Not getting anywhere in life? Learn why discipline equals freedom

In my previous post I brought up the idea that discipline equals freedom.  If you didn’t read the previous post, you can do so by clicking here.  Throughout today I realized the different areas in life where this is true. Let’s look a little further into it.

Dietary Discipline Equals Freedom

I have a friend that posts photos of entire plates of junk food that he consumes. I’m talking about plates full of marshmallow peeps, meringue cookies, burgers, fries and much more. What’s interesting though, is that he is also very lean. If you think along the lines of a normal diet, it makes no sense for him to look like this.

Discipline equals freedom - If it fits your macros
Peeps anyone?

You have to look at a diet from a different lens. 

What he does is follow the “If It Fits Your Macros” or “IIFYM” method. Basically you track your daily macronutrient intake and run it through a calculator. Of course this takes additional inputs such as heigh weight, activity level and current lean mass as well. Food wise, you can eat whatever you want, as long as you do not exceed any of your macro nutrient thresholds each day.

Trust me, it’s a challenge to track all of your macro nutrients. Most people struggle just trying to keep track of their daily caloric intake or glasses of water consumed. It takes discipline to stick with this plan. Yet at the end of the day it offers flexibility (freedom) allowing you to consume what you’ve been craving all day. Well, as long as it fits your macros.

Creating passive income – Discipline equals financial freedom

When I made my first course on Udemy I invested about 40 hours over the course of the month. I had to squeeze the course creation between working 9 hours a day, being a husband, being a father and working on network maintenances at night. I was absolutely exhausted and wanted nothing to do with creating a course.

But I stuck with it.

Now my course literally sells in my sleep. Most of the students that are buying are located in Europe or Australia. While the income from this course isn’t enough to live off of, it does provide some extra income each month. An income that keeps appearing wether or not I invest any time into it. Anyone that creates a stream of passive income with tell you that it requires discipline to set it in motion. You will work for hours with no guaranteed return, but it’s the moments when “you win” that make it all worth it. 

Discipline equals career freedom

screen-shot-2016-10-17-at-8-59-27-pmComing from the world of IT, there are many certifications that people hold. Some certifications require hundreds if not thousands of hours worth of studying to obtain. One in particular is called the CCIE. Some people will refer to this as “The Doctorate of Networking”.


Everyone I’ve know that has obtained the CCIE had to hide in a cave for 6-12 months to study. At the end of the process they come out with beards (even the ladies!), glasses and if they did it right; a certification that relatively few people have.

Assuming the individual has practical experience as well, they now have the freedom to pick and choose where they want to work. Cisco value added resellers (VARs) are always searching for CCIEs. Large enterprises and network carriers place a lot of value on CCIE holders as well. For most people in IT, it’s worth surrendering a year or your life to obtain this.

 Discipline can lead to a ripped physique, passive income, and the ability to “write your own paycheck”.

How has discipline helped you to achieve freedom?

Write your responses in the comments below.

3 Lessons from Extreme Ownership

How Extreme Ownership can help your business

When a Navy SEAL talks, you should pay attention. Or in the case of “Extreme Ownership” by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin you need to keep your eyes open and keep reading. Extreme Ownership is the concept that a leader is ultimately responsible for their actions, along with the actions of their subordinates. This book is packed full of knowledge, and I highly recommend this to anyone in a leadership role.  This includes parents, sr. executives, managers and even teachers.

Extreme Ownership
Leif (Left), Jocko (right)

Here are three quick lessons from this book.

Lesson 1 : There are no bad teams, just bad leaders.

A team can be completely changed by changing only one member; the leader. In this book the authors talk about a scenario from SEAL training. They place the trainees into different groups that compete against each other in “boat race” style event. There is one boat that is consistently in last place. The leader of this boat believes that he was given the worst SEAL trainees to command.

As an experiment, they trainers swapped the leaders of the last and first place boats. The leader from what was originally the last place boat now believes he has an upper hand with a more skilled team.

