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How To “SELF-DISRUPT” Yourself

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Here we go again that Tim Denning guy is making up phrases like self-disrupt.

Yup and I do it because it’s the best way to communicate with you concepts that have helped me achieve massive success.

Just like a startup, unless we disrupt ourselves, we get stuck in the same groove of life and forget to change – we forget to innovate on ourselves and question the meaning of our life. Do these three things first.

Check in with your energy levels. Are they low?
Are you following patterns?
Do you feel down?

If you get a yes to one or more of these questions, then it’s time to self-disrupt. You must put in the work to improve your current situation. It’s driven by you, for you so that you may serve others.

I had a yes to two out of the three of these questions and that’s why I went into self-disrupt mode.

Here’s how to self-disrupt yourself:

Do something with less than 48 hours notice.

“We all want to drown in a foreplay of planning rather than get to the main event and be surprised by the sudden climax”

That’s why in my self-disrupt process I did what I’ve never done before: I booked a trip to Japan with only 48-hours until take off.

Kind of crazy, especially as I don’t speak any language other than English. I had no idea where I was going or whether North Korea would even bomb my destination point as people hinted they might. I didn’t give a damn.

Self-disruption requires rapid and immediate action. You need to make a decision that’s going to teleport you a million miles away from your current reality. Come up with a rapid plan and then enable it with less than 48 hours notice.

Enable the flight mode emergency protocol.

Captain, we have an emergency. It’s time to get all hands on deck. If you’re going to go into self-disrupt mode then you better also enable flight mode on your phone. This process will not work if social media is reminding you of everything that has put you in this situation.

Become a ghost for a bit so that you can return as Bruce Almighty. People will understand. Make them understand.

Do it by yourself.

Avoid the temptation to bring others with you. This is the one time where you need to be completely alone. Self-disruption is a solo journey that needs only you. It’s a selfish endeavor in a way, but it translates to helping others at the end of the process.

I did my recent self-disrupt process by myself. It was hard considering I started a romantic relationship with a new girl the day before. None the less, it was crucial so I could return home and make her even happier.

Some things in life must be done on your own. The decisions you need to disrupt yourself have to be made by you. You can’t transfer the responsibility for these decisions to someone else.

Allow plenty of time for complete reflection.

Make sure there are blocks of time in your schedule filled with nothing. I chose to do mine in an Onsen (Japanese Hot Spring) because water helps me think. I have my most productive thinking in the shower and a hot spring has a similar effect (I’m sure there is science behind this).

For your self-disrupt process, you’ll need to contemplate every aspect of your life. This takes huge amounts of time to do properly so schedule it in. I did two full days at the hot springs and it worked perfectly for me.

Take down morsels of wisdom.

Do it on paper if you can’t avoid the temptation of your “not so smart” phone. Reflection will bring out some nuggets of gold and you’ll lose the game if you don’t record them. I found myself running in and out of the hot spring to write down these morsels of wisdom every 30 mins or so.

Ask yourself a question about your life’s work that is crazy.

What if everything I ever did online was deleted?
What if I quit my job or business tomorrow?

These are the two questions I asked myself during my recent self-disrupt. I realized I had been in the same job for a while and doing this blogging thing for a number of years. The answer to the first question was that if all my online work got deleted, I’d be okay because I still got the growth from all of the content.

The second question was a bit harder but either way, I realized the answer would be fine too. Ask yourself a crazy question and see if it’s something you should do to interrupt the pattern of what you’ve been doing. You can’t grow unless you try new things. This lack of growth is why you’re probably on this self-disrupt quest in the first place.

Redefine your passions.

Mine’s blogging. Yours might be cooking French pastries for the local bird watching community. It doesn’t matter what it is. Do you still love this passion? How does it make you feel? Are you still serving people?

“Our passions evolve and we need to check in to ensure that there isn’t a version 2.0 of our passion hiding somewhere in the dark”

For example, I’m currently doing written blogging. I redefined my passion to ensure that it didn’t need to evolve to video form.

