How to stay motivated and taking action when life feels hopeless and like it will never work out for you.
In this video coaching newsletter, I discuss an email from a 28-year old viewer from Europe who has been following my work since 2017. He met his dream woman right before the lockdowns in 2020. He says he got lazy and complacent and stopped making her feel heard and understood and then lost her to another guy. One year later, and he is struggling to find his motivation.
He’s had a hard time since then. Lots of drugs and alcohol, feeling depressed and sleeping all day. He hasn’t met anyone who comes close to making him feel the way he did with his ex. He feels like it’s hopeless and he should just give up. My comments are in bold italics like this below in the body of his email.
If you don’t date and court your girlfriend or your wife, eventually some other guy will. And that’s just a fact of life. The two biggest things I see when I phone sessions with guys in long term relationships is they either stop dating and courting their girl, or they don’t make her feel heard and understood. When a woman feels heard and understood, the legs open, and when she doesn’t, the legs close. And so, he’s not doing the two most important things that it takes to maintain a relationship. Because what you do to get her is what you do to keep her. A lot of guys will court a woman, but once they’re in a relationship, they stop. They stop doing that and think, “Okay, I got her. I don’t have to do this stuff anymore.”
Women want to be in a love story, and if you stop the love story, eventually, they’re going to recognize that if you really cared, you’d be showing them through your actions. And guys that don’t, eventually learn the hard way, like this guy did. And so, his problem is it’s now been a year, so he got into drinking a bunch, he got into doing drugs a bunch. He was depressed. He just stayed in bed and slept all day. He says, now he’s slept with seven different women since the breakup, he doesn’t feel anything for any of them, and he’s starting to lose hope. He’s all of 28 years old.
He brings up a lot of good points here because, quite frankly, if you’re if you’re a human being, the older you get and the more you go through life, the more you recognize that there’s a lot of challenges that are going to come during the seasons of your life. And depending on when you grow up, because when you’re young, you don’t know what you don’t know. If you get into your twenties when the economic cycle is in the boom cycle, all of your reality is that, hey, things are going well. And then you go through a bust cycle where the economy crashes, or it’s hard to get a job where unemployment’s high.
Like now, we’ve got inflation high across the board because of all the ridiculous things that have happened over the last several years. And so, you’ve got hard times. And if you grew up during good times, you never really been through any hard times. You might have been through them before, but you were too little. You were a little kid and you didn’t know any better. But me being 52, you kind of see the boom and bust cycle. It takes about 12 to 15 years to go through a cycle. And we just had a huge boom cycle for the last 6-8 years, and now we’re going to go through a bust cycle, and people get stressed out.
In this case, he stopped dating and courting his girl properly. She leaves, goes and gets with another guy. And then your whole identity is wrapped up in that relationship. Especially because he was like, “This is my dream girl,” so it was the best he had ever had. But he got lazy and he got complacent. He didn’t maintain it. He didn’t do the little things. Love is about giving. The purpose of all relationships is you go there to give. And if you go there to give, and you do it in the beginning, and then you stop at some point, eventually, the woman is going to figure out that you either don’t care, or you don’t know what to do to maintain it, or you don’t want to. You’re not motivated.
A big part of life is like when you’re young and you don’t know any better. It’s great to have motivation and to have an emotionally compelling vision and mission you want to create for your life, but the reality is, all great things take time. Great businesses, great success stories, none of us hear about them until they’re 10 or 15 years down the road. When you look at something like a Facebook, or an Apple Computer, or a PayPal, or something like Tesla, you don’t hear about these. You might hear about them a little bit, but it’s usually a minimum of a decade before they really start to do well.
And I found this in my own life. But, you know, this guy is he’s all of 28. So, if you take a decade, where was he when he was 18? Well, a lot of things have changed in the last ten years of his life. Also, he said he wants to become an mechanical engineer. He wants to go back to school, but he’s losing his motivation. And the reality is, it takes a lot of years. The typical mechanical engineer, that’s usually a four-year degree. Maybe you go get a Master’s. You’re 4 to 6 years in school. So, you’re in your mid-twenties by the time you just get done with your school, and then you’ve got to get into the real world and get some experience.
