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A Quick Guide to Designing One’s Self & Life by Obi Okorougo The original title of this guide was “The Art of Activating Your Best Self”—though to-the-point and informative, it lacked the juice necessary to excite one into reading it. And I want you to be excited. We’re talking about your Life here! And if creating the kind of person that you want to be doesn’t excite you, well, then we’ve already got a challenge to overcome. But you don’t have this challenge. You’re reading this report, which means that you’ve already got ‘The Juice’. And since you’ve got The Juice, let’s begin. JOURNALING A few necessary tools: • • • • • A Quality Journal A Worthy Pen Books / Magazines Scissors Rubber Cement
Now, I can write an entire book on why you need to journal (and I just may), but for now just take my word(s) for it: YOU. MUST. KEEP. A JOURNAL. It’s a great way to get thoughts out of your head and onto something tangible. You need your mind clear to come up with brilliant ideas, so keeping it free of thoughts is invaluable on this journey of yours. And there’s something about writing things down that makes them more likely to happen. So those genius ideas and clever schemes that you stockpile in your head and never do anything about might just actually happen if you start writing them down. Food for thought, er, journal. My journal is like a self-written magazine of inspiration. I keep clippings of beautiful and inspirational images, write down favorite quotes, and jot my own philosophical musings for future introspection. There have been few things more beneficial to awesome people than keeping a journal. Gandhi did it. Marcus Aurelius (the emperor from Gladiator) did
it. Leonardo da Vinci most definitely did it. Heck, I’m sure Jesus even did it. That’s quite a pedigree of awesomeness. And like actions produce like results. SO get on it! (Click here for an informative blog about the genius of journaling) ººº In this next section I’m going to go over a 5-step process especially designed to help you become even more awesome. It may be best to pull out your journal and write down ideas as they pop into your head while reading this. Ready? Let’s begin. ººº
FIRST STEP: Who Is Your Most Awesome Self?
Most people love the idea of having an ideal self (or activating it), but fail miserably at this very crucial step. They don’t have a vision. They’re lost. And unfortunately for them, one major difference between being an extraordinary person and being an average one is vision. If you don’t know where you’re going then you’re likely to be led. If you don’t know who you are then someone else will tell you. (People loooovvvee telling you, don’t they?) So heed the advice of our good man Socrates and “Know thyself”. These next 5 questions will help you get a firmer understanding of the person you are and want to be. Think about them and meditate on your answers. Answer them thoroughly (in your journal!). • • • • • What do you love to do? What do you want to do? How do you want to behave? What do you want to act like? (Visualize this. I’m talking posture, mannerisms, language, word choices, tone, attitude, anything behavioral.) What do you want to look like? Who do you want to associate with? (Remember: You are the average of the five people you hang out with most.)
When you’ve spent time fully answering the questions, visualizing your answers, and writing in your journal, then move forward to the next step.
SECOND STEP: Designing Your Most Awesome Self
We’ve all been designing ourselves since childhood. I would draw superheroes for inspiration as a child. Now my ideal self is represented in the Uberman. It’s my model for being the most awesome version of myself. It gives me juice. A mentor of mine was really into secret agents as a young man, so he designed his most awesome self around James Bond-type characters: cool, steely glances and slow movements, excellent posture, well spoken in 5 languages, and a mysterious air about him. What gives you juice? Spend time alone and sit quietly, visualizing your new awesome self moving through Life. Imagine yourself in regular, everyday situations responding as this new person. Observe how others see this new awesome self. Creating a vivid template in your mind is the precursor to action—so don’t sleep on this! “The possession of anything begins in the mind.” – Bruce Lee Go out and get new clothes or start wearing the clothes you already own in a different way. Redecorate your pad or move things around so they no longer seem to be in the right place. Get rid of old things that weigh you down and bring newness into your home. Get a haircut or change your look in some manner. Shave your beard off or grow a new one. If you wear glasses or contact lenses try switching it up by wearing the opposite sometimes. The idea is to re-enter your Life as an innovative person. This tricks your mind into believing that things have already changed for you, even if it’s something as simple as re-arranging your room. These small shifts can be great catalysts (read: a good kick in the pants) towards becoming the newest version of yourself. So a small voice inside you says: ‘Isn’t this being inauthentic? I just want to be myself.’ Sure, it’s a valid question—but misguided. Who are you really? The person that you’re looking at in the mirror? This person that knows he can be more than he is? This person that feels like she’s not fully representing herself? You are today what you have been, and who is that? If you haven’t spent the time to consciously create your character, then you’re nothing but a jumble of external influences, opinions and events. I would argue (convincingly) that this new awesome self that YOU’RE designing is more You than anybody you’ve ever been. You’ve now decided that you just won’t accept a life driven by others’ expectations—you’re going to lead yourself. Look around you. Mediocrity is everywhere. And these are your influences? Scratch that. You’re now choosing to pull away and create a new, stronger, better, more awesome character to re-enter the world with. And there’s nothing more noble or authentic than that.
