Mission progress


#1 +1 or -1 = Destiny Math

What Must YOU be?
Abraham Maslow studied the greatest people of his generation. People like Eleanor Roosevelt and Albert Einstein. He told us about the

#2 The #1 Key to Happiness + Flourishing

Hint: Become BFFs with your Inner Soul
Imagine your ideal self. Smiling and waving at you. See ‘em?! (Seriously. Take a deep breath/10 seconds and bring that epically awesome

#3 How to High Five Your Inner Daimon

My Philosophy in One Word
To the extent that there’s a gap between who you’re capable of being in any given moment and who are actually being in that moment, you

#4 Your Infinite Potential

And Where to Find It
Phil Stutz and Barry Michels wrote a great book called The Tools. There are five Tools in the book and we may chat about others later but I

#5 3:59.4

How to Run a 4-Minute Mile and/or Do Other "Impossible" Stuff
At this point, most of us know that Roger Bannister was the first person to break the 4-minute mile. Very smart people of his era said that

#6 WOOP! There It Is

The Science of Making Your Dreams a Reality
Gabriele Oettingen is a world-class researcher who has spent her career studying the science of making your dreams come to life. In her book

#7 Handy Dandy Motivational Calculator

The Science of Solving the Procrastination Equation
Piers Steele is a leading research scientist. After analyzing hundreds of studies on motivation, he came up with a little equation to
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#8 Motivation = ENERGY x (Value x Expectancy / Impulsivity x Delay)

A Modified Look at the Science of Motivation
Yesterday we talked about our motivation equation. You know: Motivation = Value x Expectancy / Impulsivity x Delay Quick re-cap: Our
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#9 Simmer vs. Boil

Let's Turn Up the Heat
Have you ever heard of “activation energy”? It’s a chemistry thing. The dictionary tells us that it’s “the minimum quantity of
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#10 Antifragile

vs. Resilient vs. Fragile
In his great book Antifragile, Nassim Taleb walks us through the fact that there’s a big difference between being fragile, being
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#11 Psychological Flexibility

A Hallmark of Happy Humans
Dan Siegel is one of the world’s leading mindfulness / neuroscience / interpersonal neurobiology experts. Dan tells us that the healthy

#12 Keep Shooting

A True Story About Moving thru Some Serious Obstacles
Once upon a time (1938 to be precise) there was a pistol shooter. He was incredibly good. Hoped to be the very best, in fact. Unfortunately,
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#13 Good Bad Days

Mastering the Art of Playing Badly Well
Jack Nicklaus once said that the real key to being a great golfer was “playing badly well.” It’s one thing to play well when
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#14 Really Hard vs. Impossible

Want to Go for a Bike Ride to Mt. Everest?
In Spartan Up!, Joe De Sena (founder of Spartan Race) tells the ridiculous story of Göran Kropp. Imagine your friend inviting you on an
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#15 Did I Win?

How to Sink a $1m Putt and Do Other Great Things
Gold-medal-winning mental toughness coach and author Lanny Bassham is all about focusing on the PROCESS of goal achievement. He tells a
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#16 Relentless Solution Focus

60 Seconds of Whining and Then You're On!
Jason Selk is one of the world’s leading mental toughness coaches. He tells us that the best among us have a “relentless solution
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#17 Bring Forth

How to Be a Wise Parent (for Yourself + Others)
As you might have noticed, it’s easy to stress ourselves out as we strive to step up to our heroic potential. So… We need to make sure
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#18 Deo Volente + Thy Will Be Done

Wisdom from Apollo, the Patron God of Philosophy
Deo volente. It’s Latin for “God willing.” The ancient Stoics told us that it’s important to have clear goals but we need to qualify

#19 How to Build Your Grit

The 4 Key Scientific Variables
Angela Duckworth created the science of Grit. It’s fascinating. She defines it as intense passion + intense perseverance. In short,
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#20 How to Stop Thinking

The #1 Tip on How to Master this Important Lost Art
Patrick McKeown is one of the world’s leading experts on optimal breathing. When I interviewed him recently, he made a very interesting
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#21 The Rise of Superyou

