I’ll give it to you straight.
I’ve been struggling the last few weeks. For some reason, the insidious thoughts of doubt and insecurity and “not being good enough” have crept back in to my mind.
Now, I’ve gone through this before. You may be surprised to hear this, but I’ve always struggled with these types of insecurities.
Through my sobriety and through a lot of self training, I’ve been able to train my mind and design my thinking in a way that helps me get through these moments of doubt and fear. My mental training is most of the reason why I continue to be successful.
In my view, entrepreneurship is 80% mental strength, 10% skillset, and 10% good decision making.
In this week’s issue, I’ll give you 3 tricks and mindset shifts that have helped me massively in my journey to create multiple streams of income.
Let’s go. 🔥
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Get One Thing Done Every Day
When I was a younger man, I had a very difficult time. By now, most people know my story of addiction, but you may not know the consequences I faced as a result.
I was always …
- in trouble with the law
- in very poor health
- getting jumped, beat up, or in street fights
- losing relationships
Eventually, my behavior starting catching up to me. I was experiencing terrible panic attacks and suicidal thoughts. I’ll spare you the grim details, but I was a dark place.
For me, panic attacks don’t look like the typical freak out. I wasn’t hyperventilating or panicking. Rather, I would get “stuck.”
I wouldn’t move, or talk to anyone, or really do anything. Rather, I would hide in my apartment in Northeast Philly. I would sit there, too scared to move or participate in life at all.
I was only 20 years old. At this point, my drug use and bad behavior hadn’t quite gotten out of control, but I was on my way.
One day, I sat on a chair in my apartment for the entire day. I didn’t read or watch TV or anything. I just sat there.
After about a week of not talking to anyone, I finally reached out to my grandfather. I opened up a bit as to what I was feeling and how I felt stuck. The advice he gave me sticks with me till this day. He said …
“Son, just get one thing done each day.”
What my gramps was teaching me was that progress doesn’t come in leaps and giant steps. With anything in life, the progress comes slowly. It comes so slowly that in most cases, it doesn’t even feel like progress.
As long as you continue to make baby steps forward you will succeed. What you must avoid is getting stuck. Staying still is a death sentence. It’s a universal law of nature that if you’re not growing, you’re dying. There is no such thing as staying still.
So in moments like this, where I’m in my head and I’m feeling stuck, it never fails for me to stand up and say “just get one thing done today.”
Bad days are fine. Not every day will be filled with motivation and inspiration.
Eventually, the bad days will pass. When they do, you will be further ahead than you would have been otherwise.
“Make It Till Midnight Kid.”
I was 25 years old.
I was a little more than a year sober. I was finally starting to pull my head out of my ass and I was beginning to believe that I could have a good life. For the first time ever, I had hope.
This is a dangerous time in sobriety. You start to get some blessings back in your life and that feeling of happiness can make you let your guard down. It’s not uncommon for people newly in sobriety to relapse right when life starts to get good.
It’s confusing, I know.
At this time, I was talking to a mentor about fears and uncertainties I was having. I would ask ….
“what do I do at weddings? can I not have a glass of wine for a toast?”
“what about every Thanksgiving when my family takes a shot of Macallan?”
“what do I do if I go back home to Philly and a friend offers me a hit or a shot?”
I was living in the future. I was projecting a realm of possibilities that weren’t even real and most likely would never happen.
My mentor looked at me and gave me the single best advice I’ve ever gotten in my entire life. He says …
“Just make it till midnight kid.”
Living One Day At A Time
While I have long term goals, I don’t live based on the future. I live in the right now. I am only ever concerned with this present moment, because this is the only moment that is actually real.
Make it till midnight means that I only live one day at a time.
If my day is going really bad, the only thing I have to do is make it till midnight. Get to midnight before I make an emotional decision, or pick up a drink, or respond to an email that made me angry. Get to sleep before I get emotional.
And guess what? When tomorrow gets here I will do the same thing.
But thinking of tomorrow is pointless, because I still have to make it till midnight for today.
I believe that anxiety is a symptom of living in the past and that fear is a symptom of living in the future. If you can train your thinking to stay in the right now, and to always live in this present moment, you won’t have anything to worry about because right here right now, you are alive and well.
My best friend Josh dropped this nugget on me a few years ago.
At the time, I was still living in Florida. All my friends had moved away, I broke up with my girlfriend, and I was spending most of my time cruising around Boca Raton on my boosted board and sitting at the gazebo on Palmetto and A1A.
I would sit right on this spot on the handrail, look at the waves, and think about what I wanted to do with my life.
Eventually, after isolating for a few months (are you noticing a pattern?) Josh called me and asked what my deal was. I told him what I was feeling, how I didn’t know the direction I wanted to take my business, and how I felt like it was time for me to leave Florida.
I kept saying “I feel like …”
- “I just feel like it’s time to get out of here.”
- “I just feel like I’m not living up to my potential.”
- “I feel like it’s time to do something else.”
Eventually Josh interrupted me. He said “Tim, you keep saying ‘I feel like.’ Stop feeling. Tell me what you want to do.”
That’s when I said …
“I want to go all in on Stodzy and build out a media company about healthcare.”
Then he said …
“Okay, so go fucking do that.”
It was that simple. I had weeks and months of uncertainty come into focus by simply identifying what it is I already knew.
Feeling Aren’t Facts
When I tell people to ignore their feelings, most people think I mean to become a robot and to disregard feelings.
I’ve even had someone tell me this was toxic masculinity, which I thought was hysterical.
But that is not at all my intention. My intention with this advice is to help you recognize the truth. What is the reality of the situation? What are the opportunities, the challenges, and the actual desire that your feelings are trying to tell you?
Understand, feelings exist for a reason. They are a survival mechanism. Anxiety and tension exists to keep you from walking into that dark cave where you could get eaten by a lion.
But those anxieties aren’t useful anymore. There are no saber toothed tigers. These days, the anxieties we feel are very disconnected from actual danger.
In that moment, I already knew the reality of the situation. I knew what I wanted and I knew what I had to do to get it. The only thing stopping me was inaction.
To get what you want in life, you will never feel your dreams into existence. You must take action.
ACTION > FEELINGS
It’s not uncommon these days for me to be struggling with a situation in business and quite literally say to myself “Tim, stop feeling.”
Once I do that, I can look at a situation more clearly and determine what the next action steps are.
This has helped me many times over.