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A Man Can’t Be A Man Without A Plan

The origin of this way of thinking for me came from Aspen, one of the new recruits, that’s the best way to put it, a new enlistee. He had just come and he’d say a jingle like, you can’t be a man without a plan. How can you say you’re a man if you have no plan? Now if you’re a man, then you must have a plan because only a man has a plan. If you’re not a man, I understand you have no plan. But if you think that you are a man, then you must have a plan, or you obviously have a plan. So if you kind of get what I’m saying, you could play with the words over, and over, and over, and over again.

So we would just play with the words during dinner, or after dinner we’d be sitting by the campfire and one person would be like, “Erik, do you have a plan? Then I would respond, “Obviously, I’m a man.” Then I’d shoot it off to somebody else and be like, “Joe, I heard that you’re a man. Then he’d be like, “Most definitely. Didn’t you know I have a plan?” So we would have fun doing that, and we’d go around. It’s just something that stuck in your head, so by gamifying be a man, have a plan, it got stuck in our head, over the course of just playing with that joke. Do it with yourself, do it with your friends and before you know it, it will be ingrained in your mind that a man equals a plan and a plan equals a man. So it could be woman too, but I was in a group with no girls, so it was all men. I’m not saying it’s only for men. I’m just saying in my group, it was all men, so we just … It was easier for us to just say, “If you have a plan, then I guess you’re a man.”

Living Without A Plan. 

Wakes up naturally, no structure in; exercise, diet, or budget. No defined mission. No purpose in life. Does not create challenges, and impulsive behavior. 

Wakes up naturally. Now you could argue, waking up naturally is healthy. However, unless that is your plan to wake up naturally for health benefits, then that’s not a very good plan because then you’re not controlling your morning. You might think you are because you’re waking up naturally, but what if waking up naturally is you’re waking up at 8:00 in the morning? Business day has already started. You’re late.

Waking up naturally, maybe on vacation that’s fine, but every morning … We’ll get to that in just a second, but you need to challenge yourself. So waking up at a specific time is beneficial for your integrity and for your discipline. Now waking up naturally, what does that mean? It means like a kid. When you were younger, I don’t know. I never really did this because I was in programs, and we had structure at all times. I’m guesstimating this is what normal kids would do. They sleep in until about 10:00 in the mornin and play video games, and really have no mission. They’re just walking around aimlessly.

Now if that is your structure that you are accustomed to, that’s a very difficult structure to break out of. So then it would mean that it’s natural for you to wake up naturally because you’ve been doing it since you were a kid and no one’s told you it’s a problem. It’s the same thing as going to bed really late as a teenager. If you go to bed at 1:00 in the morning, there’s no possible way you’re going to wake up at 7:00. You’re going to wake up at mid morning, 10:00, 11:00 in the morning, which is waking up naturally. But by doing that, you’re missing half the day. You’re missing the pivotal parts of the day to jumpstart on everybody else. Remember the saying, early bird catches the worm.

So if you want to wake up naturally, then the consequence of that is you’re going to miss the worm. While you’re waking up at 10:00 in the morning, I consider it afternoon because 10:00 in the afternoon, I’m already asleep. That’s midnight for me, but 10:00 in the morning, I’ve already started my second day. If you were paying attention to Walk With a Purpose I have two days in one, by 10:00 in the morning, I’ve already had an entire day either getting prepared for day number two of the same day, or waking up and starting day number two of the same day. So waking up naturally, if you want to be a man with a plan, that’s the first plan you need to have, is what time are you going to wake up?

No structure. We talked about that with waking up naturally, but we’ll break it down into these three different categories a little bit more, going more depth. If you do not use your muscles, you will lose them. But wait, what? Erik, you’re going to lose your muscles? No, I’m not going to lose them. Yes, you will lose them. If you do not use your muscles, you will lose your muscles. So if you do not exercise, kiss your arms, kiss your legs, kiss all your strength away because that’s what’s going to happen.

