Monthly Archives: January 2019

The Law of Use

“The possession of Knowledge, unless accompanied by a manifestation and expression in Action, is like the hoarding of precious metals-a vain and foolish thing. Knowledge, like Wealth, is intended for Use. The Law of Use is Universal, and he who violates it suffers by reason of his conflict with natural forces.” -The Kybalion

I broke the Law of Use.

What is “The Kybalion?” The Kybalion is a collection of hermetic teachings from ancient Egypt. These are some of the oldest teachings which has ever been taught from mankind.

In the book, you are taught several principles of life itself. Some of it is a bit “out there,” but other principles are quite practical.

The last principle, one which I have forgotten completely, is one which I have broken, and I have deeply suffered the consequences of it.

Let this be a warning for those who are stuck “learning,” but aren’t going out taking action.

The Law of Use

The law of use in layman’s terms states that knowledge acquired should be put to action. If you learn how to budget, you should make a budget and stick to it. If you learn how to approach girls, you should approach girls.

Now don’t take this out of context; obviously if I go up to you and say “hey here’s how to build a car” you shouldn’t build a car because some random “law of use.”

This applies for information you deem valuable to yourself, or which you seek out.

When you don’t immediately apply what you have learned, some terrible things begin to happen. It compounds over time & gets worse & worse. B

Story: Applying the Law of Use

When I first started digital marketing, I was highly action-orientated. That meant to start, I was having to soak in a ton of knowledge.

I watched video courses, took notes, and learned a lot. It was exhilarating!

Soon I began making video proposals, getting online contract work, and learning more about the ins and outs of freelancing as a digital marketer.

Within the year I was able to make money online while traveling the world.

When you actually apply the knowledge you learn and “get into the field,” your rate of success becomes exponential.

I am no genius; I just applied the law of use. And, I’m certainly not a genius, because I’ve also broken the Law of Use.

Story: Breaking the Law of Use

Sometime during my stay in Sofia, Bulgaria I began to “lose my edge.”

I stopped doing sales. I never created an Ecom store. I never sold anything more on Amazon.

This began to fucking eat away at my soul.

I knew I wasn’t living up to my full potential. The comfort was addicting yet poisonous. I felt a drive to grow, but I wasn’t growing.

Soon things began to fall apart in my life. While many bad things were 100% unavoidable, the strange thing is that had I applied the “Law of Use” I would’ve been 10x more prepared for the bad things to happen.

For example, I would not have had financial issues during Cyprus (after Bulgaria) or in Germany. Many problems would’ve ceased to exist, and I could’ve enjoyed these places to the fullest.

Instead I did not get to experience Cyprus how I wanted to. In Germany me & my then-girlfriend had to stay 2 nights in one AirBNB, 2 nights in another city, 10 days back in the old AirBNB, then one final night in another AirBNB just to save $.

Also, we got attacked by over 30 wasps & had no AC in the first 2 nights.

Would this have happened had I applied the Law of Use, grown my business, and then had money to properly taken care of us?

It gets worse.

The longer I went without taking action, the harder & scarier getting back into action would take.

To further compound the problem, people commended me on my current achievements, which is hardly anything, but compared to mainstream thinking I guess I’m living some exotic lifestyle.

This made me egoic & detached from reality. Because I had the knowledge of a person 10x more successful than myself, I could talk the game and impress everyone.

I began to live life in the fantasy realm, in my mind. Rather than creating a definite plan from getting “here to there,” I began to spend too much time thinking about what could be, what would be 5 years from now, and everything that I know- but not actually putting my fingers in the mud and creating this life.

It gets even worse. In the past month I’ve experienced emotions of jealousy, despair, negativity, hopelessness, and bad depression.

When you let yourself fail & feel helpless despite knowing what you know, it’s even worse than legitimately being in the shitty situation.

It gets worse, but you get the gist of it. Let me put it clearly: knowledge which doesn’t go to use will EAT AWAY AT YOUR SOUL.

And if you believe in mystical universal stuff (like I kind of do), then MAYBE you need to put the knowledge to use ASAP because of the coming changes in life!

Again, had I practiced the Law of Use in Bulgaria, things would be completely different. I violated the law, and the changing tides of life swept me away; I wasn’t as prepared as I could’ve been.

