If You Are Struggling: WATCH THIS – This Is How You Turn Your Life Around – Ed Mylett
Transcript of the Interview:
I had a really good friend of mine, I went to lunch, and he said, “I don’t know who this guy is here, in front of me.” And he goes, “Let me ask you a question. Honestly, right now, what are you grateful for?” And at the lunch, I said, “Jack shit. Nothing, brother. There’s nothing good in my life right now.” And I’m not exaggerating this to you, when I tell you this, and this is a factual story.
As I’m mouthing these words, two people walked in with an older man, both of them clearly were fighting cancer somehow. Both had lost their hair, one of the ladies had a bonnet on, and they were barely moving, and both walked by our table and gave me the most warm greeting, the warmest smile, as a stranger. And he goes, “That’s pretty freaking pathetic. You can’t find anything in your life to be grateful for right now?” And on the drive home, I’m not kidding you, I started to stack gratitude. I started to take inventory, because if you can find things to be grateful for in that space, man, is your life going to be rich when there really are external things to be grateful for.
So, my first mechanism out of that space, was honestly, to stack the things I was grateful for, and I started reinforcing it over, and over, and over again. And, what happens is, there’s this reticular activating system in our brains. And all of a sudden, because that’s the messaging I was giving myself, all of a sudden, all of these things start to come into my awareness that I’m grateful for. I start to magnetize to myself some people that I needed to find into my life, and that was the next layer. I started to see things to be grateful for: my health, my fitness, people who loved me, and what it is, it changed my state.
When I stacked gratitude, I changed what I did in the morning, and I changed what I did in the evening. And so, somehow, by grabbing control of my morning, and by grabbing control of my evening, I got some measure of control over the middle of my day. I was an out-of-control person back in those days, meaning this: I woke up worried, stressed, fearful, and I immediately start thinking about a bill I had to pay, something that was wrong, and I’m in a state of reaction to begin every … I’m talking about within six minutes of waking up, six seconds, most people listening to this, that’s what they do. I said, “I’ve got to grab control of my morning,” and I set up routines, in my morning. Maybe they served me, maybe they didn’t, but they were things I could deliver on doing for myself.
That which you do not hate, you will eventually tolerate. And I think that identifies most people’s lives. In other words, they… Average becomes sort of like this slow asphyxiation. It’s almost like an anesthetic, and that, over time, we become kind of a immune and dulled to the average that we’re becoming. I know this is true, at least for me. You probably experienced it yourself, too. And so, over time, we minimize where we’re at. In other words, “I’m a little pudgy,” instead of being, “No, you’re a fat ass.” You don’t magnify the degree to which the pain ought to be affecting you.
And so, really what he means in that, is, “Listen, you’re going to get out of your life what you’ll accept.” That’s really difficult for people, I think, to understand, is, “Look, what you think you’re worth, and what you’re going to tolerate, is absolutely what you’re going to bring into your life, and what the outward part of your life’s going to look like.” I live by that. I let myself feel the pain and the difficulty of being not where I want to be, and whatever that area is, whether it’s spirituality, my relationships, my money, I let myself feel that pain. Because, as you know, there’s two motivators, right? There’s the gaining of pleasure, wanting to go get something, chasing the dream.
But then there’s the avoidance of pain. And, for a lot of champions, that’s a pretty big driving force for them. And so, at least for me, I leverage both of those things on me, to get myself to take action.
There’s this thing people think, that like, “I’ll be happy when…” Once I get this big amazing home, or once I get this car, or once I get this relationship or an amount of money, then I’ll allow myself some happiness. The problem is, the finish line always moves. You never arrive there, right? The other part is, people think, “Well, if I enjoy myself now, I’m going to lose my drive.” In other words, if I can just wire myself with enough pain all the time, I won’t lose my drive or ambition. The truth is, there’s no correlation between the two at all. There’s no relationship between you feeling complete pain all the time, and losing drive.
And so, I talk about living in a state of blissful dissatisfaction and, the more we can begin to reward ourselves with bliss, we’re not going to lose our dissatisfaction. We’re not going to lose that. For me, our brains, this dopamine hit you get when you do something successful, if you constantly cheat yourself out of that hit, bio-mechanically in your body, less and less in the future, will you want to achieve the next level, the next dream, the next step.
And that’s why so many people stall out in life. They got to a certain point, and they cheated themselves out of the bliss, out of the celebration. It’s important that we celebrate our wins, we celebrate our lives, because it causes us to want the next bite. It keeps us hungrier, not the reverse. And so for me, I want to live in a state of being grateful and blissful now, not waiting for some future place or date that may never arise.
Self-confidence is really self-trust. So the first thing is, the people that I know that are really happy, are very self-aware. In fact, the best entrepreneurs I know, are very self-aware. They’re aware of their short-comings. They want to improve them. They want to get to the next version of themselves all the time. And so, for me, self-confidence comes… because I didn’t have it. I think anytime you meet somebody like yourself, or myself, who might now appear self-confident, it’s because I really had to find tools and resources, because I was so insecure, and shy, and introverted, so I had to find techniques and resources to build that up in me.
And for me, it’s very simple, it’s the promises that I keep to myself. If I have a habit, over and over, of beginning to stack one on top of the other, of keeping promises I make to me, not other people. In other words, the minute you begin to get external in your life, worrying about what other people think about you, you’ve lost all control, and it never fills you up. People’s admiration, people’s gratitude towards you, will never fill you up. It’s your own, it’s your own, inside. And so, for me self-confidence comes from keeping the promises I make to myself.
And, the other part of it is, being aware I’m doing it. In other words, most people don’t give themselves enough credit, all the time. They’re very aware of these 20% things, and not aware of the 80, and that’s why the dosage is so important too. You’ve nailed it. It should be 80-20, because people get addicted to this, “I’m not good at this. People don’t like this about me. I don’t feel good,” instead of focusing on the 80, and stacking up. “Well, I did eat what I said I was going to today. I did get up when I said I was going to. I made the amount of phone calls. I treated people in such a way I promised myself.” It’s not just doing those things, it’s rewarding. It’s being aware of it, and stacking that up.
When I work with athletes, the successful athletes I work with, when they’re in a slump, it’s never that they can’t hit a ball anymore, or make a shot, or swing a golf club. They’ve lost their self-confidence. Somewhere along the way, they’ve lost the ability to focus on the things they are great at, and stacking those promises they made to themselves. And the way I get them to break their slump, is not correcting their swing, or getting them positive, it’s getting them to acknowledge the small promises, showing up to batting practice early, hitting that extra bucket of balls, beginning to reward themselves for the extra promises they keep to themselves, puts them back in a state of self-confidence. All of a sudden, they’re hitting the ball great again.