How to get your life back on track

For a little now I’ve been “stuck” in my life. Things were great, then I got too comfortable, then things started to stagnate.

It happens to everyone.
It can be caused by things being too good, or too bad.

And lately I’ve been trying desperately to get OUT of it and back to my PRODUCTIVE life.

Well I did a lot of soul-searching kind of stuff and talked to a lot of people….and that helped to an extent, but dammit….there’s nothing like taking some good-old ACTION STEPS to get out of it!!

SO here’s my Guide to getting your life back on track:

I feel like if you do some/all of these, things will slowly start to spin around for you again.  The underlying concept is getting momentum.  I’ll try to back up each example with my own actions:

 

HEALTH WEALTH LOVE (3 minutes)

Quickly evaluate three main areas of your life and rank them from 1-to-5.
Health: Your health situation.
Wealth: Your money situation.
Love: Your relationships with family/friends/spouse/partner.  

Before I was:
Health: 3
Wealth: 5
Love: 5

Then it became:
Health: 5  (+2)
Wealth: 2  (-3)
Love: 2  (-3)

So I can obviously see where I need to concentrate on.

Try doing this for your own life, and it’ll shine some clear idea on where you can get started improving.  Here’s more about this concept.

 

 

Your Top 5 Influences (10 minutes)
This is one of my favorite concepts:

“You are the composite average of the top 5 people you hang around.”

This doesn’t mean your favorite people to hang around, it means the people you LITERALLY SPEND THE MOST NUMBER OF MINUTES WITH PER DAY.

So if you live at home with your parents, just by the nature of that arrangement, your parents will be some of your top influencers. Or if you have a husband/wife….they will be one of your top influencers.

So take a look around, and write out who your top 5 influences are (aka who you are physically around the most):
1.) __________________
2.) __________________
3.) __________________
4.) __________________
5.) __________________

Now…..
Are those people the kind of people you wanna become?
Are they as successful as you wanna be??
Do they have the kind of attitudes about life that you want???
Are they going to places you want to go????

If you’re hanging around a bunch of losers with crappy attitudes…..it’s likely you’ll pick up those traits too.

If you’re hanging around a bunch of positive people with great attitudes and ideas……it’s likely you’ll pick up those traits too.

So check your list to see who is negatively influencing you, and try to cut down the time you spend with those people so they don’t take you down also.

I dare you to cut out at least ONE of those people. DARE YA!!
Here’s more about your top 5 influences.

 

 

To-Do Lists (5 minutes)

You KNOW I’m obsessive about to-do lists.  But I’ve been a little unfaithful to my dearest to-do lists lately, in that I haven’t been completing them everyday.

I have since returned, and the productivity has begun.  Here is my to-do list when I started writing this blog post:
Life back on track To Do List

I actually took some of my OWN advice to get back on track:

Watch that to-do list video for some inspiration on how to make your own to-do lists.
You can find out more about to-do lists here.

 

 

Stack your calendar (10 minutes)

Simply GOING to events that interest you will help get some momentum going.  I started to skip a lot of tech events and conferences….and this bad, because those usually motivate the hell out of me (meeting other people doing cool things always makes you work harder).

I still use a physical calendar to track all my stuff like this:
Life back on track - Calendar

I went to my bookmark bar of “Austin Events” and started adding things recently.

All good spots to start: Meetup.com, Yelp.com, Craigslist Community.

Wanna go to tech meet ups? Then search “tech meet ups Austin” (or wherever you are).
Nearby universities generally hold a lot of cool events.
I have a whole bookmarks tab of websites/museums/charities etc that hold cool events.

 

 

Re-connect with friends by giving to them

Next thing I did was throw a small party (not a typical party though). I only invited 1 or 2 other people.

It was called the “Early Morning Blog Post Writing Party From Nev’s Pool Party!”

The rules were:

  • We start at 8am
  • We go to the shallow end of the pool at my apt
  • You bring your laptop
  • You write a blog post from inside the pool

I wanted it to be like “having your own writing island.”

So me and Billy (Forever Jobless) hit up the pool at my apartment at 8am with laptops for a “Blog Post Writing Party”! It may have been the nerdiest party in the WORLD at that moment!

Blog Post Writing Party

Billy Forever Jobless Blog Post Writing Pool

I’m literally writing this post from the pool right now!!

It was actually damn fun, and Billy even said:

“I got more writing done today than I have in 4 months!”

If there’s any Austinite’s out there interested in joining me for this every once in a while, lemme know.

 

 

Changing your living space

I think changing your living space often signifies changing your life in some way.

I bought a super-kick-ass “Float” desk from HumanScale a few weeks ago, and it just arrived.

It’s awesome in several ways:
1.) It can quickly adjust to any height with a small lever.
2.) The work area is clean, all-white, and HUUUGGEE.
3.) The engineering behind it is awesome (it uses a counter-balance system that uses the weight of the stuff on your desk to move it up and down)….yet it’s all hidden inside the desk and you’d never know it. Basically it’s like a desk Apple would make!

It’s super-neat to go from standing to sitting in less than 2 seconds with this desk.  Sometimes I prefer moving around and standing, but sometimes sitting down is necessary and more comfortable.

Screw all those “Standing” desks…..this one can do both!

life-on-track-desk

The large size of the desk isn’t really conveyed in that picture.  I’ve had it for a while now….and I can honestly say it’s been an awesome investment and really helped with productivity!

Also in the “changing your living space” department…….I needed some art for the loonngggest time but couldn’t find any. So I sat down and ordered two of the BIGGEST pieces of art from Ikea I could possibly find.  I stuck one of them over a boring white wall above my bed:

bed

It doesn’t look that big in the picture, but that picture is HUGE.  It’s like 6.5 feet across.

I’m also making sure I make the bed every morning.  I learned this trick from Gary Halbert:

Make your bed as SOON as you wake up in the morning, and you will already start the day off with a small win!

“Messy bed, Messy head.”

 

 

WELL…..
Those are a few things I’m doing to “get my mojo back”.  Most of these things are more to mentally-psych myself into being productive once again.

Perhaps if you’re going through a period of time where you need this, you could take some inspiration from any of these tips.

 

Sincerely,
Neville Medhora

P.S. From my last Superpowers post, these people won NevBox’s: Dave, Dave H, Allen T, Jacqueline P, Robin W.
Thanks Sithana for helping me decide. I’m sending YOU one too for that!

 

P.P.S. Comment on this post with actions that helped your snap out of a sluggish phase in your life….I’ll physically ship 5 commenters NevBox’s (worth $97 each…and you can’t even buy them if you wanted to). Not only that, but your comment might give some poor soul trying to “figure things out” an idea that could change their life!

 

P.P.P.S. Please share/send this to anyone who could use a little “jump-start” in their life.

