6 powerful habits every man should try at least once in his life

And how to build them in less than 30 days.

What you do every day determines what kind of man you will be.

Good routines will increase the quality of your life like Dom Toretto his car when he pushes the NOS button The Fast & The Furious. Therefore bestselling author James Clear habits call it “compound interest in self-improvement.”

While sporadic actions will make you feel good for a short time, they will not bring meaningful change.

  • A healthy meal will not give you a six pack
  • Reading a few pages over the weekend will not give you life-changing knowledge
  • To write one relationship journal once will not solve the problems with your partner

If you want to become the man you dream of being, your best bet is to establish the right habits – here are six I’ve tried and tested.

Boost your creativity, productivity and happiness by doing Niksen

“Sometimes sitting and doing nothing is the best thing you can do.” -Karen Salmansohn

When was the last time you did nothing?

We live in a hyperactive world. Netflix, work emails and buzzing smartphones. It is difficult to juggle a career, family and personal growth at the same time. Doing nothing will improve your hectic life in many ways.

  • It boosts your creativity and problem solving skills. Research of the University of Lancashire shows the benefits of seeking out boredom.
  • It makes you happier. Psychoanalyst Manfred Kets de Vries say, “keeping busy can be a very effective defense mechanism to ward off disturbing thoughts and feelings.” Watch them instead so you can improve your life.
  • It makes you more productive. It sounds crazy, but consultancy Ernst & Young found workers get 8% more done for every ten hours of vacation. A well-rested mind is productive.

Every Sunday I block off an hour to sit on my front porch with a pen and paper, do nothing and let my subconscious bring up what it wants.

The Dutch, one of them happiest people in the world, call this practice Niksen.

Self-improvement doesn’t get any easier.

Try this habit if:

  • You are constantly busy and always up to something
  • You find yourself constantly distracting yourself with social media
  • You rarely take time for yourself
  • You want an easy way to find solutions to your problems

Take advantage of your excess sexual energy and use it for something productive

“We gain strength from the temptation we resist.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Every time you masturbate, you give 100 million unrealized offspring an amusement park ride through the local drainage system and flush your sexual energy with them.

I used to be a chronic masturbator and watched porn several times a day. What started as a natural urge turned into a toxic habit that drained my energy and messed with my sex life. After that, I committed to nofap – in other words, no self-made orgasms.

  • My energy and drive went through the roof like rockets in a fiery firework
  • My confidence improved drastically
  • My sex drive increased and I enjoyed the horizontal tango and physical sensations much more

Many other men I have spoken to report the same thing.

When you feel the urge, use your sexual energy to do something productive instead. This could be exercise, a creative endeavor, heck it could just be cleaning your place.

man doing squats

Try this habit if:

  • You’ve never tried it (it’s one of those things you should challenge yourself to experience at least once in your life)
  • You will have insane amounts of energy, drive and motivation
  • You watch porn and masturbate too often

Make yourself a powerful bastion of calm

“The nearer a man comes to a calm mind, the nearer he is to strength.” – Marcus Aurelius

Panic, confusion and anger will get you nowhere. They only make difficult situations worse by stressing you out.

I used to be a hot-headed nuke with a short fuse. Stress was my drug and once I got high I couldn’t stop. The results were gray hairs and failed relationships.

Daily meditation has transformed me into a bastion of calm. You can achieve the same, so you perform better in:

  • High level meetings at work
  • Difficult conversations with your partner
  • Lessons you teach your children

All you need is a simple meditation habit. I have found the best method for beginners is one body scan. Close your eyes and focus your attention on the small area between your lips and nose, then let it travel through your body.

Remember these tips:

  • You don’t have to “achieve” anything. The essence of meditation is to accept and be in the present as it is.
  • Try not to stop thinking. If thoughts arise, let them be and go. The goal is to increase the time between them.
  • Try different times of the day – some people prefer mornings, others evenings.

Unbridled anger is weakness, calmness is power.

Try this habit if:

  • You have anxiety or stress in difficult situations
  • You want to stay calm no matter what life throws at you
  • You want to improve your ability to focus on a task for hours so you can be more productive

Learn to understand what you already know

“Journal writing is a journey to the interior.” – Christina Baldwin

Putting thoughts into words wipes the fog off your mental glasses.

I have been record keeping for over three years and it has saved me from going down the wrong path many times.

