviews, only five-star reviews are shown.
I enjoy his podcast, and his books, so I was surprised to see so many one-stars.
I found three other podcasts that have hundreds of five-star ratings, but also 40+ one-star ratings. For two of them, when I went to read the most critical reviews, again not a single person who wrote a one-star review. Zero. Zlich.
One podcast had three one-star reviews, but they were left in 2009 and 2010.
These podcasts are all in the top thirty of the category. Meaning lots of daily downloads and a huge listening audience.
I’m unsure if they are being negatively targeted, or those are genuine since they have thousands of downloads a day and therefore a much higher listener base and negative ratings are bound to happen.
What I do know is that I’m in this rare category of having 40+ one-star ratings.
What to think of this?
I’ll be honest, I was pretty hurt by seeing so many one-star ratings at first. Forty-one? That’s more than half of the five star ratings I’ve gotten. What was going on?
My first thought was maybe I should quit. Maybe my podcasting skills are terrible. Maybe these are legitimate.
Not too long ago, I knew nothing about how to run a Facebook ad to sell a product. Okay maybe just tried it once. I ran an ad for an iPhone app I had to try and get more users. I wasn’t sure if it really helped. I probably was doing it all wrong. Still I tried.
One day in March I came across someone selling a course about how to make money selling your own t-shirts online. This seller was your typical internet marketer. He said how easy it was. He said he earned over $100k in a month. He made it seem like anyone could do it. He knew how to sell.
So my eyes got big and dreamt about the money I could earn if I sold my own designs. Selling t-shirts had been on my mind for many years. I just never thought I could make that much money from it.
I bought the course, which was really cheap. The course was just okay, but I knew nothing to start anyways. Soon I had my first t-shirt design uploaded and ready to sell. I created it myself with my basic Photoshop skills. I created an ad and started running a Facebook ad campaign. I learned to test it out with a $10 ad budget. If no one bought a shirt in the first $10, then stop the ad. It was a way to test out the design and buyers.
My first design got to $10 and no one bought. I stopped it.
Still I was interested in this. I liked the process. I joined a couple Facebook groups to talk and learn from other people. Some were just beginning, some were having success, while some were still struggling.
The next twenty designs and ad campaigns failed. I spent $10 each time to test it out, and despite thinking people would love the shirt, no one was buying.
The highest I got was 3 shirts. I thought I had an amazing design and targeted the right audience. I lost money on that campaign because each day I spent $10 and ran it for seven days hoping at least ten shirts were ordered. The reason I needed ten orders is because the website I was using to print and ship these shirts is Teespring.com. They make it easy for anyone to sell shirts. Just upload a design, set your price, and if at least 10 shirts are ordered, then the shirts get printed and shipped. They handle that. They just send you money.
If it doesn’t reach at least 10, then no one will get charged and no shirts will be printed.
So no upfront costs and no need to keep any inventory.
I learned it wasn’t as easy as I thought. I couldn’t just make a shirt, and advertise it. Twenty-one failures proved that. I tried selling shirts to dog lovers, coffee lovers, hot sauce lovers, lawyers and more. It would have been easy to quit after so many failures. I wasn’t ready to quit yet.
Finally on the 22nd campaign I had a winning design. It was stupidly simple. It was just a cute message I found on Instagram which got a lot of like thanks to the cheapest likes on Instagram I got and targeted towards pediatric nurses. It took less than five minutes to create it in Photoshop. Once I ran the ad, I had a sale before I spent $10.
After the campaign ended seven days later, 17 shirts were bought. I spent $81.72 on ads and earned $112.25 for a profit of $30.53. It wasn’t a huge profit, but it was a successful campaign finally. It took a few more failures before I had another successful one when I sold 32 shirts.
Here is that shirt. As you can see I was targeting butchers, and giving them a funny shirt.
Seeing success made me even more obsessed about this. I stayed up late to research ideas and work on new campaigns. I learned through trial and error. I carried a Moleskin notebook around all day and wrote down t-shirt ideas. The first thing in the morning I would check how sales overnight were. The last thing I’d do before bed was preparing new designs to start selling in the morning.
After my first full month, I just about broke even. I cashed out $1,106.87 from Teesrping, but paid just about that much in Facebook advertising. Some people might be discouraged, but I was glad I broke even.
In the month of May, I kept working hard. I was flat out was obsessed with it. All my free time was spent on this. Because I was trying to find the right audience and sell them the right design, I had more failed campaigns than winning ones. But the winning campaigns were massive.
I had my tipping point
The month of May I was finally profitable! I finally was more consistent with my campaigns and selling designs that my customers wanted. All the struggling I had before was finally turning around. All the hard work I put in was now starting to show me massive results.
The month of May was my tipping point. Since then I’ve been profitable every month.
I’m walking through the aisle at Wal-Mart and I’m trying to figure out what I want for dinner. Actually it wasn’t that difficult of a choice. I was going to eat what I craved the most and would probably miss the most the next 21 days – pizza. I went to the frozen pizza aisle and got one with with sausage and pepperoni.
I felt like a death row inmate enjoying his last meal. I finished every bite even though I was beyond full. I couldn’t leave any leftovers.
Four days later
My wife and I are walking through the same aisles at Wal-Mart. This time I tried so hard to resist the pizza. It wasn’t only the pizza that was tempting me. It was the Oreos or the bag of Lay’s KC Masterpiece BBQ potato chips that I love. I was starving, but I needed to resist.
99% of my body wanted it, but I stuck to the 1% and walked out without a frozen pizza or any of the other junk foods that I love.
