My Routine For Hard Times (How To Save Yourself)

You open your eyes for the first time and let in life. You close your eyes for the last time and let out life. 

In between:

Life tests your will by breaking your heart. Stealing your joy. 

Serving you lawsuits. Bringing you to your knees. Killing your loved ones. 

And wiping your bank account clean until all you’re left with is what you were born with:

The fundamental state of Being. 

How you weather these challenges determines whether you climb to the upper echelons of society… 

… or remain at the bottom. 

Problem is: When life gets hard, most people make their daily schedule easier. They start missing gym sessions. They make love to the snooze button. They stop putting in the deep work. They sit around all day, bitching and moaning. The result of all this? 

Further chaos, pain, and suffering. 

I know because that’s exactly how I’d respond to the challenges of life. I’d take my foot off the gas, give up all momentum, and let the pain destroy me from the inside out. 

But the more I did that, the more I realized:

This is bullshit and only making whatever situation I was dealing with 100x worse. 

As a result, I realized:

When life gets hard, don’t make your daily schedule easier (even though everyone around you will be telling you to take it easy).

Instead:

Make it harder.

By doing so:

You build the courage, tenacity, and strength needed to deal with whatever cards you’re faced with. 

With that noted, the question becomes:

How do you make your daily schedule harder?

I don’t know what will work best for you.

But inside this newsletter, I’ll walk you through the exact routine I return to every time life gets hard. By hard, I don’t mean the ups and downs that come with normal life (that’s all graaaaaaaavy). I mean, the days, weeks, months, and years when you’re experiencing the deepest despair, grief, and suffering that makes up the human experience. 

In other words:

When your family members die.

When you get a call that changes the trajectory of your life forever (for the worst).

When relationships end.

When you lose everything you worked so hard to build. 

When you get betrayed by people you would’ve died for.

When the walls are caving in and there’s nowhere left to run to.

When the stress is at an all time high and you’re ducking calls. 

When you’ve dug yourself into a hole and gotta make more money than God to crawl your way out. 

These are the times that require the strongest version of you – not the weakest version. 

So during these times, it’s important that you dial the F in, laugh at the odds, and get to work. Again, the way you’ll do it will be different from the way that I do it. 

But the way I do it is designed to target the following:

  • Mind/Body

  • Focus/Work

  • Inner World/Bending Reality 

(I target these areas during hard times and easy times nonetheless, but during hard times there’s absolutely zero wavering and not missing a single thing.)

Each of these areas play a critical role in how well you navigate the depths of despair to turn darkness into light. 

With that stated, I’ll now walk you through my go-to protocols for each of these areas. Then I’ll stack it all together and reveal my full daily routine for hard times. 

Ready to dive right in?

Let’s go!

My Mind & Body Protocol

On August 14th, I received a call that ripped the floor from up under my feet. 

On August 15th, I woke up and realized that my mind, body, and soul wanted to do nothing more than lay in bed all day and sleep away the days, week, month, and year. 

So I got up, got dressed, got my game face on and got started with Day 1/75 of #75HARD instead:

  • Two workouts a day (45-minute each)

  • 100% clean diet 

  • No cheat meals or alcohol 

  • Take a progress picture

  • Read 10 pages 

  • Drink 1 gallon of water 

In addition, I added: 

Consistent bed/wake times. 

This was something I didn’t want to do.

It was something I had to do.

Because when life gets hard, make your daily schedule harder.

By committing to another round of 75 Hard, I knew that I would inevitably build momentum and keep my mind and body moving in the right direction. 

In other words: 

I would “distract” the mind away from weak, limiting, worrisome thoughts and keep it focused on building mental and physical strength to charter the uncharted seas. 

So that’s what I did.

And that’s what I do when life gets hard. 

Now, I don’t always go back to 75 Hard – although it’s fantastic. 

But what I do implement is two a days, 100% clean diet (no alcohol), and a dialed in sleep schedule. 

With the two a days, I keep my body moving (most important because movement is medicine). 

With the clean diet, I keep my brain clear (nothing worst than feeling like hell already and further fucking up your brain with processed foods and foggyness). 

With the no alcohol, I keep my senses intact and avoid wallowing in the pain/difficulty/unease (only drink alcohol when you’re celebrating, never when you’re wallowing).

With the sleep schedule, I keep my energy levels consistent (earlier bedtimes and earlier wake times – although sleep can be difficult to find when you’re really going through it).

All this, in return, ensures that my mind and body are operating to their fullest potential and can assist me in coming up with the plays required to turn darkness into light (or be there for loved ones if going through something personally). 

More importantly: It ensures that my mind doesn’t betray me in my time of need.  

If this happens, I’m fucked. 

So I find moving my body and building mental toughness to be extremely important in navigating stormy seas. 

Next up is… 

My Focus & Work Protocol 

All my life I’ve only made money from my own ideas. Meaning, there was never a boss. Never a salary. Never a guarantee of $x dollars. (Wouldn’t have it any other way.)

As a result:

Every year, quarter, month, week, and day would reset and I would start back from $0 and it was entirely on my shoulders to convert thoughts into words and words into dollars. 

(Failure wasn’t an option.) 

So at times (especially early on in my journey when my bank account was on life support), I’ve found myself with my back against the wall, the scoreboard going against me, and the clock ticking down numerous times… 

Only way out was to make it out. 

During these times and whenever I’ve had to truly muster down and turn nothing into something, I’ve always committed to going all out with my work protocol. 

