Routine, habits, discipline… this is how you reach SUCCESS! EVERY DAY you need to grind and put in that 80 hours a week sacrificing anything even remotely enjoyable. Have a 6-pack, make 6 figures a MONTH, and drive a Bugatti. RAIN, SNOW, SLEET… FUCK your off-day. Vacations are for pussies!
Nature has but a few things that are routine or habitual. The sun will rise in the morning and set in the evening. The Earth will rotate yearly which gives us the opportunity to experience seasons, whether that be a drastic change (Massachusetts) or minimal (Cancuun). The leaves will drop in the Fall, they’ll grow anew in the Spring. So, yeah, it’s going to have it’s habits. It’s going to have regular occurrences. It’s going to have expected behaviors.
But from time to time there’s the freak storm that blows through, an earthquake that rattles the ground that we walk on, or a bird takes a shit on your head (I’ve heard it’s good luck, but it’s still quite the mess to clean up). Animals can act erratically too. Your pet dog may just sleep all day on a Monday, but then come Friday it has a case of the zoomies. Sound familiar?
“It’s 5am, I need to get to the gym so I can get my workout in before my 9am meeting, but I need to make sure I get a latte-mocha-chino-frappe with my avocado-egg-vegan-swiss-protein wrap on my way and then I have a flight I need to make at noon for the merger and be back home by 7pm so I can watch Johnny’s big game, but I’ll make sure to have my cell phone and laptop so I can get my work done. Then Tuesday I’ll do it again, but I don’t have to fly anywhere again until Thursday.”
I’ve heard and seen this nonsense before. These people are too busy to realize that they need to drink a water or rip a fart. They put the smile on their face but when they finally pull back the curtains they reveal the stress that they juggle daily, the bullshit they endure with their co-workers/peers, and the constant of trying to keep up with the Jones’s. Typically, their physical and mental health reflects it. Tony Robbins once said that, “The words we use is the reality that we create.” The same people that lived a life like that would text me with depressing complaints about a life that’s been formed through choices they’ve made. I entertained it for a bit in hopes that I could shed some light on their train of thought, but some people just loooooove complaining.
Too often do we get so busy that we miss all the beauty that life is laying out for us. I live on a very busy street in the heart of Plymouth, MA that rattles daily with loud cars/motorcycle gangs, first responders that keep their sirens on, and people that can’t handle their liquor. When it FINALLY gets quiet down here… nature’s simplicity and peace finally shines through. The tree out front reflects its’ foliage as the crisp autumn air blows. The ocean gives off its’ deep navy blue color with crests of white sporadically as miniature waves crash. Gray and white clouds glide across the horizon, peacefully as if they’re the pillow to the dark blue comforter that lies on nature’s bed.
When we’re answering emails, phone calls, pushing for our own versions of success, we may see these small gifts of sight that are laid before us on a day to day basis, but in no way do we actually have time to appreciate its’ wonder and absorb what we see. Not to mention the smells that are carried on the wind, the rustling of the leaves on the tree, or the chirps of the small flock of birds that have yet to descend south… reminding us that “winter is coming.”
There are days that I’m up, exercised, meditated, journaled, showered, and out the door to do a million and one things by 9am… but there are ALSO days that I glance out the window and glance at my “to-do list” like a chess match. If my errands and tasks spilled over to tomorrow, would my life change drastically? Am I able to take today and enjoy the peace that I’m surrounded by? Will the world end if I go hash it out endlessly with Verizon tomorrow instead of today?
Nope… Fuck it. Today has become a day of reflection and stillness. Even damning a fast flowing river for a single moment would create more pressure for its’ subsequent release.
People title these times as “vacations” or a “vacation day.” Or most employers do, I guess. You usually have to plan them in far in advance… so come these planned days off you could be stuck with weather conditions that resembled a hurricane or be so inundated with other unexpected stressors that you can’t enjoy it. Ever gotten sick right before “vacation?”
Spontaneous “Fuck-it days” are necessary. You can meditate forever, but there are still going to be emotions that creep up when your mind, soul, and body avoid the rest you desperately need. There’s such a thing as “overtraining” for your body, so there’s such a thing as “overtraining” your brain/soul. Honestly, I hit it that point so quickly I feel as if I should trademark “Fuck-it Days.” Maybe it’ll be “Phuck it Day” and put it on a T-shirt?
Put it this way… I’ve been called “lazy” or “undisciplined” and “dipshit.” The latter was by a random person on the internet, so it hit the hardest. These were mostly on days that I knew I was at work begrudgingly for many days in a row and obviously, not much good came of it. But remember – there is no darkness, just a lacking of light. There is no coldness, only lacking of heat. So is it really “lazy?” Or is it really “undisciplined?” Or is there just a deeper misunderstanding happening? Even sports competitors take unexpected “time outs” when a leader notices that they need a break. Perhaps that should be more widely looked at in professions besides sports?
Maybe your passion does not coincide with whomever spoke the harsh words? Or perhaps, are you easily distracted and your passions fall wayside because of toys, media, and fear that’s manifested as avoidance? Or do you not entirely care that the 711 slushie machine has dust on it? It’s liquid poison anyways.
Artists take a lot of these moments that we’re blessed with and create from their soul and their perspective. Critics lean on the other side of the scale by taking content made by an artist and speaking their opinion on it. Professional critics can get so skilled at absorbing people’s content and spitting out opinions that they may never create anything themselves. Sure, there has to be balance because a 3 year old can’t build a Michaelangelo sculpture… but some can finger paint like a mother fucker.
We all have the ongoing battle of the critic vs. the artist within us. Critics can tell you that the only way to the top is by grinding it the fuck out at that law firm and burning both ends of the candle. You’ll be happy when your bank account says so. You loved playing the paino when you were in school and had more time, but now “priorities” come first. The habit of consuming everyone else’s creations at all time (food, videos, pictures taken by other) feeds the critic. Small doses of such a thing can help spur inspiration and innovation feeding the artist, perhaps even steering you from what’s stealing your soul and helping you create again.
But a man needs to eat! So yes, there are days we get up and do some grinding to put money in someone else’s pocket. It may include travel, unwarranted respect to a superior, or just living in what can feel like an utter waste of time. But with the discipline of working on your passions, creating a healthy set of habits to engage said passions, and mastering your craft through that 10,000 hours of discipline… maybe one day that we do wake up and have to grind…we can be making money for ourselves instead of selling our souls daily for that wretched Mr. Burns.
Love thyself, take care of yourself, and be aware of what your soul needs. Create, admire, engage curiosity, genuinely spread positivity, exercise, eat well, drink water… and STRETCH. Be in the business of understanding there is only one YOU for this world and everyone else in it. When you take yourself your next Phuck-it Day™ remember… it’s just business.