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    Blog posted on: September 28, 2013

    117 comments on “How to get your life back on track

        1. Shannon

          I read a personal development book FIRST THING every morning for 15 minutes (I love “The Magic of Thinking BIG” by Swartz). I do not allow myself to check email or read the news since it is so negative. By reading first thing, it helps me get in a positive, empowered frame of mind. Also having a folder of sites that motivate me (including YOURS!) helps, too.

          Oh, and I make my bed as soon as I roll out of it, too. So depressing to come home in the afternoon to a messy bed!

          Reply
          1. BedPro

            You should not make your bed as soon as you roll out of it. Namely, you must let bed clothes get some air first. It is recommended to keep bed open 15-30 minutes before making it :)

    1. Zoran Vitez

      - Autosuggestion/autohypnosis that I learned in hypnotherapy and that’s really powerful to work on motivation
      - Get a work-out habit back on track – especially hard in colder days but worth the “sacrifice” to get energy levels up
      - Get a good early morning routine going – excercise a bit (push-ups), good breakfast, read news / that ebook you wanted to read, then work as soon as possible

      Reply
      1. Neville

        Nice Zoran,
        I’ve started doing the breakfast thing, and I have a trainer I see twice a week….so health is pretty much where I want it to be.

        I need to keep reading in the morning like you…I made that a habit for a month, and it was GREAT because your mind is so clear early

        Reply
    2. Skye

      - cold shower to shock your body, clear your mind and wake up
      - regular exercise schedule. exercise is huge to me for sustaining energy throughout the day
      - surround yourself with awesome people doing awesome things. if you don’t know any go find some like nev said with events
      - work somewhere new. working from home can get boring and unmotivational. find cool spots to work like nev did. a couple weeks ago i worked at the airport while watching planes arrive.
      - read good books every day. this is akin to surrounding yourself with awesome people. reading about amazing people will help to motivate you
      - listen to podcasts while you’re doing mindless things: showering, exercising, commuting, cooking, getting dressed, etc. So many amazing podcasts out there.
      - proper diet. if you’re eating crappy you won’t have the energy to be motivated.
      - start journaling!! look up the 5 minute journal. awesome product. recently featured by tim ferriss.
      - Sleep. Make sure you’re getting ample about of rest and sticking to a regular sleep schedule
      - When you want to get things done, eliminate all distractions: phone, skype, iMessage, Facebook, email, your significant other, the internet if you don’t need it, etc.

      Hope that helps.

      Keep rocking Nev.

      Skye

      Reply
      1. Neville

        Damn, you gotta lot!

        I’m learning to ignore the web more and more….but still kinda suck and get distracted when working.

        Have you ever noticed how much work you can get done when WIFI is down?? :-)

        Thanks for the list Skye!

        Reply
      2. Wayne Kille

        That’s an awesome list, thank you :-) I’m definitely going to look at implementing at least one or two of those ideas

        Reply
    3. Alex

      I started implementing the “Don’t Break The Chain” method by Jerry Seinfeld. In a nutshell, I get a calendar like the one pictured above and I write my goal on the top of it (example: floss every day). I then tape it to my bathroom mirror with a permanent marker and mark an X every time I do it. At this point, I’ve got a streak of 60 days going and it builds on itself.

      Reply
    4. Mariam

      For me….
      - 10-15 min meditation
      - Read in bed for at least 30 mins
      - Make a quart of fresh juice

      adding to my list making my bed upon rising :-)

      What I need to improve on…
      -I would like to not check social media once I wake up.
      -Journal-ing more.

      Reply
      1. Neville

        How does the meditation help?

        I still can’t do more than 5 minutes. I mean, I CAN, but I don’t see any clear benefit.

        Reading in bed is awesome, and I’ve also picked up the juice habit again (well, smoothies to be precise).

        Thanks Mariam!

        Reply
        1. Mariam

          Any amount of time is good. What I get from meditation is clarity. I feel I can focus more on my tasks when I do meditation and get more done.
          It adds an emotional boost, whatever negativity, doubt I may have at that moment disappears after meditation.

          Reply
    5. Gary

      Hey Neville, Great post and so timely!! I too have been having the same feeling. I’m going to try your 5 influencer list challenge.

      As for me I have been doing two main things to get back on track.
      1. Meditation I recently read an article that discussed the benefits of meditation, so I have been trying to meditate a few minutes a day and after a month I am starting to see the benefits. My head is more clear and I am able to focus more.

      2. Saying no: I realized that I am putting too many things on my plate from projects to events, and it is keeping me from spending time on the things that are the most important and have the biggest impact. Despite being effective it is the hardest for me. Damn FOMO!

      Reply
      1. Neville

        The Top 5 Influencer thing is massive.

        Whenever I hang around my friends with big companies and huge aspirations, it pushes me SO MUCH BEYOND what I’m normally doing.

        1.) Still doing the meditation? I do maybe 2 minutes, but that seems to be enough for me.

        2.) Good for you! Use this Earl Nightingale quote:
        “Imagine a ship going from harbor to harbor. If you ask the captain at any point, he’ll tell you EXACTLY where the ship is going. And then after re-stocking in port for a while and resting, he’ll head to the next destination.

        That ship can reach an extraordinary amount of locations because it goes one place at a time.”

        Reply
    6. Venita

      The number 1 thing I do is the opposite of what I’m currently doing. So when someone asks me to hang out on short notice, I now just go! Don’t think about it. That is an instant shock to my current system of planning everything to bits. Just go, just say it (whatever you’re thinking). I do that for a solid two days and it works better than coffee to get you out of your slump!

      Reply
    7. Ramon

      I started driving to work with the radio off. For starters, the news are always a “if it bleeds, it leads” format so avoiding depressing news first thing in the morning helps to stay upbeat. As a plus, you are able to focus on your thoughts without having stimuli around you.

      Reply
      1. Neville

        NO!!!!!

        You should try listening to podcasts or interesting stuff on NPR!

        My favorite thing to listen to is the TED Radio Hour or Snap Judgement using the NPR app on my phone (I hook it up to my radio)

        Reply
    8. dk

      Big thanks for that post (and all those comments so far). There’s still a lot to optimize in my book, but here are the things I consider quite helpful: freshly made juice every morning (I could vary my recipe more, though), earning me my daily surfing time by converting the amount of actual working time done so far – btw, using a time tracker (Grindstone) – (over weeks/month the ratio can be changed slowly in favour of working time), always tidying up the desk in the evening (o, huge difference!).

      Reply
    9. Jason

      Great post! I really dig the Human Scale desk.
      I’ve gotten my life flowing in the right direction lately by following James Altucher’s Daily Practice. Google that and you’ll find a post from him on it super fast. Great guide that will help you build momentum.

      Reply
    10. Jamie

      This post rocks. Thanks Neville!

      I personally set an alarm on my iPhone every day at 1pm. It’s the midpoint of the day and a great time to look at my to-do list and see what I have done so far. If I see I haven’t done my priorities of the day, I shift gears and start doing them. This helps get important things done instead of just staying busy all day with the trivial things.

