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9 Habits of Highly Effective Libertarians

9 Habits of Highly Effective Libertarians

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1. Properly Manage Stress 

The reason I put this one at the top of the list is that I believe that this is something that we as a society almost completely neglect. It's easier to focus on (and "treat") all the symptoms that stress causes (weight gain, lethargy, bad digestion, depression, anxiety, anger, violence, etc), but seldom do we reach the bottom of the root of this one.

Now you should always consult with your actual healthcare provider before you start or stop taking any medications, but I've never liked the idea of managing stress with prescription drugs. The furthest I would go is perhaps taking an ashwagandha herbal supplement or tea.   

There are things that you can start today that will help you manage the stress that virtually has no negative side effects. If you reach the point of chronic stress, it is extremely difficult to remove the mind and body from such ensnarement, but it can be done. 

The first step is to find a time of day and a time at night to simply not do anything for 10 minutes per session. No emails, no arguing, no scrolling through the phone. Just 10 minutes of silence twice a day goes all to you. Make the time for it. Clear your headspace. Simply acknowledging the stress will keep it still and steady for a while and bring everything into the moment. Make sure you have a good place to decompress. 

One thing I've found that is certain is that you will have to fight stress head-on and resolve it. It cannot be alleviated by "fixing whatever is bothering you". It has to be remedied before you deal with whatever is stressing you out. 

Secondly, practice some diaphragmatic breathing exercises. This will pull your body out of the fight-or-flight mode. If you're chronically stressed, you are likely in a persistent state of fight-of-flight without even realizing it. It will also help if you have digestive issues like acid reflux or bloating caused by stress (which is a completely overlooked cause of GERD). 

An extension of the second step is the 3rd level, which is laughing. Laughter is the only thing that will keep us balanced in this clown world. We'll never make it if we can't have comedy. So stop fearing, start laughing. Like the breathing exercises, it will help remove your body from the fight-or-flight instinct.

When you're stressed, the body releases cortisol and adrenaline, hormones that will help you in an emergency like running away from danger or fighting off a predator. If you're sitting still breathing deeply or laughing, the body cannot be in a state of alert. Those stress hormones will begin to clear out of your system. Recent studies reveal that you don't even have to find something fun to get the benefit from laughing - just fake laugh - it will do the same thing. 

Performing these steps every day will help you get to the most important level of all - sleep. You need restful, recuperative, soul-cleansing sleep. If you're getting 4 or 5 hours of broken sleep every day, you will wake up miserable and your productivity and mental health will suffer tremendously. You should aim to get at least 25% REM Sleep and 25% Deep Sleep. The use of a sleep tracker is controversial, so I just measure falling asleep time and waking time, and how often I woke up in the middle of the sleep session. You will be able to rate your quality without a tracking device. 

Once you begin getting better sleep, your stress will slowly dissipate. Your body and mind cannot heal without it. To get a better night's sleep - turn the phone off early, turn the tv off early (or have it on a timer), make sure your room is not too hot or too cold, and make sure that your nighttime clothes aren't too tight (I sleep nekkid) don't eat for 3 hours before or drink liquids 2 hours before bed. Avoid alcohol or drugs because they will make sleep worse in the long term. If you're having trouble sleeping, try these breathing techniques that will help you doze off quickly. 

All of the next habits you'll read about as you continue through this article will help you mitigate stress as well. It's not something that should be ignored. If you're stressed, whether it's business, job, relationships, or just frustrated with the state of the world... ya gotta get it managed without drugs and booze if you want to be highly effective (and healthy).

Once you get the stress off you will find yourself being less tired, less depressed, less angry, and less anxious. You'll digest food better which will give you a better nutritional profile that leads to more energy, more productivity, and weight loss, and make you better in the sack. Give it time, it will improve. 


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2. Improve your diet and eating habits

There are a lot of diets out there. Regardless of what camp you choose, the real reality is that you just need to cut the heavily processed junk food out of your diet. There are only a few species on the planet that have so many health problems due strictly to diet, and that is human beings, dogs, and cats (and other domesticated animals). There are even known cases of gorillas in zoos experiencing harm because they were eating the wrong foods.