We dropped off some groceries at my mom’s house. While we were there, pizza was still on my mind. The past three years whenever I’ve had the tiniest bit of a craving, I’d satisfying it. I’ve always lost the battle. I tried to think of an excuse to have pizza.
It really felt like two voices were talking to me. One said, “Go ahead! What’s the big deal??” while the other one said “It’ll taste good, but you’ll regret it afterwards if you eat it.”
We went home and I immediately made a salad. The hunger went away and felt pleased that I resisted my temptations.
Why am I doing this?
The day after my final pizza I began a 21 day cleanse. The 21 day cleanse would have me eating a lot of fresh natural foods. No more dairy, carbs, processed foods, gluten, refined sugar. and meat. No pizza, fast food, and no ice cream. All the things that I absolutely love. I am addicted to food and although I don’t need to go to RTC in California I did need serious help.
Why did I want to do this? Because I’ve been feeling like 100% crap. Not just recently, but for the past three years. Ever since I ran my last half marathon in February 2011, I’ve slowly gone downhill.
When I finished my last half marathon, I was in amazing shape, but then I went to Taipei to visit Eleanor and slowly went back to my old ways. When I got back months later, I couldn’t run a mile without being out of breath.
I love to eat. When I eat, I don’t just eat a small portion. I eat until I can barely breath. If there’s opportunity for dessert, I always say yes. It’s a terrible cycle.
I’ve gone through phases since college when I’ve been in great physical shape. That’s how I’d love to be all the time. However it’s always been an up and down roller coaster.
But as I’ve gotten older, my body started to change. Not sure what factors but maybe metabolism slowing down, exercising less, and eating more junk. Probably all three.
Because of the way I was eating, it had side effects. I remember last year being on vacation and I’d get these really bad headaches after taking a nap. Felt like migraines. I’d want to take a nap often because I had a huge meal. I noticed that when I went to bed, my heart was still beating really fast. That wasn’t right. I should be relaxed and calm.
I didn’t like how I looked either. I had this beer gut without drinking any beer. I looked at pictures of me and couldn’t believe this chubby guy I was looking at. It was embarrassing.
Willpower alone did not work
It seemed like everyday I’d tell myself that I was going to change.
I’m a sugar addict. I feel that is my biggest problem. I’ve tried just using willpower to eat less sugar. I sounded like a broken record cause I would always say, “No more sugar for a week” or “I’m not eating this much anymore.”
Yet I’d be back the next day doing the same thing. How good I felt while I ate sugar overpowered any thoughts of long term consequences. I only looked at instant gratification and the more I did, the weaker my willpower got.
I truly believe that sugar is an addiction just like a drug. I always thought just using willpower I could cut back on sugar. It’s not that easy.
I’ve wanted to do a 3-day juice cleanse that has become so popular. Surely I could handle that. I tried once and I made it only one day.
I tried fasting 24 hours twice a week. I survived for a couple weeks, but the problem was after a fast I’d have a huge meal.
I kept looking for a quick fix where I could still eat the foods I loved and still lose weight and feel great.
I had to stop trying that.
21 Day Cleanse – The First Attempt
In October I saw on Facebook a friend’s wife going through the 21 day cleanse. She’d post daily photos of what she made and commented often how good it tasted. I read more about the program and seemed like something I needed.
The benefits of 21 days were:
reboot my body
clean out whatever toxins I had built up
get rid of food cravings
That’s exactly what I wanted.
Buying the program was not going to guarantee success. Sure I was motivated, but I’ve been motivated before when starting.
But could I do it? Could I not eat meat for that long? What about rice or bread? Would I feel irritable cause I couldn’t have sugar?
For the 21 day cleanse, I liked that it gave me a lot of recipes with great photos. It had a day by day plan of what to eat each meal. I looked through the recipes and some looked good, while others I wasn’t sure about.
I would give it a chance.
I started in November. We went to the health foods store to buy all different kinds of nuts, seeds, and other foods I’ve never bought before. My wife wasn’t going to do it. She looked at the meals and knew she couldn’t survive. She did try some of the meals and snack and loved them.
The first three days I felt fine. I thought I can do this. I wasn’t having headaches or dizziness that some people reported because of withdrawals from caffeine.
The fourth day I hit my wall. Hard. I was so hungry. Anything I couldn’t have sounded so good.
My family wanted to eat Chinese buffet on the fourth day. I hadn’t told them I was trying to do a 21 day cleanse. We go occasionally and I always eat too much. I was torn. It sounded so good. I could have said no.
Then my instant gratification side starts coming up with excuses. My thinking was I’d get rid of my craving and pick back up the day after. I’d be like a cheat day once a week. I eat clean the next six days, but this cheat day would help the cravings.
That was not part of the 21 day plan. I was bending the rules.
I went and it tasted like a 5 star meal.
The day after I ate healthy, but the day after that I had a pizza. The craving came back and I made an excuse that it was okay to have it. So much for going six days of healthy eating. I don’t know what it’s like to be addicted to drugs, but I felt like I needed my pizza to calm down. After that, I never got back on track.
I went back to my old ways. Eat out a lot. Big meals at home. Eating ice cream, chocolate and cookies.
Then we went to London, Paris, and New York in February. It’s easier to eat a lot on vacation and that’s what I did. I had the headaches and just overall discomfort again.
While on the trip, I told my wife when I got back I was going to do the 21 days. She said okay sure, but I don’t know how much confidence she had in me that I’d stick with it. Since we’ve been married, she’s heard me complain about my weight.
I was serious this time. I had my breaking point. This madness had to stop.
I needed to. I hated how I always felt. I especially hated how I looked. I’ve been complaining about it for so long. I got tired of hearing myself complain.