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How One Can Hit Rock Bottom and Climb Back to the Top

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hitting rock bottom

On December 8, 1941 Franklin Roosevelt, one of the most revered wartime presidents bellowed that “No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.” At a time when most of America felt as though we had hit rock bottom, Roosevelt was confident enough to see a way through it.

Roosevelt was no stranger to adversity. Only 20 years before this speech, Roosevelt was diagnosed with polio. As a result, he was paralyzed from the waist down, but it offered him his most important challenge that prepared him for the Great Depression and winning the Second World War.

My rock bottom moment came from a prison cell in the Texas State Penitentiary. From this, I learned a similar lesson that Roosevelt grappled with while fighting polio: Daily, disciplined action is the only way to overcome obstacles.

Rock Bottom is a Good Thing 

It wasn’t easy to consider my prison sentence a good thing. After months of emotional turmoil and feeling sorry for myself, I realized that I could only get more successful. There was only one way to go from rock bottom: upwards.

After the mindset shift comes the requisite actions. No matter what the situation, what is the one thing you can do right now to overcome this obstacle? Don’t worry about how it all fits into the bigger picture. If you’re at rock bottom the big picture is intimidatingly large. Consider one simple thing you can do.

Start with reading. In prison that is one of the first actions one can take to improve the situation. Malcolm X did it, Nelson Mandela did it, and I did it. Books provide knowledge, the wisdom of others, and varied perspectives that build skills for the future. It wasn’t hard work, but it was a single step in the right direction.

After reading books I started to brainstorm ideas and keep a journal. Then I started to exercise and even created a fasting practice. The purpose of starting with one thing is to build momentum. Then you can add another and another and even more difficult disciplines to your daily routine as well.

“Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.” – George S. Patton

Engage Everything 

There is not much one controls from inside prison. Guards would force us to wake up at 4:30 a.m. to eat breakfast and much of the day was forced upon us. No matter how much power was taken from me, there were still things that I could control. Every option I did have was met with my full engagement.

No part of our day should be done mindlessly and certainly not when we have reached rock bottom. We should question why we do everything each day and see whether it aligns with our goals.

We engage everything because it helps us to build daily disciplines throughout all facets of our lives. From making my tiny prison bed in the morning to bodyweight exercises in the prison yard, everything was part of a bigger plan.

This doesn’t mean we can’t rest or enjoy ourselves. Even taking a moment to watch a show on Netflix might be useful. The point is to consciously acknowledge why we do so rather than blindly follow habit.

One Step At a Time 

The road to the top from your lowest point can seem insurmountable, but it isn’t. When Roosevelt was diagnosed with polio he never questioned how he was going to reach the presidency and become one of the most revered men in United States history. Instead, he focused on the small tasks he could take to overcome his illness.

As we gain momentum from the small tasks, we can incorporate more of them in our lives and tip the balance in favor of what we desire to achieve.

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” – Lao Tzu

What was your rock bottom moment and what did you do to get out of it? Leave your thoughts below!

Mansal Denton is the co-founder of Nootropedia, which is an unbiased and accessible platform to learn about nootropics and smart drugs. When he isn’t improving cognitive function in others, he enjoys a host of active hobbies. He likes jiu-jitsu when his body allows, meditation, and a healthy dose of travel.

Life

These 7 Daily Resolutions Can Change Your Life

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We all strive to be better every day. Most of us want a new day to bring something new, and we plan for it as well. Of course, the execution is debatable as procrastination is real and it becomes an overwhelming feeling at times. Also, not to forget the customary practice of making resolutions on new year’s eve!  All of us are fascinated by the thought of preparing long lists of resolves to mark the beginning of a new year. Not sure how many people are able to translate these resolutions into functional realities. (more…)

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4 Reasons Why Content Is Pivotal For Mental Health Healing

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One of the most important things for an entrepreneur’s mental health is expressing their feelings, thoughts, and emotions. This is where content creation and writing becomes pivotal. Whether you read something that resonates with you or you write a compelling blog post, the act of expressing yourself through content can help to put a smile on your face and make you feel better about things.

Most entrepreneurs don’t spend as much time taking care of their mental health as they should. Over the course of your career, you will experience a lot of ups and downs; these emotions have the potential to take a toll on your mind and body if you don’t learn to manage them properly.

Here are four reasons why expression through content is pivotal for healing, slowing yourself down, and giving yourself grace when the going gets tough.

1. Content can be a form of self-expression

When you are an entrepreneur, you frequently face feelings of insecurity, doubt, fear, apathy, and exhaustion, just to name a few. Some days it feels like no one is on your business’s side and everyone else has it all figured out. On those days some of us try to look at our website’s analytics to cheer up. 

But an even more freeing task is creating content. You create content to improve your business and reach more people’s lives. But, there is something special that happens when you write with the intention of expressing your thoughts and feelings — you open a door to yourself. 

Content is inherently personal, which means content creators open themselves up when they share their thoughts on a platform. Everything from the title of the post, the keywords they choose to include, and even the content itself helps you to understand who the author of that post truly is. And as an entrepreneur, this can be an important experience because it allows others to empathize with you.