Repairing the Law of Use

So right now I’m trying to take action again, and I must confess it’s difficult.

I often feel a dark, heavy energy inside of me dragging me down. At the same time I’m learning how to relax & be in the present moment and accept the work I have to do. I’ve entered a flow state for the first time in months.

I feel quite anxious, about failure, being rejected, or completely fucking something up. This is all quite irrational, but I’ve been “out of the game for too long.”

When it comes to social circle & meeting people, I’m not “living on the edge either.” Before I put so much effort into meeting people, now I struggle with scheduling meetings (and being on time, sorry friends!!).

Video games have once again entered my life, which is never a good sign. Almost every time I start playing video games it means I’m getting dangerously depressed. Today I intend on deleting all of my video games- again.

Focusing is harder. Distractions are easier.

I feel like I’ve “lost my edge.” I feel like a dull knife, not “all there.” Going into “state” feels more difficult. I’m neither “on fully” or “relaxing fully.”

All that being said, the only way to repair the law of use is to apply the law of use. This is exactly what I’m trying my best to do now.

If you violate the law of use, you may find yourself trapped in “analysis paralysis” or simply have this nagging feeling of knowing that you could always “do more.”

This is your warning to get moving ASAP. If you don’t, there will be consequences.

The way you fix it is simple: you take action. Meet people. Work hard. Focus. Set goals. Achieve them. Fix your routine. Drop bad habits. Develop good ones. Read books.

It’s all a million times easier said than done. You can’t expect perfection of yourself, but you must try & fix this.

Final Warning

Knowledge without action is poison. Remember that. ​​

This is your last warning today, do NOT violate the “Law of Use.” It will eat away at your soul. Put to action what you learn immediately.

Setting Intentions, Reality, & Spirituality

Everything I’ve ever deeply desired… I’ve gotten.

Online business & world travel? Check. Girlfriend? Check.

Whatever I kept sustained focus on always came… of course it took a bit more time.

The hard part is of course sustaining focus for a long enough period of time. Some people may discover that they don’t truly want XYZ (money/girls/whatever).

In the book “Reality Transurfing Steps I-V,” the author explains reality as though like a dream except a bit thicker.

If you are lucid that you are dreaming, then you can take charge of the dream. Want to fly? Boom. Want sex? Boom. Want anything? Clap your hands and it’s yours instantly.

Reality is a bit delayed… but I see the concept as being true in this reality too.

The winds of manifestation are much faster in the dream realm. In the physical realm, we can explain-away our manifestations as creations of XYZ, but you’d be lying if you said you could perfectly understand reality & success & everything completely.

I’m not presenting a woo-woo spiritual concept here that is anti-science; instead science can perhaps in a way validate what is described by “law of attraction” authors.

You might be quick to say it’s crazy, but shit gets weird at really big (black holes) and really small (quantum) levels.

For example, our current technology is approaching a too-small limit. You can research this for yourself (link) but here’s what I’ve learned:

Our tech is becoming too small to work. When things get as small as our current tech is, quantum particles (namely protons) can teleport through things for no other reason than it wants to.

This is not woo-woo but instead measured science.

There’s also the double slit experiment in which quantum particles change their behavior based on whether or not they’re being observed.

Some people think this means we live in some type of matrix reality or simulation. I disagree.

I think we have a “physical world” and a “spiritual world.” We, at the same time, live forever but also die. There is a metaphysical, and a physical.

Everything has a yin and a yang. Good emotions, bad emotions. Man, woman. Above & below. Life, death. Perhaps there is physical, metaphysical?

So back to where I was initially: setting intentions.

Everything I’ve ever wanted, for one reason or another, has came to me.

And by want, I don’t mean just casually or whatever. I mean that I actually took massive action, focused daily on it, etc… it always came.

Perhaps this can all be explained in terms of physical, such as the brain’s reticular activation system. The purpose of that part of the brain is to sort information in reality based on your beliefs. If you believe there is abundance, your brain will reveal opportunity & prosperity to you.

But, as mentioned earlier, no single human or as far as I know entity can understand the entire complexity of the Universe & reality itself.

