things learned 2019

I want I used to be half as good now as I used to be at 16!

However studying the whole lot you don’t know is a part of the method.

One factor I really like about my work is I really feel like I be taught new issues every single day. Typically they’re small little tweaks and hacks, and different instances they’re broader methods or concepts.

I initially drafted this listing 10 years in the past, after my thirtieth birthday, and have up to date it a number of instances since then.

For context, that was pre-Facet Hustle Nation, pre-podcast, pre-kids, and pre-almost the whole lot I’m engaged on now. I’d been a full-time entrepreneur for 4 years already at that time, however my enterprise had seen a lot of ups and downs.

Turning 30 hit me more durable than I anticipated it to, and I’m guessing it was as a result of I actually wasn’t the place I wished to be. I’d been battling with flaky builders, preventing with the state Meeting in Sacramento over online marketing tax legal guidelines, and we have been within the strategy of short-selling our dwelling — which had been a significant supply of stress.

Ten years later, that stuff is fortunately in previous, and I’m in a a lot better place right now.

That’s to not say I’m utterly stress-free, however turning 40 wasn’t so dangerous. I’m extremely lucky to have a wholesome household and to get to work on stuff I really like every single day. Annually that goes by makes me increasingly conscious of that reality.

However the life I’ve right now didn’t occur in a single day. It’s the results of actually many years (properly, not less than 2) of entrepreneurial schooling, trial and error, hustle, and if I’m being completely trustworthy, luck.

In any case, listed here are 40 life classes I’ve picked up in my 40 years on this planet.

Get pleasure from!

1. There are solely 2 methods to get wealthy.

Make extra, or want much less.

2. One of the best alternatives aren’t seen till you’re already in movement.

I’ve Ryan Finlay from episode 72 of The Side Hustle Show to thank for this one. Though I don’t assume I absolutely understood the recommendation on the time, I’ve come to see it maintain true again and again, each for myself and for my fellow entrepreneurs.

It’s physics: an object in movement stays in movement. When you get shifting down the entrepreneurial path, regardless of how feeble these first few steps are, it’s powerful to cease.

For instance:

  • This web site is the direct descendant of an outdated private weblog I had.
  • That weblog was impressed by a buddy of mine I employed to assist with website positioning for my shoe enterprise.
  • The shoe enterprise was born out of an internship I had in college.
  • One other buddy identified that internship job posting as a result of he knew my different one was over.

In one other department of the aspect hustle tree:

  • I began a contract enhancing enterprise on Fiverr.
  • I realized about promoting on Fiverr from an interview on the podcast.
  • I knew about Kindle publishing as a result of I’d self-published a few books.
  • I self-published my first guide as a result of I wished to make an internet site of mine seem extra authoritative.
  • I first constructed that web site after getting impressed by an identical web site in a special area of interest whereas researching yet one more web site.

These phrases from Ryan are most likely the “#1 tip” I return to most frequently.

Begin right now. You by no means know the place it’ll lead you!

3. Need to “generate profits on-line”? Assist somebody.

There have volumes of content material written about how to make money online, however the easiest reply is normally the one which will get missed: assist somebody.

I’m reminded of The Rule of the Web, which was defined to me by Jim Kukral at a convention a couple of years in the past. He stated, “Individuals are solely ever on-line for certainly one of two causes: to unravel an issue, or to be entertained.”

I feel fixing issues is mostly simpler (and maybe much less aggressive) than being entertaining, so what downside(s) are you able to remedy?

Cash solely follows worth. Like Zig Ziglar stated, “You possibly can have the whole lot in life you need, if you’ll simply assist different folks get what they need.”

4. You vote your priorities together with your time.

My most typical excuse for not getting one thing completed has traditionally been, “I didn’t have sufficient time.”

Sound acquainted?

What I’ve tried to exchange that with is the extra trustworthy, “I prioritized one thing else.”

Time is our most dear asset, and it’s a uniquely egalitarian asset in that everybody has the identical 24 hours every day.

Associated: How to Unlock an Extra 2 Hours a Day

Associated: 5 Ways to Be More Effective Every Day – In Just 5 Minutes

5. Nobody bats 1.000.

What I imply by that’s not the whole lot you strive goes to be a hit.

(For these unfamiliar with baseball statistics, a batting common of 1.000 means getting a success each time. A few of the finest gamers in historical past hit .300, basically failing 7 instances out of 10.)

I’ve had loads of failed projects an extended the way in which. Some have been costly errors and misplaced me some huge cash, and others simply value me my time.

Don’t let the concern of failure cease you from stepping as much as the plate, as a result of one factor’s for sure: should you by no means swing, you’ll by no means get a success.

