Master Chief Information Systems Technician Dennis Wilbanks, head SEAL recruiter said, “You have to want the program. And mentally, never give yourself the option to quit.”
70% drop out within the first few weeks. That number is pretty high considering sailors know what they are signing up for.
They want them to be able to work flawlessly under intense mental and physical exhaustion. Why? As one instructor put it, “Mistakes made when working with explosives only happen once.”
He makes a good point.
Navy SEALs raided Bin Laden’s compound last year. I read an article in Esquire magazine about the man who actually shot Bin Laden. A fascinating firsthand account of what it was like inside.
One story in the Esquire article really stood out to me. It really put in perspective how badly some of these guys want to become Navy SEALs.
One test during Basic Underwater Demolition School/SEAL (BUD/S) he describes, but I bet words can’t begin to show how grueling it really is.
They break them down and see how physically and mentally tough they are. It sometimes reaches the point of death and resurrection.
“One of the tests is they make you dive to the bottom of a pool and tie five knots,” the Shooter says. “One guy got to the fifth knot and blacked out underwater. We pulled him up he was, like, dead. They made the class face the fence while they tried to resuscitate him. The first words as he spit out water were ‘Did I pass? Did I tie the fifth knot?’ The instructor told him, ‘We didn’t want to find out if you could tie the knots, you asshole, we wanted to know how hard you’d push yourself. You killed yourself. You passed.”
But that’s what it takes to become a Navy SEAL. Unrelenting drive and a willingness to not quit.
Isn’t that what separates the ordinary from the extraordinary amongst us as well? The ones who have success in life act like the guy who tried to tie that fifth knot.
They are the ones who act like tying one knot is enough to pass.
I spent a great week in Hong Kong and was so excited to go cause of the food.
One thing we couldn’t wait to eat was dim sum. If you don’t know what it is, it basically refers to a style of Chinese food prepared as small bite-sized or individual portions of food traditionally served in small steamer baskets or on small plates.
Basically it’s damn good.
My wife found one famous local place and told me it was going to be different than what I was used to.
For example, when you enter the restaurant there is no hostess to seat you. You don’t line up waiting for people to leave and then go sit down. You have to walk around looking for people leaving. It’s like trying to park your car at the mall during Christmas time. You’re circling and hoping to see a spot free up.
A strategy we used was to see if people were very close to leaving. Then stand by their table patiently waiting for them to leave. It could be five minutes or more. You just hover around people while they’re finishing up. It might feel like you’re bothering them, but you have to do it if you want to get a seat.
When you do find a table, you’re very likely going to be sharing a table with others. When we went, we shared a table with three other small groups.
Might seem awkward, but if you really want to eat, you can’t be picky about where you sit.
The way most people know dim sum is ladies will push around a steam cart with stacks of small wooden baskets filled with food. They come to your table and open each stack to show you what they have. If you like it, you tell them and they give it to you and make a note on your ticket. At the end of the meal, you take that ticket to the cashier, and they add it up.
It’s very organized and it’s exciting to see the carts come by to see what good food they have. It’s also great cause you can eat within seconds of sitting down.
The Hunger Games
This place definitely was different than the dim sum places I’m always used to going to. My wife said it’s cause it’s more traditional style.
Ladies come out of the kitchen pushing the steam carts, but instead of everyone waiting at their table for them to come by, people rush to the cart and quickly surround it. (see photo above and look for the short lady in light blue and the people surrounding her)
They’re all looking to see what it is. If they want it, they get the attention of the old lady by gently shoving their ticket into her face. Poor lady!
When they have their items, they have to walk through a crowd of people who barely move cause they don’t want to lose their positioning.
Eleanor went up many times. She had some success but also walked away empty handed many times too. I tried a few times and had to squeeze my way in if I wanted to get something. Didn’t matter if it was old lady or old guy. I had to stand my ground. Sometimes I had success and other times they ran out of that particular item quickly.
We called it hunger games because it was a battle to get the food. If you didn’t go get food, you would go hungry.
Okay you wouldn’t literally go hungry, but you would miss out on most of the good food.
Sometimes the carts would have leftovers. That happened when the items weren’t as appealing or they made too much of a certain item. This is when the ladies would push the cart around to different tables. Then at the comfort of your table, you can take a look at what’s left and and they’d give it to you.