I mean, just try explain your work day to your cat or dog. Watch the expression on their face. They don’t fucking understand.

So there are things “above our pay level” which we can no doubt never understand. Perhaps some machine we invent will understand it, but it’s unlikely even the machine will be able to communicate it to us.

All I know is that sustained focus tends to bring me results in life.

For more information, I’d recommend reading “The Science of Getting Rich” or “Reality Transurfing: Steps I-V” (not affiliate links).

While we may not ever be able to deeply comprehend the strangeness of our Universe, perhaps we can leverage parts of it for our own desires.

That is all I propose here.

In fact, we probably don’t even need to understand it all. The dog doesn’t need to understand where its dog food comes from, but cares only that it’s there.

We as humans may wish to understand a bit more, but perhaps all we really need to know is to have what we want.

I can’t say I’m an expert in that, except that anything I’ve focused on & taken massive action despite struggle (persistence) has always arrived.

I make no claim that this is truth or that I know any secrets about reality.

This is just my experience, and I guess neither of us can fully have the truth can we?

Just some thoughts to chew on for a bit…

-Michael

Looking For a Home

I’ll confess. I’m getting exhausted in life, a bit depressed, and the downward momentum feels strong.

Since June of 2018, I haven’t been in one country for more than 1 month. A few days ago was 1 official month in the United States (woohoo), however I did not spend more than 1 month in Phoenix until I flew to Chicago.

I’m currently writing this on a plane back to Phoenix from Chicago, but more on that later.

Time is Flying

Time feels like it’s flying by. A couple weeks ago I woke up realizing that I’m just a few months away from turning 21.

This horrifies me, as it feels like yesterday that I turned 20 and received the best birthday gift ever from my then-girlfriend, now ex.

At 18 I thought things would be considerably different now. I had just started my online business and I had what felt like endless motivation to make things happen.

Now I’m feeling burnt out on energy, and devoid of motivation. The constant switching around of places makes it all too easy to become lazy & complacent.

Anyways, time is flying by fast and it’s a huge kick in the ass to wake up. Since May/June of 2018 I don’t feel like I’ve done anything too substantial.

I’m just worn down, and breaking up with my ex probably has a lot to do with that among the other life stressors such as some business issues & the whole travel-too-much thing.

Home Base Struggles

So why did I fly to freezing-cold Chicago in the middle of Winter from cozy Phoenix? First let’s take the story back a bit.

Following my surgery in Chiang Mai, I was pretty crushed. I felt alone, depressed, sad from my break up, and the massive physical pain following the surgery didn’t help.

A friend (who helped after the surgery, thanks V) convinced me to stay in Chiang Mai longer and to stop traveling around to new places.

The problem is she ended up leaving to Vietnam for a week, and during my period alone & in pain (though I did have one other Spanish friend I was eating with) my silly mind began once again its escapist tactics.

“Maybe you’ll be happy back in the USA,” it thought.

So I wrote passionately about moving to Las Vegas, Nevada, or Portland, Oregon. Life had essentially become an “escaping into the future.”

I purchased a flight from Chiang Mai – Phoenix for mid-December, so that I could make Christmas with the family. Then I healed from the surgery.

After I healed from the surgery (about one week) I began doing the things in Chiang Mai that I legitimately wanted to do.

For example, I met people and explore the area. I rented a motorcycle and rode it with a friend hanging on the back in the beautiful Chiang Mai mountains. I made another motorcycle friend and we explored some beautiful regions together.

Suddenly passion filled me again! I was having fun, living how I had always dreamed of.

You see, it was my dream to ride a motorcycle (or scooter in this case) around Thailand, meet people, eat delicious food, etc. When I first arrived in Thailand, I was doing none of that.

I felt scared, culture shocked, heartbroken, and I simply wasn’t putting in proper effort in order to be happy.

What I’ve learned is that happiness is really more of a choice than you could realize. You can’t say “I’ll be happy exactly now” in ALL cases (but some certainly), but you can choose to do the things and put in the effort (such as making friends) to genuinely make you happy.

The last week in Thailand was a ton of fun, but I had already purchased a flight back home. I considered skipping the flight but didn’t. In hindsight, I should’ve skipped the flight- it was made days after an extremely painful surgery which I was completely unprepared for.

