From: The Desk Where It All Began.
Subject: The Value of Humble Beginnings.
It was a quiet Christmas this one just passed.
I spent it with the people who matter the most to me.
The people who I could not live without.
We didn’t do a whole lot – just enjoyed each others company, exchanged small gifts and shared delicious food.
Usually we are joined by other family members, but they could not make it this time.
And so it was just my brother, my sister, my mother, myself.
Between us all we don’t have too much.
We only have what truly matters in life – each other.
And we get along like peas in a pod, which makes this place I call home, a wonderful place to be.
The gifts we gave each other we’re only small things.
Nothing expensive and nothing crazy.
It’s always been that way in my family: extravagance has never existed, simplicity is valued above all else and it’s the little things that we appreciate more than anything.
We’re a simple family who grew up living off the land, producing our own electricity, killing our own food, taking care of ourselves.
Life was good back then and my parents owed nobody anything, leaving us free to do whatever we wanted.
Then one day: a result of the added financial stress of moving into town, getting a mortgage like everybody else, and never seeing each other – my parents split.
Mum walked away with nothing but my siblings.
I went with them.
And for a long time life wasn’t too easy.
We we’re hurt. We we’re scared. We we’re poor. We we’re powerless.
I was in trouble at school constantly.
Anger issues are what they told me I had – but really I was just a boy who wanted to get away from this little world I found myself in.
I dreamt of golden beaches, forests, mountains and the sun setting over the sea every evening.
Yet this little town I found myself in, which was surrounded by hundreds of kilometres of dirt – presented no way out at the time.
When I looked around all I saw was drugs and alcohol and dead-end jobs that led nowhere.
I felt trapped.
I had no interest in going to University because I knew that wasn’t for me – with my highly abstract mind and adventurous spirit, sitting in a classroom is a miserable experience.
The military had also turned me down because of an injury.
And what I knew was for me, seemed impossible – so I didn’t even bother trying.
It felt like my small town was swallowing me and it felt like there was no way out.
Many of you will be able to relate to this feeling I’m sure.
One day though, while on holidays at the beach, I picked up a used book in a used book store and this book was called Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.
Now until that fateful day in the used bookstore – the idea of my mind creating my reality was unknown to me.
I hadn’t read any real books yet.
I was just like everybody else: unknowing.
All I knew was all I was taught in school, which was nothing.
So when I opened it’s old pages and began reading, I felt like I had just stumbled upon a new world – a world of possibility and a world of knowledge.
This book led to other books that opened my mind further, which led to people who opened my mind even further, which led to the understanding I currently possess.
It showed me that even without money, or connections, or privilege – I possessed the power to shape my reality using an obvious little secret that every creator in this world understands.
But it took a long time for me to understand the depth of that secret.
Today, many years later – I am still going deeper in my understanding of it.
In the ancient world they called this little secret The Principle of Mentalism.
I will discuss it on a deep level in the future, when my understanding of it is much more complete.
Now I lived inside this book after my parents divorced.
I would get lost within it’s old crinkled pages for hours.
The wise words of Napoleon Hill gave me hope and made the desert that surrounded my little hometown seem like a part of the adventure to come.
In my mind I imagined myself setting forth into the world, using the principles in the book and living a great adventure.
Years later I can look back with a smile because that’s exactly what I did.
And today we’re going to talk about how you can do the same.
Before we get started – this article was produced for two people:
1) Those of you who believe you are stuck in a place that you don’t want to be.
2) Those of you who think that you can’t be somebody because of where you are coming from.
If that’s you – take a seat and hold onto your hat if you’re wearing one.
I’ve had people laugh at me when I tell them where I am from and what I want to do with my life.
“You’re from where and you want to do what?”
It’s not normal for somebody from somewhere, to want to do the things that I want to do – so when you tell people you’re from nowhere and you want to become a world class writer, most of them think you are joking.
That’s why I don’t say shit to anyone anymore.
Now I’m just the guy that’s passing by.
Even though my hometown is home to some very famous and rich artists – by societies standards people who grow up where I grew up aren’t supposed to become great at something.