      Reply
    11. Anthony Navarro

      I’ve heard about the make your bed tip years ago. I used to do it all the time, and quit for whatever reason. Now I’m back at it and completely back to being sparky and productive when I wake.

      Also, it feels amazing when you go to sleep, because all you have to do is just hop in the bed and tuck in. No need to scramble the sheets to get coverage.

      Here’s a cool hack for making the bed:
      When waking, before getting out of the bed, tuck the covers/sheets back over the the bed while your laying. Then sneakily get out of bed without messing up the covers. You’ve won half way! Then when you’re out, simply adjust the sheets to make it perfect.

      Done and Done!

      Great post Nev! this is just what I needed to get me back in the groove.

      Reply
      1. Neville

        BAHAHAHAH!!!

        I do that a lot actually….thought I was the only brilliant one who figured this out!!

        I’ve got a king-size bed, so pulling the covers over really helps get everything “pre-organized” before doing the final touches on the bed making.

        Awesome Anthony :)

        Reply
    12. Dividendium

      “So check your list to see who is negatively influencing you, and try to cut down the time you spend with those people so they don’t take you down also.”

      You (Nev) used to read a lot of biographies. That’s an interesting way to change your Top 5 influencers to people that you know did amazing things.

      I’ve also taken recently to re-reading books like these to increase the amount of time I spend with those people.

      “If there’s any Austinite’s out there interested in joining me for this every once in a while, lemme know.”

      Count me in.

      One that I haven’t seen mentioned here yet for getting your MOJO back is making big long term plans. 10 years or more. “Strangest Secret” style. Dream BIG. Exercise your imagination, and see what you can come up with.

      I also took this 10 year goal, and wrote a description/story of my “perfect life”, and recorded myself reading it. I put that on my phone, and now it’s what I listen to instead of music or news when driving, or waiting any where. I had a great time getting my teeth cleaned the other day with this recording playing on repeat. :)

      Reply
      1. Zoran Vitez

        Good one :) What’s really important is the fact that you clearly define your goal. Having a vague picture of what you’d like is almost useless as having none..

        Reply
        1. Dividendium

          Definitely agree…clearly defined. And if you can write it up in a story with details, you’re there.

          One other one I forgot to mention for getting MOJO back or getting out of a rut…wake up REALLY early. Like 3:30-4:30am. The quiet and knowing that no one else around is awake gives me excellent productivity.

          Reply
      2. Neville

        NICE man!

        With all the help you’ve given me over the years, you’re def invited if I have another one :)

        I looked back on my perfect life at 30 years old….and I pretty much nailed it! Some things aren’t where I’d like them, but pretty damn close.

        I might need to try long term goals again……I’ll give it a try tonight!

        Reply
    13. Peter Tur

      Great post. Very helpful stull that I’ll be implementing immediately. Thanks Nev.

      One tip that I use is something I refer to as the “positive 180.” I forget exactly where it first came from but I’ve been doing it for years when I get into a rut. Basically all you do is focus on identifying the moment when you first begin entering a negative thought pattern and quickly reversing it with something positive. For example, I could be going through my morning routine, making coffee, when suddenly I spill it all over the counter top. My immediate reaction is “shit, now I’ll be late” and I could get into a negative mindset. I try and catch myself immediately and rather say “nice, the perfect opportunity to get this kitchen clean.”

      It is a small change but if you can do it consistently you find that it becomes hard to get you down.

      Reply
    14. robert

      Great post, as always!

      A couple things that have worked for me are:

      * going to bed an hour earlier and getting up an hour earlier.
      * eliminating the reading of unproductive blogs/Internet surfing and Facebook.
      * turning off the TV while working, less evening news and no news on the way in to work. More techno music throughout the day! ;)

      Thanks again for what you do….

      Reply
      1. Neville

        I’m slowly eliminating a lot of Facebook time. It’s mostly useless (although SOMETIMES useful).

        TV is horrible unless the times are set. Sucks ya in everytime!

        Reply
    15. sandy

      I don’t know why this works but when your hair is looking scraggly there is no better way to start fresh but to get a super sharp hair cut. Go ahead invest some money and find the best barber or hair stylist in town.

      No matter how you dress that sharp cut will get everyone asking you where you got the cut? giving you compliments? and making you feel uber cool.

      Then you can get some work done in style.

      Reply
    16. Ronald Canepa

      I usually keep this as a start page in my browser and printed out physics and posted somewhere.

      Do it every day.
      Want to become a concert pianist? Do it every day.
      Want to become a writer? Do it every day.
      Want to become depressed? Think of depressing thoughts every day.
      Want to become an optimist? Think of cheerful thoughts every day.
      Do it every day.
      –Robert Anton Wilson

      Reply
    17. Benjamin

      Hey Nev great post, your first tip, also called Wheel of life, can be a powerful assessment tool to identify what’s wrong with yourself !

      ## Here is a little powerful trick :

      There is one mind hack you can use to shift from apathy, negative emotions, unproductive feeling TO high energy, motivated and happy IN 2 minutes.

      Most of people think that facial expressions and body language only reflect your current emotions and feeling.

      But, in 1902, a psychologist named William James found out that body language and facial expression can be used in the reverse way.
      You can create an emotion, by adopting the body language and facial expression of your desired emotion/feeling.

      Try to adopt the BL of someone depressed. Bend your back, adopt an expressionless face, move slowly… (or mimic this : http://bit.ly/1fTuf3F )
      Hold it at least 2 mins. How do you feel ?

      Now adopt the BL of someone full of energy and happiness. Smile (with the eyes). Get your back straight. Torso forward. (True smile http://bit.ly/1999TSN)
      Hold it at least 2 mins. How do you feel ?

      ## The steps to use it :

      1 – Be aware of the negative emotions you’re currently experiencing.
      2 – Notice your associated body language and facial expression
      3 – Choose the emotion you want to experience instead
      4 – Adopt the associated BL and facial expression and consciously hold it at least 2 minutes
      5 – Feel awesome !

      More on this : http://bit.ly/VjrPRu

      Hope you’ll try it :)

      PS : Sorry for my english, I’m French !

      Reply
    18. Alex

      One of my goals is to write more. It is kinda hard because I’m in medical school, and that is a total time sink. A lot of times, when I come home from 8+ hours of slog, I don’t feel like writing. I just wanna unwind and slack around.

      So this is what I do to make sure I write at least 1 hour a day.

      The night before, I have a notepad that is totally blank, except for the title of what I am going to write about.

      Then when I get up in the morning, I head over to my desk. I look at the time. I look at the title and won’t have to waste precious brain power coming up with a topic. And then I begin writing. The writing could suck, or it could be awesome. It doesn’t matter. The most important thing I do is keep on writing.

      I kinda based it on what Eugene Schwartz did. And it works!