This is all because we have an abundance of processed garbage at our fingertips, and we feed our pets junk too. Animals in the wild do not have to join fitness clubs or go on diets to lose weight. Why? Because they're already eating the right, natural diet. 

With that in mind, let's proceed. 

Next time you go to the grocery store or farmers' markets to get your food, try to find "real food" or "clean food", basically vegetables and meats that are whole and unprocessed. If you're a vegan or vegetarian, mitigate all that heavily processed fake meat and cheese. It might be "better for the environment" but it's still pretty bad for you. Don't assume that just because you're a vegetarian you're healthier. Plenty of vegan, vegan junk food. Try a plant-based whole foods diet instead. If you're an omnivore, try the Mediterranean diet

Also, when it comes to mealtime, it's time to relax and eat slowly. Avoid bolting your food and eating on the go if possible. Remember, you are not what you eat, you are what you absorb. Bolting your food will make it hard to digest and could lead to acid reflux, gastritis, IBS, SIBO, and other digestive woes. On the contrary, if you eat properly, your body will be able to utilize the nutrition much better.  

In addition to eating slower, begin intermittent fasting. Try skipping breakfast and eating one meal at noon and one at 6 pm if possible (you can change the window of time, but it's beneficial to fast for 18 hours a day).  You don't have to lower the amount of food you're eating, but rather just the window of time to consume it. This gives your body time to clean itself out. Skip the snacks during the day as well. Even "healthy snacks" can spike blood sugar and disrupt your digestion. Eventually, you will not be as hungry and you will begin to feel much, much better, which will make you less stressed and more productive and efficient. 


3. Get Organized 

One thing that will make you incredibly more effective in life is journaling. It's such a simple yet under-utilized practice in our time. It will keep you focused and help you remain accountable for everything that stacks up against you. 

I have a phone as most people do, but I don't use it for my organization. Some apps will apps will help you journal, sure, and if you prefer that, then it's fine. I, however, like to write stuff down with a pen and paper. It's old school but it connects you to the tasks at hand.  

whichever way you choose to do it, here are some things you should map out: 

  • Eating Schedule - Pick a good window of time and have your meals on or around those times every day. 
  • Prework and Postwork Regimen - Plan to wake up much earlier than your work day, but do not begin working. Instead, take a walk, read, exercise, or meditate. Whatever you do, plan it out at specific times each day before work. After work, know exactly when you're going to shower, brush your teeth, watch a show, read, go to trivia night or bingo or to the pub, etc. Whenever you can plot out your day, do so. 
  • Goal list - What do you want to accomplish each day? Don't say you can't do it or don't have time, ask yourself how do I get this done? Simply asking that question opens the door to the next level.
  • Food Journal - Write down your calories, and macros, and keep track of your weight and measurements. Write down what you ate and if you felt better after eating it. Eliminate foods that cause distress. 
  • Reflection - What did you learn today? What challenges did you overcome? Who fucked around and found out today? Reflect upon it. 

Keeping accurate track of your life will make you organized and highly effective. It will improve your memory and lower stress. You will become more successful and confident. Your health and sex life will vastly benefit from it as well.


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4. Get Adequate Sun Exposure 

We as human beings have mastered the art of manipulating our environment to make us more comfortable. Shelter, indoor plumbing, air conditioning, television, computers, etc. These are all luxuries that capitalism has made standard in the world. 

The only problem is, your body lags in its ability to keep up with such a constantly expanding technological universe. It still needs nutrition, water, and sunlight. It's very critical that your body makes its hormone secosteroid D (Vitamin D). There are a myriad benefits to getting adequate sun intake such as staving off depression, improved cardiovascular health, boosting the immune system, lowering blood pressure, and getting better sleep scores. 

You can take a vitamin d2/3 pill, but it is not efficient in giving you all the benefits of pure sunlight, and it actually might be dangerous. You can get it also from some mushrooms and fish that have been exposed to the sun naturally, but it still does not come close to the power of the sun. 

Try to take a walk in the sun without sunglasses or too many layers. Going outside frequently will help build up your melanin. If you're thinking that being outside is risky due to skin cancer, the exact opposite is true. All the studies that led to the hyperbolic warnings of sun exposure were done on white people in North America and Western Europe who stayed inside all year round until they went to the beaches of the Caribbean and got their asses zapped by the sun.

