YOU’VE GOT A FANTASTIC RESEARCH LABORATORY -BETTER THAN THOSE AT STANFORD, M.I.T. & OXFORD COMBINED- AT YOUR FINGERTIPS…TO USE AT ANY TIME
It’s YOUR LIFE and it’s the most creative, flexible, and malleable laboratory you could ever dream into existence!
WHAT IT IS YOU DREAM ABOUT ALL THE TIME?
- Making more money?
- Finding a different job?
- Making a career change?
- Getting in better physical shape?
- Beginning a meditation practice?
- Become a minimalist?
- Starting a business?
- Write your first (or another) book?
I’ve made all of these changes in the last three years…and it all started with an experiment.
HOW TO DESIGN A LIFE EXPERIMENT TO TEST YOUR OPTIONS
There’s no need to over-invest in your aspirations when you can design a short or long-term life experiment to see if it’s the right course of action. If it goes well, fantastic….you can make it a permanent part of your life. If it’s a rocky outcome, then you have a choice to either readjust and continue with the experiment or discontinue it. Nothing is set in stone in life and everything can and will change.
Life experiments help you embrace the transient nature of life and seize opportunities when they arise.
STEP 1 – Pick an area of interest. Choose a life area (see bullets above for ideas) in which you want to experiment. It could be a pleasurable activity or a career change. Choose one to test.
STEP 2 – Choose an appropriate time limit – I nearly always choose a month for an experiment because a lot of times my experiments lead to knew habits. Habits can be formed in less than a month, but it also gives me enough time to adjust my approach if it feels right without abandoning the experiment. Sometimes a slight adjustment is all you need to keep moving forward.
STEP 3 – Get an accountability partner on board – Depending on what the experiment is, I recommend having a partner who will provide support, feedback, and encouragement. The going will get tough and the right accountability partner can make the rough spots smoother.
STEP 4 – Create a simple routine – Design a repeatable routine that incorporates your new activity into your daily routine. Spend time assessing how best to include it into your everyday routine – this is critical. It will be easier to sustain this activity if you do this important bit of assessment and planning up front.
STEP 5 – Review your results at the half-way mark – As I said earlier, sometimes an adjustment is required to sustain your new activity. That’s fine and the best way to evaluate whether an adjustment is necessary is to review your results at the two-week mark for your one-month experiment.
MORE OF MY PAST LIFE EXPERIMENTS
Living in the UK – at age 18 I moved to the United Kingdom and lived there for a while It changed me forever. I’d love to have a mother extended residency there some day in the future for about six months.
Giving up Caffeine – I’ve conducted this experiment a few times over the years. I’ve always started consuming it again.I think the results demonstrate that while I do feel better when I don;t consume caffeine, I enjoy the effects in moderation. And…I’m sipping a coffee while writing this page.
Blogging – Nearly 15 years ago I launched my first blog to see if I had the drive, energy, and skill to make a go of it. At first it was rough, then as I learned more about the craft of blogging writing, and design, I knew it was a medium that could work for me.
Motorcycle Travel – I was always crazy about this idea and in 2013 I designed a two week trip to test out my resolve, stamina, and ability to get on a bike for two weeks. I’ve since commuted on a bike everyday and crossed the US twice in three weeks on a motorcycle.
Plant-Based Nutritional Plan – In 2010 I stopped eating beef and pork. In 2013, I stopped eating chicken and poultry. That left only plants and seafood. For two and a half years, I consumed only these foods. I recently shifted to a plant-based higher protein nutritional plan to lose weight and aid my workout goals.
Strength Training & Weight Loss – I’ve begun a comprehensive strength training and weight loss program designed by a fitness coach to get into the best shape of my life. At age 58, it’s still not only possible, but imperative to do this. I spend a large part of my day caring for my 80-something parents who have multiple active disease states, including my dad who has Alzheimers dementia. I decided long ago that I didn’t want to enter my 60s in poor physical shape and/or health.
I joined a local gym, and each morning (Monday through Saturday), I arrive at 6a-7a and doe my scheduled work out. My coach divided my strength training workouts as follows: M-arms, T-legs, W-back, Th-chest, and F-shoulders. I spent some time on the treadmill to get my body musculature warmed and then do my strength training workouts for about an hour. I limit Saturday to a swim and doing some work on the treadmill.
I’ve committed to doing this for at least a year to achieve the goals I have for myself: Weight – 190 pounds (currently 234) and a flat stomach with marked muscle definition (I’ve never experienced that).
Filmmaking – I like creating videos, though my skill level is very basic. When I was journeying across the US on motorcycle I recorded live broadcasts via Facebook and had a blast doing so. In an effort to get more comfortable with video and more skilled in presenting on camera, I’m starting an experiment called The 5-Minute Friday Facebook Film.
Each Friday at 1p, I’ll be broadcasting live from wherever I happen to be in the world and will cover three succinct points in five minutes. Click here for more information!
More to come…
WOULD YOU LIKE TO BEGIN TAKING PART IN LIFE EXPERIMENTS?
Simply follow my advice above and if you need an accountability partner, leave a comment below and I’ll be that for you! Just let me know what you’re think and I’ll help in any way that I can.