And right here’s the opposite factor about failing: it’s normally not life-threatening.

6. Airplane tickets are my favourite issues to purchase.

Maybe you’ve heard the quote “journey is the one factor you purchase that makes you richer.” Whereas it’s positively not the solely factor you should buy to enhance your life, it’s certainly one of my favorites.

Within the final 10 years, we’ve been lucky to journey fairly a bit each domestically and internationally. And the journeys are thrilling, however the cool factor about shopping for aircraft tickets is you get to look ahead to that journey for months.

And now the cool factor is with the ability to meetup with fellow aspect hustlers and “Web buddies” practically in every single place we go.

Associated: We regularly fly and keep free of charge due to this one spending habit.

7. In relation to folks, regardless of the place you go, we’re extra alike than we’re totally different.

Most of us have the identical needs and motivations all world wide.

Maslow referred to as this the hierarchy of needs, and extra not too long ago Dan Pink defined how we try for Autonomy, Mastery, and Purpose.

This has been useful to comprehend in a time when the whole lot appears so polarized.

8. That stated, it doesn’t matter what you do, some individuals are simply jerks.

Particularly on-line.

Do your best work and don’t stress the haters and the trolls.

As somebody — and possibly this sounds acquainted — who usually prefers to be appreciated over disliked, this was a tricky one. However as T. Swift would say, haters gonna hate and also you simply gotta shake it off 🙂

I used to get fairly upset over somebody leaving me a foul assessment or calling me names on-line. And I’d be mendacity if I stated it nonetheless doesn’t trouble me just a little, however the type notes and thank yous I obtain far outnumber and outweigh these.

I even created a “hate mail” label in my Gmail so I can archive a few of the extra colourful messages I get. I inform myself they’re most likely simply having a foul day.

Necessary word: Constructive criticism like I ask for in my member surveys is definitely actually useful. I’ve made a number of adjustments in response to these notes.

9. Selecting what’s subsequent doesn’t imply selecting what’s ceaselessly.

Previously, I feel I assigned an pointless permanence to sure choices.

As an illustration, I naively thought I’d run my authentic shoe enterprise ceaselessly.

However in different areas, I went into jobs and initiatives positioning them as experiments in my head. I knew I didn’t need to keep at Ford ceaselessly earlier than I even began, but it surely was what was subsequent.

Equally, that’s opened the doorways to mess around with different aspect hustles and have enjoyable with them figuring out that in the event that they don’t work or I don’t get pleasure from them, I don’t need to preserve doing them.

10. The journey is the vacation spot.

So the shoe enterprise I discussed above? That was my authentic aspect hustle, however after 10 years, it had reached the top of its lifespan.

It had an awesome run and was the automobile that allowed me to stop my job, but it surely was time to move on.

I feel each enterprise (and human) has a lifespan — some longer than others in fact — and whereas there are issues you are able to do to increase the longevity, nothing lives ceaselessly.

That’s why I say the journey IS the destination. You’ve bought to be taught to like course of, the ups and downs and twists alongside the way in which as a result of each time to get the place you’re going, the identical query at all times looms: what’s subsequent?

11. Get whereas the getting’s good.

In hindsight, figuring out that the enterprise wasn’t going to final ceaselessly, I want I’d scaled up sooner. I might have introduced on assist earlier to assist speed up the expansion, however I figured I had loads of time — and possibly had some management points too.

However I see folks taking this lesson to coronary heart on platforms like Amazon FBA. The chance may not final ceaselessly, however they’ve discovered one thing that works proper now and are going laborious to construct their enterprise whereas it does.

12. If there’s a shortcut, it’s mentorship.

For years and years, I used to be a hermit.

I used to be heads down, engaged on my enterprise, with little or no interplay with the surface world. I used to be cussed, however resourceful, I instructed myself — each problem that got here alongside — I can determine this out.

That angle was not less than higher than giving up and chucking up the sponge — however I’ve come to acknowledge there’s a third possibility that entails much less brute pressure effort and may shorten the educational curve for nearly any process. And that’s mentorship.

As a substitute of making an attempt to determine the whole lot out myself, I now ask, what I be taught from the individuals who’ve gone earlier than me?

Masterminds have been an enormous gamechanger for me, and it’s type of loopy to assume a couple of years in the past I had no concept what they have been. However that modified, and people teams have been actually useful for accountability, suggestions, assist, and friendship over time.

The entrepreneurial highway may be lonely, and a peer group or mastermind group of individuals strolling an identical path and ensure everybody will get the place they’re going just a little sooner.

