The Ladder of Prioritization: How to Focus on What’s Important

Ladder of PrioritizationIn War of Art, author Steven Pressfield introduces the Principle of Priority. He says:

“The Principle of Priority states (a) you must know the difference between what is urgent and what is important, and (b) you must do what’s important first.”

But how do we determine that difference? How do we know what’s important? When it comes to building a better body, how exactly do we know what to focus on? Where is our precious time best allocated? Where should our priorities lie?

In truth, our priorities determine our behaviors. They determine our decisions and, ultimately, the actions we take.

If our priorities are non-existent, then it becomes difficult to know what to focus our efforts on. If our priorities are not in line, then poor decisions will only lead us to the wrong place faster.

Getting our priorities straight is an essential step to achieving better health and a better body (not to mention a more productive life). In this post, my goal is to show you a very simple framework that can help you re-shape your perspective on priorities.

Let’s dig in. [Read more…]

The Power of Results: How to Effectively Track your Progress

How to Track Your ProgressQuick question of the week:

What motivates you?

What is the one thing that really keeps you going?

After some serious pondering and maybe a shot or two of espresso, the answer should hit you like a sack of potatoes:

Progress.

Results (or progress of any kind) is in an incredible motivator. It’s what drives each and every one of us. It’s what makes us stick to our goals, our workout plans, our diets, our careers and our hobbies.

Results spark a fire inside of us. Progress assures us that everything we’ve been doing so far is right. That all the time we’ve invested to get to that point has been completely worth it.

And so we keep going.

Because, like I’ve said before, results drive results.

Its a beautiful, self-perpetuating cycle.

But to enter this cycle, you need to set up some sort of feedback system that will allow you to see and analyze changes over time. Changes in your body. Changes in your workouts. Changes in your habits.

You need to record some simple data points along your journey.

And it’s much easier than you think.

Let me show you how to set up your very own tracking system. [Read more…]

Hack Your Schedule: 20 Simple Ways to Build a Better Body at Work

Standing DeskIt’s not always easy to find time.

As we know, time (or lack of it) is an issue for many.

We work long hours, face congested schedules, and have a million and one things to do before we find time for ourselves.

Understood.

But, I don’t think lack of time should hold anyone back from building a better body.

We just have to be a little creative with how we spend our time.

If we do some out-of-the-box thinking, it’s actually fairly easy to find ways to incorporate healthy habits and activities into our already busy schedules.

So let’s think…

Where and how is most of our time spent?

Simple: at work, sitting at a desk behind a computer and dealing with emails, spreadsheets, models, and attending more meetings than our bodies and minds can handle.

So why not kill two birds with one stone?

If we’re already spending 8-9 hours a day at work, why not incorporate simple strategies that will help us build a better body while we’re there?

It’s easier than you think.

Today I’m going to show you how you can hack your schedule. I’m going to show you 20 simple ways you can build a better body at work.

Let’s dig in… [Read more…]

Why “Lack of Time” Should Never hold you back from Building a Better Body

lack of time is not an excuseQuick question:

What is one thing that’s holding you back from building a better body?

Think about that for a second.

If you’re like the majority of my readers who I presented this question to in my free newsletter, your answer is fairly predictable:

Lack of time.

Lack of time, it seems, is the greatest obstacle people face on their journey to a better body. We all want to make time for exercise and healthy eating. We know it’s important.

But, we still falter.

We’re way too busy, we claim.

We have jobs to go to. Careers to be successful in. Children to take care of. Businesses to run. Tests to study for. Parties to go to. Research papers to write. You name it.

We claim we don’t have the time, but today I want to show you why that’s a bunch of baloney (and baloney sucks!).

I want to show you why lack of time should never hold you back from achieving a better body.

Let’s begin. [Read more…]

Interval Sitting, Micro-Breaks, and the Myth of the Perfect Posture

Perfect PostureThe other week I got a chance to attend a neat little workshop held by my good friend David Wu from Student of Movement.

The workshop was called Destroy Desk Posture.

Sexy topic, I know.

But it’s a topic of incredible proportions. A topic essential for those of us who put in major time with our butts neatly tucked away in our comfy chairs. Whether you work a desk job, spend hours writing research papers, or spend endless days in front of a mountain of textbooks, sitting affects you. Big time.

The implications prolonged sitting has on our posture, our movement, and our health in general is akin to many of the deadly diseases we fear so mightily. It can and will kill us if we choose to ignore its powerful effects.

The Destroy Desk Posture workshop was full of strategies on how to combat these negative effects. David went over some powerful corrective exercises, assessment techniques, and little tips and tricks on how to negate the degradation.

And it just so happened that on the day of the workshop our city got hit with a pretty big snowstorm causing most of the people who signed up to back out.

Except me.

I was a lone soldier standing (I got good winter tires!) and I got a chance to pick David’s brain one posture-improving tip at a time.

Here’s what I learned…

[Read more…]

Better Your Life One Picture at a Time

One Photo a DayLife is beautiful.

There are so many small, joyful, funny, and tragic moments that happen over the course of our lives that it begs us to ask the question:

How are we going to remember it all?

This was the question posed by young director Cesar Kuriyama in a very inspiring and intriguing TED talk I watched recently (posted below).

Cesar used to be in advertising. And he did what many of us are stuck doing every day: sitting behind his desk and plugging away at his computer. He had long work weeks and little time to do the things he loved.

One day Cesar made the decision to to take a year off to travel and to pursue his own creative ideas (something I think we all need to do).

And that’s when he started his one second a day project.

Let me show you. [Read more…]

Be Mindful, Be Aware, Be Happy

MindfulnessWhen was the last time you took a moment to do nothing?

No texting. No creeping randoms on Facebook. No situps. No watching TV. No reading.

I mean absolutely nothing.

That was how Andy Puddicombe’s TED talk started (video below). And the entire concept of mindfullness really set in.

We live in a world today where we are constantly distracted. Overtly stressed. Our minds are constantly stimulated. Our eyes are always glued to devices, our fingers to keyboards, and our butts to chairs.

Studies show that, on average, our minds are lost in thought 47% of the time.

This means that we spend half of our lives completely unaware of our surroundings, our thoughts, and our emotions.

This, my friends, is no way to live life.

We are slowly, but surely becoming less mindful and more stressed and this is taking a toll on our health.

But here’s what we can do about it… [Read more…]

25 Lessons Learned in 25 Years of Life

25 Life LessonsAs is common for me on the 24th of every December, I celebrated another year of existence.

Only this one was a little bit different.

A milestone as they would say.

This year I hit the big two five. The quarter century mark…

They say the 25th birthday is a special one. One that brings a lot of change. A lot of responsibility.

A lot happens apparently after a man hits his 25th birthday. The body apparently breaks down while the mind (hopefully) becomes more wise and mature. I’ll have to challenge the first one.

Over these past 25 years I’ve definitely experienced a lot. I’ve had my share of accomplishments interspersed with mistakes and setbacks. I’ve had moments that I’ll remember forever and days I wish never happened. I’ve met so many interesting people, crafted beautiful relationships, and lost friends and family members (and pets) along the way.

But I’m thankful for every single one of those moments because they have helped turn me into the man I am today.

They say that with every experience, whether good or bad, there is a lesson to be learned.

And boy have I had my share of lessons.

Today I’d love to share with you 25 lessons I’ve learned over my 25 years of life: [Read more…]