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The Empowering Feeling of Taking Immediate Action

Many times I'll get a great idea, and just think to myself "that's a good idea, I should do that". Then it's set to the side, put on a list, or just forgotten.

One day I had an idea for a video I wanted to create, it was going to be a video about my life to show to friends and family before I left for 2 years. I had the thought " that's a good idea, but I know myself, if I don't do this right now the likelihood of actually doing it will be less than 50%". I had time available so I just started working on it, and it came out great.

This experience taught me that there's no sense in waiting to act. There's no better time than the present. And it felt amazing because I actually did it. Which is very empowering.

Many times i don't think of the ramifications of planning to do something or even just saying I'm going to do it. It's kind of like a little promise to myself, and then when I don't do it I lose some self respect because the next time I think about doing something I'll remember that I didn't do the last thing I was going to do.

It's as if a friend tells you he's going to do something for you and then doesn't do it, but worse because I have no one to blame or scapegoat, it's all on me.

Habits, Leverage, and Trees

On Tynan

If you want to totally screw up your life, here's my advice: cultivate some bad habits. That's how most people do it. Very few people screw up their lives by drinking once, but a lot of people screw it up by developing a drinking problem. I've never heard a story of someone who went to Vegas for the first time and lost his entire fortune, but I've heard plenty of stories of people with gambling addictions who have blackjacked their way to bankruptcy. Even breakups are far more likely to be caused by habitual bad behaviour than by a single action (even in the case of cheating, a lot of couples stay together).

This is because a single action doesn't have all that much leverage on your life. But habits, on the other hand, define us as people-- literally. What we do regularly becomes a label. Bob's an alcoholic. Tom is a cheater. Raymond is a gambler. Habits change ephemeral verbs (Tom cheated) to nouns. Once you're defined by your habits, it takes a lot to change that. If Bob doesn't drink for a night, he isn't magically changed into tee-totaler. You are your habits.

And that's why habits are my religion. I write about them all the time, from every single angle, and that's mostly a result of being fixated on habits in my own life. If you can change your habits, you can change who you are.  So I pay very little attention to rare occurrences and work on my habits constantly.

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