What’s your uniqueness?

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”

Oscar Wilde

Only you can be the best at who you are. No one can beat you at that game.

On the other hand, trying to mimic the mannerisms, behavior, style, etc. of others, will never get you far. You’ll always be the poor knockoff version of the original.

E.g., if you like a certain type of music that none of your friends in your social circle like, don’t try to pretend that you also like what they like. Embrace 100% of who you are. Everything you say or do is cool because it comes from you, and you set the standard of what is cool.

Makes sense? Look at this way: if you’re trying to be cool (standards set by others), you’re basically by definition not cool.

Find your uniqueness and focus on that.

KRISTJAN

5 core habits that drag you out of depression

If I had to pick five habits that I consider life-transforming, they would be the following: waking up early, meditating, exercising, reading books, and focusing on your passion.

You might have a different opinion, and that’s fine, obviously. These are the activities that relate to me. I personally have benefitted tremendously from these, and maybe you will too. You really can’t go wrong with any of these. They are powerful!

Wake up early

Wake up early every day, no just on workdays. For me, no matter what, I have to be up before 9 am, and I follow this rule religiously.

It doesn’t mean I won’t wake up even earlier – it just means that this is where the line is drawn (it applies even if it’s Sunday or if I happen to go to bed at 5 am).

For most people, waking up before 9 is probably a no-brainer. But, for me, I have always been struggling with this. I sometimes woke up at 2 pm or even at 4 pm.

Waking up so late made me feel miserable as I felt that I wasted a whole day. Therefore, this habit has had an enormous effect on my life. If you want to find out how I did it, search my blog, I have an article about it.

Many successful people also swear by waking early. Early mornings are a perfect time to do your work (passion), read a book, build your business, or something else that would benefit you. You have full energy, and there are no distractions and unpredictable variables distracting you.

Meditate

It’s one of those activities that a lot of people don’t do because they don’t see immediate results. Or they think it’s a waste of time.

The effects will come, but they slowly and without any obvious signs. It’ll take time before you notice a change.

For me, the main benefit is that I feel a lot calmer in chaotic environments and situations. I don’t become immediately as reactive as I did before. Also, I’m quite sure it has helped me more in controlling my emotions and in my focusing ability.

Essentially, meditating is exercising for the mind as you’re strengthening your prefrontal cortex – the part of the brain associated with rational thinking and decision making. You will be a lot better prepared to resist urges and impulses.

Exercise

There’s a reason we’ve all heard it a thousand times. It’s because it works. You must exercise!

Read books

Starting to read books was probably one of the main factors that got me out of a negative downward spiral I was in for years.

Good non-fiction (and some fiction) books offer substantial value.

I think it’s crazy that people who are really successful in their fields have brain dumped all their knowledge into a 10 dollar paperback. They teach you everything they know and tell you how to get what you want – and most people don’t bother. They play games on their phones and browse IG instead.

I know why actually – the author Carol Dweck explains in her book” Mindset” that some people have a “growth” mindset whereas others are in the “fixed” mindset. But that’s another story.

So, read non-fiction books on business, money, psychology, self-help, marketing, and of course (auto)biographies.

“Deep Work” by Cal Newport was one of the first self-help books I read, and it’s still one of the best ones I’ve ever read. Sometimes I think that this book saved my life. For me, this book is not just about the importance of being able to focus, but it also opened my eyes to the whole self-improvement world.

Do your “one” thing

The concept comes from the book called “The ONE Thing” by Gary Keller. The basic idea is this: find out what is the most important thing for you and do it every day. Maybe it’s writing, painting, photography, building your brand, religion, bodybuilding, or something else.

Everyone has their “one” thing. It’s the thing you’re passionate about, and that fuels you when you do it. This is an important indicator! It has to give you energy – otherwise, it’s not your thing.

Conclusion

So, if you’re depressed or feel your life is in a rut, implement these habits. At least try them before taking any anti-depressants.

The combination of clearing your mind and body from toxins and negative thought patterns (meditating and exercising) coupled with adopting your mind to a growth-mindset and feeding it inspiration (reading books), and giving you a sense of purpose (doing your thing), is extremely powerful. Probably more powerful than any medication.

PS! As a “bonus”, I would add eating healthy – or rather – avoiding junk food (sugar, processed foods, white bread). The problem with junk food is not only that it makes you gain weight, but it also lacks in nutrients. Lack of nutrients will affect negatively your body as well as your mind.

KRISTJAN

How to set goals: simple, effective tips

First, as Ray Dalio wrote in his “Principles”, you can have just about anything you want, but not everything you want.” So, I recommend writing down everything you want to achieve, then take the three most important ones, and forget everything else (at least for the time being).

Second, be really clear and precise about what you want. Don’t be vague like “I want to become successful.” Who doesn’t?

Third, write down clear (again!) actionable steps that get you there. What are the steps you need to take that you know if you’d do them, you’d get to your goal? It’s best to break down big steps into smaller chunks that make sense. If your goal is to climb Mount Everest, you wouldn’t write down the steps, as e.g., 1) get to the base of the mountain; 2) climb to the top. They’re way too abstract and massive.

Fourth, write down estimated timeframes for these steps, or at least for some of them.

Fifth, read Grant Cardone’s “The 10X Rule” and realize that you should set 10X higher goals than you normally would. Don’t hold yourself back! If you limit yourself, then it’s near-impossible to get 10X results as well.

KRISTJAN