The nice, firm body you had when you were younger, if you don’t exercise, it’s gone, so you need to have a plan how to maintain your body for a while. Not just 18 to 25, and then 25 is downhill, and you turn into jello. No, that’s not a man with a plan, or a woman with a plan. I’m using man interchangeably, so then I don’t have to stop myself and say woman again. So if you are a man with a plan, then you need to have a plan to be here for a while unless you’re planning to die fast. If you’re planning to die fast, then that’s fine. Then that’s your plan. But if you’re not planning to die fast, and you’re planning to be here for a while, then you need to plan exercise.

Your diet. Now I’m not good at this. I’m terrible. I still drink a beer every now and again. Well, basically every night. I have a challenge with smoking. I drink energy drinks, so my diet is not perfect. However, I also ride the bike for 20 miles in the morning, and I run for three miles in the afternoon. I’m working out, and I’m juicing everyday adding nutrients to my body on a daily basis. So do I understand that I have work to do? Yes I do, but I am a man with a plan. I am constantly working on my diet through exercise, and through juicing, and changing different things. If you’re paying attention to one of my classes I have right now where we’re trying to find a natural energy drink, trying to solve problems that might hinder my plan of being here for a while. Does that make sense? Because I plan to be a man for a while. You get it? All right, let’s move on.

Budget. There is no possible way you can be a man without a financial plan. No way. You can pretend all you want, but without a financial plan you will falter as a man. If you can’t live within a budget, then you might as well just give up. You have to have the discipline to live inside your own budget. It’s going to sound crazy. I think I’ve said this before. I don’t know where I’ve said it, so feel free to write me an email and tell me where I said this before. Since I was younger, I have always in my mind thought of keeping my bills under $1,000 no matter what.

So when you look at my house, my house is … It’s a bigger house. It’s 3,200 square foot. It’s 400,000 with the pool, all that kind of bells and whistles. But how much do I pay a month on it? I don’t. I pay my taxes, but I paid for cash because I want my bills under $1,000 a month. Because if your bills are under $1,000 a month, then cashflow is pretty large. If you make $2,000, then you’re doubling yourself every month. Now I know you’re going to be like, “Well, Erik, I don’t have $400,000 to invest in a house.”

Do you know where I was living before here? I was living in a house I paid $3,800 for, and I lived there for three years. No, no, no, not a year, $3,800, for three years of living. I didn’t pay the taxes, so $1,000 a year for three years. I had my utilities, but that was way under $1,000. Was it the nicest house? Heavens, no. It was probably the worst house in the world, but I wasn’t concerned about the looks. I was a man with a plan. So where my head was laying wasn’t as important as my plan because guess what? I am a man.

No defined mission. No purpose in life. It’s almost self-explanatory. Maybe I need to go into this a little bit more, but I almost think that it’s self-explanatory. If you do not have a plan, you are not a man, so no defined mission. No defined mission means that you don’t have a plan. No purpose in life means that you don’t have a plan. If you don’t have a plan, then you don’t know where you’re going. If you don’t know where you’re going, then you could be going around in circles and not know. Does that make sense?

You could be going around like a dog chasing its tail and go absolutely nowhere in life. You will think that you’re moving a lot, but you will not proceed because you have no defined plan. So in turn, you are not yet a man. I don’t know. Maybe I’m thinking it’s funny, and you guys don’t see it, but you see how I’m rhyming the man and plan throughout all of this, hence, the reason why the chapter is called A Man Can’t Be a Man Without a Plan? All right.

Does not create challenges. All right, now this is a big one. A lot of people avoid things that are hard. We tend to want to do things that are easy. You don’t believe me, look at the obesity rate. The obesity rate is going up, not down. If people like to do things that are challenging, then the obesity rate would be going down, not up. Exercising, and taking care of yourself, and having structure is extremely challenging. To start. Once you get into the routine of things, things are no longer as challenging as they were when you started. It’s kind of like walking, or running, or riding a bike, or any new skill.

To think that when we start something new, it’s going to be easy would be ludicrous. Nothing in life is easy. It might be very simple. It might be very simple, not easy. Let me explain to you what I mean by it could be very simple, but not easy. Learn Chinese. Let’s say there’s a thousand characters. It’s a lot of characters. It’s very simple. Memorize all the characters and practice. That is very simple. There’s only what, two steps, three steps? Write all characters down, practice, memorize, three steps. Practice with other people, four steps. Very simple.

