My new favorite saying to myself when I get into a sticky situation is “well, kick me in the nuts!“. It’s not because I literally want to be kicked in the nads, but more because I’ve just come to the realization that I cause my own problems in life. Allow me to explain…
Have you ever met someone so incredibly talented, with so much potential in life, but for some reason they can‘t seem to get out of their own way?
They waste 90% of their energy running around in circles and creating problems for themselves. Then they go home exhausted at the end of each day having accomplished very little. They have an inability to think long term, and worry about things that don’t actually matter in the grand scheme of life. Do you know a guy or a girl like this?
Well, I saw a guy like this yesterday…
The person was ME – I was looking in the mirror at myself.
One of my favorite sayings from Teddy Roosevelt is:
“If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month.”
If I wanted to kick the person responsible for all my troubles in life, I would have to kick ME in the nuts! (I know Teddy Roosevelt puts it nicer by saying “pants”, but he is a gentleman – and I am not – so please excuse my vulgar language)
Self Defeating Behaviors:
Part of my daily writing journey is reflecting on past experiences. Something common that I’m finding is that I have some self defeating beliefs and behaviors that are making me less productive in life. Things like:
- Perfectionism: For example, wasting 10 hours doing a task because I want it to be done perfectly. Instead, if I just spent only 1 hour on the task, I would have completed it 95%… And that’s good enough in most situations. I should stop trying to be perfect!
- Fear of Rejection: A lot of the time I hold myself back or don’t even try a certain activity because I’m scared that people won’t like me. Or, I’m scared that I’ll fail. Imagine how much more I would have accomplished in life if I wasn’t scared of rejection!
- Comparing myself to others: Whenever I meet a younger guy or girl than me that seems to have achieved a lot more in life for their age, I can’t help but compare myself to them. I definitely should let this bother me as much as it does sometimes.
- Setting too many goals: Sometimes I have a problem saying “yes” too much, and focus too much on quantity vs. quality. I’ll start my day off with 80 things on my to do list and only get 5-6 of them done by the end of the day. Really, I should just be setting my to-do list with ~10 main priorities and let all the other stuff go.
- Procrastination: This goes hand in hand with the point above. With too many items blurring my priority list, I waste too much time on random crappy activities and distractions. Every minute I spend on low value activities, means 1 less minute I can spend on high value activities.
- Short term thinking: Many of the things that I worry about and stress over in life are actually very short term problems. Thinking much longer term is a healthier way to focus on the real problems vs. ones that don’t matter in the grand scheme of things.
Kicking my troubles – in the nuts:
Ok, so, now that I realize that I am the cause of most of my own problems… How can I retrain my brain to think differently? How can I snap myself out of these self destructive activities?
First up, I have a reminder flash card taped to my computer screen. It reads “kick me in the nuts!”. The more I tell this phrase to myself, the more I can snap out of my automatic behaviors. Setting visual reminder around my house and workstation keeps my eye on the ball. (pun intended)
Next, I’m reading more self-help books to try and get me out of my own way. This is the one I just ordered on Amazon: Get Out of Your Own Way: Overcoming Self-Defeating Behavior. Another one of my favorite books I’m re-reading right now is called Extreme Ownership which helps me take responsibility for my actions (and in-actions) in life. (BTW these links are Amazon affiliate links to books. But please check your local library and borrow them for FREE if you can!)
Lastly, I’m trying to focus on 1 of my issues at a time. It’s overwhelming for any man or woman to try and solve ALL of their problems at once. So, breaking this down into small chunks will have more impact. My main focus this coming month is to work on comparing myself to others.
Today, I’m gonna get out of my own way. No second guessing myself, no overthinking things. I’m kicking myself in the nuts!
Maybe you feel the same? Tattoo a kick me in the nuts sign on your brain and take responsibility for your own productivity in life.
Kick me in the nuts – Side hustle?
Did you know there’s a guy in Las Vegas who is offering tourists a chance to kick him in the balls for $20? Now that’s a weird side hustle I’ve never heard of! I wonder how much money this guy makes!!?? I just saw a video and it looks like for just an hours work he probably made over $1000!
Next time I’m in vegas I’m definitely keeping an eye out for his cardboard sign! I think he’s on Freemont Street. Maybe I’ll even give him a kick in the groin and get some aggression out! Check out this funny video below (Warning – It’s a pain to watch!)
*pic of guy kicking the sun with his foot up top by Aziz Acharki!