Either you are getting better or you are getting worse. You sure as fuck are not staying the same!
This is me coming out of the water looking like fucking Swamp Thing back in 1997. I sure as hell was getting worse. Through my life I found out a lot of things about myself. I found out you can never tell what you are made of during the good times, that’s something you must find out in the bad times.
There were several times in life where I wanted to quit. And there were several times in life where I did quit. Having a mentality of giving yourself a way out helped get me to look how I did in that picture.
There is a harsh reality in life. A reality that took me years to figure out. Everybody comes to a point in their life where they want to quit but it is what you do in that moment that determines who you are.
I was hoping that the good Lord or the powers that be were going to gift wrap me a nice happy life. One that when I woke up there would be instant gratification, instant success, instant money, and a shit ton of happiness to go along with that. Well, Merry Fucking Christmas! As Jack Nicholson said, “While my existence grotesque and incomprehensible to you might end up saving you from the horrible existence I once lived.” You don’t have to allow your previous life make you feel, look, and act like a piece of shit! Own that motherfucker! Choke that motherfucker out! Attack it with a verocity of a lion going after its prey. As human beings, we all have the ability to fuck shit up. And when I say fuck that shit up, I mean that in a positive way. We have the ability to dominate, to overcome, to stand alone and to conquer!
Don’t allow this weakened society to make you believe that it’s ok to just be a mediocre human being. Life isn’t about a trophy- but it sure is the fuck about achieving more than what you ever thought was possible! Stay hard always!
A lot of us are full of shit! We think we are doing more than what we truly are. We are under a false illusion that just because we are working, we deserve and are supposed to be exactly where we want to be in life.
But, what the fuck are you basing that off of? For instance, I talked to a young college student the other day & he said he was working his ass off in school but not making the grades. I asked him against which he was measuring his hard work? He explained in high school he didn’t have to work that hard. So, he is measuring his level of work against a baseline of essentially nothing.
If you want to measure yourself against someone, make sure it is a person who is waking up early & going to bed late! Not from partying all night but from putting true time and effort into whatever craft they have!
We fill our heads full of bullshit on what hard work looks like. The truth of the matter is that hard work does not look pretty, the effort behind it is sometimes mind-numbing. The amount of focus involved is sometimes more than people can bear.
WHAT ARE YOU WILLING TO FOREGO? Sleep, going out partying, time with friends and family? That is when you truly know that you are working hard.
Like I say all the time- my message is not for everybody. Until you can get to the raw truth about how hard you are really working, you will always be asking yourself the question “why haven’t I accomplished this yet or succeeded at that yet?” For several years of my life, I thought I was dumb, a social misfit (which I still might be!), destined to be a failure, etc. I wasn’t any of that shit! When I was working hard, I simply wasn’t working hard enough. I was full of shit and kidding myself saying I was trying my best and giving it everything I had. It wasn’t until I truly started giving everything I had and realizing that came at a price (that some of us are not willing to pay) that things changed for me.
Sometimes you need to just look at yourself when you are trying your hardest but still not succeeding and simply suck it the fuck up and say I still haven’t done enough. So when is it enough? Only you have the answer to that. What is “it” worth to you?
So, what do you stand for? What do you believe in?
A lot of people love playing “follow the fucking leader.” They want to look like somebody else, talk like somebody else, walk like somebody else, and act like somebody else. But, the real question is who are YOU at the core of your fucking soul?
I am not saying to be someone that you are not just for the sake of being someone different. If you are the person who just likes to blend in with the crowd, that is fine. But, there are a lot of people who have different thoughts, viewpoints, opinions, etc., about many things in life and keep their mouths shut out of fear of what other people might think. When you do that for too long you don’t even know who you are at the core of your soul.
A lot of times if just comes down to wanting to be accepted and liked. There are a lot of people who are out here spending countless dollars on social media just to get more followers, views, likes and even more comments. If people don’t like what you have to say, you shouldn’t value their opinion or acceptance so much that you have to buy it or change your message or who you are. Trust me- there are a lot of people in this world who don’t like me for what I stand for and believe in. You have to be willing to accept the price of being true to yourself.
Having the courage to believe in yourself and what you stand for is a truly important thing. The people who have the strength to stand alone and speak their truth are the people who truly change the world. The ones that follow the leader rarely make lasting change.
For me, the truth of who I am was my starting line. While I had a lot more friends and people who liked me when I simply tried to fit in back in the day, I found the most peace when I finally learned to stand alone.