THIRD STEP: Act On It!
Though the first two steps are incredibly important, they mean nothing, and I mean NO-THING, if you don’t implement this crucial step. Without acting, you’ll be nothing but words and ideas. You’ll be the one talking out of your ass about the things you “know” (but never experienced). Don’t be that guy. No one likes that guy.
“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” – Aristotle, Greek Philosopher, physicist & zoologist (384 BC - 322 BC)
“Act on it” could best be described as “scheduling your habits” or “scheduling the characteristics you wish to become habits”. If you want to be awesome and become that person in your vision, then you must habitually do the things an awesome person does. And the only way for something to become a habit is if you do it regularly. And the only way you’ll do something regularly is when it’s in your schedule. You get up and brush your teeth every morning right? (Come on now, you should all be nodding here.) This is something you do automatically because as a child, your parents, dentists, and teachers stressed the importance of keeping your teeth clean and breath minty-fresh. It doesn’t even feel right for you not to get up and do this. You can create that same compulsory feeling for anything you want. Just schedule it! Do it! Watch as it becomes easier each time. If your most awesome self is cool, calm, and collected in the midst of chaos, thoughtful, creative, and free from temptation—then you may want to schedule a 20-minute meditation practice upon rising. If your most awesome self is ripped, sexy, and athletic—then you may want to schedule some short, high-intensity workouts 4-5 days a week. If your most awesome self can see through walls, read people’s minds, leap tall buildings and teleport—then we need to talk. ACT. ON. IT. (Read: SCHEDULE. IT.)
FOURTH STEP: BEcome Awesome
They say (and don’t ask me who “they” are) that it takes 30 days for a habit to become engrained in your character. I say that it may take a bit longer, but after 30 days it definitely gets easier, and if you slip and relapse, then it’s more of an active choice on your part than a habit re-appearing.
So becoming awesome is sticking to the plan you’ve made and watching your world change as you change. This is the most fun part of it all. YOUR LIFE. LITERALLY. CHANGES. And this is and without any extraordinary effort on your part (you’ve already done the work). You’ll have new experiences and meet new people as the non-essential people in your life begin to fade away. You’ll respond to circumstances and external stimuli in new ways, from a different perspective. Things will come into your Life in shocking, unexpected ways. But you should expect it. You’ve changed and now the world is offering you its bounty.
FIFTH STEP: Give Yourself to the World
There’s little point in being awesome if no one else knows about it… I’m only half-kidding when I say that. Think about it: if you’re a creator, and you’ve worked deliberately and consciously to create the extraordinary person you are today—then it’s an absolute must that you share yourself with the world. You’re beautiful. You’re a work of art. And you’re not doing the world any favors by playing small. Think of what your most Awesome Self would give to the world and work on giving that. What is it that you find within your power to offer the world? Is it kindness? Creativity? Inspiration? Or is it your very much improved self, ready to serve wherever the need may arise? Consider what this newer version of you—this new personality and innovative human being that you have become through conscious effort—can rightly offer to help move things forward. That is, what do you absolutely need to bring to the world so that you may feel compelled to keep improving yourself? When we consider all that we have to offer the world, it makes us want to improve and it makes us want to offer all that we have become to a greater cause. With the faculties of your mind and the strength of your unbending will, you have been able to craft this new person out of the malleable and flexible medium of YOU. And now, you have reaped the rewards for this artistic endeavor. So how can you give back to the world in a way that promotes this kind of change for everyone who may be like you once were, seeking their most Awesome Self? Be Awesome, my friends.
For more inspiring articles, expressions of Creativity, and pure awesomeness, visit us at http://www.theuberman.com
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