From my experience people seem to expect people from nowhere to be nobodies.
They seem to believe where you grow up determines your potential.
Now this is correct to a certain degree because the adult mind is a product of the environment that it was raised in and the information it was exposed to.
Your mind as a child is essentially a sponge and it will absorb everything it is exposed to, eventually setting like concrete as you age and forming the worldview you currently possess.
For some reason while growing up – I was mentored by a self-made millionaire who taught me about money, I befriended an old man who taught me about the Universe, and I was exposed to various books about living an unconventional life.
As a result we have me.
So unless you are exposed to information that expands your mind and shows you what is possible – you are effectively blind and your worldview will be inherited from the people around you.
Now the people around you usually won’t know how to do anything other than work jobs and pay bills.
When you ask them for advice you will get a series of preprogrammed responses that all have the same goal: to convince you to become a cog in the machine of society.
Nobody who is normal will suggest being a bum and travelling the world to learn about life.
Nobody who is normal will suggest pursuing your talents and true interests.
“So Johnny, what career do you want?”
That’s the extent of their advice.
And as youngsters who are unaware, we buy into this narrow minded view of life – then it makes us feel trapped because most of us don’t want to do any of those things that we’re supposed to do.
We want to live. We want to travel. We want to experience life.
But according to normal people that stuff comes later on – after you have buried yourself in debt for a degree or succumbed to the comfort of a normal life.
These normal people value comfort and security over everything, which is exactly why they are filled with regret when they grow older and look back at the fatal mistake they made.
What was that fatal mistake?
At some point, at some time – they knew what they wanted to do and they knew who they wanted to become – but they didn’t go for it because their comfortable lives had them scared of failing and losing the comfort they’d acquired.
The false sense of security and the feeling of prestige from their well paying career we’re too hard to walk away from.
Didn’t wanna give up the fat pay cheque.
Didn’t wanna give up their perception of others perceiving them as successful and competent individuals.
Didn’t wanna go for it because of all the perfectly logical reasons that they came up with, regarding why it was better to play it safe.
And they don’t see what they have missed out on, until old age comes – but then it is too late.
So they spend the last part of their life coming to terms with the fact that everything they really wanted to do, has not been done.
You must understand – time and energy are finite resources drawn from a deposit that runs emptier every single day.
I’m dying as I write these words, you’re dying as you read them, and there ain’t a fucking thing either of us can do about that except live a life so full of adventure and experience that death comes to be seen as a hard earned rest.
Personally I’d rather regret living recklessly and failing constantly, than regret not living or not trying, at all.
What about you?
Do you wish to die having never lived?
At the age of eighteen I knew I wanted to be a writer who enlightened people through the written word.
I just didn’t have the balls to sit down and start.
So I don’t tell people face to face what I really do – I just say that I do a little writing here and there.
I don’t tell people I have devoted my life to two very specific things:
A) The pursuit of truth – about us, this life, this reality and this universe.
B) The communication of that truth in the simplest form, from myself, to the world, through the medium of the written word.
When I was eighteen I knew this was what I wanted to do.
I just couldn’t face it and embrace it and go for it.
Like every amateur artist in this world – I was afraid of doing the work.
I was afraid of living the life I deeply desired: the life of being debt free, travelling and writing for a living.
It seemed like an impossible dream.
So back then I spent every minute of my free time buried in books, searching for a way out and searching for a way to do what I wanted to do – failing to realise that all I had to do was just do it.
I could have thrown a bag on my back and set off into the world on a great adventure, while I worked towards my dream of writing for a living.
But I didn’t do that because I thought I needed to find a good career like everybody else.
The only problem was I had absolutely no interest in doing that – so with no idea what to do and convinced that I was stuck in my small town, I took a job cleaning toilets for money.
Every morning I would rise at 3am to go scrub dirty toilets.
Now there ain’t nothing wrong with doing that and some strange people might actually enjoy it, but I fucking hated it.
Despite not actually needing to do it, I continued doing it for quite some time because of limiting beliefs in my mind.
I was dominated by fear, I felt like life was too hard and I didn’t want to put myself out there.
