Practice Your Craft

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit. – Aristotle Bah. I suck. I’ve been hesitant to write lately and seem to have a mental block. Trying to come up with content to write about for Rentything has been a challenge. There’s a reason for this. I haven’t practiced, and I haven’t been consistent. If you want to get good at something, you must must must practice consistently and deliberately. There are no shortcuts. It is a necessary, but not sufficient condition for success. Anything less simply doesn’t cut it. The path to mastery is littered with failure and setbacks, but this shouldn’t stop you from trying. There are skills that I believe have a huge return on investment and are definitely worth learning. Some of these include:   1. General strength training Not being generally strong is a terrible thing. There are so many reasons to be strong that the list is exhausting. Some of the reasons include being functionally useful in a variety of activites, such as helping friends move, gardening, playing with your kids, and so on. Strength makes almost all activites better and very few worse. And the best part is strength is something that can be earned, significantly, if you are willing to put in your time, probably more so than most other types of physical activites.   2. Social skills This is the one that most people believe is either you have or do not have, which is simply a FALSE belief. Social skills are a game of practice and encompass a huge variety of skills...

Consistently Consistent

The single biggest bang for your buck in terms of results is consistency. It is boring and unsexy compared to magic bullets and one shots of awesomeness, but consistency works, plain and simple. I don’t think you’d find a successful person in the world who encourages people to be wildly inconsistent, except perhaps to spark creativity, to break negative habits, and to discover new things. And only for short periods of time. Consistently doing bad things will lead to further bad things, and consistently doing good things will lead to further good things. Consistency forms habits (and habits are good and bad). Want to start becoming more awesome at something? Figure out what works, then be very consistent in doing that thing. Want to stop? Then become inconsistent at doing that thing. Want to get good at arm bars? Find out how to do them properly, then do them. Lots of them. Every day. Consistently. Want to get better at bouldering? Boulder. A lot. Consistently. Want to get good at x? Find out the best way to do x, then do it. A lot. Consistently. Every day might be too much (if recovery is an issue, or if money is an issue, or time is an issue, or x is an issue). Doesn’t matter, do it at a pace you can do it at, at a schedule you can reasonably do it at. Push too hard, and it’s unsustainable. Push too light, and you won’t see the results as quickly if at all. Consistency is not a guarantee for success (especially if you are consistently doing something incorrectly), but...

Making Things Intolerably Inconvenient

Humans are lazy creatures by nature. Its just the way it is. Laziness isn’t a bad thing, in fact I think it has many benefits including getting adequate rest, keeping things as simple as possible, doing only what’s important, etc. If we can just accept the fact that we are lazy by nature we can use it to our advantage. One of the ideas I’ve been playing around with lately is the idea of intolerable inconvenience. The basic premise is you make something so utterly inconvenient for you that your laziness kicks in and you decide not to do that something. This works great for getting rid of bad habits, saving money, sticking to a good eating lifestyle, and so on. I first noticed this myself one fine morning when I realized I didn’t have any food in the kitchen but was starving. I was going to drive over to Tim Horton’s for a breakfast sandwich and coffee (bad habit) but realized I didn’t have a car for the day. “Oh, how inconvenient” I thought to myself. So what did I do? Nothing. I decided to fast that day instead (good habit). When I noticed that I did a good habit instead of a bad habit because I was too lazy to walk to the Tim Horton’s, I thought “hmmmm, what else can I make really inconvenient for myself to force good habits?”. Some of the stuff I came up with was removing a lot of bookmarks to time wasting websites so that if I wanted to go to them I would have to type them in manually. Too...

Lifestyle experiments: A great way to challenge yourself

What are lifestyle experiments? They are like 30 day challenges you give to yourself to help give you some insight on something or to help form a new habit. They take you out of your comfort zone and usually help break some bad habits. Lifestyle experiments should be fun and challenging and should be in alignment with your life goals. Here are a few that I am starting or have recently started. If you are new to this I would recommend starting out with only 1 challenge at a time. Lifestyle experiment #1 – No disposable garbage such a coffee cups, take out containers, etc. This one will be very tough for me, but I realized how much disposable garbage I’ve been using because its convenient to do so. At lunch I grab things on the go when I’m busy at work and this will have to stop. I especially like the vegetarian soups across the street from my work, but they don’t come in bowls, only takeout styrofoam containers. I won’t be able to get any Tim Horton’s or Starbucks unless I bring my own container, either. Plus there are numerous other places I go to grab food on the go around my office that I won’t be able to any longer. This will be a challenge, and I don’t know if I’ll succeed. But I’ll try and by the end of it I’ll be confident that I’ll have reduced my consumption of these wasteful products significantly. Reason for doing lifestyle experiment #1 – to further reduce my ecological footprint on this planet, one of my lifelong goals....

finding time by organizing your priorities

Somebody recently asked me when I actually sleep. With all the things going on in my life at the moment I still had time to hang out and have brunch with her and told her all of the movies I’ve been watching. Its actually pretty simple, its all about setting up your priorities. High on my list of priorities are my friends. I don’t have many that I see frequently these days, so when I get a phone call or an email saying one is going to be in town and want to go for brunch or hang out, of course I’ll say yes. Unless I have an absolutely immovable meeting or am booked solid, I try my darndest to say yes to meet up. It just means I have to shift something else around and reset some of my priorities. If its important to you, you’ll find time for it. That’s just how it is. There is always time for the things that are important to you. If you don’t have time for it, it means it isn’t important to you, simple as that. When somebody tells you they don’t have time to see you, that just means you’re not as important to them as something else at the moment, lol. Finding time can be a challenge if you’re extremely busy, but it isn’t impossible. If you commute at any part of your day (most people do), that is a great time to listen to those language courses to learn that language you’ve always wanted to learn. Or going for a run during your lunch break and eating...