Most people won’t ever become truly successful.
Sadly, most people will remain bored with their work and lifestyle. Their relationships will remain shallow and superficial.
That nagging feeling that says, “I’m not supposed to be doing this” will always be there.
The worst part is, it doesn’t have to be this way.
Elon Musk once said, “I think it is possible for ordinary people to choose to be extraordinary.”
But most people won’t. Here’s what I’ve found to be 7 of the most prominent ways to remain bored, lonely, and unfulfilled.
1. Take Pictures Instead of Making Memories
The other day, my wife and I took a long hike in the South Korean mountains.
Halfway up the ascent, I realized something weird:
Nobody was taking pictures.
For 2 hours, I had not seen even one person taking a selfie.
It was weird. Unfamiliar.
The entire hike, I wasn’t thinking about lighting, or filters, or how to capture the best view that made me look like an adventurous, daring, ruggedly-handsome hiker.
I didn’t need a picture. Those memories of the beautiful countryside will be with me for the rest of my life.
2. Look at Pornography
“Porn doesn’t just f*ck your brain; it f*cks your family too.” -Tim Denning
Porn is really bad for you. Tons of people use it without realizing the damage it does to them.
Some people had heroin. Others had alcohol.
For me, it was porn.
Growing up, I looked at pornography pretty much daily. I was a “C” student from an unstable home bullied for my stuttering problem. I had grown to rely on pornography as a crutch to get me through the day.
I didn’t realize I was losing my ability to connect with anyone.
I’m 27. Since graduating college, the hardest thing I’ve had to reconcile is that friends and community are hard to come by.
It’s hard enough to connect with people without pornography short-circuiting your ability to connect with others.
Like any other mind-numbing drug, pornography will keep you isolated within yourself.
3. Keep Telling Yourself You Don’t Read Books, Wake Up Early, or Exercise
“For some people, the power of their excuse is more powerful than the power of their dreams.” -Robert Kiyosaki
Every day, millions of people continue telling themselves, “I can’t.”
Self-proclaimed night-owls declare they can’t wake up early to be productive.
Television-lovers insist they can’t make time to go exercise or read.
In the words of James Allen:
“As a man thinketh, so he is. As he continues to think, so he remains.”
You might be a slower reader than others. You might have a slower metabolism. You might not be used to waking up before 7 A.M.
None of these are valid excuses.
If you want to become extraordinary, disciplined, and fulfilled, you need to make time to read, exercise, and use your morning hours effectively.
“I never knew a man come to greatness or eminence who lay abed late in the morning.” -Jonathan Swift
4. Settle For “Good-Enough”
“‘Good-enough’ equals shitty.” -Brian Grazer
Common choices beget common results.
World-class choices create a world-class lifestyle.
Most people settle for “good-enough.” Their diet, dating partners, job, income, and relationships are all merely “good-enough.” But since their choices are common, that’s what their life becomes.
Boredom, loneliness, and dissatisfaction are all common today. It’s rare when a person walks around knowing their life is full of meaning, purpose, and incredible quality.
Don’t settle for the wrong endgame.
“If the ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step we take just gets us to the wrong place faster.” -Stephen R. Covey
4. Prioritize Entertainment Over Education
Imagine this: you’re a plant, and entertainment is kind of like shade.
It might be nice for a while. But if you stay in that shade, your growth stunts. You stop growing. You wither up.
If entertainment is like shade, education and learning are like the sun. Once you put yourself back in the light, you can grow 10x or even 100x faster.
There’s nothing wrong with relaxing (the right way).
But if you’re not careful, that “relaxing” can turn into a poison that makes you sick and stunted.
“The goal of life is not to relax on the beach, sipping mojitos all day. The purpose is to find something you love that adds value to the world.” -Ben Foley
5. Spend More Than 10 Minutes on Social Media Every Week
I’m going to make a bold statement you probably won’t like. You might even completely disagree.
Spending more than 10 minutes a week on social media is bad for you.
Someone once wisely quipped, “Facebook’s main product is you.” Facebook barely cares if you stay connected to people; their algorithm heavily favors paying marketers, not actual users.
Don’t believe me? Take a look now. How many ads do you see?
Instagram and other tools are following suit. For them, it’s not about connection; it’s about creating profits.
You don’t need to cut social media out completely.
But the sooner you take yourself out of social media’s marketing equation, the more fulfilling your life will be.
“There are many things of which a wise man might wish to be ignorant.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
6. Choose Safety Over Freedom
“So, what’s it going to be — safety, or freedom? You can’t have both.” -Louis Sachar
In the words of Bilbo Baggins:
“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
What awaits you in safety?
The same life you’ve had until now.
But what awaits you out the door, away from comfort and security?
I can’t tell you. But ever since I left my little hobbit hole a year ago, I’ve had the most exhilarating and unforgettable adventure of my life.
There’s a voice calling every one of us to go on the journey.
Are you going to answer it?
7. Be Arrogant
“Arrogance gets in the way of mental clarity.” -Ayodeji Awosika
The following is an ancient Buddhist parable.
“Once upon a time, there was a wise Zen master. People traveled from far away to seek his help. In return, he would teach them and show them the way to enlightenment.
On this particular day, a scholar came to visit the master for advice. “I have come to ask you to teach me about Zen,” the scholar said.
Soon, it became obvious that the scholar was full of his own opinions and knowledge. He interrupted the master repeatedly with his own stories and failed to listen to what the master had to say. The master calmly suggested that they should have tea.
So the master poured his guest a cup. The cup was filled, yet he kept pouring until the cup overflowed onto the table, onto the floor, and finally onto the scholar’s robes. The scholar cried “Stop! The cup is full already. Can’t you see?”
“Exactly,” the Zen master replied with a smile. “You are like this cup — so full of ideas that nothing more will fit in. Come back to me with an empty cup.”
Arrogance is the enemy of learning and growth.
You have so far to go. Don’t waste your time pretending you’re already there.
Most people will continue to live lives characterized by profound boredom, inner loneliness, and constant dissatisfaction.
It doesn’t have to be this way.
You can start cultivating a life of deep, meaningful relationships and a purposeful career that fills you with true satisfaction.
If you want that, you need to cut out these 7 behaviors first.
This article is from Medium.