Your passion doesn’t really change that much but the vehicle you use to define it may. A good self-disrupt ensures that you still have the right vehicle and it’s traveling on the correct freeway, at the right speed.

Interview yourself about your stored treasure trunks of value.

What I mean with this one is think about all the value you’ve created. Is that value continuing to increase or is it depleting? It’s fundamental to be investing and spending the value you’ve created wisely. The self-disrupt process involves doing a minor calculation to see where you stand.

For example, if you have no money to spend on trying a new path then you’ve saved your stored value poorly. Be brutally honest and see where you’re spending your resources. Think about how you use your time as well. This process always reveals wastage somewhere which you can reign in.

Contemplate whether you are reproducing more Jedi Knights.

You’ve become a Jedi Knight and I salute you. That’s all well and good but to self-disrupt you must think about whether you are reproducing more leaders to take on the clone armies of negativity.

Remember that our mission as human beings and the way to be fulfilled is to serve others and give everything we have. That’s how we can create abundance in our own life.

Through this exercise, it reconfirmed that the mentoring I have been doing is positive and that I need to take on about 20% more to get the full benefit. I’m only one person and I need more leaders to lead the way through self-development.

Think through your dead woodpile you’ve accumulated.

Are there people you’ve collected in your life who have become a burden on your potential? There sure have been in my life. To self-disrupt, you need to burn the dead wood with a match stick. It’s not easy and that’s why you’ve procrastinated on burning this pile of junk.

I know it sounds harsh and that’s because life is harsh. To self-disrupt, you need new inputs. Those inputs will be partly in the form of people and you can’t have 1 million friends that you all know by first and last name.

Do that one thing you’ve cheated yourself out of.

Mine is public speaking. I’ve done a bit of it but I stopped at speech number two in Toastmasters. I got busy with life and finding a woman, so I stopped doing it. As part of my self-disrupt process, I’ve committed to getting back on the horsey.

I’ve told people too (including you guys) so I won’t back down.

There’s a goal you’ve wanted and put to one side. As part of your self-disrupt process, I want you to pick up that goal and start it over. You’ll feel so good when you do and it will feel like a weight off your shoulders.

Go back to the one thing that made you who you are.

In my case, it was inspiring others through personal development and entrepreneurship. In a way, I had veered off track slightly and begun to do other closely related passions. When you self-disrupt, your aim should be to remember what has gotten you to where you are.

Once you know what that is (it should be easy) then you need to add a few new ingredients to strengthen that one thing and take it to the next level. This whole self-disrupt process is designed to take you to the next level of your life.

You must break the pattern.
Question old philosophies.
Do a clean out.

Go out there and disrupt, and innovate on yourself. You’ll thank me later.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

Motivation

How to Stay Motivated to Achieve Your Goals

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Time is the raw material of our lives. How we choose to spend it, shapes our life accordingly. So having the motivation to spend it on achieving goals is crucial to creating a life we want.

What is Motivation?

The Oxford dictionary defines motivation as the desire or willingness to do something – our drive to take action.

Scientifically, motivation has its roots in the dopamine pathways of our brains. When we do something that feels good, that’s dopamine kicking in. Our actions are driven by the desire for that reward (the good feeling).

Author Steven Pressfield describes motivation more practically. He says we hit a point where the pain of not doing something becomes greater than the pain of doing it. He sees motivation as crossing the threshold where it’s easier to take action than it is to be idle. Like choosing to feel awkward while making sales calls over feeling disappointed about a diminishing bank account.

However you choose to think about it, we all want to harness motivation to achieve our goals. 

How to Get Motivated

James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits, says that most people misunderstand motivation. They think that motivation is what gets us to take action. In reality, motivation is often the result of action, not the cause of it. Once we start a task, it’s easier to continue making progress. Like Isaac Newton’s first law: objects in motion stay in motion.

This means most of the resistance when working on your goals comes right before we start. Since motivation naturally occurs after we start, we need to focus on making starting easier.

4 Ways to Make Starting Easier

1. Schedule it

One reason people can’t get started on things is that they haven’t planned when to do it. 

