It’s always been having for me — probably similar to you — always having the end of the movie in my head. And then filling in the script. So I knew I was going to leave there with a sale. I just had to write the script.
The script might change. There might be, you know, call an audible, and you might have to rewrite the script, but the end of the script was always the same.
I’m going to run a hundred miles.
Okay. Well, how are you gonna do that, Jesse? You’ve never — You’re not, like, a crazy endurance runner!
I became very aware of my relationship with time. When we think of relationships, we think of our relationships with our mom or our dad or our kids, or this and that, but no one thinks of a relationship with time.
Now, I’m turning 50. The average American lives to be 78 years old. So, if I’m average, I hope I’m not, but that means I got 28 years of life left. If you reverse engineer that… Like, I just climbed Mount Washington. There were no 70-year-olds climbing Mount Washington. The actual years that you have left to be active and do the shit that we want to do, they shrink significantly as a percentage as you get older.
So once you get aware of your relationship with time, everything shifts. I had a fundamental shift when I came home, as it relates to my relationship with time. Who I want to spend it with and what I want to do. And I want to put more on my plate of the stuff that I love to do, with the people I love to do it with.
And I started getting a lot of clarity around that when I wasn’t getting bombarded with everything else. Like, I don’t spend any time alone. The only I spent alone is if I go for a run. Everything else is… I’m getting influenced by everybody else and everything else. So I’m losing my main superpower, my instinct.
I survive on instinct and gut, and I was losing that, because I was so distracted. So once I started to get that alone time… You don’t have to go to a monastery to do it, you just gotta, you know… Carving out a little bit of time for myself, every day. I started to think a lot clearer on how do I want to live, how do I want to reverse engineer the rest of my life.
Breakthrough moments are often the result of many previous actions, which build up the potential required to unleash a major change. This pattern shows up everywhere. Cancer spends 80 percent of its life undetectable, then takes over the body in months. Bamboo can barely be seen for the first five years as it builds extensive root systems underground before exploding ninety feet into the air within six weeks.
Similarly, habits often appear to make no difference until you cross a critical threshold and unlock a new level of performance. In the early and middle stages of any quest, there is often a Valley of Disappointment. You expect to make progress in a linear fashion and it’s frustrating how ineffective changes can seem during the first days, weeks, and even months. It doesn’t feel like you are going anywhere. It’s a hallmark of any compounding process: the most powerful outcomes are delayed.
So just don’t focus on more than one desire at a time. The universe is rigged in such a way that if you just want one thing and you focus on that, you’ll get it. But everything else, you got to let go.
At the end of the day, I do think, even despite what I said earlier: life is really a single player game. It’s all going on in your head. You know, whatever you think, you believe, will very much shape your reality, both from what risks you take and what actions you perform, but also just your everyday experience of reality.
If you’re walking down the street and you’re judging everyone, you’re like, “I don’t like that person because their skin color, I don’t like that — Oh, she’s not attractive. That guy is fat. This person is a loser. Oh, who put this in my way.” You know, the more you judge, the more you’re going to separate yourself. And you’ll feel good for an instant because you’ll feel good about yourself. “I’m better than that.” But then you’re going to feel lonely. And then you’re just going to see negativity everywhere. The world just reflects your own feelings back at you.
Reality is neutral. Reality has no judgments. To a tree, there’s no concept of right or wrong or good or bad, right? You’re born, you have a whole set of sensory experiences and stimulations and lights and colors and sounds, and then you die. And how you choose to interpret, that is up to you. You do have that choice.
So this is what I meant, that happiness is a choice. If you believe it’s a choice, then you can start working on it. And I can’t tell you how to find it, because it’s your own conditionings that are making you unhappy. So you have to uncondition yourself. It’s just like, I can’t fix your eating habits for you. I can give you some general guidelines, but you got to go through the hard habit forming of how to eat right. But you have to believe it’s possible, and it is absolutely possible.
When you start building a skill, it’s like planting a seed. You may have to water it for a while before you see any results. But eventually you get a nice harvest that makes it all worthwhile.
What skills might you begin building today that could really come in handy 5-10 years from now?
Ten years might seem like a long time, but it doesn’t matter. That time is going to pass no matter what you do. It’s inevitable that you’ll find yourself there someday. When that day arrives, you’ll either have a decade of skill-building behind you, or you won’t. It’s up to you to decide which path you’ll take. If you don’t consciously commit to the path of skill-building, you settle for stagnation by default. Please don’t do that to yourself.
If you don’t like the career choices in front of you, don’t decide. Go outside and explore, and let your intuition guide you.
What many people don’t realize, however, is that this exploration never ends. Exploring is an integral part of any fulfilling career, not merely something you do before making the choice. No career choice is final.
If you’re feeling stuck in your career choices, maybe none of them are right for you. Go outside your comfy hive. Do some of the things you’ve always wanted to try, even if they don’t seem relevant to your career. This exploration will serve you well.
As I made additional career decisions, I asked myself, “What would be fun and interesting to do next?” as opposed to “What permanent career choice should I make?”
If there’s a real secret to “seduction,” here it is: Always be building a life that turns you on, represent yourself as honestly and straightforwardly as you can, and have conversations with a lot of people. That’s it. Connections will happen. If you’re bad at those things, give yourself as long as it takes to get good at them. You have time.
Everything is in a state of movement, all life is movement, even death is movement, because cells are breaking down and turning into other compounds. Let us remember at all times that one cannot stand still on a tightrope, one can either go forward or backward.