13. When the work sucks, it’s time to maneuver on.

In case your aspect hustle will get to the purpose the place it simply drags on you, why preserve it going? The very last thing you want is a second job you hate.

I’ve pulled the plug on a number of initiatives as a result of I simply didn’t get pleasure from engaged on them. Some the place money-makers and a few weren’t performing that properly, however the frequent floor was there have been different initiatives I might prioritize that have been extra thrilling, rewarding, and fulfilling.

Like the podcast.

14. You possibly can’t count on to get higher with out apply.

I don’t play a lot golf anymore, however after I did I’d always berate myself for not bettering.

Then it hit me: why did I count on to get higher? It’s not like I’d been practising or hitting the driving vary persistently for the reason that final spherical I performed.

The identical is true with enterprise. You’re most likely not going to be superior at it your first trip, however you’ll get higher with apply.

15. Canines are superior.

I used to be by no means “a canine individual” rising up, and as a younger grownup and aspiring entrepreneur, the very last thing I wished was one other accountability to maintain.

Ten years later, the “aspect hustle shih tzu” is an irreplaceable a part of our household. He doesn’t get as a lot consideration as he used to, however the place feels empty with out him and I feel having him round the home has been nice for our boys.

16. Everyone seems to be self-conscious about one thing.

Too fats, too skinny, too furry, too bald, too brief, too tall, my voice sounds bizarre, my automobile’s a large number, my garments don’t match. No matter it’s, we’ve all bought our personal insecurities.

Hmm … I can develop hair on my face…

The excellent news is, most individuals are too fearful about themselves to even discover yours.

17. It’s OK to marry your highschool sweetheart….

…however there’s no have to rush into issues.

Bryn and I began relationship our sophomore yr of highschool, after I was 16 and he or she was 15.

Eleven years later, we lastly tied the knot in high secret-fashion at San Francisco Metropolis Corridor. (Just a few months later family and friends joined us for an superior sham-wedding weekend in Cabo.)

I really like having such an extended historical past and having grown up collectively. She’s been super-supportive of all my loopy enterprise concepts and has constructed a pretty sweet side hustle herself.

In school, after I was debating taking this house painting “internship,” she inspired me to present it a shot.

“So what if it sucks?” she requested. “It’s 3 months of your life.”

And what?

It did suck.

However it was additionally superb and eye-opening and a extremely vital expertise for me.

One factor that did take us some time to totally embrace is that relating to funds, it’s a staff sport. To at the present time we really nonetheless have separate accounts, however they are surely in identify solely. After we realized that early retirement was even a factor, we each bought actually excited and started monitoring our family internet price.

Associated: You should utilize a free software like Personal Capital to trace yours.

18. Millennia of biology apart, babymaking won’t ever be a “rational” determination within the twenty first Century.

I wrote this years earlier than our sons have been born and nonetheless stand by it.

Our little hustlers are in no way the product of rational determination making, which is why I feel we had such a tough time making it.

We’re spreadsheet folks, by means of and thru, and the “cons” column on our professionals/cons listing was fairly a bit longer! I imply, children value time, cash, and freedom — and sleep — 4 issues we occur to worth fairly a bit.

So we justified the selection by chalking parenthood as much as being a part of the journey of life and the hope he’d make our lives happier (regardless of boatloads of scientific evidence to the contrary) and the remainder of the world a greater place.

In the long run, we’ve concluded that parenthood amplifies happiness. The highs are larger and the lows are decrease — and each extra frequent.

19. However children are fairly superior too.

It’s been a blast watching the boys develop and be taught extra every single day. They’re each sponges to the world and it’s fascinating to see the whole lot they choose up on.

family in sf

Being a guardian has given me quite a lot of new views, together with to understand life’s little pleasures, moments of calm, and a newfound respect for all of the sacrifices my mother and father made.

20. Management the controllables.

In our home we’ve a saying: “the climate in Turkey.”

Bryn really got here up with this whereas we have been preparing for our journey to Istanbul a pair years in the past, as I used to be getting confused about wet climate on the 10-day forecast.

Since then, we use it to redirect concentrate on issues you possibly can management (what you pack) vs. the issues you possibly can’t (the climate).

(It really ended up being lovely there!)

It’s additionally useful should you or accomplice end up freaking out about politics, present occasions, or different market circumstances. It’s all simply climate in Turkey and all you are able to do is management what you possibly can management.

In a way, “management the controllables” is the driving level behind Facet Hustle Nation. You by no means know what outdoors forces will do your livelihood, so it’s finest to be proactive and take issues into your individual fingers and your individual hustle.