      But there are days when I lose motivation … that maybe I should resign from developing a business and resign from writing and just become a run-of-the-mill doctor (which I am not too passionate about). But then I would force myself to take a walk around the neighborhood and meditate. It’s important for me to get quiet time to dive deeply into my thoughts.

      I would ask myself, “Could I really trade away years of happiness for security? On my deathbed, would I regret the decision to play it safe?” And the answer would always be:

      Yes, I would regret living a safe, but unhappy life.

      So then I would get fired up and continue on my crazy plan to build a business and to become a fantastic writer … and somehow merge that with medicine. Even if I fail, I would have no regrets.

      That is how I motivate myself to continuously move forward.

      Reply
      1. Neville

        nice man!

        Being Indian….obv I have A TON of doctor friends who went through the grueling process.

        It’s tough!!

        I actually always have the article in mind the day before I write it. Sometimes it just HITS ME, but most of the time I know a day in advance, then write it the next day. WAY easier to write that way.

        Keep up the writing, and it’ll become second nature. Even if you don’t end up making a career of it, I know it will help you :)

        Reply
    19. Alicia Bostic

      Nev,

      Great post. I needed this today. I’m in the middle of some tough life transitions, and it’s damn near impossible to stay focused and productive. It’s really helpful to have someone like you sharing openly what has worked for you in a completely practical way. It also doesn’t hurt that you’re super sexy. If only I lived in Austin…private pool party…nevermind.
      To do lists are vital. Sometimes I struggle with where to start, but the important thing is to keep moving forward. Making a mistake is ok. Doing nothing is NOT ok.
      Thanks for another great post. And thanks for my NevBox! *pickme!*

      Reply
      1. Neville

        So you’re in the same boat then! I’d suggest doing a few of the things recommended here. They seem simple, but they’re supposed to be.

        Just gaining that first turn of the wheel to get momentum is the hardest part.

        Try some of these tomorrow and report back!

        Reply
    20. Dan Mirolli

      Nev,

      So my fall semester of my sophomore year I hit a huge rut. I had just come back from a life-changing summer as a missionary and was so sick of school I could puke. I wasn’t even interested in business so you couldn’t even describe me as a Wantrepreneur. Grades suffered, health suffered, relationships didn’t even pretend to happen.

      So, I decided I needed inspiration. You know that thing about the 5 people you hangout with the most? Well I took it a step further and tried to simulate hanging out with people I thought were really cool but would never be able to meet. For ten weeks I watched a TEDTalk per day. One TEDTalk. Every. Damn. Day.

      Why? Because TEDTalks are the best and brightest people from around the world giving really passionate 20 minute talks about what inspires them to keep going! I figured I’d keep watching until one of the talks resonated with me and I’d know what I wanted to do.

      For 10 weeks I watched these things. And yes, I’ve seen a LOT of TEDTalks. Some of them resonated, some didn’t, and finally I found one! It was by an entrepreneur and he was so crazy intense and passionate about business and stuff that I loved that I knew, not only did I want the passion he had, but I wanted to do what he did!

      BOOM!!! Rut 0, Dan >9,000

      Now I didn’t know this guy who gave the talk and there was no way I could meet him. So I did the next best thing. I listened to a lot of his talks, bought some of his books, his friends books, his friends friend’s books, and even some entrepreneurship products off one of his friend’s website (AppSumo! Funny how that worked out).

      The point being, when you’ve forgotten how to be your own President, how to inspire yourself to keep going to the Moon and doing other things not because they’re easy but because they’re hard, find some other people that are doing those things. People that are being that President for themselves, for others, or maybe even Kid President telling people to keep on dancing!

      The point is, no one, and I mean NO ONE!!! Gets out of a rut by themselves. Period. We often fall into ruts after we feel like we’ve made it because we look around and tend to say, “I’ve accomplished a lot”. But ruts don’t happen if you focus on helping all the people who helped you get there. It’s like when Benji Franklin said, “A man wrapped up in himself is a very small bundle”. That’s so true, but he’s also a very heavy bundle! And that man will rut himself into a hole until he realizes that the loneliness he was proud only existed if he wanted it to.

      I hope you get out of your rut, dude. Let me know if I can help! :) Praying for you!

      @MirolliDan

      Reply
      1. Neville

        Thanks Dan!

        The rut is quickly fading as I’ve started to gain some momentum. You should actually being seeing an increase in activity from me soon :)

        I was mad at myself for allowing myself to become so far removed from the Neville I knew (intensely curious, random, and slightly crazy).

        But I’m coming back!!

        Reply
    21. Marcy

      Fab post Nev! Another thing that really helps me is making sure the kitchen sink isn’t full of dishes! Makes me feel like yuck to wake up to a gross kitchen. It’s the little things like making the bed and doing the dishes the night before that add up to being more ready to work every day!

      I also use Freedom to block myself from the internet for certain amounts of time. I thought I had some kind of control of limiting distraction but it’s not true. If I’m going to get my novel finished, I’ve got sit my ass down and do the work. Go Pro with setting up environments to do the work.

      Reply
      1. Neville

        I NEEEVVEERRRRR keep dishes in the sink. Too much of a neat freak to let them sit there (I mean, it’s SO much easier to just put them away immediately right)??

        I’ve tried Freedom before and loved it. I’m not trying to emplore myself to show the restraint automatically. A lot of times I use Facebook and other sites for useful things, so I’m just trying to put “Freedom” in my own head :)

        Thanks Marcy!

        Reply
    22. catherine

      When I find it hard to get moving I set my phone`s timer for 10 minutes, when time is up I review what I have done so far.

      Reply
    23. Liz

      dammit why are all of the business world peeps i connect with in frickin’ austin?!

      So … one of the hardest moves for me was evaluating the people in my life.

      Long story short -

      I left my husband.

      No, not because Neville said to ditch one person dragging you down; actually HTMYFD (htmyfd.com) was the catalyst that started that (but that’s another story for another time!).

      no more stuck liz.

      Since just that one decision I’ve lot 15 lbs, have increased my take home pay by almost $500/month and created at least four relationships with potential JV partners.

      cheers to moving, doesn’t really matter (at first) which way … just MOVE!

      Cheers,
      liz

      Reply
      1. Neville

        WHOAAA

        Sounds like some serious life-changing you got going on over there (I’m guessing there were some pre-existing problems in that relationship also).

        Good to hear your change has been positive though!

        Reply
    24. Isaac

      Outsource. Got a lot of projects to finish but also have tasks? Outsource them!

      Someone else can mow that lawn.
      Someone else can wash that car.
      Someone else can clean the house.
      Someone else can buy the groceries.

      TaskRabbit and other sites can help outsource your life. It gives you more time to focus on completing your own projects. Nothing is more important than time.

      Reply
    25. Rick

      Hey Neville,

      What incredible timing for this article. (and Noah’s creativeLive presentation)

      I started off the year strong and got my health to a 5 and was rolling along. I was going to the gym five times a week and lost 35 pounds and was rolling along in the HTMYFD course. But after my son died I (and the 5 people I spend the most time with) got in such a funk that it has been difficult to pick myself up and get that momentum back.