Is that easy? No. No, that is not easy. The characters are very complex, and then if you want to be able to draw them as well, then it’s going to take you a lot more time. It’s going to be a big challenge, but the challenge is very simple. It’s not a lot of steps. It’s very few steps, but within those steps it’s a huge challenge. So that’s what stops majority of us from living life with a plan. How to get rich, follow simple steps. Be disciplined with your money, invest wisely. Be disciplined with your time. Those are about the three major things if you want to change your world that you need. Those are very simple. It’s three things, but to practice those are great challenges.

So in order for us to develop the necessary skills to go through life with the ability to acknowledge the challenge, analyze that challenge, and find the way around, above, through, that whatever challenge it is, that’s a man with a plan, and it takes practice. If you think that you’re going to be the best problem solver on your very first problem, I hate to break it to you. Good luck. However, if you train your brain to problem solve, then every problem that comes through, it’s going to get easier.

When I say problem, I’m interchanging that with challenge. A challenge is always going to be hard, but that’s what’s so great about it. If a challenge was easy, then once you achieve the challenge, you wouldn’t feel anything. The reason why you feel something is because of the amount of work you had to put in to achieve said challenge. So if you want the feel good, you need to overcome challenges? Every time you overcome a challenge, you build your self-esteem. You build your integrity with yourself because you told yourself that you were going to do something, and you did it. Now let’s keep on going because I think I’m going a little bit too far into living without a plan.

Impulsive behavior. A person without a plan has very impulsive behavior. Don’t believe me? Go talk to somebody that’s been sitting at a house all day and is bored out of their mind. Go up to them and say, “Let’s go.” What are they going to say? Let’s go. Impulsive behavior. They don’t really care where they’re going. They’re just ready to get out of the house. They’re bored. Another one. Corona has been happening for the last year. How many people want to go on a vacation now? Impulsive behavior. They might not be able to afford it, but they got to go because we’ve been stuck in the house for over a year. Not a very logical decision if you don’t have any money, but who cares about logic? When you don’t have a plan, you’re acting impulsively. You do whatever. It doesn’t matter.

Fear of missing out. You only live once, whatever little saying you want to call it. It’s the same. A person without a plan has more impulsive behavior. If you have a problem with alcohol, start having a plan, start filling your day with other things. If you have a problem with going out, you want to stop going out. Well, have a plan, have a mission. Have a goal, have a dream. Find inspiration, and go out there and do it, and do that opposed to negative things, the things that aren’t getting you to where you want to go. It’s very simple. Keep doing the things that help and stop doing things that don’t, period.

Living With A Plan.

Wakes up before everyone else for personal time; work, exercise, meditate, or to read. A very structured life. Understands the importance of time. Is on a mission. Has the ability to put the phone down. Removes distractions. Makes sacrifices. Creates personal challenges. Understands the real competition is within. All right. We talked about a man without a plan. This is someone with a plan.

They wake up before everyone else for personal time. That is, I would have to say, one of the important things that people miss. People look at me and be like, “Well, why do you wake up so early?” Because nobody else is awake. I can’t hear noise. I can’t hear the birds. I just heard one. That’s a distraction. In the middle of the night, a bird is not even awake, so I’m not getting any distractions. So if I want to work, if I want to exercise, if I want to meditate, if I want to read, that is the most opportune time to do it. Now I understand, you’re going to be like, “Well, I like to read before I go to bed.” So do I, if I want to go to sleep. If it’s late and I need to sleep, let me open a book. By the end of that first page, I’m asleep. Now I might make it a chapter or two, depending on the day, but I know if I wake up a little groggy, go for a bike ride, wake myself up, meditate for a little bit, get some work done, I know my mind is sharper. I’m going to retain more information first thing in the morning than I am at nighttime. I have a mantra where it’s, once I’m done with the day, I just go to sleep. I’m done. What else is there to do? I don’t want to hang out. I don’t want to waste my time. I got to wake up in the morning time because that is the opportune time. That’s my secret, first thing in the morning before anyone else wakes up.

