I’m going to try something new.
As I blog about becoming a better person and sharing what I have learned, sometimes I catch myself not following my own advice. What a conundrum. It’s not intentional like I don’t really believe this stuff works or anything, it’s just that I am human like the rest of you and struggle with things like discipline, patience, etc… When I catch myself not following the things I say on this blog, it really bothers me. I want to be the kind of teacher/leader that someone can get behind because they are setting the example. And I do believe that setting the example is one of the most influential ways to get someone to subscribe to or believe in what you are promoting. (I talked a little more on this here.)
So, in order to do my best in not being a hypocrite (and to gain some accountability), I am going to be posting personal journal entries about my own journey in self-improvement and personal development in the three primary areas I believe are the key to living better: spiritual, mental, and physical.
These 3 categories make up the 3 sides to your “life existence triangle”. If you’re deficient on one side, the whole triangle collapses which translates into worst case scenario your whole life falls apart and you hit rock bottom, or best case you glide along in life at a plateau feeling stagnant and stale with no purpose or drive to do anything.
The best way to fix this is to keep all 3 areas “healthy” or “fit” while maintaining an appropriate balance. Each section can be broken down into sub categories like relationships, work, family, fitness, money, God, emotions, intellect and so on.
In order to keep a healthy triangle, you need to not only “work out” in all 3 areas, but also get rid of the junk. If you go to the gym every day but eat junk food all the time, you won’t make very much progress and can you really say you’re healthy? If you fill your mind with negative thoughts, limiting beliefs or even drama from the people around you or the TV you watch, it’s going to have a huge impact on your belief system and what you are able to accomplish in the world. This is where depression can start, or emotional problems, or fear take over and keep you from doing something great. And it’s just the same with your spiritual life. What you feed it, is what you will get out of it.
The spiritual level is something a lot of people either don’t care about because they don’t understand it, or because they choose not to believe in it. Every person has a mind, a body, and a soul. Your soul is the essence of who YOU are. It’s where your true passions and desires come from. My theory is that a lot of people aren’t sure what they really want to do in life because this area of their life is severely lacking. How can you improve something that you don’t believe or don’t know exists? To me, the spiritual aspect is the most important. It is the foundation to your triangle and is the first place to start. It is the place where you answer questions like “why?” and “who?”. Get your foundation set right, and the house you build on top will be sturdier, last a lot longer, and ultimately be so much better.
So, here’s what I’m doing to work on my physical, mental, and spiritual self. It’s a process and journey for me but my goal is to be transparent and honest about what is working and also what is not. This won’t be a regular update but I’ll post as I experience major life changes or accomplish my goals.
Fitness Goal: I want to complete a triathlon.
Why: My whole life, I’ve never thought of myself as an athletic person. I’ve always been in pretty good health, and I’m not overweight or anything, but I guess my family wasn’t really a sports family. I ran track in high school, but that’s about it. When I started thinking about what I wanted to do in life, I realized that I have a lot more options that I ever thought I did. Why can’t I be athletic? I had been allowing some limiting belief from my childhood to keep me from pursuing what I think would be really fun! I love running. I love swimming. And I love biking so a triathlon is the perfect sport, plus, it’s tough. SO, the reasons why I want to do this are first, to prove to myself that I can do just about anything I put my mind to, and second, I would love to have a fit, healthy body that has energy to give back to the world. By training for the triathlon, I will get a lot closer to that goal.
Health Goal: Switch to a fully raw diet
Why: My whole life I’ve struggled with fatigue. My high metabolism is burning off food quicker than I usually eat plus what I was feeding it probably doesn’t help. I believe our bodies were made to eat fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. Period. All the essential nutrients your body needs (and more) are in those four groups. Plus, the amazing amount of energy that comes with it is what I’m looking forward to. It does help, though, that I love fruits and veggies already.
Finances Goal: Get out of debt.
Why: If you owe money, then it’s not really yours. I don’t want to owe anyone anything. You never know when something might come up and they’ll want it back. Plus, while I’m making payments for years and years and years, that’s millions, yes millions of dollars I’m losing out on due to compound interest. The quicker I get out of debt, the more freedom I’ll have to use my money for changing the world.
Memory Goal: Improve my memory
Why: I have a terrible memory. According to research, you are not stuck with the brain you have right now. It can be easily improved just by taking care of it and giving it what it needs. One thing I hope to improve over time is my ability to remember facts, names, faces, dates, etc…
Knowledge Goal: Read a lot more
Why: In order to grow your brain and expand your thinking, you gotta have input. This can come in many forms and one of the best but quickly declining is books. One day I hope to be able to read one book a week, but for now I’ll just stick with getting through as many as I can. Another way I input is through the wonderful world of podcasts. There are so many great ones out there and it’s a very easy way to gain knowledge. Check it out.
Focus Goal: Be able to concentrate better on the most important thing at the most important time
Why: I’ve never been a multi-tasker. If I’m carrying on a conversation with someone in the car while I’m driving, I usually end up taking the wrong exit or running a red light. It’s pretty bad. My mind can only focus on one thing at a time. I want to be able to direct that to the highest leverage activities and projects in life, or in other words, those things that are going to have the most impact on my life.
Identity Goal: Be able to clearly articulate and explain who I am and why I exist
Why: It is paramount that every person be able to explain who they are and why they exist. I know that there are a lot of different beliefs out there but many people don’t even take the time to consider the bigger questions out there like why are we here? When you are able to answer those questions, you will be able to find and pursue your true purpose in life and in the process, you will change the world.
Sanctification Goal: Sancti-what? Basically I want to grow more like Christ
Why: I am a disciple of Jesus and as such it is my goal to be more like my lord and savior. Sanctification is the big word used to describe that process. I will never be perfect, not in this body at least, but I CAN get better. The best way I believe to go about this is to practice love. Love God, and love people. So, to start, I love YOU.
Theology Goal: Understand and know my Creator better
Why: As humans, we were created in God’s image and likeness. I believe that means we have His personality traits. Our desire to build as a species comes from Him. Our knack for thinking, and reasoning, and showing emotion are directly from Him. Now, I know that those things were corrupted when sin entered the world, but these traits still point back to Him. As someone who wants to be an inventor, I believe I got that from my Maker. He is the original inventor; He invented us. That being said, I desire to know Him more. I want to understand Him and His ways. I want to experience Him and see Him however I can. I do that by reading the Bible first to see what it says about Him, I then pray that the Holy Spirit reveals Him to me, and then third, I learn from those who have dedicated their lives to the study of Him and His work.
I know there’s a lot here, but I feel like it’s important I share this. I don’t know if anyone will get anything of value from it, but at least it’s helping me stay on track towards my goals.
One last thing. Here is my purpose statement, or my answer to the question “Why do I exist?”
“I, Chad Doeden, exist right now to glorify and serve my God and Creator by being the best version of myself and by reaching my highest potential. This is extremely important because First: I need to honor, respect, and take care of the body, mind, and soul I was gifted, Second: because as I get closer to my best, I hope people will see the beauty, power and glory of God through me, and Third: because when I have helped myself, I am stronger and more equipped to help, serve, and love others as we as Christians are called to do. This is why I am alive today.”
Thank you for reading and I hope you are inspired and motivated to change your life and change the world.