To his surprise, his previous team mates are now keeping up with him in the new boat. Nothing else changed, other than the person calling the shots.

Lesson 2 : Keep it simple.

Complex orders are difficult to follow. They increase errors and cause information to be relayed in less than reliable manner. When on the battlefield, the SEALS communicate in the most concise and easy to follow method. This allows information to be relayed quickly and reliably.

In business, we often botch this. When speaking to others you must communicate with them at a level that they understand and keep the orders simple. If you can get the point across in two words versus ten, do it.

Lesson 3 : Discipline equals freedom

To many, this is a contradictory statement. How can rigid discipline equate to freedom? In the book the authors discuss how having a detailed list of standard operating procedures gave them more freedom to improvise when it was required

In everyday life, discipline is important. If you constantly find yourself saying you do not have time for something during the work day, did you spend your time wisely? Did you get sucked into projects rather than saying “No!”? Did you spend your time wisely and avoid social media, texting and other sources of distraction? If not, it’s time that you reevaluate where your time is going. 

The authors also emphasis the importance of waking up when you alarm first goes off. When you hit “snooze” it sets the tone for how the remaining part of the day will go.

All around, this was a fantastic read. It allows you to get an idea of how a team of Navy SEALS operates in the field. The authors get the point across through storytelling that rivals any fiction writer. As it should; these guys are the real deal. 

Can you create passive income through drop shipping? Let’s find out.

I’ve heard about people using drop shipping to create a semi-passive income stream for years. I wanted to find out if it’s all hype, or if there is actual money to be made.  As usual I like to dive in and discover things first hand.

First of all I need to find a “Guru” or method to follow.

Method 1 : The Anton Method (https://www.dropshiplifestyle.com/)

dropshipping-passive-incom

Blogger, Entepreneur and world Traveler JonnyFD raves about this course. This method seems to focus on finding a specific niche and selling products targeted to them. Sounds like a reasonable method to follow. There are many niche markets out there. In fact I know someone that owns a company that sells crawfish traps! She knew nothing about the business until someone in her family gave it to her as a gift.

The course from Anton requires significant investment. From what I can find it runs somewhere between $795-$1500 depending on discounts and other spiffs.

At the current time I don’t want to put forth that level of investment. I am working on other streams of income and need to find something more cost effect.

Method #2 – David Dang Vu’s Udemy Course

Screen Shot 2016-07-04 at 11.00.05 AM

Udemy recently changed their price structure and doesn’t allow courses to cost over $50. I picked this up for only $18. Prior to the change in pricing structure this course was sold for $299. Looking at the 14,353 students and a 4.7 rating this course seemed like a steal for $18.

This course is packed with good material. David explains retail arbitrage and how thousands of people use this method to create an income.

He then shows you step by step how to setup your eBay and Paypal accounts. Once you have these steps taken, it’s time to start listing items. David explains how to optimize item descriptions for better SEO rankings on e-bay.  He also provides a number of helpful links to optimize your title, and search for UPCs which are now required on e-Bay item listings.

The other sections of the course teach you how to process orders, manage inventory and deal with customer issues. There is also an entire module on tips and tricks to maximize profits and production.

Sounds easy enough.

E-Bay Store Creation

I followed David’s course and created my eBay store. I went to a number of suppliers or “source” sites and started to list various items. Sadly my account is new and e-Bay only permits five items and / or a total of $500 to be sold. I will need to call them in a few days to request a bump to my seller limits.

Here’s the list of items that I am trying to sell. I listed these earlier today, so it makes it interesting to see a few views on them already.

e-bay drop shipping - passive income

Now we wait.

I will review these items and monitor the number of views. If any of these are very lower performers, they will get the axe to make room for other items to experiment with.  Once my limits are increased I will max them out, then ask for another increase. I know that sellers like David have 2,000 + items in their eBay stores. It may sound like a lot to manage, but I’m told that once you build to that level it’s not that difficult to keep on top of. Especially if you hire a virtual assistant to help run the day to day tasks and customer service follow ups.

Until next time –

Keith