But that didn’t happen as often.
You could sit on your butt and wait for the leftovers to come around and get full, but if you wanted the really good stuff, you had to take action. Most likely if it was something you really wanted to eat, so did everyone else in the restaurant.
From the time we walked in till we left almost 1.5 hours later, every time a cart came out, the same thing would happen.
This is exactly like life
While sitting there laughing at how chaotic it was and taking pictures, I realized this is like life.
When you want something, you’ve got to get off your butt and go get it. Sometimes you get it, and sometimes you come up empty handed, but at least you tried.
If you sit and wait for it, you’ll never ever get what you truly want.
The life you want isn’t going to be handed to you. No matter how much you wish that would happen, it won’t.
Someone isn’t going to walk around with a cart full of dreams and ask “Would you like to earn more money? Here you go.” or “Would you like to lose weight? Coming right up. Enjoy.”
The point is that you can’t wait for someone to give you the life you want.
Yet that’s what happens all around the world. People want everything to be spoon fed to them. They’re too lazy to take action. They want someone to tell them what to do. They want someone to do the work for them. They want instant results with little work.
Then they wonder why they’re not happy in life. They’re the ones who whine and complain. They try to bring others down in life because they can’t live their dreams.
I get a lot of emails with people telling me about their problems and looking for some advice. Some are short, but some pour their hearts out. Many of the situations I can relate to because I used to feel like that.
I reply to as many emails as possible, but I know just one email isn’t going to make a huge impact. It might motivate them to take action, or shed some light on something they didn’t realize, but one or two replies isn’t enough to make a huge dent in their beliefs.
I wanted to do more, but how?
Get Busy Living in 30 Days
So after wanting to do more to help, I decided it was time for to put together a plan of action that goes into more detail on how I finally got unstuck in life.
It covers two years of learning and doing. I’ve found what works for me and now see the truth about what it takes to be happy and successful (in that order which I cover in the course).
It’s called Get Busy Living in 30 Days and it’s a course that’ll help if you’re feeling stuck in life, or you just want to achieve more than you have so far.
It’s going to help reprogram your mind so you’ll be more motivated to create positive change and do what’s necessary to achieve your goals.
What this course also is about is cutting away all the fat and unnecessary advice and focuses on what really matters. What can you focus on that’ll give you the most result?
What do you need to learn first? You need to learn how to walk before you can run. I don’t want you to run a marathon yet. We’re going to be taking easy jogs around the track.
This course is the foundation for everything else you will do in life. Without a strong foundation, you’re not going to be able to build your dream life. You can only build an average one that will crumble after one minor setback.
I’ve taken the best stuff I’ve learned and used the past two years to turn my life around and put it in this course.
How will this course be delivered?
The course will be delivered by email. Once you join, you’ll get one lesson a day for 30 days straight to your inbox. The emails will show you behind the scenes of truly what it takes to be more and do more in life.
They’ll inspire you and give that kick in the butt you desperately need.
Some lessons will have action steps or a worksheet for you to do. It’s an important part of the process.
I chose email because I asked YOU! I did a survey last year to my subscriber list on whether to deliver it an email a day or put it all in an ebook. The majority said one email a day and that was my preference as well.
With one email a day, it breaks down all the information one day at a time.
There will also be a premium package where at the end of the course you will get all the emails and worksheets in a beautifully designed PDF ebook. You can go back and review everything in one place.
Some of the topics I’ll cover in the course
Why boring, unsexy, unnoticeable steps will always create massive results.
How to release those chains holding you back in life.
Why you really feel stuck in life and how to get out of it.
How to reboot your mind to get it work more optimally.
Why you must find happiness before you can find success.
How to properly set goals that’ll empower you.
Why you might need to change your friends if you want to succeed.
Why a morning routine can be the best thing you do all day.
How to achieve more in three months than some do in a year.
And much more!
Limited Time Only
The course is open now for registration, but will only be available a limited time until Saturday, March 2nd at 11:59 AM EST.(Registration is closed. Will reopen in the near future).
I want to spend my focus with the first group of students going through their first 30 days and getting their feedback. That’s why I’m limiting registration.
I’ll re-open the course in the future, but not sure when yet.