2. Self-reflection will lift you up

As you think through what to write about and how to express yourself, the process of self reflection is a valuable step you need to go through. You’re able to reflect on the blessings you have, assess what you learned from the negative experiences, and create a plan on how to maintain the positive experiences you’ve had. 

There are a few ways that self reflection can help you with mental health healing. The act of reflecting on your experiences helps to create clarity in feelings, thoughts and emotions which will eventually lead into acceptance for what has happened or is happening currently without feeling overwhelmed by it all. This process also leads people towards finding new things they enjoy doing. Self reflection is therapeutic and can be implemented anytime you feel the need to overcome overwhelm.

“Writing in a journal each day allows you to direct your focus to what you accomplished, what you’re grateful for and what you’re committed to doing better tomorrow. Thus, you more deeply enjoy your journey each day.” – Hal Elrod

3. A sense of belonging and camaraderie

It is important to have a support network of people who will listen and understand what you are going through. When you post a blog or upload a video on YouTube, there are others who feel the same way and experience a sense of connection with you.

When you put time, attention and thoughtfulness into your writing, it is amazing when someone reads what you’ve written and comments on it thanking you or expressing how they resonate with what you’re going through. It’s hard to put into words how powerful it feels when someone who has gone through the same experience and reads your words then reaches out.  There is power in expression but miracles happen when people bond over a similar experience.

4. Library of content to share with more people

It can be very difficult to know what content to share with people as the symptoms of mental health disorders (anxiety, depression, etc.) vary from person to person. But as you accumulate more and more content, this will increase the number of articles or videos available for readers to choose from depending on their specific purpose. It also builds your personal library of resources you’re able to share to different people you encounter or engage directly with.

As chaotic and distracting social media can be, it can also be a beacon of hope with the right content. Many people share viral posts, or content that interest them. Since your content is valuable and personal, the more you share it, the more likely it is to be shared with the right audience.

You never know who is watching (reading)

Your content is speaking to someone and even though they may not be actively engaged, their experiences with your work are impacting them. Think about the last time you watched TV: did everyone in the room have something entertaining to say? 

You never know who’s watching because there’s always somebody reading your posts or viewing your videos-even if they just skim through it briefly. This is why creating content worth consuming is critical, not only to get you out of your funk, but also to serve your audience.  Be authentic and stay true to yourself; make every post count as an opportunity for connection with your best self and for potential readers to bond with you.

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5 Ways To Invest In Yourself and Change Your Life

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Warren Buffett once said, the best investment you can ever make is in yourself. Time and money spent on bettering yourself are never considered a waste. Whether it’s through learning how to make money online, exploring new ways to increase your financial security, or watching TED talks to expand your knowledge. Do not be stingy when it comes to self-improvement because it will definitely pay off in the end. 

Need some ideas to get started on your journey to becoming a better you? Here are 5 ways to invest in yourself and transform your life. 

1. Change Your Self-Concept

Having a negative self-concept can have a tremendous impact on your life. Limiting beliefs and self-doubt are some of the main reasons why many never achieve or attempt to pursue their dreams. Take a moment and think about all the negative thoughts you have repeated to yourself throughout your life. How have these thoughts impacted the way you live life? From now on, create a new self-image by turning these negative thoughts into positive ones and appreciate your good qualities. 

2. Sign Up For An Online Course

If you’ve been wanting to brush up on your Photoshop skills or learn how to code professionally, this is the perfect time to get started. As long as you have a stable internet connection, you can access an endless amount of valuable information online. For example, sites like Coursera and Youtube are both awesome resources for online learning. With a few search strings and clicks, you can find all the information you need. 

“Investing in yourself is the best investment you can make. It will not only improve your life, it will improve the lives of all those around you.” – Robin Sharma

3. Learn From a Mentor

No matter which stage of your life you are currently in, working with a mentor can help you stay motivated and focused on your goals. Not only can they guide you in the right direction, but also transform your vision, provide you with new insights, and connect you with amazing resources. If you’re feeling unmotivated or unsure about what you want to do in life, consider finding a mentor to help you navigate this process. 

4. Start A Side Hustle

The salary from a 9-5 job would rarely allow you to reach your maximum income potential. Why not achieve financial success while pursuing your passion by starting a side hustle? Whether it’s through starting an ecommerce business, freelance writing on the side, or starting a Youtube channel. There are infinite numbers of ways to make money, and there is bound to be one out there that fits your passion and skills. 

5. Nourish Your Body

As many may say, “health is the new wealth”. Without a healthy and functioning body, living a fulfilling and comfortable life becomes difficult. To take care of your body and prioritize your wellbeing, start with small habits such as eating healthier foods and exercising regularly. Bike or walk to work instead of taking the car, and opt for a healthy protein bowl instead of greasy burgers at Burger King. With time, these small habits can make an incredible difference.

Check out the infographic below, to see more ways you can invest in yourself:

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Life

How to Turn Inward and Detox Your Mind

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When we are overwhelmed by confusion, our psyche tries to establish certainty to alleviate our discomfort. This is usually accomplished by mentally imagining and acting out a plot. Unfortunately, much of the time, we mentally visualize pessimistic (or worst-case scenario) scenarios to provide certainty. (more…)

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