Introducing a New Mantra: “No Pressure, No Diamonds.”
Steven Kotler wrote a great book called The Rise of Superman. In it, he challenges some myths of mastery—telling us that it’s not so
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#22 Acres of Diamonds

Got Any Priceless Gems in Your Backyard?
In our last +1 we had fun with our new mantra: “No pressure, no diamonds.” Continuing the diamond theme, let’s talk about Acres of
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#23 Dominoes

Ready to Amplify Your Latent Potential by 2 Billion?
Are you familiar with the physics of dominoes? It’s fascinating. And wonderfully applicable to the power of lining up a series of
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#24 Gratitude

Science Says: It Works!
Gratitude is a very powerful thing. Shockingly so. In fact, research shows that something as simple as writing down 5 things you’re
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#25 Grateful Flow

The Antidote to Ick Sauce
In our last +1, we chatted about the scientifically-proven power of gratitude: Simply writing down 5 things you’re grateful for can boost

#26 Celebratory Love

Gratitude’s Generous Cousin
In the last couple +1s we talked about the power of Gratitude and Grateful Flow. (You try them out yet? 😃) Today, let’s talk about
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#27 "I'm Excited!"

What to Say to Yourself When You’re Feeling Nerves
Alison Wood Brooks is a researcher at Harvard Business School. She studies the most effective strategy for dealing with acute stress. First,

#28 Emotional Stamina

What to Do When You’re Having a Rough Day
What do you do when you’re having a rough day? Maybe it starts the moment you wake up and you just don’t feel like doing your normal
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#29 The Stockdale Paradox

I’m Confident It’ll Happen AND… I Know It Will be Challenging
Vice Admiral James Stockdale was shot down during the Vietnam War. He spent seven and a half years in a brutal prison camp. He spent four of
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#30 Sharpening the Saw

/Building a Chainsaw
Stephen Covey‘s seventh habit of Highly Effective People is “Sharpen the Saw.” He tells us about the importance of renewal if we want
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#31 "Needs work!"

What to Say to Yourself When Things Don’t Go as Planned
What do you say to yourself when things don’t go as planned? It could be in the middle of a big game or creative project or dinner
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#32 Active Love

How to Get Out of a Mental Maze When Someone’s Annoying You
Here’s another really powerful tool from The Tools guys, Phil Stutz and Barry Michels. Use this tool whenever you find yourself in one of

#33 The Science of Making Hope Happen

Three Keys: Goals + Agency + Pathways
Hope is one of my top 5 signature strengths. The science of hope is one of my favorite things. Let’s kick this one off with the simple,
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#34 The Science of Self-Compassion

Three Keys: Self-Kindness + Common Humanity + Mindfulness
As we go ALL IN on Optimizing our lives, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. That’s when the science of Self-Compassion comes in. The science
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#35 Journal Lately?

Science Says: It’s one of THE Most Robust Ways to Boost Our Optimism
Here’s another simple way to keep your motivation high: Journal. Sonja Lyubomirsky is one of the world’s leading scientists studying
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#36 Deep Work

How to Escape Shallowville and Go Deep
Cal Newport has a very big brain. He got his Ph.D. from MIT and is a professor of Computer Science at Georgetown. He also wrote one of my
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#37 Multitasking Is a Myth

What We Do Is Really Task Switching — And that Has a Big Cost
Multitasking is a myth. Our brains aren’t like computers with parallel processors. We can’t actually do multiple things at one time.
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#38 How to Schedule Your Best Work

Match Your Mental Energy to Your Task
Scott Adams created Dilbert. (Over 10,000 of them by now, actually.) He also wrote a great book called How to Fail at Almost Everything and
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#39 Deep Work + Team Work + Monkey Work

What Goes When for You?
In our last +1, we talked about matching your mental energy to the right task. The essence of that? You don’t want to try to do your most

#40 3 + 1 = Magic

How to Optimize Your Big 3: Energy + Family + Service
We all have areas of our lives we want to Optimize. Stephen Covey tells us to think about our “Roles and Goals.” Tony Robbins calls it
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#41 OMMS