I’d love to help make this year your best your year.
If you’re ready to finally do something with your life and become the person you’ve always wanted to be, I’m ready to help you.
All the risk is on me
I do have a 60 day money back guarantee.
No questions asked. Just send me an email saying you want a refund.
All I ask is that you go through the course, do the worksheets, apply what I’ve taught you. In 60 days after you’ve joined (30 day course + 30 days afterwards), if your life is the same and you haven’t improved, I’ll give you your money back. I don’t want your money if I haven’t helped you.
How’s that for a guarantee?
I wondered if I should add this because it might scare people off, but that’s my goal, so I’m gonna be upfront and honest.
Before you decide, I have one warning. Change is hard.
Years of bad habits and bad thinking is hard to change. Being successful in your life is hard. The process is tedious, tough, and sometimes even boring. Becoming the person you want to become with the life you want is slow and challenging.
Don’t get me wrong. After going through this course and following these steps, you’ll see immediate results.
But if you don’t like to roll up your sleeves and put in the work, be disciplined and committed to changing your life, you’re welcome to turn the TV back on, have the same boring routine and bad habits, and keep hoping your life will change.
I want to be upfront about this because I don’t want you to waste your time if you believe this course is like finding a genie bottle with three magical wishes.
“If you want to have more, you have to become more. Success is not something your pursue. What you pursue will elude you; it will elude you; it can be like trying to chase butterflies. Success is something you attract by the person you become. For things to improve, you have to improve. For things to get better, you have to get better. For things to change, you have to change. When you change, everything changes for you.”
- Jim Rohn
(This is post is an excerpt from my upcoming 30 day course coming out next week.)
When most people set a new goal they think, “Ok what do I need to do to get it?” They find the steps and just follow them. It’s natural to think that and it’s not a bad question. But it’s not the first question we should ask.
The question we should ask ourselves is “Who do I need to become?”
If you’ve never realized this, then this post will change how you achieve success.
When I learned this, I figured I would try it this way. I needed to stop doing it the way I had done it before, which was just finding out what I needed to do. My past efforts at change in all areas of my life all failed since college. On the outside, life may have seemed great, but on the inside I felt hollow.
I did what most people do, which was try and change my external world. If I did that, I figured I would change as a person on the inside.
Well…that strategy never worked out for me. This time I needed to take a different approach.
It turned out Jim Rohn’s words were the important to my current personal development success.
Before my goal was to make money to become financially independent. If I could do that, life would be great. I thought all my self-confidence, unhappiness, and motivation problems would go away.
I didn’t find success though for a long time. The reason I didn’t was because of ME. I didn’t become the type of person that would achieve the goal I wanted. I just tried to do step 1, step 2, step 3, etc.
I thought knowing how to do it was enough, but it wasn’t.
If you’ve been failing at changing your life and achieving your biggest goals in life, you need a new approach.
It’s all about us
No matter what it is we want to change, we’ll never achieve lasting change until WE change. Once WE improve, everything else around us will improve. When it comes to achieving our goals, remember it is not our goals that need to be worked on; it is US.
It is important to understand that we don’t get in life what we want; we get in life what we are. We will only achieve the level of success in our life that equals our level of self-worth.
Re-read these last two sentences so you really understand it.
But it’s natural tendency to look at the results and figure out why we didn’t get what we wanted, while giving little attention to the cause.
This time when I finally decided I was tired of how my life was, I looked to change myself from the inside out first. It wasn’t about writing down a list of goals (again), putting my head down, and focus on achieving it. I had to change first. I didn’t like the type of person I had become. I was pessimistic, didn’t take responsibility for my life, hated life, jealous, and frustrated cause I felt stuck.
My level of self-worth sucked. Yes I wanted to reach these big goals I had. Yes I wanted to change my life. But I didn’t truly believe I could achieve it. I still felt success was hopeless.
I needed to change myself FIRST, so I could have success. Not the other way around.
Let me give you an example of how I used to approach my goals. I’ve tried to make money online for so long. I’ve always loved how I could do work from anywhere. I spent a lot of time online so it interested me. I’ve joined courses that taught me how to do it. For example, I tried to set up niche websites and make money from Google ads. I followed the steps, worked hard to set it up, tweaked it, and waited to see what kind of results I would get. I didn’t get much. I quit that and move to the next get rich quick opportunity.