Oh, another thing I’ve learned is that I need to stop playing super-human all the time. After all the crazy traveling before Thailand, heartbreak, etc. I thought I could go all alone and have a surgery all alone? Yeah, I need to take better care of myself because this is just a bit crazy.

Did I mention I also had no anesthesia? Just basic numbing. No painkillers either. No laughing gas even. I may have unconsciously chosen this because I felt guilty leaving my ex in the midst of her own life struggles. Laughing gas would’ve been a mere $60, but I was determined to save every penny…

The slight PTSD I had for a month around blenders probably wasn’t worth saving $60. Actually, I still get a bit uneasy around blender sounds. It reminds me of when I could feel the saw ripping apart my gums & wisdom teeth, the blood splattering outside my face and choking me as I was forced to swallow my blood by the cup.

Let’s get back on track now:

The problem in Chiang Mai is that I had gotten used to constantly moving around, even if I didn’t like it. Staying and putting in the effort to meet new people would’ve made me genuinely happy, but instead I was still in work-a-holic coping mode so I isolated myself in the first week. In the second I couldn’t meet anyone from the surgery. And the third was awesome, but I was already committed to leaving.

When I returned to the USA, I felt very sad for the first week or so. I was constantly upset and missing Bulgaria & my ex. The time passed by super fast, I can’t believe I had stayed almost a month in Phoenix before going to Chicago!

One really good thing I did was take up Yoga. Yoga really helped me feel peaceful, relax, and focus. It helped calm me and re-focus.

I’m still struggling with motivation, loneliness, and lots of other things, but yoga really helped grounded me to give me that tiny edge to keep moving forward.

After a few weeks in Phoenix, I couldn’t decide where I really wanted to go. I began to doubt Vegas. Portland made me nervous, I questioned if it could be anything like Europe.

What I realized is that asking an American, “hey is this city walkable,” is a ton different than asking a European if a city is walkable. American cities are designed for machines, not humans. When you can walk 20 minutes to a grocery store, that’s considered walkable, whereas in Sofia, Bulgaria (and most European cities) there’ll be like 20 grocery stores within a 20 minute walking distance.

I don’t feel particularly passionate for any of our “walkable” cities such as Chicago, Portland, Philadelphia, Boston, and New York. A lot of our American cities lack beauty & humanity like European cities.

If you like to drive, then of course you will love American cities. I wish to get around without a car or public transit because it’s healthier and I enjoy that lifestyle more.

Realizing that America is hardly suited for these desires has been a struggle. Who knows, maybe Portland or Philadelphia is actually great, that’s what I hear, but I don’t have an excess budget to visit many of these places to feel them out first.

Being as I’ve also been in Chicago, I can affirm that “walkable” in Chicago is miles different than walkable in Sofia, or all of the other European cities I’ve visited. No, it’s literally miles different. Chicago is fucking huge! And expensive…

So a part of me would love to live in the USA. It’s that part of me that just wants to speak English, understand everyone, understand the culture, and all that jazz.

The other part of me wants to be around culture, uniqueness, walk-ability, and architectural beauty, which I’m sorry but USA really lacks this.

Another side-tangent: I also don’t understand at all how the USA was developed. Look, I understand all of the cities were made after the invention of cars, but what about those people who couldn’t have cars, or how did people socialize?

For example in Krakow, Poland there is a giant main square filled with shops, restaurants, and everything you could imagine. Around the giant main square is everything else you’d need. These city squares or similar can be found in every European city packed with people. It’s where people go to meet, hangout, and be social!

Growing up before phones blew up, the only way to meet people was through other families in the neighborhood, or school. We went out in the woods (nature) or played in front of or behind the houses. That’s it.

If you haven’t been to Europe, you may not understand exactly what I’m trying to communicate here. I’d argue that it’s near-impossible to understand. Until you’ve lived the European city life, you can’t really tell.

I just don’t understand why things were developed like this. It must’ve been so hard to socialize pre-technology.

The friend I stayed with is in the suburbs of Chicago, and it was 100% lonely. The only friends he had here were friends from school. It was literally impossible to meet more people without going downtown to Chicago.

