Life is a game and your character determines the outcome.
Your character is malleable.
That’s the first realization you must make.
You can change.
No matter how painful.
No matter what your mind tells you.
No matter how much you want to cling to the comforts of your current life that are causing more destruction than you think.
Your character is your concept of self: who you think you are.
An amalgamation of ideas, beliefs, experiences, and information you’ve processed that compose the operating system from which you interact with reality.
For most, their character was created for them.
In our childhood, every single one of us are a product of our environment.
The fundamental human drive to learn allows us to soak up any and all information that will contribute to our survival.
With this information, we are set on a default yet mediocre trajectory.
Like a train hurling down the tracks, if we don’t learn to conduct our own adventure we may end up heading towards a dead end.
The fate of humanity is not guaranteed.
This is the case for every life form.
If we do not make intelligent and conscious choices, we may eradicate ourselves from the face of the Earth.
This is the worst-case scenario, but it is an ever-increasing possibility.
Our character determines our actions.
Our actions contribute to society and culture.
Society and culture influence the programming of other characters.
The ideas, beliefs, and information that compose the form of our character will be spread through our choices to form other characters.
The collective character will determine its own fate.
It all starts with an individual’s ability to wake up from their mediocre trajectory, change who they are, and let their actions impact the world.
The Paradox Of Personal Development
Life is a game that houses infinite games.
There are two macro games that are the most fruitful:
1) The External Game
The external game is what you choose to do with your life.
It is the self-generated goals you pursue that impact humanity.
It is your life’s work (that I help you discover and create in Digital Economics).
The thing that you dedicate your time, focus, and money to building as a modality for value creation.
2) The Internal Game
If your external pursuits are not backed by a philosophical sense of mastery, they will remain superficial and meaningless.
For every goal you pursue outward, there is a lesson you must unlock inward.
That is the paradox of personal development.
The higher you push in the world the deeper you dive into yourself… if you don’t get lost.
As you develop yourself you increase your level of mind.
At each level, you get a top-down view of your past experiences.
You start to realize the structure of the system, or game, that you were playing (or allowing to play you).
A season of internal struggle is the requirement to reach your next level of mind.
When you acquire the skill or knowledge necessary, you reach the next level of mind that solves the problem you were facing.
Like how I failed at 7 different businesses.
I tried everything under the sun.
Learned every skill I could.
Tried freelancing, dropshipping, agency work, and social media with minimal results.
Nothing happens, then everything happens.
All at once, the puzzle pieces I had been gathering clicked in my brain.
An avalanche called insight crashed into my psyche.
I knew exactly what I had to do to make my next business endeavor work.
After multiple cycles of this phenomenon, I am where I am now.
This is why no matter how much free “game” I give you, you will still have to struggle for years.
You have to battle with reality to get the lesson that makes perfect sense to you.
It won’t happen in an instant. You must commit to the path of uncertainty for life.
Superficial To Metaphysical (Chiseling Inward)
The path of the problem solver, or value creator, is how you escape the world of replaceability. Fall in love with the challenge that problems present, from superficial to metaphysical, and your ideal future will create itself. This is the infinite game.
That is a quote from my finally finished book, The Art Of Focus, launching (hopefully) this year.
To change who you are you must strike a balance between peace and progress.
You have to push outward toward meaningful goals while shedding the hardened shell of an identity you’ve formed.
Certain goals require a certain character to be achieved.
And if you neglect the inner work on your external journey you will end up trapped in a surface-level existence:
A businessman with no health.
A bodybuilder with no philosophy.
A pick-up artist with no values.
The art of self-architecture demands holistic development.
New problems will surface in your awareness as you achieve bigger and better goals, but most people neglect these, hence the state of society.
We’ve discussed how to set, pursue, and achieve meaningful goals many times in the past (like this letter), so we will focus on chiseling inward.
Think of who you are, your concept of self, as an intellectual structure you’ve built with time.
When you remodel a house, do you go straight for the foundation?