It takes 2, 3, 4 or 5 years of real world experience before you really start to understand the industry. And then you’re 30, 31, 32 by the time you kind of feel like, “Alright, I’ve kind of got this. I kind of get what the industry is about. I know how to do my job. I’ve grown my reserve knowledge. I’ve developed my gifts, my skills, my talents.” But things take time, and people get impatient. People want everything with instant gratification. If they become single, or they decide they want to meet their future ex-wife, or whatever, it doesn’t always happen when you want it to. If you start a business, it typically isn’t going to take off and really get going for at least a decade or more. And for most people, if they don’t get the success they want in a matter of weeks and a matter of months, they’re ready to quit and they’re ready to give up.
And so, just like the title was saying, how do you stay motivated? Because there’s going to be a lot more times, especially if you’ve got a big audacious goal, maybe that’s going to take you 15 to 20 years. There’s going to be a lot of days, there’s going to be a lot of weeks, there will probably be months and periods you’re going to go through, and you’re going to feel like, “Man, I’m not really making much progress.” And success, feeling like you’re successful and feeling happy, is a result of feeling like you’re making progress.
A lot of the time I look back, for those of you that have read Mastering Yourself. And that’s one thing this guy needs to do. He needs to read Mastering Yourself to understand how life works, how the banking and financial system works, how the economy works. What it takes to motivate yourself day in, day out, week after week, month after month, year after year. Like for me, when I started this business, I figured in a year or two, I’ll be right back to making multiple six figures like it was when I was in real estate. And then, four years later, I’m sleeping on my dad’s couch, waiting tables for ten months at a sports bar at 39-40 years old. That wasn’t part of my plan. I didn’t expect to do that.
I was willing to do that. I was willing to suffer, because I believed that at some point, some day, some way, somehow I was going to figure out the right way to package up what I had to offer in a way that enough people could see the value in it, that I could earn a really good living off of it. But there were a lot of years of struggle. And what do you do when you’re three or four years in and you still don’t feel like you’re any closer to succeeding or getting the things that you want? Ray Lewis has a quote that I always liked. He says, “Grinding is my rest.” And so, you have to grind. There are things that you have to do every day, day in, day out, week after week, month after month, year after year, and those have got to get done every day, no matter what.
It doesn’t matter how you feel, because really it’s all about discipline. Like Jocko Willink says, “Discipline equals freedom.” Well, if you notice, if you ever go on his Instagram, he’s constantly, every day at 4:30 a.m., “Hey, I’m getting after it. I’m at the gym, I’m working out. Here’s a here’s a picture in black and white on my watch. I’m here getting after it, being disciplined.” And it’s through disciplining yourself day in, day out, week after week, month after month, year after year, that you build up your body, that you get in shape, or that you lose weight. Or you take a business from an idea to where it becomes very successful or a multi million dollar business. It’s not something that happens overnight. There’s an old saying, “It took me ten years to become an overnight success.” And so, you’ve got to recognize that great things take time and they never happen when you think they will.
When I think back in my life, most everything that I’ve accomplished or achieved, it never happened when I expected it to. It was long in coming. And when I look back, I was always grateful that things worked out, but, man, the amount of time to make something happen, you just have to understand that’s part of life. And so, you have to learn how to you get through your days when you don’t feel motivated. How do you get through a day and take action when you’re like, “Man, I’ve been at this for four years,” or five years, or six years. Or, “I’ve been working at this crappy job for two years, and it doesn’t seem like anything’s going to change for me.” Or, “It’s been two years since I broke up with my girlfriend, and I’ve met one girl that I really like.”
In this guy’s case it’s been a year, and he’s like, “When’s the next great love going to come around?” And then you’re going to look back and say, “I haven’t found anything as good as what I had in the past. Is this is it for me? Is this my lot in life?” And so, you’re going to have to deal with thoughts like that. Everybody has to deal with that. The question is, what are you going to do? And for me, every day I think, “What do I have to get done today before I go to sleep?” That’s the most important thing. It doesn’t matter how you feel, because you’re going to have days you feel good, you’re going to be happy and things will be great. And there are going to be other days where it’s just going to go sideways, and seem like everything goes sideways all at once. And that’s the way it is. You’ve just got to plow through it. What has to get done right now?