It was much easier to hide from the world in dark bathrooms with a mop and bucket, listening to motivational speeches and dreaming of a better life that didn’t involve smelling somebody else’s shit every morning.
After months of waiting for something better to fall in my lap – I found myself staring into a dirty mirror, smelling like shit and realising that life didn’t work how I thought it did.
It was only then, with real life experience to relate to, that I began to understand one of the major lessons from Think & Grow Rich:
Nothing better was coming, nothing was going to happen and I would remain where I was doing what I was doing – until I decided to do something else.
I put myself where I was.
I could put myself somewhere else.
I could leave my small town.
I could be somebody.
All I had to do, was decide to do it.
This brings me to what you MUST understand if you’re in a position like I was:
It does not matter where you are coming from, how rough your childhood was, or how bad a hand you have been dealt – you can rise above it and become whatever you decide to become, if you want it bad enough and if you are willing to do what it takes.
You’re stuck because you’re stuck.
It’s not the town you live in, it’s not the shitty job you have and it’s nothing external that is the cause of you being stuck.
The cause is your own mind and the habits of thought that currently dominate your mind, but it often takes the mental pain of hitting rock bottom to fully understand this.
Mental pain is the gateway to transformation.
If you are experiencing a great deal of it, you must accept that it exists and ask yourself:
What is life trying to tell me? What must I do differently?
Do not attempt to numb the pain through distraction or intoxication because if you do this, then you will be unable to find the lesson your pain is trying to teach you.
Sit down in your pain like a dirty dog in the rain and let it wash away whatever is keeping you stuck.
I believe there is tremendous value in coming up from nothing.
You learn what life is really about and you learn how to get things for yourself.
The people who are given everything in this life, never being required to experience the pain of progressing towards a goal, paradoxically have everything taken from them because their character never develops.
I call these people Silver Spooners.
You can always pick a Silver Spooner because they’re weak, entitled, arrogant and they cry like a little girl when things don’t go their way.
Let me tell you a story that will illustrate my point:
A few years ago I was travelling with an old friend whose girlfriend was the daughter of a very rich architect.
Having nowhere to live at the time, me and my friend stayed at her mansion in the hills outside of Brisbane, Australia.
During our brief stay I watched this stupid bitch have a tantrum, throw her $3000 Macbook down the hallway and storm off to her pink Mercedes, all paid for by daddy.
She had a brother who was the same: relatively successful for his age, but a smug little cunt who ate my jar of peanut butter.
And so nothing comes from ease except a rotten character.
It is pain that shapes people into the type of people we all admire and look up to.
Humble beginnings are a gift that you should be grateful for because they are responsible for some of the greatest individuals to ever walk the earth.
Coming from a poor family, having nothing and being forced to build your life from the ground up makes you appreciate success when you eventually find it.
Coming up from rock bottom and fighting tooth and nail for a better life – will build your character and develop traits in you that nobody will ever take away.
It will develop balls.
And you cannot become successful in this world without balls.
I have a very good friend who is from the same place I am from.
We grew up together.
As teenagers we used to ride our bikes around the town and dream about what we would do as men – both taking a vow to never work a regular full-time job and become a slave to money like most people in this world.
Even as boys we wanted out of our small town and we wanted to live lives of adventure.
There was something in both of us from a young age that kept us away from the drugs and the booze and instead had us reading books about life.
As usual we caught up this Christmas and talked for hours.
He is now living in the capital city of Australia and has become the apprentice to one of the highest earning Real Estate Agents in the entire country – all because he had a dream, he had balls and he was willing to take a risk.
So it does not matter where you are from, what matters is your thought process.
You must never be ashamed of who you are, what color your skin is, or where you are from – be proud of these things and believe in yourself because what you think of yourself will determine your fate.
Like Johnny Depp said in Public Enemy:
“Don’t matter where a man is from, all that matters is where he is going.”
And you know what determines where a man is going?
Where he decides to go.
So for anybody from nowhere with a dream, just like me and my good friend – here is something you need to understand about life:
It will give you whatever you punch it in the fucking mouth and ask for.