We spend an average of 3 hours and 15 minutes on our smartphones, and the top 20% of smartphone users have daily screen time of over 4.5 hours. 1 With the average user spending 143 minutes daily, the world spends 720 billion minutes using social platforms. Over a full year, that adds up to more than 260 trillion minutes, or 500 million years of collective human time. 2 We spend at least 3-4 hours daily picking up our phones, using social media platforms, and interacting on instant messenger platforms, among other media.  That means we spend at least 1/8th of our time daily surfing the internet; if you are going to be alive for 80 years, that would amount to close to 10 years of your short life spent surfing the internet.

90% of the data in the world today has been created in the last two years. Everyday, we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data–so much that 90% of the data in the world today has been created in the last two years alone

Social media is one of the greatest innovations in the past three decades. But having said that, I also believe, like most technologies, are beginning to cause more harm than good. We are all in a collective digital slumber, busy scrolling through our timelines, as educator Neil Postman noted in his 1985 book “amusing ourselves to Death.” The quest for virality and validation is so seductive that it takes a lot of self-discipline not to fall into the trap of spending an enormous amount of time on these platforms.

Lose the battle but win the war.

Play the Long Game (idiom) 1: to plan and do things that will help you to be successful far into the future, rather than only thinking about the present or near future. Life is a marathon that requires playing a long game. Being successful in this game involves starting with the end in mind, knowing your why, and working on your plan. One of the most essential lessons from finishing multiple marathons is that your outcome is somewhat predictable. As the marathon chart below shows, a certain amount of minutes per mile must be run to finish at one’s intended finish time. We play the way we train; if you cannot do it during training, executing it on game day will be hard. When you play the long game, you plan your pace and not go too hard at the start.

“All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake up in the day to find it was vanity, but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible.” – British Army Colonel T. E. Lawrence, The Seven Pillars of Wisdom:

Dreaming is cheap; almost everyone dreams, but executing the dream is often expensive. Your dreams will only be wishes until you start doing something about it on a daily basis. You don’t have to be great to start, but you must start to be great. We all have greatness in us and have potential energy inherent in us, but we need kinetic energy to bring forth our potential. For most of us, our potential energy gets unused as a result of childhood programming, societal indoctrination, religious dogma and familiar naysayers that disrupt our kinetic energy. There is a price to be paid to achieve your dreams, which involves betting on yourself, showing up daily, having faith and executing relentlessly. Dreams are free, but executing them is expensive. Your dreams are valid, but you must do whatever is necessary to achieve them.

Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do. – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

You Go First is a metaphor for being the first to make a move, take the initiative, and, in the process, get what you want. We often wait for the right moment, for the government to get their acts together, for the right clime or to get lucky. But as the Scandinavian proverb goes, “There is no bad weather, we only have inappropriate clothing”. The key is to be prepared for the weather, keep showing up, take initiative and execute relentlessly. The universe is neutral and often rewards the self-starters, self-motivated and go-getters that “Go First.”

 Don’t wait to be contacted by a writing agent; start a blog. Don’t wait for people to reach out first; reach out. Don’t wait for the perfect time to start that business; make a move today. Don’t wait for the stars to align; re-align your values and live every day with your priority in view. Don’t wait for the stranger to say Hi; smile at them first, and magic could happen in the process.

There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.’ – Elbert Hubbard

If you don’t want to be criticized, say nothing, do nothing and be nothing. The moment you say something, do something and stand for something, you become a target for people’s opinions, comments and criticism. Some of this external input would be warranted, most would not be helpful, while some would be subjective. The key to navigating the opinions of others or the Fear of others’ opinions (FOPO) is to know your truth, trust your judgment, learn from well-intentioned criticisms and stay off the comment section. Never explain, those that need it don’t matter and those that matter don’t need. Everyone has the right to their opinion but not to the facts. The fact is that we are beings having a human experience, and that entails making errors, mistakes, and shortcomings.

