Ayoub is a freelance writer, who writes about how simple changes in our lifestyle can improve our productivity.
Only 8% of people manage to stick to their New Year’s resolutions and only 18 % of gym members hit the gym regularly. We know that one of the most popular goals is to get fit, and that most people set very serious New Year’s resolutions.
Why is it that even though people want to get fit so bad, they can’t even hit the gym regularly? Do they lack knowledge? Do they lack motivation? Are they just weak? How do we develop that laser focus that will enable us to focus on our goals?
It’s not surprising that we lack willpower and persistence. After all, less than 5% of people participate in 30 minutes of exercising each day. The food we eat is also packed with fats, sugars, and additives that hinder our cognitive abilities and prevent us from focusing.
Most of us have office jobs that involve a lot of sitting. It’s estimated that one in four Americans spend more than eight hours a day setting.
How to focus on your goals?
To reach success, we need two things: First, knowledge, and second the focus and dedication to use that knowledge. The internet has already taken care of expertise; we can quickly learn anything we want on it.
The Internet contains the knowledge that can help us reach and attain whatever we want.
However, having the knowledge is simply not enough- at least in this day and age. We need a different perspective that emphasizes focus, persistence, and discipline. We also need to remove powerful distractions.
Trust yourself and don’t follow fake gurus
Whenever we decide to accomplish a specific goal, the first step we take is gathering information. For example, if you want to lose weight, you need to acquire knowledge on diets and nutrition.
After failing several times at achieving our goals, we become a bit desperate and weak. Weak and desperate is what predators look for. A person who is desperate and weak will easily accept and buy your products.
Fake Gurus love to exploit these weaknesses, they will feed on our insecurities and promise us quick result with little to no effort.
Fake gurus will usually target young people, because they are willing to spend money on self-improvement. Over 94% of millennials are willing to spend around $300 a month on courses.
If you notice these red flags, run for the hills, or at least be cautious:
1-They’re always showing off
Cars, mansions, testimonials, and fancy trips are some of the tools they use to convince you that they have achieved success.
2-They’re very young
How can someone be an expert at drop shipping or Amazon FBA at age 26? Realistically to become an expert at something, you need to spend at least ten years working on it.
When they give a free class, they give the impression of being “Harmless.” A free course is how they get you hooked on their content. They use the free course to make you like them and trust them, and then they go for the kill.
These guys have no respect for the Pareto distribution, and in their ads or speeches, they will make it seem as if they have a big secret that will make you instantly successful.
5-They sell a dream
Quit your 9-5 job, travel the world, fire your boss, make money while smoking a cigar is the way these fake gurus advertise their content.
6-Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram ads
Unlike experts, fake gurus don't have famous books or work that makes them credible.
So the only way left for them to drive traffic to their courses are ads.
7-Ridiculously expensive courses
To make money and run ads simultaneously, they need to make the price of the course expensive.
Willpower is for losers
Only a small percentage of people manage to stick to their workout programs or diets. Our lives are filled with temptations that drain our willpower and prevent us from being productive.
During the marshmallow experiment, children who were able to resist eating the marshmallow were those that stopped looking at the marshmallow. The more children looked at the marshmallow, the more they were inclined to eat it.
Work by Glenn Wilson of Gresham College has found that when you’re trying to focus on a task, even the simple temptation of an unread email sitting in your inbox can reduce your effective IQ by 10 points.
While an average person will try to figure out how to resist playing video games, the successful person will throw his console or gamepad away.
Sleep More Sleep Better
Many people try to cut back on sleep to increase productivity. Still, unfortunately, by cutting back on sleep, we are also decreasing concentration, creativity, patience, communication skills, and a lot of what makes a good human.
To achieve success, we need patience, concentration, self-assessment, and willpower. Sleep is the battery that nurtures these skills. Without adequate sleep, we will always make bad decisions, we won’t focus on the task ahead, and we will quit more easily.
When you are asleep, your brain goes into a phase where he reviews all the information you learned throughout the day. He would discard the useless information (Social media buzz and worthless pieces of data) and will keep any information that would help you in the future.
Tips to improve sleep:
- Use hypnosis
- Use ASMR
- Optimize your bedroom environment
- Upgrade your mattress and pillow
- Use ear plugs, white noise, or sleeping mask if you are a light sleeper
Studies show that exercise boosts motivation by increasing dopamine storage and triggering dopamine receptors in the reward center.
Aside from its effect on Dopamine, exercise also elevates levels of norepinephrine and serotonin. When these three neurotransmitters are in deficit, people become more depressed.
Exercising will give you a normal brain that can relax and focus quickly; you will also benefit from high levels of norepinephrine and serotonin, both key neurotransmitters that will help you fall asleep. Just make sure you choose the right exercise program that suits your fitness level.
Not relying on easy fixes and people who promise us easy results will save us a lot of time. Fake gurus will keep you under the illusion of progress while taking away your money. Choosing where we learn our information and who to follow should be a priority.
Exercising and adequate sleep will improve physical and cognitive abilities; they will allow us to focus better and achieve more things.
Managing distractions and temptations is the real skill all successful people possess. Our digitalized world is full of distractions and temptations. Without careful planning, we will succumb to procrastination and addiction easily. We must eliminate distractions and plan our day in a way that reduces exposure to strong temptations.