Sunburn is not good. Avoid sunburn, not the sun. Sun exposure is extremely healthy. 

Know your limits, of course, but sunblock will deter the benefits as well as the possible dangers. As I said, if you're very pale and haven't been outside all year, watch out drinking in the hot sun of Cancun or Punta Cana. You will get burned without sunblock. 

You must gradually increase your sun exposure. Do not do it all at once. 

Building up melanin by being outside frequently will help protect you against skin cancer as well. Of course, check with your healthcare provider before beginning any sun regimens. 

If you live in an area where it is difficult to get actual sun exposure or if it is winter or some other reason you can't get outside, I recommend a verilux happy light (no compensation was given to me for promoting the product, I use it myself at my desk)


 Verilux Happy Light



5. Exercise and Play Sports

If you're like me and you're at the desk working 10 hours a day, you'll need to compensate for this lack of mobility by getting as much exercise as you can when you're not working. I am required by my own rules to go to the gym to lift weights at least 5 times per week, even if I am away on business. I also must do a minimum of 3 cardio sessions per week, each session being 20-30 minutes of vigorous exercise

I love weight training at the gym, but cardio, I admit, is excruciatingly boring at times. That is why I am allowed to swap one of my cardio sessions for a sports session if I want. Playing basketball or tennis is very aerobically effective, and it's fun for me too, way more so than the ol' treadmill. I am also a fan of cycling. Whatever sport you choose, do it frequently. It keeps the mind and body ready to conquer challenges. Running, jogging, jump roping, volleyball, baseball, and even golf. I even know a guy who makes sure he plays Beat Saber on his virtual reality game every day. They're all good for you and will help you become a more effective individual.  

Failure to exercise is not only physically detrimental, but it will also erode the mind. What are the risks of not exercising? Lethargy, heart disease, lower immune function, higher risks of bone fractures, slower digestion, constipation, higher resting heart rate, obesity, diabetes, skin disorders, and cognitive impairment. Emotionally, without exercise, you are more prone to depression, anxiety, panic attacks, anger, jealousy, and bitterness. 

If you can exercise and do not have any limitations, go for it. Ask your doctor if you do have limitations.

Benefits of Exercising to Improve Productivity


6. Avoid Procrastination

 The ancient Greek stoics were big on avoiding procrastination, and I can confirm that they were correct about where it all begins: waking up in the morning. Sometimes you just really need to sleep in, but the majority of the time, sleeping in is merely a preference for leisure over productivity. This is the first place to start if you are a habitual procrastinator. 

Set a timer to get up in the morning and stick to it. Sometimes it feels like a herculean task, especially in the winter when it's cold, but do it anyway. Get up and start your regimen early. 

The next step is to create a list of everything that you need to get done. Be reasonable with what you can accomplish in one day, but make sure something from that list gets done every day possible. Do not make a list and anticipate beginning it after your birthday, the holidays, or any other excuse. Just find the most important thing on your list and start a little bit right now. 

Have the presence of mind and wisdom to know what is in your control to change and what is outside of your control. 

Eventually, you'll enjoy getting shit done, and making a list of chores will become a pleasure rather than something you struggle to avoid. 

In the end, the reward is all your own. You will be at peace, you will be more productive, and you will sleep better with satisfaction that only comes from getting things done. 


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7. Educate Yourself & Learn New Things

I was never really much of a fan of sitting in classrooms. I found it to be dull and joyless. However, I love education. Knowledge truly is priceless and it will change your life. I read a lot of business and financial literature, which I enjoy, but I am passionate about philosophy and science. I could read physics and philosophy books all day if time existed.

Becoming more intelligent and knowing more things is the way of the superior individual. Being able to read the works of philosophers that have been long gone for thousands of years is truly beautiful. The great author's workshop is an unfinishable treasure. Missing out on such a gift is a tragedy, indeed. 

The reality, however, is that it is imperative to go beyond what you like to learn about. Why? Because it improves how you can deal with other people in business, relationships, politics, work environment, social situations, and life in general. 