The Hero’s Mantra
Ultimately, what we want to get *really* (!!!) good at is alchemizing any and all challenges into fuel for the bonfire that is our
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#42 How to Stop Being a Hardaholic

The Magic Question: What If It Was Easy?
Alan Cohen tells us to quit being a hardaholic—making everything harder than it needs to be. (Quick check in: Are YOU a hardaholic?) One
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#43 Compound Magic

The Power of Embracing the Mundane, Unsexy Pennies in Our Lives
You’ve probably heard the whole “magic of compounding interest as told through the doubling penny” story. Fantastic. It’s worth
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#44 Clock Time vs. Horticultural Time

How to Grow Yourself
Related to our magical doubling penny and its demonstration of the power of compounding growth, we have clock time vs. horticultural time.
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#45 Bright Lines

How to Make Good Contracts with Yourself
I dropped out of law school before a semester was over but I do remember one Big Idea from Contracts class. Lawyers like to say that a
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#46 Commitments: 100% Is a Breeze

99%? Not So Much.
So, as per our last +1, bright lines are super helpful in making deals with ourselves. Here’s another way to look at the same basic idea.

#47 Quick How to on Habits

100% on ONE Keystone Daily Micro Habit
So, we’re ready to go ALL IN and make that 100% commitment with super bright lines. Fantastic. But here’s the deal. First: We need to
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#48 How to Avoid Habit Suicide

OK to Suck. Not OK to Skip.
Let’s say you’re building a new habit a la the Quick How to on Habits +1. We talked about the importance of picking something that fires
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#49 Floors and Ceilings

How to Be an Imperfectionist
Stephen Guise wrote a great little book called How to Be an Imperfectionist. As a still-recovering perfectionist, I found it very useful.
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#50 Perfectionist vs. Optimalist

Which Are You?
Speaking of perfectionism, let’s look at the essence of Tal Ben-Shahar’s great book The Pursuit of Perfect. Tal is one of the world’s
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#51 Two Easies

Easy to Do. Easy Not to Do.
Jim Rohn tells us that our success in life is all about the two easies. It’s all about consistently doing the tiny (!) fundamentals that
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#52 The Most Dangerous Thing You Can Do While “Multitasking”

Can You Guess What It Is? (Now Quit Doing It!)
We’ve established the fact that our brains don’t have parallel processors like a computer. As much as we’d like to think that we can
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#53 Little by Little

The Buddha on How to Optimize
One of my favorite gems from the Buddha is this wisdom: “Little by little one becomes evil, as a water pot is filled with water. Little by

#54 Speed Is a Force

The Force Is with You - Use It Wisely
The very first thing Phil Stutz taught me in our very first session together was the fact that Speed Is a Force. He told me that the longer
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#55 The Law of Diminishing Intent

Goes Nicely with Massive Action
In our last +1, we talked about the fact that Speed Is a Force. Jim Rohn said the same thing a little differently. He told us about the
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#56 Greatness = Consistency on the Fundamentals

Universal + Specific (What Are Yours?)
Robin Sharma tells us that greatness is all about consistency on the fundamentals. Look at any great performer and that’s what you’ll
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#57 How to Put on Your (Life-)Socks

Wisdom from the Greatest Coach Ever
John Wooden’s UCLA basketball teams won 10 NCAA championships in 12 years, including an 88-game winning streak. (Go Bruins!) ESPN says
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#58 Digging Foundations

What the World’s Tallest Building Can Teach Us about Building the World’s Tallest You
One more +1 on the fundamentals theme to finish our trifecta following Greatness = Consistency on the Fundamentals and Coach Wooden teaching
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#59 Mistakes? They’re Just Mis-takes

You As the Director of Your Life
Imagine yourself as the Director of a movie. Huge budget. You have an amazing crew. Best actors in the world and an impeccable script.
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#60 Never Waste a Mis-take

It’s All Awesome Data!
Have you ever made a mistake? (Hah.) Right. (I’ve made a mistake or 3 million as well.) Here’s the deal: When we approach it with the

#61 The Obstacle Is the Way

Plus: The Paradox of Fire
Marcus Aurelius once wrote to himself in the journal he never intended to publish that we now know as Meditations that “The impediment to
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#62 "That's Like Me!"