21. It’s only a recreation.

In relation to sports activities, successful is extra enjoyable, however in the long run it’s only a recreation. And the identical is true for many of the stuff we stress about.

I was super-competitive in teachers, in enterprise, and in sports activities — not that I used to be ever excellent — I simply took shedding personally and wished to do higher.

It took some humbling experiences in all of these areas to show me to zoom out just a little bit and perceive if I put in my finest effort and another person beat me, good on them.

22. To say sure, you gotta say no.

Every thing has an alternative value. Once you say sure to one thing, you’re inherently saying no to one thing else.

I’ve been making an attempt to get higher about utilizing Derek Sivers’ determination making framework: If it’s not a “hell sure!”, it’s a “no.” That’s really been useful and has made me extra aware of the initiatives I tackle, the pitches I settle for, and the assembly invitations I placed on the calendar.

These days I’ve been utilizing my very own Progress Journal to assist establish my high priorities and observe progress towards them.

23. Should you don’t maintain your physique, the place will you reside?

Your physique and your thoughts, which it carries, are most likely a few of your most vital instruments. Doesn’t it make sense to prioritize their upkeep, well being, and wellbeing?

Handle your self. Which means gas, hydrate, transfer, and relaxation.

After I’m disciplined about these items, I really feel 10x higher and am far more efficient as a enterprise proprietor and a guardian.

Associated: My HealthyWage review: May you receives a commission to drop pounds?

Associated: Are you able to flip train into an earnings stream? Listed here are some inventive methods to get paid to walk.

24. Willpower is simpler if you play offense.

Enjoying protection with willpower all day is exhausting! If I needed to go a bowl of M&M’s each time I bought up from my desk, they wouldn’t final lengthy.

However they’re not there — play just a little little bit of offense to save lots of your self from hours or weeks of agonizing protection.

  • If you wish to cease consuming sugary processed meals, cease bringing sugary processed meals into the home.
  • If you wish to drink much less, don’t preserve beer within the fridge.
  • If you wish to train extra, put your gear proper by the mattress.

For extra on willpower, positively take a look at my chat with Derek Doepker.

25. Should you communicate with confidence and conviction, folks will consider you.

Sadly it really works even when it’s BS; politicians are wonderful at this.

However talking with confidence is one other a kind of issues that comes with apply. I hope should you return and take heed to the primary few episodes of the podcast and examine them with those from 6 years later, you’ll hear an enchancment.

I’ll not have felt very assured after I was up on stage, but it surely took a sure diploma of confidence to land my TEDx talk within the first place.

“Do you’ve any talking expertise?” the organizers requested.

“Properly… I’ve a podcast,” I stated, and went on to elucidate the angle I might convey to the occasion.

26. The belongings you personal find yourself proudly owning you.

Muddle stresses me out. It prices cash, it’s a ache to maneuver, and it takes up psychological bandwidth. However past that, proudly owning a bunch of stuff can actually hinder your happiness, particularly if it’s good stuff.

Over the previous few years, I’ve tried to implement a pair methods for making new purchases:

  • The 30-day ready interval. Subsequent time you’re considering of shopping for one thing, sit on it for 30 days.
  • Purchase larger high quality. After I do purchase one thing new, particularly garments, I’ve shifted to spending extra upfront for one thing larger high quality that I actually like, suits properly, and can final.

To eliminate the pointless possessions in your life, and even make some money in the process, you need to use a pair framing questions:

  • Would you purchase it once more?
  • Have you ever used it within the final yr?
  • May it’s simply and inexpensively changed?

Now it’s not like I’ve gone full minimalist, however I’m simply making an attempt to be extra aware about bringing new possessions into the home.

27. Nobody else goes to do it for you.

This one took some time to actually sink in.

I’d have objects on my to-do listing for weeks at a time, and eventually I’d understand they have been solely ever going to get completed if I did one thing about it.

What which means is taking accountability in your personal life and monetary well-being, becoming your own boss, and never relying in your mother and father, the federal government, or your employer.

No one else goes to do it for you.

28. You possibly can’t do all of it your self.

Or possibly higher stated, you shouldn’t do all of it your self. I’ve been engaged on bettering my delegation expertise for years, and nonetheless have an extended method to go. However I do know this: I’m in a greater place right now, as a result of I’ve been capable of let go of sure duties and initiatives.

Typically there are folks higher suited to the job. Different instances there are higher issues I needs to be doing with my time.

Take a look at hiring not as an expense however as an funding. Consider your self shopping for time, as John Jonas put it in our episode on hiring virtual assistants.

It’s laborious to think about a better thing to invest in.