      After watching some of Noah’s CL presentation I started getting my priority list together and your email today inspired me to get off of my ass and go to the gym this morning for the first time in a few weeks.

      After I got back from the gym I wrote out my todo list to start making small steps toward accomplishing the goals.

      Thanks again for the words of wisdom/encouragement.

      Good luck with getting yourself back on track. I wish I lived closer to Austin as working/writing in the pool looks pretty awesome.

      Rick

      Reply
      1. Neville

        Oh my god….not sure how to express my sorrow.

        That’s a tough thing.

        A period of time to grieve is completely acceptable.

        However if you still want to continue on with life, I’m sure if your son was here he’d WANT you to keep up the good track record you had before him. He’d WANT for you to be successful and happy.

        Maybe start getting back to the gym twice a week for now. It’ll quickly snowball back to your good habits.

        Best of luck Rick, terribly sorry for your loss. I can’t even pretend to imagine what that must be like.

        -Neville

        Reply
    26. Archna

      Do something for someone else. Whenever I’m in a funk and it’s gone on too long, I do something for someone else. Volunteer, connect someone looking for a job, cook a meal for a group of friends, etc. Doing this has always led to new conversations and new ideas. Next thing I know, I’m feeling rejuvenated and ready to go. All because I got out of my head and asked myself how can I help someone else?

      Reply
    27. Yael Grauer

      Love this post! Here are five actions that really help me snap out of the sluggish phases in my life. They all involve stepping away from my laptop and venturing out into the real world, because I’ve found that doing so will give me the change of perspective I need and is more effective than trying to power through it.

      1. Volunteering. Whether I’m cooking food for the homeless/hungry or picking up trash by the river, getting invested in a bigger problem can help me get the perspective I need on my own issues, make me feel incredibly useful, and I make good connections with decent people, to boot.

      2. Going on a walk (or spending time outdoors, like in my garden). There’s actually research that shows that even walking outside in a city (with trees and such) can help people feel less stressed and even has positive health benefits. I think it’s probably evolutionary. If I don’t have time to walk, I hang out in my garden. If it’s too cold, I try to escape to somewhere warmer for at least a day or two. Which brings me to #3.

      3. Travel. Even a weekend trip to get me out of my daily rut and get a change of scenery is enormously helpful. This was a particularly good one when I found myself living in the middle of nowhere, Wisconsin. A short trip to Minneapolis changed my entire outlook. Now I try to escape when it’s freezing just to remember what it’s like to be thawed.

      *Note: If I’m REALLY stuck on a problem, going on a walk, taking a long shower, etc. etc. seems to provide the impetus for it to magically come to me,

      4. Gratuitous self-care. I’m a big fan of Ayurvedic massage. I’ve also been experimenting with girly things I’ve ignored for decades, like getting pedicures, etc.

      5. Reading fiction (or graphic novels). I think for me when I get SO stuck in work doing something completely unrelated helps fill the well, so to speak.

      Hope some of these help someone!

      Reply
    28. Tom

      Nev – awesome post as usual. Really dig your style (and the new design of the website! You look all growns up now!).

      What do I do to get out a slump?

      I use a simple process of visualization:

      I picture myself in 10 or 20 years as a fat, hairy old man cupping my balls, watching football Sunday alone and contemplating suicide instead of going into work the next day.

      This idea motivates me because action is the only way to save my life.

      - Tom

      Reply
      1. Neville

        Awwww thanks! I thought it still looks a little goofy, but I don’t mind being called grown up now (I mean, I’m 30)!

        That’s a great technique Tom. I always envision myself on my deathbed, but I think 10 to 20 years out is better.

        I’m gonna start trying this. NevBox worthy!!

        Reply
    29. Michael McGreal

      Great post Neville.

      I started using the productive app called “Lift” that I saw in Noah Kagan’s screen share from Tim Ferris’s Facebook in his HTMYFD course lol.

      It helps you track personal goals until they become habits. Great for mini momentum.

      Reply
    30. Tyler

      Great post Neville. It’s clear you put so much thought into getting unstuck (and into the post).

      5 Things That Got Me Unstuck (Semi-Recently)
      -Moved to a new neighborhood
      -Had a party at my place (no matter how bad of a host you are; it always goes better in reality)
      -Turned off the TV and read a book
      -Surprised myself and went to the comedy club near my apartment
      -Invited someone to go to lunch on a whim and also asked some guys to do an early breakfast before work. (Love your pool idea and starting early)

      -Tyler

      PS Your desk is badass!

      Reply
      1. Neville

        Sounds like all the stuff I’ve been doing (sans the moving)!

        Really helps. Especially the party stuff. I’m doing another writing party on Wednesday, and I’ve also been meeting my neighbors. A lot of them are super cool dudes and I see them all the time, and new friends are always good.

        And yes, that desk is badass. Can’t think of going back to a just-sitting desk ever!

        And that workspace is so big and white and nice…..kick ass purchase!

        Reply
    31. Sukhneet Singh

      Thanks for this post Nev! It came at a GREAT time, since I’m dealing with a low-swing myself. Acting on some of your suggestions already makes a difference.

      The first hack I have is stopping when I have a negative thought about something, and trying to find the positive aspect. If I waste time, rather than hating myself, I’m thankful that I realized it and can do something now. It’s crazy how much this makes a difference.

      The second hack is talking about the future as if it’s the present. Rather than “I will workout”, I say, “I workout”. It feels really weird at first, but sets off triggers in my mind. To stay consistent, either I change what I’m saying or take action. It makes taking action SO much easier.

      Reply
      1. Neville

        Glad to have helped Sukheet :)

        Also try doing things you normally don’t do……

        And maybe try putting on this thought-cap:
        “The world returns, how you act towards it.”

        Reply
    32. Kris

      1. Take care of your health.

      If you’re feeling bad, it’s a lot harder, and sometimes impossible, to have the energy or motivation to get anything done. See a doctor, start going on walks, eat better… do what you need to do. Accept that improving your health is your primary job for the time being, and temporarily let go of the need for constant achievement and productivity.

      2. Tiny projects (aka Little Wins)

      Find something you can complete in less than a day. Something you want to do. Something that makes you happy or satisfied in some way. A super tiny programming project. Ultra-short stories. Craft projects. Whatever. Try lots of different things. It doesn’t really matter what it is, and whether it’s related to money or your career or anything useful. Just find something little like this to work on (and complete) at least a couple times a week.

      At some point, the momentum of doing and completing stuff without worrying about how great it is, over-thinking it to death, or trying to bite off more than you can mentally chew, will eventually lead to bigger and better things. It’s a sneaky way of forming a “doing habit” without forcing the issue too much. And you might be surprised that when you are ready to start working on something bigger and better, you’ll just simply dive right in.

      Reply
      1. Neville

        Thanks Kris!