How to Optimize Your Self-Image
Whether you’re an athlete, entrepreneur, teacher, parent, manager, or — fill in the blank here —, what percentage of your game do you
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#63 “That’s NOT Like Me!”

Part II on How to Optimize Your Self-Image
In our last +1 we had fun cultivating a strong Self-Image via “That’s like me!” imprints. Quick recap: All the elite performers agree:
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#64 Smokeybot

The Little Guy Who Smokes the Tortoise and the Hare
Grant Cardone wrote a great book called The 10X Rule. In it, he tells us that we got the whole Tortoise and the Hare story wrong. Of course,
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#65 Sacrifices vs. Decisions

There’s a Big Difference between the Two
George St-Pierre is one of the greatest mixed martial artists in the world. Ever. Of course, he wasn’t always one of the greatest. At one
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#66 Warriors vs. Librarians

Let’s Not Just Catalogue these +1s, Let’s LIVE Them
Our last +1 was about a modern-day warrior, Georges St-Pierre. Let’s talk about old-school philosophical warriors for a moment. In his
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#67 110-Year-Old You

Ready for Some Time Travel?
In his great book Happier, Tal Ben-Shahar tells us that we have all the wisdom we will ever need—as evidenced by individuals who undergo a

#68 Law of Leadership: DWYSYWD

Do *You* Do What You Say You Will Do?
Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner are two of the world’s leading academic researchers on the science of leadership. They offer us a few
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#69 Making New Commitments

What to Do When You Need to Adjust Course
In our last +1, we talked about doing what you say you will do. DWYSYWD. Super important if you want to establish a foundation of
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#70 5-Minute Sweaty Conversations

How to Navigate those Challenging Chats
You know those times when you need to initiate a tough conversation and you’re kinda sorta dreading it and avoiding it? One of my old
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#71 Wearing Scars As Medals

What a Hero Does with the Dragon Claw Marks
In our last +1 we chatted about the fact that, as Campbell tells us, when we go for bliss on our hero’s journey we need to remember that
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#72 Now What Needs to Be Done?

Remember: Feelings Follow Behavior
David Reynolds wrote what might be the best book you (and most other people) have never heard of. It’s called Constructive Living. David
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#73 Identity → Behaviors → Feelings

Not the Other Way Around
Continuing our theme of feelings following behavior, let’s chat about some wisdom from Eric Greitens. Eric is a fascinating guy. Rhodes
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#74 Spinny Fingers

How to Quickly Regain Your Balance When Life Spins You Around
Try this little experiment. Step 1. Find a safe spot to spin around and get yourself dizzy. Step 2. Spin around and get yourself a little

#75 Simplify the Battlefield

Wisdom from a SEAL Commander on What to Do in the Chaos of Life and War
In our last +1 we talked about Spinny Fingers and how to quickly regain our equanimity when life spins us around. Here’s another way. Mark

#76 Victim vs. Creator

Two Questions: "Why Me?" vs. "What Do I Want?"
David Emerald wrote a great book called The Power of TED*. In it, he makes the distinction between being a Victim vs. being a Creator. The
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#77 Dust

A Secret Tool to Master Non-Attachment
Let’s chat about something called “Dust.” It’s a secret tool I recently learned from Phil Stutz. Basic context: Remember Apollo,
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#78 AM + PM Bookends

How to Create Masterpiece Days: Start Here!
In The Compound Effect, Darren Hardy makes the important point that we have more control over the very beginnings of our day and the very
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#79 Today's the Day

What to Do When a (Daimon) Reporter Follows You Around All Day
Here’s another way to create a Masterpiece Day filled with you at your best. In Die Empty, Todd Henry tells us to imagine that from the
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#80 Time Blocks

The #1 Power Tool for Great Days and a Great Life (You Using Them?)
Continuing our theme of making TODAY (and every day!) a Masterpiece Day, let’s take a quick look at Time Blocks. Gary Keller wrote The ONE
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#81 Getting Started vs. Getting Finished

