It’s been a good first 6 months in the year of the gorilla.
Why year of the gorilla? Because by the end of 2018 you won’t be able to tell a difference between me and a fully grown silverback.
Here are the 6 things I learned in 2018.
1. It begins with respect
I always had a thing for prison movies (Shot Caller is the best movie I’ve seen this year). And it’s not just because they show guys curling heavy weights out in the yard every other scene. I believe there’s a lot to be learned from people doing time.
In prison, there are two things that can make the difference between life and death. Two values that have been all but forgotten on the outside. Respect and loyalty.
It always begins with respect.
Growing up, I had no respect for anyone. If you wanted my respect you had to “impress” me, you had to earn it. I now realize what a fool I was.
I am no better than anyone in this world and never will be. Doesn’t matter how much money I make, how shredded my abs are, how many dogs I rescue from the shelter, I will never be “better” than another person.
I can be different, yes. But never better. Some may confuse different for better, but not me. Not anymore. I understand that, at the core, we are all the same and thus cannot be better than another person.
They say respect is earned, not given. I disagree. Everyone, no matter their income, race or background deserves to be treated with (genuine) respect.
Being respectful towards others must become your default. It must become as natural to you as breathing. If you have trouble wrapping your head around this concept, remember:
It is only through others that we can find success. It is only through others that we can find meaning. It is only through others that we can fulfill our potential in this world.
It’s people that make the world go round. Treat them the way they deserve to be treated.
2. Fix yourself first
You’ve got to get your shit together before you can go out there and make an impact. You cannot be an out-of-shape, broke, depressed sad sack and be of true merit to the world.
Doesn’t matter what business you’re in. Doesn’t matter who you work with or what you do. You gotta start with yourself. You’ve got to take charge of your situation. And it must always start with the body.
You cannot be healthy mentally if you’re not healthy physically. Lose the belly and clear the cobwebs in your head before you open your mouth.
First, focus on you. Then, go out there and do your part.
3. There’s more to this world than meets the eye
You create heaven or hell in your reality. Every waking hour, you either choose to live in hell or you choose to ascend to greatness. It is entirely up to you. Choose to live for something greater than yourself.
Don’t waste your life chasing money and power.
Money and power are merely means to an end. They can never be the ultimate goal.
No. I’m no tree-hugging vegan. I love money. And I will make more money than I can spend in this lifetime. But I don’t chase money for the sake of it. Money is merely a tool to get things done in life, not the purpose of life.
4. Enjoy it while it lasts
If you’re angry, depressed and dissatisfied with your life, you’re missing the forest for the trees. The beauty this world holds knows no limit. Open your eyes and see it.
You are immeasurably privileged to be here. Stop playing the victim and see this life for what it truly is: An opportunity of divine magnitude.
If you don’t know what I am saying here, I recommend you pack your things right now and travel the world for the next year.
5. Doing the “right thing” is always the right thing
You can’t depend on others to do the dirty work. You can’t rely on “them” to do what you refuse to do. If it’s not us, if it’s not you, it’s not going to be anyone else.
Take responsibility for your actions and be a shining example of human excellence. For yourself and everyone around you.
You know what the right thing to do is. Do it. Always.
6. Children are the greatest gift of the Gods
I spent the first 5 months of 2018 as part of an afterschool program for underprivileged children in Ecuador (Check this out).
You can learn a lot about the nature of this world by being around children. They are the purest, the most authentic creatures on earth. Uncorrupted, untainted, pure.
I have never had more fun in my life than in these 5 months. I’ve never learned more than I did hanging with the kids. They showed me the light. I always knew it was there. But they opened my eyes to it.
And I will never be able to repay them for what they have given me. But I will die trying.
Here’s to the next 6 months, my friends. Promise me you’ll make ’em count.
Thank you for reading