Episode 160

Changing Your Environment Can Change Your Life

EP160: Changing Your Environment Can Change Your Life

Why rely on willpower when you can eliminate the need for it?

Starting each day with intention can be the easiest path to fulfillment and purpose but do you have the willpower to follow through? Benjamin Hardy joins Drew to discuss the main points of his book, Willpower Doesn’t Work, which describes why it’s easier to eliminate things from your life instead of going down the never-ending rabbit hole of willpower. Ben shares social psychology examples of how humans adapt to their environments, tips for changing your environment, and how creating new experiences and investing in yourself can increase your chances for success.

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Key Takeaways:

[5:50] Ben leans into his core concepts when life gets busy.

[7:54] How Ben went from having zero accountability to studying social psychology.

[14:51] Tips for shaping your environment to live an intentional life.

[27:45] How to maintain momentum and prevent burn out.

[33:33] Creating new experiences for kids.

[36:12] For Ben, journaling is an emotional regulation tool and imagination igniter.

For a full transcript of this episode, click here.

You can now watch the full episode on Youtube. Watch here!


Mentioned in This Episode:

What We Learned

  • Ben had a very difficult childhood. His parents divorced and his father became very depressed and started using drugs. His mom worked a lot and he was never very motivated after high school. He didn’t go to college and he couldn’t hold down a job. He just played video games all day. He finally decided he was unhappy and he had to start doing something. He began to run and he also went on a humanitarian mission. After he came home, he started school and began to study Psychology.
  • When Ben and his wife became foster parents, that is when he really began to realize  that who you are is very much influenced by what is around you. Realizing how different his foster children were when they were taken out of one situation and put in another. You can’t make choices if you don’t have options.
  • Ben’s belief is that you must make the decision to change on the inside but the actual mechanism for change happens on the outside. If you are doing things like watching the news, eating bad food, those inputs are going to make you what you are. So, it’s about changing the information you are consuming and the things you are eating. It’s easier to delete than add, so remove the sugar from the kitchen. Just start upgrading your standards for what you allow in.
  • The first step to changing your environment from a health and fitness standpoint is, outside of removing the bad, is being aware of intention. Live with intention each and every day. Start by setting what time you will get up in the morning and build on that success throughout the day.
  • Ben believes that motivation and confidence are two things that you actually have to earn every single day. Motivation is a byproduct of action. Confidence is a byproduct of successful behavior.
  • Invest in yourself. Your environment is a reflection of what you believe you deserve subconsciously. Invest money in yourself. Pay for a personal trainer. That behavior is a huge signal to the subconscious that something different is going on. Find a mentor or join a group. Surround yourself with people you want to be like.
  • Ben believes that life is a series of sprints and recoveries versus a marathon. A marathon is where the burn out can happen. When you are grinding away and your joints are falling apart and you are completely exhausted. True growth is about sprinting hard.

How To Take Action

  • Remove anything from your environment that could cause your willpower to fail. Whether it’s sugar in the kitchen, alcohol or negative people or music, it can all influence you negatively.
  • Remember to live with intention. Set up a morning routine and stick to it. Set a time to get up and put your alarm on the other side of the room. Get up and spend 10-15 minutes writing in a journal, meditating and praying. Who do you want to be? You be first, then you do, then you have.
  • Invest in yourself. Pay for a trainer. Join a group. Surround yourself with people you want to be like.
  • Turn your goal into a game and pursue it in a sprint.


Posted by Drew Manning

September 11, 2018 in Podcasts

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