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Why You Need to Increase Your Mental Bandwidth Immediately

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If you’d like to learn how to increase your mental toughness so you can face your fears and get out of your comfort zone, sign up for the free 90-Day Master Class hosted by the founder of Addicted2Success.com, Joel Brown.


The bus driver told me in broken english to sit back down because the police were coming for me. This had to be a misunderstanding. I was on a night bus in Portugal when I noticed my ipad missing from my seat. Maybe it fell down the side and slid to the back of the bus? While the bus was moving, I got up and looked chair to chair hoping to locate it before everyone got off at the final stop.

Long story short, I never got it back, someone had clearly stolen it, and the police decided not to charge me for disobeying the drivers orders and standing up while the bus was moving. I was frantic. I just lost my ipad with all my vacation plans on it, pictures of my late father and many business documents. It was my fault. I’d lost concentration momentarily on the bus and someone took advantage of that. I didn’t know how to react. I hadn’t and don’t make careless mistakes (or so I thought). So my reaction was pretty bad.

My father passed away unexpectedly mere weeks before, it was midnight in a town I’d never been in, and this inconvenience was not scheduled within my 6 month trip around the world. So I broke down crying, as a grown man at a bus stop. Not for the ipad, but for the slap in the face life had given me. 

What this lesson taught me is that we have it too good. I had it too good for too long, and as such, my mental bandwidth had shrunk.

The Grind

Our day to day is filled with activities and emotions that are quite confined. That’s why we call it the grind, monotony, or the rat race. Up to 95% of what we do is habit based, meaning we tend to repeat the same stuff over and over, even if (like me) it’s in a different place.

What does your day look like? You get up, make breakfast, go to work, come home, make dinner, and go to sleep. Your day might have its own challenges with a bus running late, or your boss busting your balls, but you get to go to sleep safe at home at the end of it.

Everything that occurs from waking up to sleeping is pretty much standard, bland almost. How much variability can there truly be? Your life exists within a certain bandwidth of emotions and mental states.

That’s why the theft caught me so off guard. It had been too long since I had been shaken up and exposed to the realities of the world. There are people out there more desperate than me who will steal to get ahead. This is why expanding your mental bandwidth is so important.

“If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I’m about to do today?” – Steve Jobs 

The Range

Your every day will include many instances of contact with people. Within that exist certain societal structures that allow you to get things done. There are policies and protocols at work, which ensure that most people are polite and professional in the workplace. No-one wants to get sued or fired. We stay within that range.

We are mostly on autopilot in developed countries, where taxis run by a legitimate meter, and public transport is mostly safe and relatively on time. It’s not a hassle to get around logistically, and it’s rare that you’ll be robbed or ripped off. Supermarkets have everything we could possibly ever need and are sometimes open 24 hours. Many even deliver to your door.

In the first world, our challenges are more benign. In terms of Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs, we’re at the top. Pushing for the stuff that gives us fulfillment. When travelling through less developed countries, you see the opposite.

People do things just to survive. Kids leave school at 14 to drive covered rickshaws around angkor wat, so that you can get from temple to temple without getting too sunburnt. As such, it’s easy for us to become complacent, float through life, and not have to think too hard about fending for ourselves.

Our emotional responses to things only fit between a certain range, and it takes something pretty drastic to shake that up. Do you remember in school when a bully decided you were his victim that day, week, month, or year? When’s the last time you were harshly rejected for a job you really wanted or for a love interest you really liked? It’s these types of emotions we need to get back, but in a positive way.

The Change

Losing my ipad wasn’t so much about being stolen from, but more so around my mental state being radically altered. It was the realisation that more of life existed outside my normal bandwidth. It had been challenged and changed, with a clear before and after.

It all comes down to personal resilience. How do we deal with things outside our normal range? We need to seek out challenges that put us in similar situations. You’re familiar with your job and competent at your hobbies. Try and think of the last time you tried something new, that really put you out of your comfort zone, when you started from the bottom.