I had the steps I need to take to make money. The reason I never found success was because I didn’t change. I didn’t have the attributes that a successful online entrepreneur would possess.
With my mindset, I also believe I didn’t attract the type of opportunities that were right for me either. My mindset was get rich quick with as little work as possible. Guess what? That’s what I attracted because that’s what I was looking for.
I was the same old Benny trying to make money online with every new opportunity I came across.
This is a letter for that person who feels stuck in life and feels hopeless. That person who doesn’t know if life will get better. That person who’s been trying to make a change for so long, but hasn’t been able to.
If that’s you, you’re not alone and I’m writing this to you.
To my friend,
I know things have been tough lately. Every day feels the same and you want to scream from the top of your lungs because it sucks. Every day you feel like you’re on a downward spiral. You just hope that your life starts to change real soon. Thoughts of suicide have crossed your mind because then you wouldn’t feel like this anymore, but just know there is much more to life than you have now.
It does get better if you want it to.
I was once you. I searched for what was the one thing I was supposed to do with my life. I was looking for a career not just a job. I thought by the time I graduated college I was supposed to know. When I turned 30 I still had no idea and wondered what was the heck wrong with me. I felt like if I knew what I wanted to do with my life everything would be better. Everything else would fall into place. I’d get married, have a nice house, have kids, and live happily ever after. Once I discovered what IT was, that’s what I’d be doing for the rest of my life. That’s how life goes, right?
I’ve learned that life doesn’t have to be about finding that one thing you’re meant to do and then do it forever. Some people do find that one thing and dedicate their whole lives because they love it. I’ve realized that isn’t for me at this moment. I am done searching for it too.
To me life is about exploring everything out there. It’s trying different things and putting more attention on certain ones. There’s so much out there that it’d be a shame to not have more than one interest. Is what I’m doing now what I’ll be doing forever? No, but I’ve found something that I enjoy at this moment. I know new opportunities will present itself and my need for a new challenge will come along. Who knows what I’ll be doing five years from now, but for now, I like what I do and have stopped searching for the meaning of life.
If you don’t know what you want to do with your life, it’s okay! The answer doesn’t come to you at a specific time. Some find it when they’re a child. Others discover it after they’ve had three children. Some go through ten different jobs before finding one that is right for them. It doesn’t matter if you’re 21, 41 or anywhere in between. It’s never too late to start going for what you want. Even if someone is 41, they’re still pretty young. The average life expectancy for an American is 78.5 years. At 41, you’ve only lived 52% of your life. That’s it. You still have 48% of your life left to do what makes you truly happy. That’s still a lot of time.
However a better life isn’t going to be found watching television, keeping up with Honey Boo-Boo or the Kardashians, mindlessly surfing the internet, or checking Facebook every five minutes. It’s not found sitting on the couch after work every night or drinking your sorrows away every weekend with your buddies. Your life won’t improve if you constantly feel sorry for yourself or rely on others to make it better for you.
Nor is a better life going to happen instantly. We’re used to wanting everything quicker. We want to reach our destination as fast as possible. We want our internet speeds to be lightening quick. We want our food fast. This obsession with speeds translates to the results we want. Marketers know that so they blast us with headlines like “Make money quick!” or “Lose weight fast and easy!”
Your life isn’t going to change by clicking your heels together. I had always hoped it would be that easy! I wanted it to be like the movies. My rise from the lowest point in my life to the top would be in under 2 hours and I’d get the girl at the end. There is no quick fix in the real world. I hate to break it to you, but you’re not going to lose all the weight you want in two weeks and keep it off forever. You’re not going to forever eliminate years of bad habits in a month. You’re not going to have $100,000 in a year if your bank account only has $100 now. You’re not going to build an online business making $1,000 a week working only four hours with no skills and no money to start.
One of my favorite photos from this year. View from Bryant park.
Last week I gave you a worksheet to help you review your year and see what went right and what went wrong. If you haven’t had a chance to do it, I highly suggest you take the time to fill it out. You’ll learn a lot about yourself.