Then after everybody wakes up, 9:00 day’s over. Like right now, I’m still working, but that’s just because I like to do … I like what I’m doing. But the first part of the morning, I would say I’m probably three times more efficient when I first wake up than I am towards the end of the day. That’s the secret behind waking up early, is you’re more efficient, and there’s nobody awake, you get personal time. You get time all by herself. No one’s going to bother you.

A very structured life understands the importance of time. It’s kind of funny. We were just talking about personal time. Well, this is more like time within the day. So without a structured life, you’re giving yourself the ability to waste time. Without a schedule, you’re scheduling nothing. So if you don’t know what to do, your brain is going to figure something to do, and it’s usually, to waste time. Let me say that again. If you do not have something to do, your brain will find something to do for you and the majority of the time it is to waste time.

Don’t believe me? Be bored, what do you do? Waiting at the doctor’s office, what do you do? You pick up your phone, and you scroll Facebook, or Instagram, or you check your messages, check your email. Five minutes later, still waiting. What do you do? Check Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, check your email. Even though you know there’s a 99% chance that in the last five minutes nothing’s happened, but you still do it because you’re not doing anything else.

So your brain is trying to fill this empty space. I got to do something. I got to do something. I got to be stimulated. Where’s the phone? So then you’re stimulated. Now you’re no longer stagnant. You’re doing something now. It might not be productive, but you’re still doing something. So if you are not in a structured life, you are giving yourself the ability or the excuse, rather, to fill up your day with wasting it. When you have a structured life, and you have a very stringent schedule, you will waste less time, and you will get more done.

A person with a plan, or rather a man with a plan, is on a mission. He has the ability to put the phone down, removes distractions, makes sacrifices. So let’s go over that again because we talked about that a little bit in the structured life. But when you’re on this mission, your plan, if you’re a man, then your phone isn’t as important to you. You can put it down. You can go to the store without it because it’s no longer a communication. It’s no longer a toy. A phone for most everybody is an adult person’s toy, but now we give them to two-year-olds too, so it’s a toy all the way.

You got games. You got videos. It’s like an arcade in your hand. This is how much I know it’s an arcade in your hand, because majority of the people nowadays don’t even know what an arcade is. When I was younger, if we wanted to play a lot of video games, we had video games at home, but we only had maybe Atari or Nintendo, so I’m talking about when I was six. So we’re talking about 30 years ago, so it’s not that long ago. I’m 31, I’m getting old. We had to go to the mall and play video games there. Now, why do you got to go to the mall? You can play video game on your hands, your phone. Boop, boop, boop, boop, boop.

So a man on a mission or a man with a plan knows how to put down his toy. I know most of you are going to argue and be like, “I need my phone all day long.” Really? Because they’ve been able to survive and conduct business without a phone for, yeah, that’s right, 99.9% of human interaction, human history, human existence because we’ve only had a phone, a cell phone … I remember before a cell phone, so it hasn’t even been 37 years. So if you’ve adjusted to a world where you do not know how to live without a phone, then you need to throw it away because you’re never going to get anything done if you think that you have to have your phone around you at all times. There’s too many toys, and bells, and whistles, and fun, and distractions, and that goes on to the next part.

Removes distractions. I feel like I’ve told this story too. I don’t know when, I don’t know where. When I have a project, I turn my phone off. You might not hear from me for a week, two weeks. I will be in Erik’s world and that’s it. I don’t care if the rest of the world is on fire. The rest of the world can wait until I’m done. That’s a man with a plan. Remove distractions all the way. I know. You’re going to tell me, “I got kids. I can’t do it,” and all this other stuff. Everyone has an excuse on how they can’t do something. Rarely ever do I ever hear the excuse on how they can. I’m going to say that again.

Here’s a better one. Excuses are like assholes. Everybody has one, and nobody likes them, period. So stop giving excuses. If you’re a man with a plan, You don’t have excuses. You make sacrifices. You can’t really go more into you make sacrifices. No matter what you do in life, you have to sacrifice to live right. So Yeah, you might not be able to go to the ball game. You might not be able to go to the fancy restaurant. You might not be able to buy those ridiculously expensive shoes, or pants, or Yeezys, or whatever, $600 for a shoe that cost him maybe $5 to make, but you’re stupid enough to buy it. You get my point. You have to make sacrifices in life. You have to know that your future is affected by what you do today.