        The ONE thing I did have going was that I was on top of my health. I’ve kept it up and also started eating better and sleeping earlier. Def helps when I do both :)

        Reply
    33. Charlie

      Changing my environment was HUGE. I recently moved to Brazil with a bunch of friends who are all have the same goals as I do. We’ve set up white boards in the main room with all the things we agree to do so that we are held publicly accountable. Plus we help one another set the next days goals every day before bed.

      A completely new environment + 5 people on the same track + public accountability = the most happy and productive I’ve ever been :-)

      Reply
    34. Jeffrey

      I realized that much of the reason why I felt unmotivated was because I constantly devalued my wins. No matter how small, I learned to recognize and celebrate each of the wins of my day. This continues to keep me going with the momentum that I started with.

      Reply
      1. Sukhneet Singh

        Jeffrey, that’s a huge point. Thanks for posting this. I tend to have a similar problem.

        I’m trying out your solution before bed tonight!

        Reply
      2. Neville

        Oh interesting!!

        That’s true….I keep saying “I did NOTHING this year” ….but then realize I put out a NevBox, 2 books, started consulting and a lot of other things.

        Not as many things as I’d hoped, but still great wins!

        Reply
    35. Serji

      Another great post, Neville!

      What I found is that our habits and our personal philosophy are what determine our future, so by adopting new habits and philosophies from people that have what you want you’ll be on your way to a life you always wanted.

      To have more, you have to become more!
      You can skip a meal, but never skip a book. Listen to personal growth audiobooks at least 15 minutes a day.

      Realize that there’s no such thing as a magic bullet for success! I’ve recently discovered the beauty of the compound effect, by reading “The Slight Edge” by Jeff Olson.

      Also, the biggest eye opener that made me jump into action was the philosophy of enjoying the journey, not the idea of the success that is your ultimate destination.

      Reply
    36. David Heasman

      Haha, this is awesome. It’s posts like this that keep me coming back Nev.

      Few things I did recently to get myself out of the sluggish part of my life:

      a.) Take walks in the morning. I frikking love walks, I always feel refreshed, energised and optimistic after a walk especially near the river where I live. Before I used to take a walk first thing in the morning, but now I’ve set it up to do after my first task in the morning which leads me to…

      b.) Set habits. In The Power of Habit, the author identifies habits as 3 phases. Trigger -> Action -> Reward. I set up a habit to carry out one activity which is “revenue generating” (at the moment it’s identifying leads) when I get to my desk first thing in the morning. The reward is the aforementioned walk.

      c.) Get an accountability buddy. reddit.com/r/getmotivatedbuddies is a good place to start. Me and my buddy check in twice a week over hangouts. We set ourselves rewards and punishments for the tasks we set ourselves this week, remind ourselves why we’re doing what we’re doing, and just generally motivate each other and hold each other accountable.

      d.) Finally a major reason I find myself procrastinating on something is because I just don’t know what exactly to do. I might have written down “get cute baby lamb as a pet”, but I will procrastinate on it, if I haven’t broken it down or done more research. So for my current goal, I printed out a good old paper calendar like Nev did. I reverse flowcharted the steps required to get to my goal, broke those steps into tasks and put them on my calendar. This way the goal seems more achievable, and I actually see how long it will take.

      Thanks for the post Nev, it’s always good to know rockstars are still human.

      Reply
    37. Andrea

      1) Get physical power! Once you have your ass moving, enegy starts flowing again.
      2) Incantations. So “positive thinking” but so powerful. Repetition and consistency lead.
      3) Vision. What do I want most from my life right now and where do I want to go next? Music helps a lot.
      4) Planning and goal setting. A gram of goal setting can provide a ton of motivation and momentum. Then plan it by knowing what’s your outcome, what’s your purpose and then what’s you action plan.

      Love your blog Nev!!! :-)

      Ciao from Italy,

      Andrea

      Reply
    38. Sivan

      Hey Mr.Nev
      Like so much reading your posts, like a compass it helps me determin if I’m still on course.

      I would add one sure fire way.

      Meditation.

      Real, Tibetan style simple mindfulness meditation. If you do it right for even five minutes in the morning it’s like detox for all your negativity. Like nuclear jump start to your brain.

      I do it immediately after I wake up (well, right after sneaking a peak at my dumb phone) and even if I’m like “mehhhh, life sucks” after 5-50 minutes of meditation I’m ready to go out hunting for velociraptors. Bare handed.

      I’ve read mainstream newspapers, not the new-agey stuff, running articles about how research found out how meditation is a super-medicine for, like, everything! From disease prevention to longevity. For me, I find it makes me mega productive. Sometimes in the evening when I’m tired, I can just meditate for 5 minutes and BAM! Totsly restarts the brain, like having slept a power nap, I can sneak in another 4-5 hours of focused work.

      It’s the bomb.

      S

      Reply
    39. Daniel Petroviak

      To jump start my lazy train I sat down and LITERALY physically wrote my goals In a notebook. A brand new notebook with some goals I have In life. I wrote the goal, the plan to get there and what I could do TODAY to get started. And believe it or not all of my plans for today involved watching Nev’s app sumo videos. And i feel great. I cleaned my car and room, I feel fresh and it has some movivation gaining momentum.

      Reply
    40. Chris

      It may be a bit challenging to be good in all aspects of your life. However, this isnt impossible as we have a lot of people who have proven throughout years that ultimate success can be possible.

      Two of my personal examples are Brian Tracy and Tim Ferriss.

      The point is that you have to start from somewhere, make a goal (become financially independent). When you beginning achieving that, then you can start paying little less attention to that goal and start paying more attention to health, relationships or other goals.

      The key is to always take action and never be passive.

      Reply
    41. Robin Williams

      Hey Nev and all!
      I’ve recently been using the free ‘unstuck’ app on my ipad and this helped me decide to pursue a new job – which I am pleased to say I landed. :-)

      I highly recommend the blog for this app too. It has some great and timely advice which always seems to echo with something going on in my week. http://unstuckcommunity.tumblr.com/

      Hope this helps!

      P.S. No need for a Nev box – I just found out I won one from your last post comments! :-) Hopefully this will also help me out with some creative/productive block removal.

      Reply
    42. Joe

      Awesome suggestions.
      One thing that has some serious ROI for me is going through my house/garrage/attic and donating all that extra crap cluttering up the joint to Good Will.
      It not only gives me a good feeling because I am recycling the things I’m not using anymore by donating them, but also, I am de-cluttering my living space which opens up room for more creativity.

      Reply
    43. andy ngai

      this is as if the habit of the person who took NZT in the film limitless. Combined into mental frame of mind, these rituals can certainly guide ones from sluggish person with a lack of concentration to another person with momentum and charged up. Nice work Nev and nicely put too. try it out guys, these habit might not seem significant but it will certainly change your life.