Or do you start with a small cosmetic issue so the entire house doesn’t come crashing down?
When you start chiseling away at a slab of marble, do you smack with your hammer as hard as you can?
Or do you make small, calculated taps so you don’t turn them to dust?
The same concept applies to changing who you are.
Most people want to start with deep, spiritual, and metaphysical problems that reside in their core.
If you haven’t done even the slightest bit of self-help work like:
- Going to the gym or training
- Fixing your nutrition and habits
- Acquiring high-value skills and knowledge
Then you are in for a bad time.
I would argue that the people trying to be “spiritual” without doing the superficial work are doing it for superficial reasons.
They use spirituality as a nobility card to avoid making any form of contribution to humanity by pursuing goals.
Challenge:Skill = Purpose:Profits
When all a person’s relevant skills are needed to cope with the challenges of a situation, that person’s attention is completely absorbed by the activity. There is no excess psychic energy left over to process any information but what the activity offers. All the attention is concentrated on the relevant stimuli. – Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
This is the path to a life of maximum enjoyment.
Here’s the process to follow:
1) Pursue A Goal That Is Challenging Enough
Start small and superficial.
Fix your health, finances, and mindset.
Put one foot into the unknown so you feel the stress required to kick you into action.
This gives you a lesser purpose to actualize.
2) Acquire The Skill Necessary To Achieve The Goal
It is silly to think that you can achieve self-generated goals without self-education.
You need to immerse your conscious mind in the information that will program a new identity (and give you the knowledge to attack your goals).
Follow social media accounts that give specific information related to your goals.
Purchase 1-3 books on the matter and devour them.
When you have a goal that is top of mind you begin to perceive situations with intention.
Intention = what you are stretching towards.
Information becomes more relevant and applicable to your life.
You end the mindless distraction and consumption cycle.
If you don’t know what skill to learn, consider learning high impact writing. It is arguably the most lucrative skill in the digital age. Myself and my students have proven that.
3) Hunt & Stack “Whys” To Cultivate A Personal Philosophy
If you struggle to act, it’s because you don’t have a compelling, personal, and intrinsic reason to act.
The first step is difficult, but you must take it.
Then, as you are experiencing life, keep an eye out for reasons you can collect.
I used to hate going on walks.
I didn’t see the “point.”
One day, I decided to cut some weight.
I’d gotten a bit too heavy for my liking, and a goal was formed in my mind.
I started consuming information to piece together a weight loss strategy.
Walking seemed like a great way to increase my energy expenditure.
So, I started walking 10K steps a day.
On those walks, I realized:
- I can listen to lectures and books to fuel my mind
- I can generate ideas and write content
- I actually enjoyed taking a break to get out of the house, it helped with my focus
- After I lost the weight, my daily activity was higher so I could eat more (win) while staying lean
- I can take business calls
- I can maintain a decent tan for most of the year
Now, I walk a minimum of 20K steps a day.
When I’m bored, I walk.
When I lack creativity, I walk.
When I need to go to the store, I walk.
That last point actually influenced where I live.
I don’t think I’ll ever live in a non-walkable city just because of the benefits it has brought me.
This does not only apply to walking, but to every single habit incorporated into my lifestyle.
If you don’t know “why” you are doing something, why are you doing it? That is the first sign of mindlessness.
Develop an intrinsic philosophy for each one.
Slowly cultivate the habits that forge who you are (because your choices mean everything).
4) Turn Your Pursuits Into Valuable Contributions
We live in a time where you can share your knowledge on the infinite public forum called the internet and get paid for improving yourself.
That is the best and most successful style of business anyway.
The kind that solves real, meaningful, and life-changing problems.
Most businesses fail because the problems they try to solve aren’t real.
By solving your own problems you know they are real.
You know that solving them changed your life.
Now, all you need to do is self-reflect, create a process that others can follow, and give it to others (and slap a price tag on it).
That’s how you turn purpose into profits.
– Dan Koe