Focus on getting in the moment, because inaction breeds fear and doubt. Taking action breeds confidence and courage. And I know exactly how this guy feels, because I’ve felt this way thousands of times in my life. When you think about it, there’s 365 days in a year, and I’ve had thousands of days in my life that just felt like they sucked ass and I was never making any progress. So, everybody’s got to deal with it. And the reality is, nobody cares about your problems, nobody cares about my problems, and they’re glad that we have them. And the people that you’re typically so worried about, about what they think about you, quite frankly, they’ve got their own problems to worry about. They’re really not thinking about you or worried about you that much. That’s why you’ve got to put your head down and plow forward.
I’ve been following you since 2017, read your book over 15 times back then and got my dream girl right before Covid 2020, but got complacent and of course lost her to another guy.
Well, pain is life’s change agent. It’s life’s way of saying, hey, what you’re doing, your approach, ain’t working. And this will happen with 100% of the women that you get into a relationship with. If you get into a relationship with a girl, and you stop dating and courting her and you stop making her feel heard and understood, it’s just a matter of time before she breaks it off or makes you so miserable you dump her. That’s just reality.
If you’re going to be in a relationship, you’re going there to give, and the giving can’t stop. It doesn’t matter if you’re not having a good day or you’re going through a rough patch. It doesn’t matter. You’ve got to make the effort. If you’ve got kids, you can’t go “Oh, I don’t feel like being a dad for the next six months, so you guys are on your own. Get yourself ready. Do your own clothes and find a way to school.” You can’t do that.
Every day, you’ve got you responsibilities. You’ve got things you’ve got to take care of. If you’re going to get into a relationship with a woman, you can’t lay around and be a lazy ass, because eventually she’s going to get tired of it. She hopped on your fun bus because she wanted to follow your lead. And if you stop being the leader, she’ll take the reins for a little while, but eventually she’ll become sick and disgusted with it, because it’s not natural, and she’ll leave. So that’s reality.
I didn’t make her feel heard and understood and argued with her. I never begged her to stay but told her to call me when she changes her mind. I forgot everything I learned from your book.
And you’re suffering the consequences. All I can do is put the information out there and teach you. But if you make a conscious choice to just stop doing what’s necessary, then that’s on you. You chose to not be disciplined. That’s what happened. Discipline equals freedom, and you were not disciplined enough to maintain your relationship. And now you’re experiencing tremendous pain. And that’s how life says, “Hey, you can’t you can’t live like this. The way you’re living doesn’t work. You’ve got to change your approach.”
Now, one year after the breakup, I still think about her. In the beginning, I was a total mess for many months, had a very hard time coping with my feelings, a lot of drinking and doing drugs, feeling very depressed and sleeping all day. I started reading your book again to start getting some motivation, but now I feel the motivation starting to fade.
Yeah, like I was talking about earlier, I wrote about in “Mastering Yourself.” When I was still on the path, still trying to figure out my business model for what I’m doing now, I was really excited and pumped up and motivated for the first few years. But then I was four years down the road, and I spent pretty much most of the money that I had paying my bills and living, because I really didn’t have an income. I had some, but my expenses were exceeding my revenues. And you can only do that for so long. I mean, I had enough money to basically go four years to pay all my bills, and on top of that, to spend money experimenting. So, I was I was burning the candle, financially, at both ends.
I still remember this to this day, when you’d walk through the double doors in the sports bar where I was working, I remember I was like three or four months in and I was thinking, “Man, I don’t know what the hell I’m going to do to get this business to finally take off.” And so, there was this little sink where we would wash our hands. And I remember washing my hands and just kind of looking up at the ceiling and just going, “What the hell am I going to do? How am I going to get out of here? I cannot believe, after all of the success I’ve had in my life, I’m here, waiting tables at 39-years old. And this is the last place I want to be.”
My feet hurt, my legs hurt. It was an eight hour shift, I think at that point, and you’re just constantly running around. And I had done that. That was great when I was 20, 21 years old. But here I am, 39 years old, and spent the last 20 years basically working in an office, nice clothes, just enjoying a good life, nice cushy office. Now I’m running around like a maniac with a bunch of 22-23 year olds. Just looking up thinking, “What the hell am I going to do? This is horrible. I can’t I can’t believe I’m here.” I remember I kept saying, “I can’t believe that after four years and hundreds of thousands of dollars, I’m waiting tables. I don’t want to be in this place.” And I didn’t know what I was going to do. I was out of ideas, you know, because I felt like I had tried everything.