Most of your thoughts exist only deep in your subconscious. If you journal every day for a month, you will bring them to the surface and know much more about yourself than before.

This knowledge is power. It will help you make the right decisions instead of acting on a whim and regretting it. But staring at a blank page is terrifying – so how do you get started?

There are two simple methods I use:

  • Answer specific journal questions. These give you good everyday frameworks to get your thoughts under control. Read 6 simple journal questions.
  • Stream of consciousness. When you have a specific problem that’s been bothering you but you’ve hit a wall, write down what’s on your mind. The key is not to judge your thoughts or aim for anything specific – just let the words flow. Get a page or two deep and you’re guaranteed to have new insights.

Written words reveal your true thoughts.

Start here: How to Get into Journaling: The One Thing That Can Change Everything

Try this habit if:

  • You will have more clarity and order in your thoughts
  • You feel unhappy but don’t know why or what to do about it
  • You hit the same walls over and over again

Strengthen your mind and body at the same time

“No man has the right to be an amateur in physical exercise. It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.” – Socrates

You have raw, masculine power inside you – but most men never realize it.

Instead, they hug the sofa after work, crack open a beer and let their potential go to waste.

I have been training for more than ten years and the regular training sessions have given me much more than a jacked body.

  • They taught me discipline, structure and commitment, the cornerstones of true freedom.
  • They are free therapy sessions. Sometimes shit needs to hit the fan and lifting weights is a healthy outlet for aggression.
  • They are a great way to connect with like-minded, growth-focused men. Some of my best friendships have started with a simple “can you quickly watch me on this exercise?”
  • They shot my energy and drive up. The human body is paradoxical – movement creates energy.

As a cherry on top, also regular exercise boost testosterone – and who doesn’t want more of it?

Don’t know where to start? How to start training again: A simple and clear starting point to (finally) get back on track

Try this habit if:

  • You feel lazy, drained, unmotivated and lack drive
  • You don’t like what you see when you look at yourself in the mirror naked
  • You want to harness your raw power

Feel fulfilled and get more out of life

“Only by giving are you able to receive more than you already have.” – Jim Rohn

Most men approach life with one “what is in it for me?” mentality.

It’s natural because people are selfish by nature – but that’s not how life works. If you are always looking for what to take…

  • Others will resent you
  • You will be stuck in a game of endless hunting
  • You will not be happy because you will never have enough

Instead, flip the script and focus on giving. Contributing to something bigger than yourself is one of the biggest factors for a fulfilled life and therefore important for your mental well-being. So ask yourself:

“What can I give?”

  • A smile for a stranger
  • A dollar for a homeless person
  • ONE “How are you feeling?” SMS to a friend who is having a hard time
  • A few words of appreciation for your colleague
  • A helping hand for your wife or children

Once I focused on giving instead of taking, my life skyrocketed. I got more clients, benefits and love than I could handle. And you can get the same.

Give and life will give back.

Try this habit if:

  • You feel that your life lacks meaning
  • You feel insignificant and want to make a difference in the world
  • I guess you can never have enough

How to easily build a new habit in 30 days

Building habits is easy if you know how, but a nightmare if you don’t.

From years of experience with myself and coaching others, here are four helpful tips.

  • Standardize before you optimize. You need to get in your reps, so make it easy on yourself and increase the challenge over time. One minute meditation. One small deed a day. Twenty minutes of exercise or nothing. Start small.
  • Use your environment. Your surroundings have a great influence on you. Set alarms, write post-it notes, and put your journal on your nightstand. Make the signals clear and the behavior will follow.
  • Make a rule to never miss twice. You are a human, not a robot. It’s fine to mess up – but if you’re going to do it, make sure you do it follow up the next day.
  • Track and reward yourself. This will cause your brain to release dopamine, a reward hormone that makes you happy and amplifier learned behavior. Get a calendar and draw an “X” for each successful day. Buy a nice dinner as a reward seven days in a row. Adapt yourself to the right behavior.

Now you know how to build a habit – all that’s left is to choose the one that will benefit you the most from this list:

  1. Do nothing on purpose to increase your creativity, productivity and happiness.
  2. Stop masturbating and use your energy productively instead.
  3. Meditate to stay calm in even the toughest situations.
  4. Journal to increase your self-awareness and see clearly.
  5. Exercise to make your mind and body strong.
  6. Give without expecting anything, this is where you find fulfillment and meaning.

Get to work – you are what you repeatedly do.

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