1st picture- me at 19 joining the military at 175lb
Middle picture- me at 23 after a 4 year stint in the military at 290+ lbs
3rd picture- me at 31, 190lbs running Badwater 135
As a 19yo, my dreams of the military helped me get on the right track. I finally felt that I had found my purpose. Little did I know just how many deep-rooted issues I truly had. While joining the Air Force was great, it couldn’t fix all of my problems.
I had buried so much of my earlier life that once all of that shit imploded in my mind, it caused my life to go into great turmoil. Gaining over 120lbs in less than three years is how I covered up a ton of insecurities and self-doubt. I was simply a big body with a very weak mind. It took a lot of self-reflection, hard work, and determination to get to the other side.
Throughout this journey I realized one thing, you are truly never done trying to improve yourself. If you are still breathing, it is not too late! Learn to be a warrior in life. Don’t sit down in defeat! If you find yourself getting weaker, become stronger! If you find yourself falling behind the crowd, run faster! If you find yourself not keeping up in school, work harder!
Never retreat, never surrender. Never look to the outside for acceptance or approval.
Become better than all of the odds in front of you and fuck managing expectations!
Always be asking yourself “what’s next?” While it is very important to be proud of what you do and have accomplished in life, it is more important to keep your mind challenged with a fresh new task at hand.
Your mind is always trying to find the easiest way out so once you accomplish a major task, your mind tells you “it’s time to celebrate!” While celebrating is good to do, don’t sit in that celebration for too long!
When I asked the young man what was next, he had no answer. Make sure you have an answer for questions about your life. The second you don’t have one, that is time wasted. You don’t find those answers by not asking yourself the appropriate questions. Where do I see myself next year? What do I want to accomplish? What are my weaknesses? Where do I want to be two years from now, etc?
It is important to spend time with yourself figuring out what the fuck you want to do and who you want to be. A lot of us have trophies on the shelves, certificates and plaques hanging on the wall or sitting on our desks BUT, make sure to look at the dates you earned these awards and the recognition. If they are more than one or two years old, it means you haven’t done shit since then.
Don’t sit back on past accomplishments! A lot of people believe that once greatness is earned it is permanent. That’s bullshit! Once you lay your head on that pillow, you are back to scratch again! Earn greatness everyday! Make sure your list of goals and things you want to get done in your life is one long-ass list that you are continually adding to while crossing things off. An unfocused mind becomes a lazy and undisciplined mind! Once again, I am not saying not to celebrate your accomplishments but I am saying the longer you keep your head up your ass, the less oxygen you have to breathe!
We are all born savages.
Our bodies adapt to so many different environments- when it is is injured, it finds a way to keep our major organs alive longer. When we are hot, it finds a way to cool us down as much as possible. When it is cold, it finds a way to keep our major organs functioning. I can give so many examples of how our bodies are made to go the distance. The problem is while our bodies are built to go the distance, our minds are not conditioned to do the same.
A lot of us take ourselves out of harsh environments, both physically and mentally. When we do that, our innate savage mentality starts to become brittle. The second we feel discomfort of any kind, our minds go straight to “what’s the best way out of this?” vs a savage mindset which asks “how do I get through this?” I am not saying there aren’t times when quitting is necessary and the right choice. This isn’t about killing or injuring yourself but is about is quitting way too early.
Maybe you are in a race going for a certain time and you realize you aren’t on pace to hit that time. That can be enough to deflate someone. Maybe you have some stomach issues. Maybe your legs are tired. Maybe you have failed a test in school several times. The brittle mind takes true advantage of you when you don’t know why the hell you are doing something. If you aren’t doing something for the right reasons, no matter how hard you are, the savage mindset can not kick in. It won’t find a way through when you believe you have nothing left. It senses the lack of commitment to this mission.
Life isn’t about putting a cap on yourself. I train everyday with a watch that clocks my time, distance and pace. Before the start of Leadville, I went to Walmart and bought a $15 watch because pace and place in the race didn’t matter.
You don’t know who you are until things get hard. Neither time nor place in the race has any bearing when your main focus is callousing your mind. A savage mindset is a conditioned mindset that knows quitting is not part of the plan. It knows that it has to find a way around any and all obstacles to complete the mission.
When you stop blaming other people for your problems....when you stop procrastinating, bitching and complaining about how unfair life is...it is truly amazing what the fuck you can accomplish with your life!
Once you realize no one is coming to save you, you only have two options- you can say “fuck it” and lay there and do nothing OR you can sack it the fuck up and become the badass motherfucker you were meant to be!