So your future is just a consequence of today, all right. I’m going to say that again. Your future is a consequence of today. We can even say tomorrow is a consequence of today, so whatever you do today, tomorrow is going to be affected. So if you don’t make the sacrifices that you need to now, then the consequence of your actions now is in the future. You’re going to have sacrifices, but it might not be the sacrifices that you want. Money’s good right now, so you’re like, “It’s always going to be good. I have plenty.” Well, talk to the NBA players that went broke. Let me ask them if they wish they would have sacrificed, and not went to the parties all the time, and saved their money. Sacrifice going out and having fun now, or you’re going to sacrifice later, and have no money, and no fun. So it’s either have fun now or have fun later. When I was younger, I wanted to have fun now. Didn’t get me anywhere. Now I want to have fun later. I’m a man with a plan.

Creates personal challenges. Understands the real competition is within. Warren Buffet, Grant Cardone, Tai Lopez, the major influencers of the world today, they all basically agree with this one point, that no one’s their competition, but themselves. That’s nearly the truth. Now of course, Kobe Bryant is my competition when it comes to basketball. He’s a giant, I’m not. That’s a huge challenge, but we’re not talking about those challenges. That’s his goldmine, but when you get to what you’re good at, your goldmine, your only competition is yourself. No one else can compete with you.

It’s the story of, if I compare myself to everybody else, then I’m only comparing myself to average. The definition of average is count everybody, everyone’s number, and then divide it by how many participants there are, and that’s your average. So if you’re looking around at everybody, and you’re basing your progression in life on everybody, and you find the average and you’re like, “Well, I’m above average.” But you’re not challenging yourself. You’re challenging Joe Smoe over there who has nothing, who has no determination, who wants to sit on the couch all day, and be a couch potato. So is that your competition? No. Your only competition is within.

So if you run a mile this year, and you can maintain running a mile every single day at 10 minutes, well now you know you can do that. Who cares what Sally Jo can do? That doesn’t matter. Sally Jo is Sally Jo. Your competition is the second year, try to run it in nine minutes, and then the third year, eight minutes. That’s your personal challenge. Or if it’s about saving money, if your goal this year is to not overspend on credit cards, who’s your competition? Yourself. Who cares what Johnny over there is doing? Is Johnny going to pay your bills? I don’t think so. Is Johnny worried about your credit score? He might be worried because he wants to know if he can outdo you. But in the end, your competition is only for yourself.

My aunt, she told me this when I was younger. This one should have been on the list too, one of the 12 things I’ve learned. She said this. She said, “Erik.” Well, she told me two things. I’ll tell you both, and then we got to cut it off. This is a great way to end it. She said, “Erik, you were born by yourself, and you’re going to die by yourself, so no one else really matters.” Now she says I take it out of context, but what I got it out of her statement was, no one else matters. It’s my life. I am responsible for me. I’m not responsible for anybody else. Now I might help somebody else, but I’m only responsible for me. If my life is not what I want it to be, I’m only responsible for me. So if life is not the life I wish to live, it’s the fault of no one else, but me. That’s one thing.

The second thing she told me, while I was at Cascade. She said, “Erik, you’re not here to make friends. Now if a friendship grows, that’s great, but that’s not why you’re here.” We’re not here to make friends. Friends are in the way. We’ve discussed what a friend is in previous chapters. A friend and making friends, if that’s your focus, to make friends, then you’re never going to focus on yourself. Your mission or your plan, if you’re a man, is to not make friends. Now if you make friends on the way, that’s fine, but your mission is to accomplish what you set out to do. So again, a man is someone who has a plan. So let me ask you, are you a man? Do you have a plan?

Table Of Contents

  1. Live In The Here And Now
  2. Walk With A Purpose
  3. All You Need Is 2 Dollars
  4. A Man Can’t Be A Man Without A Plan
  5. Does It Hurt Yet
  6. Be Careful When You Are Using Someone That Person Could Be Using You
  7. Use Em, Abuse Em & Lose Em: A Zero Sum Game
  8. Picking your own shit
  9. I hate people – people are stuupid
  10. I stay ready It keeps me from having to get ready
  11. Be Selfish
  12. Either You Do Or You Don’t

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