11 Self-Taught Lessons That Gave Me A Major Advantage

Succeed where others fail.

Life lessons that give a major advantage Julian Myles | Unsplash

Many years of experimentation have provided me with extensive knowledge about becoming successful and rising above the majority. In the process of learning these lessons, I've, of course, struggled, made mistakes, and even failed. Lucky for you, I'm willing to share what I've learned along the way. 

Here are 11 self-taught lessons that gave me a major life advantage:

1. Listen to the mainstream take on how to live your life — and do the opposite

It’s quite incredible how ignoring what most people think is correct is often the right path. From what I should eat to be healthy and happy to what I should invest in, the mainstream almost always gets it wrong. My most significant gains have occurred following the alternative media and people often shunned as quirky or weird.


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2. The most important skill is to remain calm when triggered

Acting out when seeing red rarely led to anything noble or helpful to yourself or society. The true heroes can keep a cool head when their senses are screaming. This will save you more in life than anything else.

@mindbrainbodylab Triggered? Try These 4 Steps to Regain Calm When triggers hit, it can be overwhelming. As someone who studies the nervous system, I've guided hundreds through these moments. Here's a simple technique: STOP. S - Stop: Pause before reacting. Just a few moments can make a difference. T - Take a Step Back: If possible, physically remove yourself from the trigger. Practice 3 Huberman sighs (2 quick inhales through the nose, 1 long exhale through the mouth) to help calm your nervous system. O - Observe: What's arising for you now? Notice your actions, urges, feelings, thoughts, and beliefs. Identify where they manifest in your body. These are parts of you seeking attention, trying to protect you. Meet them with curiosity and compassion. P - Proceed: With this newfound awareness, you're ready to respond thoughtfully instead of reacting impulsively. Choose your actions mindfully. Interested in more tools like this? Join our upcoming Group Coaching cohort! Comment 'GROUP' for the application link and take a step towards healing. #Emotional#MentalHealthTools#SelfHelp#TraumaHealing#GroupCoaching#emotions#triggered#triggers ♬ original sound - Cody | Neuroscience & Trauma - Cody | Brain & Trauma Healing

3. Your greatest strength is the degree to which you don’t think about yourself

Those who get far develop an identity around doing things, as opposed to needing to feel ready or confident or any other crap that makes it about you.


4. Expect success to feel weird

Most people never rise above the pack, either because they doubt themselves or because other people are subtly trying to bring them back to their level. This is to be expected. You will rise when you know it won’t be easy and drive through anyway.

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5. Most of our diet is garbage

Anything that is even vaguely processed or tampered with (pesticides) and devoid of nutrition is working against you. This is why my diet of primarily animal products these days is laughably minimal in the context of modern society. The closer your food source is to the farm, the better your mind and body will run.

6. The biggest opportunities are found in good habits, not good ideas

If you have an idea for something super cool, but your plan for its realization doesn’t consist of consistent habits, that idea will remain in your head.


7. Never take advice from someone who is less happy than you

Be polite, smile, and move on

8. Most people want an excuse to coast

How does knowing this give me an advantage? I know that by being ruthlessly intolerant of excuses and always taking full responsibility for everything, I am no longer a slave to my inner fears.

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9. Boldness is a state of being that will serve you more in most situations than other states

But you don’t have to feel bold to be bold. Winners cultivate the habit of being boldly proactive, regardless of their feelings of fear.

10. Knowing ‘self-esteem’ is not accurate

We grow up thinking we have a substance running through us that we can lose at any moment. If someone is mean, we risk losing “self-esteem.” Not if you realize it’s not a thing. It’s an idea. We’re already whole and confident regardless of what others think or say. Knowing this makes me relaxed and unstoppable.

11. Your greatest threat to happiness and growth is thinking your past experiences can affect your present experiences

It’s in the mind. You are not a hostage to what happened and what others said about you — unless you think it repeatedly. When we get present, and focus on action instead of self-obsession, we win.


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Alex Mathers is a writer and coach who helps you build a money-making personal brand with your knowledge and skills while staying mentally resilient.