And then, when you get in those situations, you become more flexible and more open to trying new things. Because a big part of what I needed to do was to let go of all the success and what worked when I was in the real estate and the mortgage industry. Because my success that I had with television advertising and yellow page advertising, that type of advertising was just not going to work for what I was doing. And then that led to a series of events and changes where I just started doing articles. Because I think at that time, I was 39. So, my book was almost closing in on being out for four years. And I was thinking, there’s other things I want to talk about besides dating and relationship stuff.
And so, that’s when I started blogging and writing articles and doing those several days a week, and then I started getting more traffic from Google search. And then a year or two later, I think in 2011, 2012, I started doing YouTube videos, and that made things move a little bit more. But it was slow and it took several years. It wasn’t until 2013 that I moved back to Orlando. And I never expected it to take that long. When I look at the time I started in 2006 to where I was, that’s seven years – seven years from the idea, to where I was finally able to support myself and have a nice, comfortable living doing what I’m doing now. And everything that’s come since then has just continued to build upon that.
And now I’m in year 16 that I’ve been doing this, and that’s a long time. There’s a lot of days of not feeling excited. There’s a lot of days not feeling like things are going to work out, but I kept grinding and I kept pushing forward. The motivation and the enthusiasm was gone. All I had was the grind. All I had was, “What have I got to get done today?” Because inaction breeds fear and doubt, taking action breeds confidence and courage. And so, I always kept myself busy taking action, because when I sat around, then I would worry about where I was. “Oh, I’m getting older. Things are taking forever. I’m never going to get to where I want to be in life. I’m not going to accomplish the things I want to accomplish. This is taking too long.” And you’ve got to grind. You just have to take the action that you know you need to take, every day.
I feel a bit hopeless when I do I start to miss her. I read your book 10 times again in 1 year. Every girl I’m meeting doesn’t stimulate my eyes the same way she did.
Well, as I’ve talked about a lot in many, many videos, I’ve talked about it in “3% Man,” I found that you really connect on a soul level, depending on your life path, with 1 to 3 women per decade. And so, there’s lots of girls that are beautiful, and you can have fun, you can hook up, you can have great sex. But somebody you really connect with on a soul level – just like on the same kind of level that you connect with your closest friends, where you just jive together, it’s easy, it’s effortless – that almost never happens. And that’s why we appreciate those relationships so much.
But you’ve got to get to a place where you’re happy with your life, you’re happy where you are. That’s the most important thing. Because if you don’t like your life and your lifestyle and you’re not excited about it, you’re not going to get a girl excited about it either. And so, that’s why you need to focus on yourself and getting back to a place where you love yourself, you love your life, you love your hobbies, your interests. You’re working, you’re grinding, and you’re trying to find a way to enjoy your life every day where you’re at.
Because if you can get to a place where you enjoy your own company, then you’ll be good company. But feeling the way this guy is feeling, he needs to focus on taking care of the little things that he can take care of to make his life better, so he gets to a point where he’s proud of his life, and he’s proud of the progress, and he’s proud of his goals and his dreams and where he’s going.
A woman doesn’t want to hear that at 28 years old you’re ready to give up and quit. And, quite frankly, it’s around this age that most people give up on their dreams. Because they’re like, “It hasn’t happened yet. Well, I guess I’ve got to settle. I’ve got to be realistic.” You’re at that age where we separate the men from the boys. The men just keep plowing along. Yeah, you might feel like shit, but so what, nobody cares. Nobody cares about your problems. You’ve got to find a way to grind.
If I’m walking in the city, I rarely see somebody that caught my eyes. That make me miss her even more. I’ve been sleeping with 7 people since the breakup, but it doesn’t give me anything.
Well, if you’re not enjoying being with them, then don’t be sleeping with people that you don’t fucking care about.
I miss the connection and the sex I had. How can I attract the kind of women I feel I deserve if I don’t see those women anywhere?