      Reply
    44. Zoran Vitez

      It’s amazing how many good suggestions have been provided. I’ll make a small exclusive list in the end of everything. Thanks Nev for starting this.

      Reply
    45. Gina Calvert

      Writing 3 long-hand, stream of consciousness pages first thing every morning. Really clears away the junk that weighs you down each day. Over time, it helps you spot and dismantle larger blocks, and gives you a record to be able to trace ideas and make mental connections you couldn’t see before. I do them as fast as I can without getting bogged down in the ideas. I always feel very energetic, creative and even joyful afterwards.

      Reply
      1. Rick Henry

        Gina, thank you so much for this suggestion! I have been doing this for the past three days. It is so therapeutic.

        Reply
    46. David K

      I was in a rut for the longest time at my work, and so when I switched recently I decided that I needed to find a way to jumpstart my work day. Now I set up to-do lists for the next day before I leave in the evening, helping to focus the next morning. In order to ensure that I am awake and alert, I have started to get up early enough to run a mile, eat breakfast, and shower before having to be in the office for seven. I find the activity and organization have really helped to clear my head and intensify my focus throughout the day. I’ve even cut down my caffeine intake significantly with these tasks as a part of my routine!

      Reply
    47. Derek Wyatt

      My sluggish phase happened just this past year.
      Bad divorce… But that’s another story.

      When you lose your entire world, it may seem easy to start over because you have nothing, right? Wrong!

      I had to turn somewhere to find a starting point. With the risk of sounding like a pandering douche I found that point with the blogs you and Noah do. I’m not doing this for a nevbox. I have the Kopywriting Kourse and have read Gary’s letters. Please pick someone who hasn’t been given those gifts.

      Between the business hacks that you both offer and the life tips such as the ones found in this composite post I was able to provide myself a goal.

      I began small by making my bed daily. Small wins.

      Next I scrapped my digital to do list because I never used it and started carrying around a composite notebook with “Get Shit Done” written on the front. Carrying it around definitely raises some eyebrows.

      I reevaluated my closest 5 and made two changes that hurt at first, but were worth it in the end. They were enabling me to be a slacker… It was what they knew.

      I started involving myself more in the startup scene here in Portland (even though I HATE networking events)

      Just last week I invested in myself and joined Noah’s “how to make your first dollar” course. This was the missing piece! I was given access to his CreativeLive course where I discovered your Wealth, Health, Love philosophy. I was able to objectively take a step back and realize that I was slacking still.

      I make the joke (but am sorta serious) when I say I’m starting a new religion called “Noah Krishna”. Care to join?

      Thank you to both of you for sharing your stories and involving your audience in how you hack life to be more productive. Too many “experts” focus not be how-tos and forget that deep down we’re people and we need to fix that shit first before working on our businesses.

      I must go… I have to buy me one of those AWESOME floating desks. That is truly the last missing piece, I swear!

      Cheers!
      -Derek

      Reply
    48. Huw

      Hey everyone!

      Hopefully you’ll all be able to take at least one thing from the solutions to my problems!

      My problem?

      I talked the talk but didn’t walk the walk.

      For years I’ve always written really cool songs and always wanted to become a songwriter for the biggest artists in the World.

      My problem… I always put off recording them and sending them off to A&R guys at Record Labels.

      I’d always say I’d record them one day, but never got to doing it and I’d always end up on frikkin Facebook!

      With all that time wasted behind me, I took some serious action and tricked myself. Using some of Nevs and Noahs tips, along some of my own, I got the job done.

      The Solution.

      1. I turned my summer house at the end of my back garden into a recording studio.

      Why? The summer house has really poor Wi-fi signal, so it’s a pain if I do use the internet. It’s also somewhere where I can’t easily get distracted by anyone.

      Tip: Isolate yourself and your Work-space.

      2. I leave my mac in the summerhouse at all times.

      Why? Because, even if I want to play on it, or simply go on Facey-b, I have to walk out to the summer house to get my mac. And it can get seriously rainy and cold here in the UK. So as a repercussion of not going out to get it, if I’m way too lazy to walk all the way down the garden to the summer house, I’ll end up reading (which, in my opinion, is a rather positive repercussion to not doing something). But you can see how the pain point really helps me here, yeah?

      Tip: Force yourself, put your goal in the way of your everyday path. (A tip that I’ve stolen from one of Noah’s previous blog posts)

      3. I leave a double espresso (without water) next to the kettle when I leave for work in the morning. (Btw… I LOVE espresso!)

      Why? As soon as I get home from work, I don’t want to sit down and waste time. So I stick the kettle on as soon as I get in, run upstairs to change, run back down, finish off the double espresso (…Mmmmm…) and exit through the back-door, headed straight to the summer house. I repeat this process every time I set out to Record Music after work.

      Tip: Prepare yourself. Treat yourself. Use Momentum. As Seth Godin suggests ‘Lean Forward’, don’t sit back, lean into things and the momentum will keep you going.

      Tip: Get pumped! Nev suggests in his ‘Kourse about building a Kourse’ course to drink a redbull or coffee to get you light and giddy for when you film so you’re not ‘all sluggish on camera. This is another benefit of the espresso. It gives me energy to sing and play the guitar. You can really tell someones energy levels when recording a song.

      4. Wear running shoes whilst you work.

      Why? You just feel like you should be active! I bought a new pair of Nike Air trainers and I put them on as soon as I get back from work, and I also wear these shoes to the gym. So when I put these bad boys on, I know I’m here to work and nothing else. Plus you feel all bouncy when you work!

      Tip: What you wear really effects how you feel. If you’re looking sharp, you instantly feel the swagger flow through your veins. If you feel active, you’ll wanna get shit done!

      Before I go, I’d just like to say thanks for reading this far, please start using one of these tips today! Finally, just a quick note – the A&R guys are now putting together a deal for my songs. BOWSH!!

      This shit does work when you put it into practice.

      Lots of Love,

      Huw.

      P.S. I took Nevs Kopywriting Kourse and used the knowledge and techniques there to write a sales letter for my demos – and shit does that stuff work!!

      Reply
    49. Wayne Kille

      Hi guys & Neville

      Some more great ideas – thanks again Neville!!!

      Here’re a couple of things which I’ve found pretty helpful and hope someone else might too:

      1. I find I feel the best about myself and most productive if I’m in a good routine, this especially means getting up out of bed pretty early.

      But I’m terrible at getting out of bed.

      Solution: I set three or four alarms on my phone which start to go off about 15mins before I want to get up, and I set the clock radio to go off (very VERY loud) at the time I want to be up by…..

      Here’s the cunning part, I put the clock radio downstairs in the sunroom. If I don’t get up then I’d be responsible for not only waking up the rest of the house but neighbours too, and at the sort of times I set the thing for this would not make me very popular. It (almost) never fails to get my sorry ass up on time!

      That one tactic has changed my life. Honestly. I am not exaggerating.