 I guess if you have an established friend group, wife, kids, etc. then the suburbs are cool but it just seems so lonely and desolate. There is no easy way to meet people and everyone is alone in their giant houses. Is that really a way to live life?

You may be able to guess where this is going: I wish that the entire European city development could be pasted into the United States of America. I wish we had their public transit, cheap flights, and walkable cities.

Who knows, maybe I’ll end up somewhere in Phoenix with a motorcycle and be perfectly content. Or for all I know Boston could be just like any other European city. What I do know is that most of what I’ve experienced reveals that it isn’t the case.

When I made the decision to fly back to Phoenix from Chiang Mai, I also had another reason deep down (which I believe I wrote about also): the Bulgarian Consulate is in Chicago, so should I decide I want to live in Bulgaria I can always apply from here.

Looking back, I think the decision was unconsciously made because I could apply- not because I intended to live in the USA. Ah, I have one tricky brain…

Getting over the whole “not living in the USA” thing is as you can see a huge internal struggle. I’m reminding myself it’s temporary, and to go where I’m happy. I’ve always been happy there, even when I was single for that last month while it hurt I at least had friends & a happy lifestyle.

 So that’s why I was in Chicago: I stayed with a friend to apply at the consulate.

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to apply; I am missing some much-needed documents which we thought I could get here but can’t. I am returning to Phoenix one week early (and wasting $, grrr) to handle my documents. When the documents are complete I’ll confirm with the consulate then fly back for an interview & application.

I’m really nervous, to be honest. There’s some quote that says something like “we are more afraid of success than we are of failure.” That couldn’t be more true.

If this Visa gets rejected from Bulgaria, it would mean that I can’t live there. If I never applied, I could at least have the opportunity. I know this is silly reasoning but you can’t deny that you’ve thought in a similar way for your goals. I’m also more afraid of living there and loving it so much I never want to return to the USA, which would (and currently is) mind-fucking to that little kid who so proudly held the American flag.

I guess I’ve traveled so much now (the world?) that I’m gonna be culture shocked no matter which way I go. USA? Reverse culture shock. Bulgaria? Foreigner forever. Anywhere else? Culture shock.

So I’ll be landing in an hour or two, and putting one foot in front of the other into getting my visa shit handled. I pray that it gets accepted, for I know I am happy there.

In the meantime, I’m working on being happy now- the first thing I’ll do is sign up for an unlimited yoga membership and continue with daily yoga. I’ll work on getting a good morning/night routine and growing my business.

My business has suffered as a result of my complacency, surgery, and heartbreak. I hate to admit it, but I’m starting over at ground zero, with a bit more cash but a lot owed in taxes that I wasn’t able to pay as a result of my mistakes.

It sucks, but I’m figuring this out, you know? I’m much more grateful that I took these risks, even if it turned into a 3 steps forward, 2 steps back kind of situation. Actually, that’s exactly what happened- 3 steps forward, 2 steps back. Time to take another 3 forward…

My goal in Phoenix is to improve my habits, get some energy back, and keep pushing forward. Being depressed is no joke but I’m gonna stay focus on Bulgaria.

I’ve also been second-guessing every decision I make, and struggling with focus. I made a lot of wrong moves recently, and some unnamed people weren’t supportive in the beginning of it and made me feel like I couldn’t make a right decision, so part of this is just regaining my own self-confidence and self-belief (which is all you really need).

I saw a movie recently, “Glass.” It was great, but watch Split before you see it. There was a deeply emotional moment for me in which someone said that “superheroes become superheroes because they believe in themselves so much it becomes true.” Nothing could be more accurate about life itself.

If you believe in yourself, you may have what you wish to have. Through all of this, I’m learning just to believe in myself again. Even though things got tough, crazy, and I made a few wrong moves, I know it’s all going to work out because I believe in myself (at least I’m trying more and more to bet on myself).

And with that, I pray I do get that Visa and fix the business and my habits and everything and I return to Bulgaria strong than before. And should that not work out, then I pray I do find my home, soon.

Namaste,

-Michael

2019 Goals

This isn’t a New Year’s Resolution. These are just general goals that I’d like to move towards in 2019.