I joined a kickboxing gym, and despite working up to it over weeks, sparring with an experienced fighter scared me to death. But you know what, I’m still here.

No-one can predict losing a loved one, being stolen from, losing your job, getting in a fight, crashing your car or any one of the many events that can shake up our life. So, in the meantime, we need to look at what and how we are truly challenged, and only then can we expand our bandwidth. This will help us grow and prepare us for when the unfortunate does come our way.

“Most everything that you want is just outside your comfort zone.” – Jack Canfield

Conclusion: 

Do an honest audit of your life. Write down 3 activities that scare you. Then go do them. This video shows how much benefit Jesse Itzer got from motivational figure David Goggins when they spent a month together.

What Jesse gained was being pushed outside of his comfort zone. While we can’t all get a navy seal to live with us and coach us for a month, we can be our own coach.

For your 5 activities, utilise SMART planning to ensure that you can achieve your goals. Think of it like a project and break it down into manageable chunks you can work towards on a daily or weekly basis. If it’s to go skydiving solo, get in contact with sky diving schools, commit and buy your first 3 lessons. That way, the money commitment will keep you incentivised to attend your sessions.

Book them in your diary and inform some friends or family, so that there’s a level of accountability. Repeat for your other activities. Eventually life will test your mental bandwidth or you can choose to tackle it head on. Don’t be the adult crying at a bus stop over an ipad. Grow your bandwidth on your own terms.

What’s the last thing you did that took you out of your comfort zone? Share your experience below!

Matt McKee is a Pharmacology graduate, Med School dropout and a qualified Trainer with extensive experience influencing people for a living. Now using my skills for good. My purpose is to help you become the best version of yourself.  Check out my tips here and connect with me to maximize your potential.

Success Advice

Here’s Why People Get Mad When You Achieve Success

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There’s no denying that success comes in different “shapes and sizes”. You could be successful financially, romantically, or health-wise. And if you’ve always found yourself to be advantaged in some way, then you must already know that some people feel a little envy towards you, (and may want to take what you have), but you can understand where they are coming from. However, what is perplexing is when the people you’ve always known suddenly become jealous when you begin to win or shine more. And when you think about it, the logical conclusion would be “they should be happy for me now that I’ve achieved success”, but this is not the case at all times and that’s the harsh reality of life. (more…)

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5 Hacks to Beat Fear and Become More Successful and Abundant

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Fear and success don’t usually go together. When we look at who we believe to be successful, they look so confident and sometimes less like ourselves. When we begin this comparison, we tend to go inward and feel self-doubt. This is often when the fear sets in. We do this in so many areas of our lives on an everyday basis. (more…)

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5 Ways to Change Your Habits and Reach Your Goals

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American philosopher Will Durant once said, “We are what we repeatedly do.” Therefore, being excellent is not a single act, but a habit. Have you ever questioned how you choose to spend those precious 24 hours we receive every day? I bet you have. Most of us flirt with the idea of becoming more productive, satisfied, and successful in our daily activities. (more…)

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How Sports Can Greatly Improve Productivity in a Business

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We have all known for a long time how valuable sport is for all spheres of our life. By leading an active lifestyle, you can improve your appearance and health, normalize your emotional state, and reduce stress. Among other things, sport can significantly influence your productivity at work and in business. 

How Sport Helps Well-Known CEOs to Succeed In Business

There are many examples of outstanding businessmen who do sports without any excuses and even with great pleasure. Exercising seems to support their passion for life and innovation, energize them, and move on. Let’s look at the prominent business representatives and their sports hobbies.

Tim Cook, Apple CEO, prefers working out in the gym every day for an hour at 5 a.m. The head of Apple used to go in for rock climbing and still goes hiking. Cycling also remains one of his most important sports. In addition to playing sports, Cook goes to baseball and rugby matches. Also, he makes sure that he makes at least 8,000 steps per day. Tim believes that doing sports helps to avoid stress.