Here’s what it entails:

  • An outrageous income target (I don’t know about you, but baby goals and baby targets never got me out of bed. We’re either gonna touch the sky or we’re gonna stay in bed. So, my focus & work protocol always entailed a north star outrageous income target. For example, I’ve set targets in the past like clear $x in next 90 days)

  • Throwing away everything on my plate and narrowing down on the 1-3 projects that are going to bring the income target to life in a big way 

  • 4-8 hours of deep work (when I say 4-8 hours, I’m saying completely locked in with zero distractions for every single minute) on those 1-3 projects (every single day for 90 days – no breaks, no rests, no holidays)

In addition to the above, I would tune out absolutely everything else and be completely absorbed in what I’m doing. 

No music, no media, no books (besides 10 pages a day from a biographical book for 75 hard), no podcasts, no nothing. 

Only 75 hard, 4-8 hours of deep work, and the actions that make up my inner world & bending reality protocol. 

Let’s cover that now. 

My Inner World & Bending Reality Protocol

This protocol varies based on what I’m dealing with. 

If I’m dealing with personal matters (i.e. loved ones dying), then it’s geared more towards inner world practices to fully stay with the pain and the grief (contrary to what most people say… I actually think it’s important to not run away from your feelings, but to actually feel your feelings fully. So it’s important to set aside time to process the grief/sadness/loss). 

If I’m dealing with business matters (i.e. needing to make big plays that’s either self induced or obligatory), then it’s geared more towards reality bending practices to make the improbable happen (I don’t believe in working against life, but with life). 

So with that noted, here’s what my inner world protocol would consist of: 

  • 30 minute belly meditation (morning)

  • Inquiry/Presence Process/Bioenergetics/IPP (pick one)

  • 30 minute belly meditation (night)

And here’s what my reality bending protocol would consist of: 

  • 20 minute morning meditation

  • Reading Mindset Folder x3 

  • Nature walks 

  • Writing intentions in past tense 

  • 15 minute visualization exercise 

Keep in mind: 

This is stacked on top of #75HARD and 4-8 hours of rigorous and relentless deep work on 1-3 main projects, so I’m literally squeezing the juice out of each and every minute. 

In addition, I make it a point to set aside 20-30 minutes daily to laugh my stress off via stand up comedy (or calling a loved one and just shooting the shit). 

This is important because keeping perspective is important. When you’re going through it, the hardness of your situation can lead to a lot of heaviness and burden. Making you feel like you have the weight of the world on your shoulders. And your situation is rather bleak. During these times, you need a light attitude, not a heavy one. 

In other words:

You need to quite literally laugh at the odds and maintain a playful zest for living and loving life. 

Stand up comedy is how I personally do that. 

Find whatever works for you. 

So that’s the full protocol. 

Question you’re probably wondering now is:

How Do You Have The Discipline To Do All This?!?!

It sounds like a lot.  

And that’s precisely the point. 

Pack your daily schedule to the brim, so you don’t have time to feel sorry for yourself. 

And in terms of where the discipline comes from:

Internal movement (in the form of pain) creates external movement (in the form of action).

So the more pain you’re feeling internally, the more capacity you have for taking action externally. 

This is the silver lining that comes with hard times.

So if you approach it right, you can use hard times to make infinitely more progress in half the time because you’re in too much pain to want to sit still. 

Don’t run away from hard times. 

Use hard times as fuel.

It’s one of the best sources of fuel you’ll ever find. 

With that noted, let me now run you through what a day in the life could look like following this routine:

The Ultimate Routine For Hard Times

  • 6:00 am – Wake up 

  • 6:00 am – 6:30 am: Meditate + Mindset Folder

  • 6:30 am – 7:15 am: Workout 1 

  • 7:15 am – 8:00 am: Shower/Breakfast (Clean)

  • 8:00 am – 12:00 pm: Deep Work (1-3 Core Projects) 

  • 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm: Lunch (Clean) + Mindset Folder

  • 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Deep Work (1-3 Core Projects)

  • 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm: Workout 2

  • 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm: Dinner (Clean) + Mindset Folder

  • 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm: Inquiry

  • 8:00 pm – 8:30 pm: Stand Up Comedy

  • 8:30 pm – 9:00 pm: Meditate + Visualization 

  • 9:00 pm – Sleep

By following this routine, you strengthen your mind, body, finances, compassion, willpower and zest for living (which is exactly what you need to be doing when life gets hard)… 

Then you take all this built up *strength* and throw it against whatever you’re faced with… 

So you can prevail. 

Contrast this with how most people approach hard times:

  • Hit the snooze button endlessly 

  • Drag their feet out of bed 

  • Complain, bitch, moan

  • Stuff their face with processed foods 

  • Sit inside all day – stuck in their head 

  • Give up all their good habits when life gets tough

  • Drink to ease the pain 

  • Show up to their relationships, career, life as the weakest version of themselves 

  • Create more suffering 

  • Repeat for days, weeks, months, years on end until they either die from the pain or cannot take it anymore and must dig themselves out of the hole 

Recipe for disaster, isn’t it? 

Of course, but the above is what happens to most people because they’re unconsciously being led by the child inside them.

When the child feels good, they act.

When the child feels bad, they throw a fit and give it all up. 

You don’t want this. 

You want to allow the child to be there and feel whatever he/she is feeling, but still remain an adult and guide the child and yourself to doing what is necessary. 

In good times or bad:

The work still needs doing, so get up, get dressed, get out the door and keep making magic happen. 

After all: It’s the best next move on the chessboard of life that you and I can make. 


/tej

p.s. I just relaunched the Clicks&CopyU – a 12 month cohort where we work together to rewire your mind, build a $1M direct response skill stack, and create a 6-7 figure income in 12-36 months. 

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