Travel-Related Goals

Re-visit Cyprus

In June of 2018, my visa for Bulgaria was rejected and I was forced to leave with about one week’s notice. My heart wanted to go to Thailand, but for various reasons I chose Cyprus.

I let myself be so depressed in Cyprus. My life situation was completely falling apart. I was miserable.

Today I was contemplating: why did Cyprus have to be like that? Pafos is a beautiful city, there’s tons to do, and the food is delicious and people kind.

Cyprus could’ve been way more fun than it was, so I want to go back and “make right on the wrong” I did to myself.

I’d like to stay for at least 2 weeks, with friends (or make more friends there), and have a blast. There’s so much to do there, it was just my attitude at the time bringing me down.

Re-visit Krakow

Krakow, Poland is exceptionally beautiful. I could see myself living there. Who knows, maybe I’d end up living there?

There’s so much to do & see there but like Cyprus my attitude wasn’t the best and I was also in work-a-holic mode. I’d like to enjoy Poland with a bit more peace this time.

Try live in Bulgaria (or re-visit) 

I’m about to apply for immigration to Sofia, Bulgaria. I intend to live there for a year while traveling & using it as a home base. Eventually I’ll return to the USA to explore and maybe move back, but for the time being I’d like to continue my friendships in Bulgaria & life.

Let’s just hope the application goes through smoothly and I can go…

If not, I may have to do a visit, but if my visa is rejected and I can’t live there, then I don’t know what I’ll do because I don’t have contacts to live in any other country.

Visit Amsterdam

No particular reason it’s here. Amsterdam is just cool

Go Surfing

I didn’t surf in all of 2017, and I didn’t surf in all of 2018. WTF?

That needs to change in 2019.

Home Base

I’d like to acquire a temporary “permanent home base” for at least a year. I’ll still go on little travel trips but I’d like to have one main place to live. Constantly living in new AirBNBs gets exhausting and it’s too unpredictable.

Hopefully Bulgaria ends up as the home base for the year. If not, then I’m at a loss for where to go next.

Business Goals

I have a new income goal I’d like to achieve, but saving it for personal reasons.

I’d also like to make a “home office” where I end up living. If that’s in Bulgaria then I’ll get a 2-bedroom apartment, and turn one of the rooms into an office.

One business-related goal I want to have is creating a regular work routine, and a regular life routine. I basically want to setup the environment & habits needed to be extremely productive which I’ve been lacking recently.

Health Goals

I’ve been enjoying yoga recently so I’d like to sign up for a yoga membership and do yoga several times per week. It’s helped a lot recently with grounding, flexibility, and peace.

I also want to sign up for a gym membership & get a personal trainer. I’d like to work on getting shredded and really building some muscle. Recently I’ve been doing home work-outs, but they’re not near as effective as the gym I’m sure.

Finally a regular running/workout routine would be great. Recently workouts have been random and unplanned. On most mornings I work out but I don’t have a schedule, goals, or milestones. That needs to change.

Social Life

First create an epic sex life. Don’t lie you want it too.

Second create an awesome social circle with a few very deep friends to regularly hangout with, and also an expanded social circle with several acquaintances.

I like being socially connected, and it’s huge for my happiness.

Adventure & Attitude

Even if I don’t end up traveling a lot, or miss something else, I’d like this year to have a much better attitude. I should rephrase this to I intend to have a better attitude about everything.

For example if I didn’t achieve my financial goals & couldn’t immigrate to Bulgaria and ended up living in the USA, I’d want to go on trips to explore the mountains, see the stars, surf, etc. rather than letting life be dull.

What Are Your Goals?

Alright, so these are my goals. I don’t have an exact timeline just yet and I’m not focused on everything now. One thing at a time, you know? And if I don’t achieve it all that’s okay, it’s just a direction to sail the ship in.

What are your goals? Let me know. 🙂

-Michael

Revisiting Ground Zero

One of the focuses in my life recently has been growing business-wise & financially, however I have struggled on this front.

That’s strange considering I’ve grown so much in the past 2 years. Why should I struggle to grow my income now, than when I was first starting out?

I think one part of that is that I stagnated in this area of growth. It’s a lot easier to keep growing after achieving a goal than it is to stagnate for a couple years before getting back into gear.