29. The second finest method to stop a hangover is Vitamin B.

One of the simplest ways in fact will not be consuming. Stunning, I do know.

Additionally, should you “want” a drink after work, you “want” a special job.

30. Usually talking, the vast majority of subject material in class is foolish.

I exploit the info and formulation I memorized for college roughly by no means. And that is coming from a former valedictorian.

Fairly positive all that hair bleach contributed to right now’s state up high. And sure, Bryn was a valedictorian too!

What I’ve realized is that formal education is extra about studying how you can be taught and talk. These are expertise I exploit every single day.

These lifelong expertise will at all times be extra vital than memorizing passages of Hamlet or writing in cursive.

31. It’s laborious to consider, however some folks don’t like Jimmy Buffett.

My mother’s a Parrothead so I grew up listening to his music. At present it jogs my memory of dwelling and I really assume there’s quite a lot of wisdom in some of his lyrics.

For instance:

  • “If we weren’t all loopy, we’d go insane.”
  • “Wrinkles solely go the place the grins have been.”
  • Just about all of Cowboy in the Jungle.

32. The sound of snow falling is the most effective music on this planet.

I find it irresistible. I feel I need to experiment dwelling within the mountains.

33. Perfection is the enemy of excellent sufficient.

I was rather more of a perfectionist, however I’ve since realized that ok is sweet sufficient. Striving for perfection is a recipe for disappointment, procrastination, and failure to launch.

Now that doesn’t imply you shouldn’t care about your work, simply acknowledge which you can nonetheless assist folks and nonetheless generate profits with one thing that’s nonetheless imperfect in your thoughts.

Within the phrases of Reid Hoffman, the founding father of LinkedIn, “Should you’re not embarrassed by your first product, you launched too late.”

34. Within the grand scheme of issues, should you’re studying this, you’re most likely very lucky.

You’re literate, have Web entry, and have not less than a couple of free moments in your day. That’s a extremely highly effective mixture towards constructing a profitable aspect hustle.

Associated: For extra perspective, take a look at

35. It’s OK to not know what you need to be if you develop up.

I nonetheless don’t!

Blogger/creator/podcaster positively wasn’t on my radar of profession decisions.

I feel the query of what you want to be when you grow up is type of a demanding one, and we’re skilled to reply it as if a job is the one proper reply.

How about glad, excited, or interesting?

36. “Simplicity is the final word sophistication.”

I really like this quote from Leonardo da Vinci. I’ve a behavior of constructing issues extra sophisticated than they should be, and this lesson typically helps rein me in.

With most huge choices or initiatives, I try to ask if this may finally make life less complicated or extra complicated? And if it provides a layer of complexity, is it price it?

Simplify, simplify, simplify.

37. Happiness = Significant Work + Significant Relationships + Sense of Progress

Good issues occur if you’re engaged on one thing you care about, you’re feeling such as you’re getting higher both at that work or in different areas of your life, and you’ve got somebody to share with.

I gained’t get too philosophical right here, however should you’re sad, I feel it’s probably that a number of parts of that equation is lacking.

38. If you wish to be extra disciplined, be extra disciplined.

I feel this line got here from Jocko Willink, and possibly the context was folks have been asking for methods and hacks to rise up earlier or persist with their health routine. His response? There’s no secret weapon: simply be extra disciplined.

And what I’ve discovered is that the extra you apply it, the extra you do it. You begin to construct that identification behavior.

39. Should you’ve already gained the sport, why take extra danger?

This was a line that stood out to me from Ramit Sethi’s guide I Will Teach You to Be Rich.

He was speaking about it within the context of bond investing, however I interpreted it extra broadly. If you have already got the whole lot you want, it’s OK to “miss out” on the pursuit of extra.

40. Luxurious is feeling unrushed.

This can be a Tim Ferriss quote, that has particularly resonated during the last couple years.

We’re not dashing to get children out the door, to get Bryn off to work, and it’s a lot extra relaxed. My work days begin rather a lot later — and I acknowledge and recognize that as a luxurious.

Luxurious doesn’t imply designer manufacturers and fancy automobiles and homes; it’s time freedom and with the ability to allocate and make investments that point how you want.

It’s being in control of your individual calendar and agenda as an alternative of reacting to another person’s. Take into consideration what you’re optimizing for.

41. And a bonus: folks love bonuses.

Underneath-promise and over-deliver.

Apologies to Kevin Kelly!


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Your Flip

Any favorites from this listing? What would you add?

I requested Facet Hustle Nation for his or her enter and got here up with this compilation of words to live by from their responses.

Let me know within the feedback under.