There are a lot of phonies and posers on social media and at these motivational/self-improvement conferences telling you to do shit to better yourself, how to make more money, grow your business, etc. Problem with that is that a lot of these posers have NEVER done what they are telling you to do and can’t do it either! They don’t even live the life they preach about either!
A lot of people are making money off of other people’s mental weaknesses whether it be insecurities, past business failures, being overweight, etc. These cockroaches exploit people’s weak mindset for their personal gain and fame. Sadly a lot of them don’t give a fuck about you as a human being.
While there is a lot of great content out here for free, be careful who you decide to follow, listen to, take advice from, give money to for a course, etc., for your self-improvement. Now that I find myself in this world of trying to inspire people to be better, I am seeing more frauds than the real fucking deals.
There are a lot of pockets of weaknesses that we all have and some of us fill them with lies. For many years I was one of these people. It’s important to realize that we ALL have shit that we don’t necessarily want others to know about us but once we realize that and own up to our personal weaknesses, we can start helping ourselves vs looking to others to fix us. Trust me- most of those people who you are looking to for help, while they may have good advice, they aren’t necessarily heeding their own advice.
Taking souls happens very easily and oftentimes when you aren’t even trying! The conversation after this staredown was quite entertaining to say the least!
I roamed this planet Earth for several years hating on people, judging people, and, worse yet, putting titles on people!
I walked around thinking that people who did extraordinary things and exceeded perceived limits were either crazy people of just gifted and blessed. This kind of mindset allowed me to live my life and not think twice about trying to pull off becoming an amazing human being myself.
A lot of times in life it is much easier to give yourself a get-out-of-jail-free card by putting a title on a motherfucker who just worked his or her ass off for their success! For some reason, a lot of people either don’t want to give them credit, don’t want to believe it is true or just flat out can’t imagine what a normal, everyday human being is truly capable of doing!
The truth of the matter is that most of us are fucking scared! Scared to believe that there are normal, everyday human beings out there who are exceeding limits way beyond what the normal mind is able to conceive. What we are scared of is realizing what it is saying about us- the ones who just sit back and watch these people do the “impossible!” In sports today, there is a lot of talk about “load management.” A lot of us apply that same principle to our personal, everyday lives. We scale back and falsely manage our own expectations of ourselves.
Where people think I am crazy is that I found out through a lot of self-reflection and introspection that I had been load-managing my entire life up until I was 24 years old. What I then decided to do was to mentally start doing more motherfucking sets. I started maxing out more in my life.
The first thing you have to do is stop looking at yourself as simply normal. Once you do that, you can read a book about anybody, watch a movie about anybody who has done exceptional things and realize “I too have the ability to do the same thing, maybe even better!” If you ever catch yourself questioning or putting a title on someone who has exceeded perceived human limits, stop for a second and think....what is it saying about me to question them?
I’m not crazy, I’m just not like you.
Before You Dress It Up, You’ve Got to Clean It Up!
There are a lot of successful people in this world who wonder why they still feel empty. To try and fill the void, they figure they should make a few more million, maybe buy a bigger house or a few more cars, etc. All those things just dress up the emptiness.
For me, I wasn’t even successful. I was just fucking empty. So how I dressed it up was by hiding my insecurities and fucked up life - shit, I just flat out hid! I kept wondering why whenever I faced hard obstacles I didn’t have the substance to fight through difficult times.
In life it is important to attack the inside of ourselves.... you can have money, fame, good looks, etc., and still feel empty as fuck inside. The emptiness comes from not truly liking yourself. This is why we try to dress it up!
The world made me a turd. Being abused by my father growing up, not being very good at school, having low self-esteem but faking it, etc, I tried on many costumes to hide the real me but, I finally learned at the end of the day, we all have to face the harsh reality - you can’t dress up a turd!
The only way to fill that emptiness is by going to war with yourself. You have to come to a point in your life where you like yourself enough to realize that you don’t need much at all to be truly successful.
Sometimes you fill those voids in your life in the strangest and most surprising ways but you never find that out until you have done the hard work. It’s like cooking a turkey on Thanksgiving... some inexperienced people dress the turkey and start cooking it not realizing that before you dress it, you need to clean that motherfucker out! The same thing applies to our lives- don’t start dressing yourself with material possessions before you spend the time going to war with yourself and conquering your inner-demons!
Check out this new interview with @edmylett - we touch upon a lot of new shit.
And.... Thank you all for supporting my book Can’t Hurt Me. It’s been sitting atop the Amazon charts since it’s release in December. I am truly humbled by the response to the book and this community. The number of lives positively impacted and forever changed by the book is astounding!
Remember- I am not the hero of the story- you are!