In The Book of Boundaries: Set the Limits That Will Set You Free, Melissa Urban, co-founder of the wellness program Whole30, shares strategies for setting boundaries, prioritizing personal needs, and nurturing long-lasting relationships. The book also includes 130+ scripts for setting boundaries which leads to better mental health, increased energy, improved productivity, and more fulfilling relationships.

In What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful!, executive coach Marshall Goldsmith identifies fundamental problems that often come with success–and offers ways to attack these problems. He outlines twenty habits commonly found in the corporate environment and provides a systematic approach to helping you achieve a positive change in behaviour.

The difference between success that happens because of our behavior and the success that comes in spite of our behavior

The big picture is the entire perspective on a situation or issue. The big picture concerns a broader perspective or outlook on current events. Focusing on the big picture is getting more challenging as we are readily distracted by the short-term instant gratification of our internet-powered world. In a micro-wave world where we are more excited about sharing a goal on social media than focusing on the mechanics of actually getting the goals executed.

Courage is not the absence of fear; it is feeling the fear and doing it anyway. Whenever you try to do something beyond your reach, it will be scary and require a bit of bravery to pull it off. Scary is subjective, as what is scary for me right now may be a walk in the park for you. Growth is on the other side of your fear. Being scared indicates that you are human and that red blood cells run through your veins. Putting yourself out there, leaving your comfort zone, setting a challenge for yourself, attempting the somewhat impossible, trying to break personal records, and stretching oneself can be scary. As ancient Rome stoic philosopher Lucius Annaeus Seneca once quipped, “It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, it is because we do not dare that they are difficult.'”

Aristotle once quipped, “We are what we repeatedly doExcellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” We get rewarded in public for what we repeatedly do in the dark. One of the hallmarks of high-achieving people is that they are usually the hardest workers in the room; they go the extra mile, sweat the small stuff and stay consistently self-disciplined on the path to achieving their goals. As the saying goes, How you do one thing is how you do almost everything. The self-discipline required to repeat reps, laps, drills and sessions in the gym is required to study for an exam, build a business, or follow through on a commitment. Overnight success usually takes 10 years of consistently working on your craft, becoming a better version of yourself, making daily progress and trusting the process.

We are what we repeatedly doExcellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. – Aristotle

The Power of Reps

I can attest to the power of repetition in the daily improvement that I am experiencing in my wellness plan. I spend an average of 2-3 hours daily exercising. I start my exercise regimen daily with swimming laps, then go for basketball shooting drills and running for 30 minutes on the treadmill during cold months or 1 hour during the summer months. I repeat almost the same drills and laps every session, becoming muscle memory activities as the day passes. I am not where I want to be in most of these activities, but I am not where I used to be. The daily consistent practice and repetition are adding up, and I notice the improvement with time. It can be frustrating shooting the basketball during drills, and they are not entering the net, but with patience, perseverance and commitment, it is going to get smoother. As the saying goes, “Slow is smooth, smooth is fast”. We play the way we train; if you can’t do it in training, it is going to be hard to execute when it is showtime.

The above image shows my exercise training regimen for the month of July. I was in the gym for 108 hours, and I exercised for 31 days straight, covering 809 KM in the process. It takes a lot of dedication, self-discipline and commitment to pull this through. Have the end in mind, start with why, trust the process and be patient with yourself.

The central governor model suggests that exertion is throttled by some central nervous system mechanism that receives information about energetic bodily needs and motivational drives to regulate exertion and, ultimately, to prevent homeostatic breakdown, chiefly energy depletion. 1 The central governor is proposed to be some central nervous system mechanism that takes as input information about energetic needs, current physiological states, and various motivational drives to regulate physical exertion to save the organism from catastrophic homeostatic failures during physical exertion.2

The model offers a plausible ultimate explanation for why self-control seems to wane over time. Without a central governor that throttles physical effort, people might exert themselves to the point of hurting themselves and causing serious bodily damage. No bodily harm is caused by mental exertion, but the same throttle mechanism is thought to be at work. 1

In $100M Offers: How To Make Offers So Good People Feel Stupid Saying No, entrepreneur Alex Hormozi shares strategies for crafting an irresistible profitable offer and how to turn advertising dollars into (enormous) profits using a combination of pricing, value, guarantees, and naming strategies. The Grand Slam Offer as Alex calls it, would make people feel stupid saying no.