The other part which I’ll be discussing in this post is that I’ve lost touch with some fundamental habits I had which helped me become successful in the first place.

Some of these habits were completely unintentional, a result of my situation. They still played an effect.

I have been asking myself what I was doing then which helped me stay so productive, and what am I doing now that differs from what I did then.

Here’s what I’ve learned. You may find a few good nuggets for becoming more productive in your own ventures.

Combining New & Old

All that being said, I have still grown a ton in the past couple of years in other areas of my life.

The point of this objective isn’t to do only what I was doing then but combine what I’ve learned now about productivity with what I was doing then.

For example, back then I wasn’t eating super healthy (no sugar) and I wasn’t working out almost every single day. These 2 things have vastly helped my productivity & focus. Combining them with what I had in the past should yield the best results.

Now that’s clarified, what was I doing/having then which I don’t do/have now?

Standing Desk

When I first started working on my online business, due to health complications, I could never leave the home. I was always working at home.

In order to keep my posture perfect, I converted my clothes dresser into a standing desk. Shelves were pulled out & books used as a stand to place an external keyboard. Books also elevated my laptop screen to an appropriate level.

Most of the time while I was working I was standing because my back, neck, and arms were already in so much pain. I was also able to walk & move around while working, which keeps the brain focused & active.

It’s hard to stay productive while sitting for long periods of time. Humans aren’t designed that way. Movement signals to the brain something important is happening and to pay attention.

One thing I’d like to get in the future is a standing desk, or even a normal desk. I’ve been working too much in coffee shops without an external keyboard which also has affected my ergonomics.

I’m not worried about health now, but I’m sure there’s some type of a negative focus effect being had by improper ergonomics.

Home Office

Also because I couldn’t leave home my standing desk became my “home office.”

Now I always try avoid doing work at home. “Don’t shit where you eat” is what they say, or rather don’t work where you sleep here. The reason for that is so your brain associates the office area with work, and the bed & bedroom with sleep/relaxation.

Of course I didn’t have that distinction back then, which was a downside to enjoying life, but it made me insanely productive whenever I was in my room. Rather than working in my bedroom, it was more like I was sleeping in my office.

These days I almost always work in coffee shops. I’ve visited a couple of co-working spaces also, but not enough to make it worth mentioning.

For some types of work, coffee shops aren’t that bad. Some coffee shops are also designed for laptop workers (there’s many of them in Thailand).

In those coffee shops you can be productive, but not for long. You lack the freedom of movement that a home office provides, and also the absolute focus that a home office provides.

I’ve still entered “flow states” in coffee shops, but now that I think about it almost every day of working in my “home office” was a flow state.

I hate doing work in my bedroom these days (why?), but I can’t deny that I’m much more focused there. For example, when I read, it’s super easily to “become one with the book” at home than in a coffee shop.

One of the reasons coffee shop work became the norm is because in my first travel destination, Montreal, my AirBNB lacked stable & fast WiFi. I found myself regularly visiting a superb coffee shop to do my video uploading and other work which needed a better internet connection.

While living in Sofia, Bulgaria I did almost all work at home but slowly transitioned into doing it exclusively at coffee shops. Because I wasn’t doing too high-level work then, it actually made me more productive being away from the home and having a “focus zone.”

The solution to this problem in my future is to purchase a 2-bed or 3-bed apartment and turn one of the “bedrooms” into a home office. I’ve also heard of apartments that come with an office area… I would love that.

The idea here is to still separate your lounging in the living room with friends, sleeping/sex in the bedroom, and work in the office, while also having the benefits of being at home (absolute focus, stable WiFi, etc.).

I’d still do occasional work out and about, but it is important for me to have a stable working environment.

Despite my then-vices of not working out, having health problems, and eating shit food, the isolated environment of a “home office” with a standing desk is no doubt a huge factor of my success, and also a reason I stopped growing when I lost the home office.

White Board & Sticky Board

I haven’t had a white board or sticky board since leaving Phoenix that first time, and I think it was a huge factor of my success actually.

My goals were written clearly on the white board, along with the daily goals. I could easily glance over to the white board from the “desk” to review my long-term goals and daily goals.