It’s not about finding them. It’s about becoming the kind of guy that would easily attract those women into your life. You’ve got to create a life and lifestyle where the kind of woman you want would love to be a part of it. And, quite frankly, everything you’ve described here, the way you’re thinking, the way you’re feeling, you’re not in a place right now, in the present moment, where a woman is going to be excited to be part of that. Because if you’re not excited about your life, you’re not going to get a woman excited about it. If you’re excited and you’re stoked about where you’re going, and she asks you about your mission and purpose and where are you going, your enthusiasm will come out. She’ll be excited to talk to you. She’ll be excited to hear, and she’ll want to participate in that.
I feel like I want to give up, and don’t date or do anything else, then focus on school to become a mechanical engineer, and also go the gym to get in the best shape of my life to become a firefighter. I feel I’ve become more hopeless when I don’t find people I really feel attraction for.
What’s happening is you’re impatient. Michelangelo said, “Genius is eternal patience.” And so, what’s happening is you’re impatient that you don’t have the success you want right now. And because of that, you’re like, “Okay. Well, I should just give up.” Well, then you’re going be miserable. Do you want to go through the rest of your life going, “I’m never going to achieve the things I want.” That’s even more demotivating.
That’s why people become morbidly obese. That’s why people settle and marry somebody they don’t really care for. And then, because they don’t care for the person they’re with, they’re terrible parents. Then the kids see that and grow up, and then they just become the same kind of mediocre type of people that also don’t achieve their goals and their dreams.
I would love to get some clarity and advice from you. I’m a 28-year old guy from Europe.
Well, I would definitely say you need to read “Mastering Yourself.” And something that would also help would be “Quotes, Ruminations & Contemplations – Volume I” and “Quotes, Ruminations & Contemplations – Volume II.” These are out. They can really help you with the concepts that are that are in the other books. You need to focus on your mission and your purpose in life, going to the gym, being disciplined. And also, focus on creating a life and lifestyle, when you’re not working, of doing fun things with fun, like-minded people. Because when you’re doing things with like-minded people that make you happy, you’re going to smile more, you’re going to laugh more. You’re going to be more outgoing, you’re going to be more attractive, and women are going to notice that. And that’s what you want.
You want a woman to be excited to be around you. And right now, the dude that wrote this email is not very excited or proud about his life. And so, that needs to be your priority. “How can I get to that place? What do I need to do today to fall in love myself and fall in love with my life? What kind of fun things can I do with fun people? Where can I go and meet other like-minded people who like to do the same things?” Lose yourself in your hobbies and your interests and the things that are exciting and compelling to you. That’s what I would do if I were you.
At 28 years old, it’s like, dude, most guys don’t really know yet. I remember when I got into my mid-thirties, it’s like you’re early to mid-thirties are some of the best years of your life. And especially if you’re going to go to college, you become an engineer by the time you’re 32, 33, you should get to the point where you’re done with college and you can finally become a mechanical engineer. But I remember, college sucked. I hated every frickin’ day of it – lots of math, lots of physics, lots of science, lots of homework. I didn’t enjoy it, but I had to do it in order to get the degree.
That’s why it took me seven years to get a four year degree. I would take semesters off because I would just have times where I didn’t feel like taking classes. I wanted to work and I wanted to have some fun. It took seven years, but hey, I turned out okay. And so, you’ve got to cut yourself a break. Focus on what you can control – the controllables, as I say in “Mastering Yourself” – and take action day in, day out, week after week, month after month, year after year.
You’ve got to recognize you’ve got thousands of days ahead of you in your life that are going to probably suck and you’re not going to be too excited. That’s par for the course. Over the course of your whole entire life, you’ve got thousands of days ahead of you that are probably going to suck. Probably, at the end of the day, you’re like, “Well, I wish it had gone differently. I wish that wouldn’t have happened. I wish that meeting would have gone better. I wish that client would have bought from me,” or whatever it happens to be. “I wish I had gotten that job. I wish I had gotten that raise. I wish I had gotten that promotion. I wish that girl would’ve said yes to me,” or whatever.
It’s going to happen. You’ve got to get used to rejection. You’ve got to get used to things not working out, because that’s what a man does. And if you want a woman to follow you, and submit to you, and allow you to lead her, then no matter what you’re feeling, you’ve got to be disciplined. You’ve got to grind it out. Like Jocko says, “discipline equals freedom.”
So, if you’ve got a question or a challenge and you’d like to get my help, go to UnderstandingRelationships.com, click the Products tab at the top of your screen and book a coaching session with yours truly.
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