Discover more from Unfiltered by Tim Denning
10 Wake-Up Calls We All Must Get in Life Before It’s Too Late
I saw a half-naked man that was better looking than Brad Pitt. An accidental d*ck pick showed up on her phone as evidence of her late-night adventures.
Let's start with the first "wake up call"
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Wake-up calls hurt like hell.
A few years back, I was on the dating scene. I downloaded the Tinder app and added all sorts of filters. No young women, no bikini photos, no gym junkies, no one smarter than me.
Then I waited for the messages to roll in. Nothing happened. Zero dates.
I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I’ve always thought I’m ugly. When my dating experience blew up in my face, I assumed it was because of my looks.
One afternoon a 50 year old single mother at work said to me “You’re so wrong.”
She dared me to turn off every filter on Tinder and start talking to all women. So I did. She also told me that looks have nothing to do with dating or attracting supermodels.
In her own dating life, she told me how she dated a 25 year old plumber with a 6-pack and a Mustang sports car. I didn’t believe her so she whipped out her phone.
What I saw was a half-naked man that was better looking than Brad Pitt.
An accidental d*ck pick showed up on her phone as further evidence of her late-night adventures.
As I went about my new dating adventure, everything changed. Women came from everywhere. I started going on dates with supermodels and professors that I always thought were way out of my league because I was too ugly or too dumb.
She was right.
This wake-up call saved my life. I wouldn’t be married or have a baby girl if I didn’t get this hard pill to swallow.
Here are a few more wake-up calls we all need.
The thing you fear most is the thing you must do
We all have fears.
We avoid them like Covid. I spend a lot of time replying to messages from readers. Many have some version of “I don’t know what to do next.”
This is a lie.
We know what we must do. Look at what you fear. Look at what you’ve been avoiding. Look at the lies you tell yourself. The answer is there.
Do the thing that feels impossible to do. For one of my friends, he faced this challenge. He learned he must get a divorce and move on if he wants to be happy again. There’s no easy way to do this.
His family will be split apart. His kids will have to learn to have parents that live in two different homes. 50% of his money will disappear. Tears will be shed. He’ll feel like a failure. His perfect family man image at work will go up in flames.
So I ask you dear reader … what must my friend do?
Exactly. You know. I know. He knows. He must do the hard thing. The sooner he does it the better off he’ll be.
We can’t escape wake-up calls. We can only see what they’re trying to tell us and take the right action.
If you refuse to start today, you definitely won’t start tomorrow
Maybe I’m a productivity bro. I’ll take the insult if I must, but only if it means you agree to listen to this point with every fiber of your being.
There is no tomorrow.
Stop saying “someday” or “I’ll start when…”
If you don’t want to start today then you don’t give a sh*t about whatever it is. Because we can all start today. We can all take one 30-second action towards a new goal if we want. I speak to a lot of wannabe writers.
Most of them have been waiting their entire lives to write one thing. Makes no sense.
Just fire up your favorite social media app and publish one sentence. How hard is it? If you won’t write one sentence today, you 100% won’t write a series of books and become an author.
What you do today explains what will happen tomorrow.
Tomorrow isn’t a guarantee but many of you act like it is.
A member of my family knew now-deceased Grease Movie superstar Olivia Newton-John. They were driving together in Melbourne to the cancer hospital she built.
About two streets from the hospital is a corner with a supermarket on it. My family member told Olivia about two boys under the age of 10 walking to school.
They had their whole lives ahead of them.
They walked to that corner one morning at 7 AM. They waited for the traffic light to turn green so they could go across the road and get to school.
A second before the light turned green a car came over the sidewalk and landed on top of their heads. They were both crushed and died instantly.
Olivia heard this story and burst into tears. She never drove to the hospital the same way ever again.
The point of this story is it highlights how fragile life is. Even two young boys living in a safe country with no health problems can lose their tomorrow.
Stop f*cking living like tomorrow exists.
The world doesn’t need to change. How you see it does.
There are a lot of social justice warriors that have an opinion about everything.
They tell us the world needs to change. They hang around doomers who predict the end of America. They tell us progress is unethical and that business is evil.
The wake-up call anyone in this category needs to hear is that the world doesn’t need to change. It functions the way it is. How we see the world needs to change.
One doomer can see chaos and destruction. An optimist, like most of us reading this, can see beauty and kindness. Sure, we’re not a perfect species but we’re better than the doomers give us credit for.
Social justice warriors are often nothing more than victims of undiagnosed mental illnesses. They need therapy, not to attend more protests.
Don’t worry, I have been in this category many times. But I got a wake-up call and went to therapy like a good little boy. It was embarrassing and people judged me.
Still, I went. I did the hard thing.
If you find your worldview is heavily skewed towards “everything is f*cked,” it’s time to change it. It may be time for therapy. We all need it at some point and it’s how we heal.