      2. I’ve just started plastering my wardrobe door with post-it notes of things (small tasks) that I need to do.

      Things like: take junk to charity shop, open a second bank account for bills (to help me manage my money better), get a credit card so I can open a shopify shop, improve my job posting on elance to attract some better candidates, open savings accounts for my kids, renew my passport, etc etc.

      This is good cos even when I’m feeling lacklustre one day there’s always something on there that is pretty small and easy (a small win, like you said) to get me going.

      3. I read inspiring stuff. Neville’s emails -of course- feature highly! There’s also the four hour blog, zenhabits.net, earlytorise.com newsletters, the boron letters (thanks Neville), I listen to the strangest secret by Earl Nightingale on youtube (again, heard about that from Mr Medohra), books as well, so rework by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, how to win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie, four hour work week by you’ll all know who.. and watched some awesome youtube videos recently with Noah K, Neville M, Timothy F, Kevin Rose, Leo Babauta.

      Ooh ooh and check out ‘howtowin.co.uk’. I discovered it recently and I think some of you might like it too.

      Wayne

      Reply
    50. Nick Cohenmeyer

      Quick tip for motivating myself to run at the gym on the treadmill (which I used to loathe):

      Load up a bunch of movies or TV shows on your iPad, and watch a movie while you run. I have bluetooth headphones (Motorola S11), and everything works really well. I have gone from running 20 minutes to 45 every time now. I almost don’t want to stop because the movie is only half over. I used to hate running, now I look forward to it.

      Covering the stats with a towel also helps you get lost in the movie, instead of focusing on the elapsed minutes.

      Maybe not for everyone, but certainly works for me at least.

      Also, I use GTasks for the iPad and Android, and it keeps my tasks synchronized amongst my devices. Breaking up large tasks into its component parts, with alerts, has been helping me accomplish more by staying better focused and feeling rewarded as the items get checked off.

      Love your blog Nev!

      -Nick.

      Reply
    51. Gil

      This pretty much puts it all together, I am gonna make some changes right now to get back on track! Specifically to do lists, man, I´m getting lazier than I was before without em!

      Thanks mate! Top chap!

      Reply
    52. Jimmy C

      I have a memory board. Similar to your to do lists but it’s as dry erase board hanging in my dining room. I have 2 sections on it, tasks to do and places to be. I keep a few other things on there. Wrote a checklist a workout and printed a calendar that are hanging by magnet. Really important stuff is buxed to grab my attention. I write my daily weight and body fat since my scale is right in front of it…erase the bad numbers and save the great ones. Lastly I have a quote or two up there. Currently my quotes are:
      Carpe Diem – Latin – Seize the day
      Relentlessly Focused Action
      Zenkai(in japanese lettering)- literally full release – meaning returning to full strength, or better, following a life-threatening injury.(my current circumstances)

      Reply
    53. noah kagan

      Awesome post Neville!

      it’s hard to say which is the exact thing that will “snap” someone out of a funk. I felt that way most of 2012 and some of 2013.

      Creating things really helped me even if I didn’t want to. The act of producing and benefiting others is a very nice feelings. Go help someone for free if you’re not even sure what to create.

      Totally true on removing the people taking away from your life / energy. Going back to the ones making you feel great = essential. I notice this especially after hanging with people, do I want more time with them?

      Working out definitely helped.

      Lastly, I did try embrace doing nothing which is hard for me. I like action / chaos / etc but tried embracing stillness and reducing distractions in my life (alcohol). This helped. Also provides clarity to explore the life and things you DO want to be doing.

      Like this morning, didn’t feel like doing shit so I didn’t but felt it in the afternoon so started cranking :)

      Reply
    54. Neville

      Thanks man :)

      I have started creating things again which feels great.

      Cranking up that wheel of momentum is the hardest part it seems. I used to get more done on a daily basis, but as my productivity fell, I got more used to doing less.

      I’m coming back slowly…..but coming back for sure :)

      Reply
    55. Ruben Chavez

      Hey Nev,

      Love this post and love your work in general. You’ve helped me grow a lot in business and also in my personal life.

      I’d say that the absolute best strategy/secret weapon I have for snapping out of a sluggish phase in my life is reading. In fact, I can say that probably ALL (but definitely the majority) of my good ideas and mental breakthroughs have come to me while reading. It doesn’t even have to be something directly related to a current project I’m working on. I don’t know what it is but when sit down with a book and clear away all other distractions, I get into a mental state that I can not get into any other way.

      By the way, I’m talking about real books with paper pages, NOT web pages on the internet or kindles. Not the same. Why? Couldn’t tell you. There’s just something fucking magical about old school books. Non-fiction works best for me. Anyway, just wanted to share! Keep doing yo thang man!

      Ruben Chavez

      Reply
    56. Pingback: How to kill it at life – 4 must-read articles from last week | SMART GOALS | Goal Setting App for iPhone

    57. Ayub

      I have a bit of advice for the “top 5 influencers”:

      They don’t HAVE to by physically there for you to benefit from them (though it would be the best).

      If you want to emulate Bill Gates, Elon Musk, and others to be your top influencers, what you can do is read or watch stuff they say, and then make that into a sound byte (sound file, you get this by editing the media file you chose or recording you reading whatever you chose) and then have that automatically repeat on your computer every hour or so (using task scheduler and vlc’s command line options in Windows).

      Reply
    58. Zoran Vitez

      So here’s something I don’t think I saw in the comments. Jerry Seinfeld apparently has a system he uses to push himself to be productive everyday. He simply plants a big year long calendar on the wall and marks with an X every day he did the activity the calendar is for, so in his case writing jokes. Even if it’s for just 15 min, or an h, the important thing to him is working every day, and avoiding that way complete procrastination. I found it on http://tinyurl.com/7wdogkc. If you decide to use it you might like http://luminarious.planet.ee/calendar/ where you can download a whole year calendar.
      Since I plan to use it for mupltiple activities and don’t want to fill up my wall with 4-5 calendars, I’m using Evernote to keep track of the various calendars coverted to image, and Sketchit to draw the big rewarding X :)

      Reply
    59. Chung

      Love this list Nev. Some things I’ve never tried like the Top 5 influencers or Blog Party.

      Here’s a mix of what I do to get back into it.

      1. Drink a warm glass of water first thing in the morning then some calisthethic exercise (my favorite: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=shk3XbDgpHg)

      2. Once I get into “office” fill out my iPhone calendar with what i want to do for the day so there’s no “empty slots”

      3. Using a paper monthly calendar to keep track of what I’m doing and when I’m “dropping the ball.”

      4. Tried your paper to-do but couldn’t stick to it. Gonna give this another go tomorrow and see how long I stick with it.

      5. Moving my home office set up around for a “fresh feel”… or heading to the library for a change of scenery… or doing work at the dining table have all helped me get into the flow of things.

      So far I’ve found I’m most consistent with my “drink warm water and doing exercise first thing in the am”.

      Interesting stuff guys!

      Reply

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