Mark Zuckerberg, the creator of Facebook, goes in for sports at least three times a week. Most often he runs, sometimes even with his dog. Zuckerberg always likes to try new sports: surfing, foiling, fencing, rowing, or spear throwing. An interesting fact: in 2016, he challenged himself to run 365 miles during the year. He completed that goal in the middle of the summer. The Facebook founder believes that exercising allows him to stay more energetic. While energy is needed to complete any task at work, sports have become an integral part of his life. Mark claims that he frequently catches insights and new ideas during sports activities.

Nick Woodman, GoPro founder, with his love of surfing, was inspired to create one of the most famous companies in the world today. At first, he used the already existing tools to film his surfing sessions, which led to the idea of creating a professional camera for active sports. Besides surfing, he is known for his love for snowboarding and race car driving. He is confident that people deserve to do exactly what they love in their lives. This story, like no other, demonstrates the close connection between sports and business.

Larry Ellison, Oracle founder, is passionate about sailing. He often participates in risky sailing regattas. People say that Ellison was striving to get rich just in order to get himself a fashionable and expensive yacht. Now, he even owns his sailing team Oracle Team USA. In addition, he is famous for his love for planes and golf. Needless to say, Larry has assets in various sports clubs. Ellison asserts that ​​sports and competition keep people on their toes and give them the motivation to take new initiatives.

Do Sports and Business Have Something in Common? 

Evidently, sports and business have many things in common:

  • A unique sense of teamwork. Both in work and sports, you need to work in conjunction with all participants in the process. Sport, like nothing else, develops this ability to the maximum. If you want to win, play, taking into account the opinion of everyone in the team.
  • Ability to go all the way. In no sport can you reach the finish line by stopping halfway. It seems that exactly the same thing happens at work.
  • Skill to make every effort. Whatever you do, there is always someone who does it better. In such conditions, there are no options but to do your best to achieve the goal.
  • Competitiveness. What, if not sport, develops the value of the competitive spirit? The ability to accept a challenge from someone who is better than you is a skill that drives you so much in business.
  • Self-discipline. All athletes comply with the daily regimen, follow several specific rules every day to stay in good shape. Do the world’s top businessmen not follow the same principles?
  • Endurance. It so happens that you can lose 10 times in a row. And only the strongest and most prepared person will go to fight for the eleventh time. Such resilience is a must in both business and sports if you want to achieve something.

Tips on How to Sports Can Help You Succeed in Business

Let’s take lessons from these successful people and bring sports to our lives. There are a few life hacks that will make your  way to success smoother:

  • Try out different activities to figure out which one suits you the most. Sometimes you choose this very sport that, instead of bringing pleasure, demotivates you. There are a huge number of different workouts, from an elementary run on your own to squash in pair or team volleyball. Don’t give up if you didn’t find your passion on the first try.
  • Start small. If you are not planning to become the best athlete in the world, do not overload yourself at the very beginning. There are tons of workouts that last 7 minutes, for example. If you have demotivating fatigue after exercising, just slow down. Start small, and step by step it will become easier and more enjoyable for you.
  • Find like-minded people who motivate and challenge you. When a competitive spirit emerges, playing sports becomes even more exciting. You can go in for group sports and find friends. Or just chat in apps with those who are going towards the same goal. If you have a friend who also lacks the motivation to start, it’s a nice idea to start together!
  • Introduce sports into your daily routine. For example, you can create a ritual to do a short yoga workout between waking up and boiling the kettle.
  • Create a plan for the week ahead. Once you’ve made a plan for your workouts for a specific time, it is psychologically much easier to tune in to training. But don’t berate yourself too much if you missed a workout, catch up tomorrow.
  • Praise yourself. When you succeed, don’t underestimate it. Great efforts should be rewarded not only with a pumped-up body and a clear mind but also with self-love.

Now, no one can have the slightest doubt that sport helps you stay physically active and healthy, improve your emotional state, and excel in business. Start today and be successful forever!

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