When I was a kid, we would use ‘cheat codes’ on video games to skip levels on games. In other words, we would hack the game to a more entertaining experience.
I’m not sure where ‘life hacks’ originated, and it’s certainly not as easy as pressing some buttons on a remote controller. Still, there are some valuable habits, ideas, and mindsets that you can pick up over time if you are looking to learn.
While I could’ve made this list five times as long, I thought I would start with these.
Filter Your Decisions Through Your ‘Future Self’
We all need a future self that we see and compare ourselves to. Matthew McConaughey talks about his hero being himself in 10 years. And never quite reaching that goal before the next target comes along.
What does your’ future self’ look like? What habits, mindsets, and ambition does she have? Are you making decisions based on who you want to be then — now?
Every decision we make should be filtered through this process and used to help us become closer to our future self.
Walks clear the mind, help us solve pesky problems, and nurture our creative side, which we all need, no matter our career or job.
Do Work That Has Purpose
Working isn’t always fun or inspiring, no matter what you are doing for a living. It’s necessary for the obvious like paying bills, taking care of our family, and contributing to society.
It’s also a more significant part of your life than many people realize. Your work is, ultimately — whether you know it or not — where you spend most of your days and the medium in which you spend your most productive energy.
It’s part of your legacy — like it or not.
So, why wouldn’t you choose what you felt called to do? Your work should excite you, fuel you, and be so internally inspiring, that you can work through the dullness of it, to reach the place you desire to take your craft.
Your success will come easier in life if you choose to work on your calling.
Read Daily Meditation Books
Mornings are a great time to read one little page about something that will make you a better person. Something to challenge you. Something to show you a tiny bit of wisdom. Something to push you to a better version of yourself.
Hydrate Throughout The Day
Drinking water throughout the day will keep you hydrated and healthier and help your energy levels throughout the day. No other beverage has those benefits without a downside.
Use your evenings as a time to rest from the world. Think less. Eliminate thoughts about work. Spend time with family. Watch an hour of pointless TV.
Your mind needs recovery from the day, and you can’t do that scrolling through your phone, checking social media, or answering emails until bedtime.
Focused Work > Lots of Hours
Concentrated work will always create more results than more hours of less focused work. Work hard in sprints, then recover. There are large amounts of data that back this up, and you know it’s true.
Nobody can put out 12 hours of incredible work every day — no matter what your boss told you.
No Carbs Before Noon
Unless you train for marathons every morning or handle carbohydrates very differently than most of the world, it’s useful to avoid these before noon. You need to be your sharpest in the morning, and carbs make most people lethargic and steal energy and ambition.
Don’t Overthink Things
Make decisions. Take action. Think through both sides, but don’t overthink it. Most actions in life, even if they are colossal failures, will be recoverable.
There is so much wisdom in these things, it’s unreal. Books are not always popular, ‘cool,’ or even that much fun sometimes. But that’s precisely why you should read books if you want to gain an advantage over your peers in life.
The world will become more dependent on people who can focus, put out excellent work, and create good ideas in the years to come. If you want to create an extraordinary future, give yourself advantages.
Follow Fewer Experts
There is so much noise and information available to consume in today’s world. It’s a bit overwhelming. It’s great to have many resources available, but you have to be able to filter what you truly need.
Find the experts and influences that will help you expedite your growth to your future self, and then, for the most part, ignore everything else.
It’s hard. It takes discipline and domestication to do this — but it’s worth it.
Set Goals In Peak States
Have you ever been on vacation looking at the most beautiful scenery? Lost your thoughts staring into the ocean? Or set on a mountainside watching the sun come up?
In these moments, when life seems perfect and beautiful, don’t hesitate to set the goals inspired within you — in this peak state moments. That’s precisely the right time to decide what you want to pursue in life.
To often, we set goals based on numbers, others’ agendas, or internal guilt.
Pursue goals that come to mind in your peak moments, and you will be living a life that is far more rewarding.
Use Goals To Stretch You
Goals should be more than a list of things you want to mark off a list. You have a to-do list for that dopamine hit.
We should pursue goals that pull us, make us better, and help us grow as people, in the roles we have in life.
Choose your goals accordingly.
If You Don’t Feel Pulled By Something, It’s Not For You
If you set a goal and you don’t almost immediately feel pulled to in a way that motivates your focus down to a level that nobody will stop you, then you don’t have the right goal for yourself.
Many people are not achieving their goals in life because they don’t feel pulled towards them. They aren’t genuinely pursuing what they want in life. So, they set goals to satisfy people — including themselves — but have no real connection to them.
Don’t waste your time on those. Pursue the ones that pull you out of bed, ready to take on the world with the attitude that you want the ball in your hands for the game-winning shot.
Self-Awareness Is Very Important
Know your strengths and weaknesses. Don’t put it on other people to point these things out. Develop self-awareness and take the time to work on what you need to improve.
If we all did that, the world would be a much smoother place.
Manage Your Energy
There is a lot of discussion about how much sleep each person needs, and you can find plenty of articles for that if you want.
Find out what your sweet spot is and work to get that amount or more each night.
Even more so, understand your energy levels and what you can do in a day. Know what drains you and what energizes you. Set your schedule and routines accordingly.
It’s an art, and it takes time, but once you understand this, you can manage them more strategically.
Take Cold Showers
It’s crazy, but they work. It doesn’t take a whole shower either, just top yourself off with 30 seconds to a minute.
They wake you up, energize you, and they have some pretty underrated healthy benefits. At least that’s what the experts say. I’m going with it.
Remember, as a child, when you would use these things to learn subjects in school. They worked then, and they still work for multiple jobs.
- Take notes.
- Keep quotes you like.
- Use them for the to-do list.
- Write profiles of clients on them.
- Use them to put articles together in your writing.
- Use them as bookmarks or keep in your car for taking notes about podcasts.
The possibilities are endless.
Make Fewer Decisions
Find the things you like and go with them. Eat the same five meals. Wear the same kind of shirts and pants. Like a pair of shoes? Buy two pairs.
Eliminate so many decisions from your life, it’s just wasting mental energy. The mental energy that you need to focus on deep work and the things you genuinely want to pursue in life.
Create Productive Environments
Keep a clean closet. Clear your desk of junk — store healthy foods in the pantry.
You know, you’ve heard this one before, but it’s true. Create an environment that is productive for your goals, aspirations, and productivity.
Stack Up Days
Think about the most productive days you’ve had. You got some great work done, a good workout, spent time with loved ones, and read a great book.
Now, what’s preventing you from getting that done, or a version of it each day?
We can’t climb mountains every single day — but we can climb just a bit in different areas of our lives each day.
Don’t worry, those days will stack up, and that mountain you see that represents your goals will slowly become smaller and smaller.
Don’t underestimate the power of tiny little wins each day.
Tiny daily actions make up what our lives become.
One action at a time.
Focus on these tiny little hacks, and you’ll find more peace, happiness, and success.