I went ahead and filled mine out and saw areas that went well and others that didn’t go so well. I also noticed that when it came time to write down things I needed to do less of or eliminate, I wrote a couple of the same things as last year. That’s definitely not good. I wouldn’t have really noticed it unless I did the worksheet.
It’s a wake up call to really get control of that area. I don’t want to write the same exact thing one year from now!
Last year I filled out my worksheet and posted the whole thing here. This year I’ll do it a little differently and just highlight some things.
The blog has grown this year and I’m still blogging! I have not lost interest in blogging and that’s a great thing. I knew if I wanted to start a blog that matters, I’d need to find a topic I enjoy writing and I did. Two year birthday is almost coming up and I feel like I haven’t hit my peak yet with this blog.
What’s more important are the emails I get from people who get inspired by what I write. It’s great to know that I can help out in some way.
I also get a lot emails looking for help. As I wrote this year, many take that advice and do nothing with it and it can be frustrating. However, some have taken that advice, taken action, and turned it into something positive. That’s awesome.
(And if you’ve emailed me this year about help, I’d love to hear an update from you!)
Feedback from the ebook continues to be tremendous as well. Lots of people love it and it gets them to start making positive changes. One memorable feedback about it said that my ebook told her what she nearly paid $400 to a career counselor for.
I also formatted the book for Kindle because I wanted to try and get the ebook out to a different audience. Sales have been enough to buy a movie ticket, but making money wasn’t the goal of it. I made it free for five days (the max at the time) earlier this year and got about 800 downloads. Not too bad.
I went to Blog World New York in June. It was my first ever conference so I was naturally nervous but excited. Had a great time and got to meet many online faces. Eleanor went along and we had a great time sightseeing around New York during our free time.
This week I’ll be going to Las Vegas for my second conference! It’s New Media Expo, which is the new name for Blog World. Maybe I’ll hit the jackpot while I’m out there.
Then I had answered a reporter’s question on HARO about making money and emailed back and forth answering her questions. Was not sure if and when her article would run. Another app developer told me he saw my article at the bookstore. I went that day to look for it and found it!
It’s a small mention but still happy to see it in U.S. News & World Report.
One of my main goals this year was to travel. I just got married last October and since we weren’t doing the long distance thing any more (her in Taipei and me in Florida) I wanted to make sure we went on some trips.
We did a pretty good job of it! We started the year going to back to Taipei to visit her parents and so she could vote in the Taiwan election. We had to wait for her immigration documents to be approved so she could come back in after leaving. When it arrived, we booked the tickets, and left the week after. First time booking on short notice, but prices weren’t too outrageous.
Our two biggest new destinations this year were to California and Costa Rica. We both have always wanted to drive the Pacific Coast Highway. We started in Los Angeles and made our way to San Francisco with a few stops along the way. It truly is worth the drive! We then spent five days in San Francisco since Eleanor had never been there. We saw all the sights, ate some great food, and saw great friends.
One of the best things about the trip was that nine out of ten nights the hotel rooms were free. All coming from my new favorite hobby travel hacking.
This was the year I got to put together all my new travel hacking knowledge and credit card points and put it to use.
Next Februrary we’re heading off on a trip I’ve been looking forward to since July. That’s when I spent about six hours researching itineraries to book a trip I hadn’t even planned on making. I wrote a post about it so I won’t talk about it too much again. I’m still amazed it all cost 260K points and about $400 for the both of us to fly first and business class. Looking forward to going to Sydney, Hong Kong (changed from Bali) and flying in the A380 private suites on one flight! (read my post to find out how I booked this)
In October we went to the Arenal Volcano area in Costa Rica for five days because last year I bought a Groupon to take advantage of 20x bonus points for my Chase credit card. The package included white water rafting, rapelling, zip lining, hotel, and all meals. I had never done rappelling or zip lining and it was a rush if not a bit scary if I looked down. We had a great time though and happy we bought that Groupon.
Also I finally got the chance to go to Hawaii in August. I went with my mom and her husband, while Eleanor headed back to Taipei. My mom wanted to go and I was happy to go along as a travel planner. We hit Honolulu, Maui, Lanai, and the Big Island in 10 days. I now know why so many people love it there. I’m so ready to go back.
Spending money on experiences is definitely worth the memories. In five years, I won’t remember what I bought this year, but I will remember the trips we took.