Building the New You
Let’s forget about money and business for a moment. On Jack we’ve been discussing a lot of ideas about starting over and breaking free of the ball and chain that is our modern existence. I don’t believe most of us actually feel that we’re being oppressed or deprived so much as we just want to feel alive again. It’s almost as if our Technicolor world has been dulled down to black and white. For me an unconventional life is the answer. I accept that the kind of life I’m striving for may not be for everyone and the lengths that I am willing to go to achieve it may be too much for some. Change is hard and scary, and never easy. However not changing and continuing on in the same unsatisfied state is even scarier to me. Over the past few years I’ve lost several family members and also seen the deaths of many people close to my age. I’ve not so much realized that time is short, but have grown to embrace it.
In deciding to move ahead with my goals I’ve had to commit to many changes in my life beyond just those concerning my finances and income. One of the most difficult for me to put into use is that of walking away from those people in my life who just “don’t get it.” When you choose to be more or I should say recognize that there is more in life and that you want it, the critics will multiply like rabbits. Unfortunately some of your worst critics will be the quietest and the closest to you. They will seem like the mature voice of reason, always cautioning you and imploring you to think about what you’re doing. Let me be clear on this, if you truly want to succeed in this life you must silence those voices of doubt and learn to trust and rely on your own thoughts and opinions.
Family and friends are very important in your life. They can be a valuable source of support, comfort, and ideas. There is a dark side to these relationships though. These people also have a tendency of deciding very early on what kind of person you are and want you to be. Any move out of this “box” can cause serious unrest and questioning in their lives. When you take it upon yourself to rise beyond your accepted position in life it can make others very uneasy and even resentful. People have the habit of making those things they are afraid of doing into impossible tasks that no one can do; in doing so they excuse their fear and unwillingness to change. When you accomplish the supposed impossible task though you upset that logic, and disrupt the quiet order of the lies they have built to comfort themselves.
Always remember true friends want you to succeed. They will take joy in your accomplishments and offer a hand up when you fail. A smart friend will even help you pursue your dreams and goals and in so doing move closer to their own. If your friends aren’t what I just described it’s time to give some serious thought to the company you keep. Just as thoughts of poverty will keep you poor, surrounding yourself with the unimaginative, the doubtful, and the cynical will keep you from succeeding. If you find yourself to be one of these people then you need to find a way to change your thoughts and habits if you truly want to be happy. I’m not advocating that you abandon all your friends and we all know that we are stuck with our families; however we don’t have to allow them power over our lives. If you have negative people in your life learn to insulate yourself from their advice and thoughts if you can’t get away from them.
Finally there is one person that you must get rid of at all cost though and that is the old you. I hear a lot of people talk about “The Real Me” or the “old Me.” Sometimes I fell like there are a lot of undiagnosed schizophrenics out there. Personally I don’t believe that people can change who they are. I don’t think you can actually become someone new. I do however believe that we can change the things we do, and in so doing change the character of our personality. So when I say we need to get rid of the old person we have been or were I mean it’s time to adopt some new habits, ways of thinking, and priorities. Fight Club is a great movie and book in that it graphically illustrates this concept in a literal form. Jack hated his life and who he was, but Jack was afraid of change and comforted by his routine life, so Tyler Durden was born. Tyler was everything Jack wasn’t and in channeling Tyler Jack found a way to become the man he wanted to be. To dumb it down, you need to think about how you want to live and be. Now think of the things that kind of person would do. These are the things you need to start doing.
You as a grown-up and a person who takes responsibility for their life need to abandon and walk away from the things that hold you back. It might mean saying goodbye to people you have known a long time. It might mean walling off family members and silencing their dissenting voices. On the outset this seems a cold and harsh approach, but it’s an honest one. Success requires sacrifice and commitment there is no room for half measures. We are where we are today because of the habits and routines we adopted earlier in life. If we hope to move ahead into an unconventional life filled with passion, excitement, and wonder then we will need to let go of those old ways of thinking. We must let go of old hurts and old grudges. Success is always the best revenge.