Interpersonal troubles are caused by intruding on other people’s task or having one’s own tasks intruded on. – Ichiro Kishimi, The Courage to be Disliked

Our main business is to find our purpose here, serve the world and stay true to ourselves. Our inability to mind our business is at the root of our unhappiness and anxiety. We doom scroll on social media, watch and listen to negative news all day, set unattainable expectations for others, and try to shield others from taking responsibility for their actions. When you mind your business, you put your priorities right, guard your time like it is your life, and focus on what matters. As Chinese inventor and author Lin Yutang wrote in The Importance Of Living,  “Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.”

We all see the pattern when someone dies; people cry, mourn, grieve, and eventually move on at some point. No one gets out of life alive; it is the common denominator for everyone: Everyone dies. When you fully understand the reality of your eventual demise, living your life on your terms should not be challenging, but it is hard. This is not a drill session; this is the real deal; you are not coming back; we’ve all got one shot at life. As Mae West once said: “You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” Most of us delay living and coming into our lives purpose as we delude ourselves that we will be here for a long time. The reality is that no one is promised tomorrow; we all say life is short, but we rarely live every day like it could be our last.

You only live oncebut if you do it right, once is enough.”

We delay living our lives by postponing everything to someday; we live in a someday isle. We are going to start that business eventually, start the not-for-profit when we retire, start a fitness regimen when the kids go to college, and start meditating when the challenges that we are dealing with have subsided. We live in autopilot, a trance, quiet desperation and tip-toeing towards our grace daily. The cemetery is said to be the wealthiest place on earth as most of us still have our greatness untouched, our potential unleashed, our purpose undiscovered, and our bliss unfollowed. As Greek philosopher Seneca once quipped, “An unexamined life is not worth living”. In the same vein, An unlived life is not what examing.

Take therefore no thought for the morrow; for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

How strange it is, our little procession of life, wrote Stephen Leacock 1

The child says: ‘When I am a big boy.’ But what is that? The big boy says: ‘When I grow up.’ And then, grown up, he says: ‘When I get married.’ But to be married, what is that after all? The thought changes to ‘When I’m able to retire.” And then, when retirement comes, he looks back over the landscape traversed; a cold wind seems to sweep over it; somehow he has missed it all, and it is gone. Life, we learn too late, is in the living, in the tissue of every day and hour.”

One of the worst features about worrying is that it destroys our ability to concentrate. When we worry, our minds jump here and there and everywhere, and we lose all power of decision. However, when we force ourselves to face the worst and accept it mentally, we then eliminate all those vague imaginings and put ourselves in a position in which we are able to concentrate on our problem.

When we worry, our minds jump here and there and everywhere, and we lose all power of decision.

“Life is not a practice session; there’s no dress rehearsal. This is it. This is for real. So play it straight and be real with yourself. ”

There is no treading water in life, no running in place, because everything is in motion. If you’re not improving, enriching, building, unfolding—if you’re not adding assets to your personal and professional value every day—then you’re headed down the curve.


  • Daily Calm with Tamara Levitt – Santosha
  • It is easy to succumb to thoughts of inadequacy and lack; we get fixated on thoughts like – I will finally be okay when I reach my goal weight, get that better job, or find that relationship. Once I have this, everything will be fine.
  • The stories we tell ourselves about our life suggests something is always missing. Some incomplete pieces keep us from happiness. It is great to have goals, but it becomes unhealthy when we base our happiness on an ever-elusive external plan.
  • Sanskrit word “Santosha” – San means completely or entirely, while Tosha means acceptance or contentment. Sontasha means complete contentment, finding satisfaction with who we are right now.

Once you shed your distorted lenses and self-doubting beliefs, there’s a good chance you’ll discover that you’re pretty awesome. And that the light burning within you is a far more accurate reflection of who you are than the stories you’ve been telling yourself.

  • Daily Jay with Jay Shetty – Preventing Overwhelm


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