When things aren’t scheduled it’s easier for them to fall by the wayside. You’ll end up hoping motivation falls in your lap or hoping that you’ll muster enough willpower to get it done.

An article in the Guardian said, “If you waste resources trying to decide when or where to work, you’ll impede your capacity to do the work.”

2. Measure something

It’s easy to feel uninspired when you don’t know if you’re making progress or what you’re even working towards. That’s why you need to make your success measurable in some way. Starting is easy when you know exactly how much closer your current actions will bring you to achieving your goal.

3. Extrinsic motivation

This type of motivation is from external factors. It can be either positive or negative. Positive motivation consists of incentives like money, prizes, and grades. Negative motivation consists of deterrents like being fired, having a fight, or being fined. Extrinsic motivation doesn’t work effectively long-term, but it can work well in the short term to get you started on something.

4. Make it public

Keep yourself accountable by telling friends and family your goals, or even sharing them on social media. This makes it easier to start something because you’re pressured to not let others down.

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” – Zig Ziglar

How to Stay Motivated Long Term

When we say we want to feel motivated to do something, we don’t want to be pushed or guilted into doing a task. We want to be so attracted and drawn to the idea that we can’t resist not taking action. That’s why it’s important to build a foundation that will set you up for consistency.

These are 5 techniques that will help you do just that:

1. Stay in your goldilocks zone

The goldilocks zone is when a task is the perfect level of difficulty—not too hard and not too easy. In this zone, we reach peak motivation and focus.

For example, let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against a 4-year-old. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become bored and not want to play. Now let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against Serena Williams. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become demotivated because the match is too challenging. 

The Goldilocks zone is in the middle of that spectrum. You want to face someone with equal skill as you. That way you have a chance to win, but you have to focus and try for it. Adjusting your workload and goals over time to stay within your Goldilocks zone keeps you engaged and motivated long-term.

2. Pursue intrinsically motivated goals

Being intrinsically motivated to achieve a goal is when you want to achieve it for what it is. There are no external factors like a reward or the risk of being fired. The drive behind your actions is coming from within. 

For most intrinsic goals we pursue them because they will enrich our lives or bring us closer to fulfillment. That makes these goals extremely sustainable long-term because they directly affect our quality of life and the things we care about.

3. Use “chunking”

Chunking is the technique of breaking down a goal into smaller short-term targets. By doing this you achieve multiple successes in your pursuit of the main goal. This triggers the brain’s reward system and drives you to keep going.

Traditionally, you may set a goal that you expect to achieve in one year. That’s a long time to commit without seeing any results along the way. By chunking your goals into monthly or quarterly targets, you get the consistent positive reinforcement you need to stay motivated long-term.

For example, instead of trying to lose 50 pounds in one year, try to lose 4 pounds every month for 12 months.

4. Be flexible

We’re all victims of circumstance. Things happen along our journey that we can either adjust to or quit because of. That’s why it’s important to have leeway and flexibility when you’re pursuing a goal. If you expect everything to go perfectly, the inevitable failure can make you disengaged and desireless. When you plan for things to go wrong, you make sure you can keep up for the long haul.

5. Pursue your goals in a sustainable fashion

Don’t lose hope when you’re not an overnight success. Overnight successes are the 1%—for the most part, they don’t exist. What we see as an “overnight success” is actually countless hours of work behind the scenes finally hitting a tipping point. Pursuing goals is a story of patience, persistence, and unseen effort.

Don’t compare yourself to others. Comparison is a recipe for a drop in self-confidence and satisfaction. It also cultivates a mindset where you think you haven’t done enough. As a result, you may raise your expectations and put more pressure on yourself.

This is pointless because things worth achieving take time. So we obviously won’t compare to the things around us when starting.

Mastering motivation is a superpower. With that ability at your fingertips, you can accomplish your goals and shape a life you want to live in.

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Motivation

What Is Dark Motivation and How Can I Use It to My Advantage?

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The Killer Morning Routine to Boost Motivation

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Why “No Pain, No Gain” Is More Powerful Than You Realize

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