Made it another year! This was the toughest one yet, by far. Having our first child and choosing to be a fully engaged dad meant that for the first time since I started my coaching business hasn’t grown. We’ve just plateaued to stay alive, basically, but that was a conscious choice and now that I see the connection I have with my little girl, I wouldn’t do it any differently.
As usual, every year when I cross this milestone I do a post with advice and learning from my journey. Usually, I talk about the business side of things, so this time I’ll switch over and talk about coaching.
Here are just some of my top insights from coaching thousands of people over the last 8 years (and rehabilitating criminals prior to that):
#1: It’s a myth that you must wait for people to want to change, but it’s true that they won’t change until they want to. To motivate people to want to change, you simply hit them with radical honesty and create an emotional crisis where they must consciously face a lifetime of continuing the way they’re going.
#2: Everyone has a set of core values that are innate, and evidence suggests that they are in fact born with them. While these vary slightly person to person, there is a lot of similarity. Helping someone figure out their core values and live by them measurably (as opposed to virtue-signalling and hypocrisy) is about the best work you can do with someone. Most people’s suffering is caused by lack of integrity.
#3: Nearly all issues are recurring internal problems that look like new external problems. When someone has an issue, the first assumption is that they’ve done this to themselves before, many times, and it’s just a different surface manifestation this time. E.g. their latest partner might be a new type of dickhead, but they always subconsciously choose bad partners.
#4: Money problems are really self-confidence problems. When someone has emotional reactions to money, it really means that they don’t trust their own resourcefulness, endurance, and problem-solving skills. Often, this distrust is misplaced, as their past will show that they have every reason to feel certain about their ability to survive through any money problems. They always have before!
#5: Understanding your attachment style will answer 99% of the dilemmas you have in your personal relationships. In brief, anxiously attached people tend to be clingy and suffocating, often falling hard for bad-fit partners, while avoidant-attached people tend to be afraid of intimacy, and self-sabotage relationships to prevent closeness. Focus on creating a secure attachment style rather than finding a partner.
#6: Courage has little to do with strength of any kind. Courage is a form of intelligence: it’s about outwitting your limiting beliefs, irrational fears, and insecurities. It’s about knowing when it’s not rational to be afraid of something, and then using tricks to get yourself to do it anyway, like breaking it down into tiny steps that seem manageable one at a time.
#7: Perfectionism is a myth. This is a word that people use as a badge of honour to convince themselves that they have high standards, but in reality they rarely produce high quality results. In reality, perfectionism is a mask for various fears, including fear of failure, fear of being judged, and fear of commitment. Get started and get messy in any small way if you want to actually end up doing something perfectly.
#8: Seneca nailed it: We suffer far more in imagination than we do in reality. I’ve had clients tell me they’re afraid of getting rejected, and yet they’ve asked girls out directly less than 10x in their entire lives. The problem is that they imagine getting rejected every time they desire someone, and the brain records this as evidence of a rejection. Life is way easier than you think it is, and you’d find that out if you just went for it more often.
#9: Self acceptance must be earned. While the goal of loving yourself as you are is a noble one, you simply can’t lie to yourself about failing to live by your own values, especially if you’re not even really trying. To find self acceptance, you have to do the uncomfortable things that you know are right, and then you’ll be proud of yourself regardless of the results.
#10: There is nothing more valuable you can do with your life than to become an honest person. And no, you’re nowhere near as honest as you think you are. Honesty removes shame because it makes what’s true about you worthy of sharing (because you share it). Honesty protects you socially because it polarises manipulative people away and leaves you only with good connections. And honesty builds confidence because it’s brave, ethical, and effective in achieving a long term quality of life.
There are way more but I can’t be bothered writing any more, so that’s it for now. Thanks for all the support from those of you who have been my clients and community members. Here’s to making it to 9 years!
Dan’s Top Resources
Dan has 3 bestselling non-fiction books available in both written and audio form:
- The Naked Truth, his latest release, shows you how radical honesty builds self-confidence and relationships
- Nothing to Lose explores how to build confidence from the inside by correcting the programming in your brain
- The Legendary Life is a very practical, action-focused guide on how to plan and execute a life plan that brings you your ideal lifestyle
Dan continues to put out high quality online self-paced courses through the Udemy platform
- Nice Guy Recovery: how to transform from a people pleaser into a confident beast.
- Shamelessness: how to relieve yourself of the “not good enough” story
- Powerful Honesty: takes you through step-by-step development of your communication skills to be more charismatic and powerful in your honesty
- The 3X Confidence and Authenticity Masterclass program: use the famous 3X Model to build confidence in all areas of life
- Financial Freedom for Beginners: includes everything from budgeting, to getting a raise, to investing in the stock market, to starting a side-business and more
- Overcoming Your Fear of Rejection… Permanently!: covers the psychology of “rejection” and what actions to take to make yourself immune to the fear of it