Being broke is a choice
I’m tired of hearing about money problems.
Unless you’re in a 3rd world country without internet, there really is no excuse. The wake-up call some of you need to hear is that money problems are your fault.
We choose to overspend.
We choose to *not* upgrade our skills.
We choose to be underpaid or stay at a dead-end job.
The internet is drowning in ways to make money.
Now, before someone says it in the comments section, let me address it here: if you’re on a pension or fixed income, it’s not fixed.
Fixed incomes belong to fixed mindsets.
Anyone can take on a side gig, freelance opportunity, or write for a few extra bucks on Medium dot com. The only barrier between us and more money is the internet. The google search box exists for a reason. A lack of information is never the problem.
A lack of resourcefulness is.
You need an obsession
Conventional wisdom says you need a purpose, a meaning for your life, a vision, or a list of goals. Wrong answer. Nope. Don’t agree.
We need an obsession. Something we don’t need motivation to do. A form of work or task we don’t need a holiday from or to obtain the mystical work-life balance with.
And we all have an obsession. We just need to look harder.
There’s one thing you can’t stop thinking about that takes up an unusual amount of space in your head. That’s your obsession. It should be obvious.
What’s harder is figuring out how to unlock the power of that obsession and make it become the center of your entire life – and the way you earn a living and experience fulfillment.
But don’t say you don’t have an obsession because you do. We all do.
You’re only limited by what you say you’re limited by
This one is next-level Jedi stuff.
I always lived with limitations. Then in 2013 I went to a Tony Robbins event. A 7-foot giant with big teeth told me that everything going on in my head was a story.
He told me that I had self-imposed limits. He explained the science behind it. He gave countless examples of people who’d achieved the impossible by removing their limits.
All those things you say to yourself aren’t factual. They’re stories.
The beautiful thing about stories is you can light them on fire or rewrite them. As the cliche goes, whether you think you can, or you think you can't – you're right
What if you just removed the limiting valve on your consciousness?
What if there were no limits? What if this was a beautiful freaking video game and there were no downsides or consequences?
Suddenly the impossible becomes possible.
This is now how I live. Why not you too?
A lack of action explains most broken dreams
We drown in thinking, planning, and strategy.
Most of us just need to take more action and stop trying to predict the future. No one knows what will happen. Not even the $10,000-an-hour coach.
The way you get results is you take action and measure the outcome. Then you work hard on a goal and iterate as you go. A lack of trying has killed more dreams than rejection or failure ever did. Sad but true.
Take more action.
You either sell or get sold
Those who sell get all the results in life.
I stood up in front of my local community a few months ago and told the mayor of our town that there was corruption under his watch. It hurt like hell. I felt sick for days before. But I sold the story the best I could.
I used everything I learned in Toastmasters to make him feel the transfer of emotion from me to him. He ignored me.
Two days ago a lady who heard my speech took note. She gave my name to someone else. Now the community is asking for me to run for mayor. I’m not going to, although there’s an important takeaway:
Those who sell get all the results.
I’m a fan of writer Zulie Rane. She wrote an article recently that got my attention. She said that when she refused to sell and just asked for donations and free coffees, she made $5. When she started selling what she did and asking for money in return for value, she made 100x more.
There is no way to avoid sales and persuasion.
You either sell what you do for a living … or a big, dumb, useless corporation will take what you do and sell it for you – while leaving you the scraps to live off.
Nobody is coming to save you
I say this far too often but it must be repeated.
No one is coming to save you. Some kind lady on the internet isn’t going to publish your book and cut you a check for $5M. The government that wins the next election isn’t going to finally solve racism and fix the financial system.
The Inflation Reduction Act isn’t going to reduce inflation and make your cost of living go down by 99%. A mentor from nowhere isn’t going to give you the secrets to life.
As Tupac said, it’s just you against the world.
This isn’t a Debbie Downer quote though. No. It’s empowering. It means you have the power to save yourself. Everything is within your control and just takes the subtle art of a few new decisions.
Quit waiting for Brad Pitt to ride in on a horse as a knight and pull you up by your shoelaces. Save yourself.
You’re either growing or dying
You may have heard some version of the idea many people die at 25 and get buried at 75. It’s the idea you can have a pulse and a beating heart but still be dead.
Just go visit an American Bank’s office tower. You’ll see them everywhere.
People with hearts and minds who haven’t felt much for a long time. They don’t know why they exist. They stopped learning back in college. The last time they did a job interview was when they were an 18 year old virgin with a high-pitched voice.
You’re either growing or slowly dying every day.
As my friend Joel says, each day you’re slowly dying from birth. So what have you got to lose? Start growing.
Expand your mind. Find new people to hang around. Write the book. Say “I love you.” Follow some crazy dream. Because a life not lived to its fullest is a life that’s wasted.
Be fully alive from birth until the day you die (hopefully at 195).
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