The sticky board had important notes & information pinned on it. For example maybe I had just completed a Facebook Ads course and wanted to run some Facebook Ads. The sticky board would have hand-written notes pinned for me to easily take & review.

Again this helped me stay focused. It’s all about environment. My environment was setup for my success.

Another thing I’ll add under this section is that I had folders & hand-written notes in the “home office.” These were easily accessible which made learning & implementation of what I learned easier.

Goal-Setting, Affirmations

On the white board I had clear goals written along with a clear path to achieve the goals. Without goals you can’t have a direction in life, instead you’re aimlessly wandering the world.

I also had my goals hand-written & easily accessible. Every night & morning I would read my goals and visualize them happening. I’d also do it while working.

Both of these things I haven’t been doing so well, and it no doubt kept me focused on the end result of what I was working towards.

Slow & Steady Growth

While living in Cyprus I went from working 5-10 hours per week to working over 40 hours per week, sometimes as high as 60 hours per week.

Not only was this not effective in growing the business, but it also burnt me out and set me back.

Back then I had ridiculously easy goals. I was more focused on habit-building than I was achieving externally. I was still measuring to make sure my habits were bringing me closer to my goals.

This will be a huge focus moving forward. You can’t change too much in too many areas otherwise you revert back to old ways. Cold turkey is hard. Slow & steady changes last longer.

My sales work started out with 30 minutes per day, then 1 hour, etc. slowly growing until I had several leads. I wish I would’ve kept up with it, but some traumatic events led me to stop working.

Moving forward I shall focus on building the habit of growing the business, rather than trying to achieve it. For example I’ll work my normal hours “in the business” and then add on 30 minutes per day “growing the business,” then 1 hour, etc.

The habit & focus is more important than the result. If you have the proper habits & focus, you will get what you want.

Constant Learning

Now that I “know more” and have “achieved more” it’s easier to fall into the trap of not thinking I need to keep learning. That mentality has set me up for failure in the past.

Even though I already “know a lot,” I found that if I keep expanding what I’m learning I feel more inspired to do the growth work in the business as well.

I’m currently reading “Laws of Human Nature” by Robert Greene which isn’t directly related to business, but the fact that I’m committed to learning & growing makes me more inspired to grow the business.

When you’re not growing… you’re dying.

Waking Up at 0530.. and Naps

I was also waking up at 0530 every single morning! My energy levels were stable and predictable because I was waking up / sleeping at the same time every day.

You don’t necessarily have to get up at 0530, but I enjoyed it then. Going forward I might wake up at 0700 or 0800, but keep it steady. The reason I’d do 0800 is so that I can stay out until 2300 or even a little later. Waking up at 0530, you can only stay out until 2100.

There’s just something about waking up early that makes you a bit more productive. It could be the silence, the mentality, or that you’re getting more sunlight throughout the day (the sun was rising very early in Phoenix also).

Whatever it is, I was a productive machine. Waking up at 0530 allowed me to easily schedule things throughout the day because I knew exactly when I was getting up and what I was doing.

Another thing which helped was afternoon naps. Every single afternoon I would take a nap for 20-30 minutes.

During these naps I would attempt “Astral Projections.” They seemed to really energize me and help me feel peaceful. For some reason after Phoenix I stopped this entirely, likely because of a traumatic event which destroyed all of my routines.

Ground Zero – One Hundred

Even though back then I didn’t have other necessary habits like working out & eating right, I had a lot damn right.

Now my job is to combine the old with the new. The first priority in my life is to find somewhere to be my “home base.”

I’m actually considering Sofia, Bulgaria, despite having been previously excited to return to the USA.

I already have so many friends in Bulgaria, and I know the lifestyle would be great, so this would allow me to focus on business & health while my lifestyle & social life continue as is.

If my immigration application to Bulgaria is rejected, then I’m not sure where I’ll go, but the first objective is to find a home base where I can be actually productive.

I’ll keep you updated on how this goes. It seems that there’s more to success than success. You don’t just work towards a goal. It’s more about building the habits that allow the goal to manifest naturally.

And my goals require new & old habits. Let’s see how it goes…

-Michael