A Good Idea on How to Deal with Procrastination
If you’re feeling a little less than motivated and tempted to procrastinate on stuff, you might find this distinction helpful. There’s a

#82 Suffering = Pain x Resistance

An Important Lesson on How to Reduce Suffering
In her great book Self-Compassion, Kristin Neff shares a little equation that can help us reduce our suffering. It goes like this: Suffering
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#83 Name It to Tame It

How to Tame the Gremlins
In our last +1, we talked about the fact that Suffering = Pain x Resistance. I briefly mentioned one way to reduce our suffering—simply
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#84 Rumination

It's Time to Quit Chewing on Your Mental Cud
While we’re on a roll with how to reduce our emotional suffering, let’s talk about something you want to quit doing: ruminating. Science
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#85 50 Pounds = A

How to Master the Fear of Art
Imagine this: It’s your first day of art class. You signed up for an intro class on pottery. (Nice! Go you!) The teacher does something a
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#86 What Shakespeare, Beethoven & Picasso Have in Common

Want to Create Something Great? Create a Ton.
In our last +1, we talked about how to get an “A” in your next pottery class. Quick re-cap: Produce a TON of stuff. (Remember: 50 lbs =
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#87 Swimming Rats

How to Increase Your Endurance by 240x (!!!)
Although I’m not a huge fan of some of the drawbacks of animal testing, this study is astonishing and worth knowing about. Get this: In
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#88 Hope: Leadership’s Secret Sauce

How to Increase Engagement from 1% to 69%
While we’re chatting about the science of hope, let’s focus on a key leadership stat. First, imagine yourself as a leader. (Which, of
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#89 Ikigai

What's Your Reason for Getting Up in the Morning
Do you know what the word for retirement is in Okinawa? Here’s a hint: There ISN’T a word for retirement in Okinawa. (Hah.) Think about

#90 Your Declaration of Independence

From Which Tyrannous Habits Will You Declare Your Independence?
For those of you in the States celebrating today, Happy Independence Day. For everyone else around the world, Happy 4th of July! 😃 The
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#91 The Pursuit of Happiness

Don’t Chase Happiness—Practice It
In our last +1, we celebrated our prior Declarations of Independence (and successful Revolutionary Wars) and we made a new Declaration of
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#92 The Gift of Greatness

We’ve All Been Given It — Here It Is
Anders Ericsson is the world’s leading authority on the science of what makes great performers great. If you’ve ever heard of the
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#93 The Science of Being Awesome

A Quick Look at Purposeful + Deliberate Practice
In our last +1 we talked about Anders Ericsson and his research on the science of greatness. The most exciting discovery? The fact that we
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#94 Adaptability + Homeostasis

Why Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone Is So Important
We’ve talked a lot about how important it is to get out of our comfort zones. But why is it so important? Two words: Adaptability +
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#95 Mediocrity vs. Excellence

How to Avoid Getting Stuck in the Middle of a Rugged Mountain
In our last few +1s, we’ve been chatting about reaching the Peak of our potential. What’s the alternative? Well, did you know that the

#96 Win or Learn

Three Questions to Ask after a Disappointing Performance
Lanny Bassham won a gold medal in rifle shooting in the 1976 Olympics. But he didn’t win that gold until AFTER he kinda fell apart in the
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#97 Turning Around Glitches

What True Confidence Looks Like and How to Build It
True confidence doesn’t come from thinking everything will always go perfectly. That’s crazy. In fact, as Phil Stutz pointed out in one

#98 The Equanimity Game

How to Play It Like an Emperor
In our last +1, we talked about getting really good at recovering from our inevitable glitches. My favorite way to do that? I like to think
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#99 Time Affluence

It’s a Better Predictor of Your Well-Being than Financial Affluence
Having enough money to take care of your basic needs is an important variable in constructing an optimal life. And, of course, nice things
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#100 Euthymia

How to Live with Energized Tranquility
First: Welcome to our 100th +1. It’s a special milestone. Kinda excited about it. 😃 Let’s celebrate it with one of my favorite words