It is particularly beneficial to not only be able to identify enemies with precision but also to know your enemies' arguments. As they say, every good chess player knows his opponent's moves before he makes them. Read books that they are reading. Allow your mind to contain their mind so that you are stronger and faster than they are.

Perhaps challenge yourself to the point where you no longer see them as an adversary at all, but as someone, you can work with voluntarily to achieve goals previously unimaginably.   


8. Travel to New Places

An extension to learning new things by reading is traveling. There is nothing that can replace real-world lived experience. You may never fully understand what it's like to be in someone else's shoes, but you can get a better feel for who they are and what they've seen by simply being around them. It will force you to learn about food, drinks, cultures, and events that you wouldn't think to look up on the internet. 

As you travel to so many new and more exotic places, your character builds. Start small, but eventually get as far away from what you already know as possible. You'll be more open-minded and you'll have more desire to continue learning. Every new place you visit your arsenal of memories and knowledge will advance. Reading is very important, but it will not replace the authenticity of actually experiencing other parts of the world.   

It will take a hammer to your inherent prejudices and fears and suspicions and trepidations. It will make you delighted to take on greater risks as your confidence will improve immensely. 

Ultimately, it will make you more interested and happier. You will have more to talk about and people will gravitate toward you as you speak with the greater authority having experienced life outside of your once-sheltered existence. 


9. Build Your Wealth & Be Charitable. 

Now it is common in our society to hate money and to look down upon people who want to amass a fortune for themselves.  As Mencken said, "The theory seems to be that as long as a man is a failure he is one of God's children, but that as soon as he succeeds he is taken over by the Devil."

All I can say to that is ignore it. It's nonsense. 

You should always develop your financial literacy and put it into action.

Now I'm not going to get into a long-winded explanation of how to get wealthy, because there are already many great pieces of literature out there that can help you with that. All I want to tell you is that if you are having money trouble, you need to resolve it. 

You cannot be an effective person with money woes and being crushed under massive piles of debt. 

If you do not know the difference between an asset and a liability, it's time to dig into some business books and learn before you get into any other sort of reading. If you've made it through this article, it shows that you have a lot of ambition to become a more effective person. 

If you do not have at least 5 streams of income, a good retirement plan (not a 401k), and if your liability list is longer than your asset list, it is my recommendation that when you sit down to read once a day, make sure that you start with Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki. His book is a great intro to financial intelligence. (No compensation for promoting the book)

If you're already financially literate, never stop looking for ways to expand your wealth. And always make sure that you're having fun doing it.

A great question I was asked once was, "If you won the lottery for millions of dollars, would you keep doing what you're doing now?". Most people would do something different with their lives, but If you said yes, then that means you're already doing what you truly enjoy doing.. and that is the only way to build and maintain wealth in the end - NOT by chasing money and getting rich quick schemes. 

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Once you are in the blue, you can become more charitable with your wealth. Allow me to elaborate on that. You don't have to be a philanthropist or get rid of all your possessions to be charitable. You don't even have to write a check or send a gift to a charity at all. It's awesome to pursue the road to philanthropy, but you can contribute to society much sooner than that. 

Simply invest or spend your money. I'm a frugal and savvy man, and I do donate to some worthy, reputable causes, but that's not necessary all the time. When I go on vacation with my wife, we live it up. It's not only good for us, but it's good for everyone else involved.

I could easily stay at a $ 60-a-night hostel with a bunch of broke college kids, but I don't, I can afford to stay at the more expensive places, so that's where we stay. I don't occupy a room that someone else who is currently in a different financial stage in their life could be using. Live within your means but don't live a lesser life to "save money". 

How is all of this charitable? Simple. Because I'm not holding on to the wealth. It is being reintroduced into the economy. There are millions of jobs in hospitality simply because people like me enjoy traveling and dining out. Many hands will benefit from us taking that vacation. I know some rich people who are so incredibly cheap that it boggles my mind. There is no point in having great wealth and not using it. I'm not saying piss it all away, but don't be a miser either.

When you gain wealth and use it responsibly, you become highly effective, and the community at large will benefit from it greatly. No force, no violence, and no government needed. 

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