I’ve been a freedom-loving nomad.
And I still love my freedom.
But what does it even mean to be free?
I define three types of freedom:
- Freedom of location
- Freedom of money
- Freedom of time
Freedom means you have a choice.
- Location: you choose wherever you want to be
- Money: you choose to work because you want to work, not for money
- Time: you choose how you want to spend your time
And making a choice is how you exercise your freedom.
I achieved full freedom of location by the age of 28 and freedom of money to a large extent by 32.
I have only partial freedom of time, and now I’m 33.
One thing I learned after marriage and especially after becoming a father was that:
The true use of my freedom was to take more responsibility.
And by taking responsibility, I felt truly free.
As I said, freedom is a choice.
And we can use that choice to do anything.
For me, it became taking responsibility and becoming a stronger man, husband, and father.
Here are the key mindsets that are helping me on this path:
I started paying attention to myself.
My own emotions, strengths, weaknesses, and values.
Only by setting this foundation can one achieve growth.
Kaizen is about small, consistent efforts to improve yourself.
It’s about becoming better every day.
I started following this in all areas of my life.
I found my buckets of priority.
This is my health, wealth (business), and relationships (family).
And more importantly, I map my time and energy around these buckets.
I started focusing on what I can control.
And stop blaming and complaining for what I cannot control.
In a relationship, it’s often easy to blame the other.
Or to complain about anything when things don’t go your way.
This makes you and the relationships weaker.
This comes from the Japanese Samurai.
There will be hard times in life.
And as a man, you have to keep an immovable mind.
It is the ability to possess utmost calm during times of stress and pressure that brings mastery of self.
As a man, you’re the pillar of stability.
I also started practicing this in business, as I would quickly get frustrated earlier when things go wrong.
And that never led to the right results.
Value-based Decision Making
This is something I learned from my wife.
I realized how her values drove her decisions and not just as a reaction.
I started incorporating this to improve my decision-making.
Presence Over Presents
When I am with my family, I try to be with them fully.
I don’t see my phone when I’m playing with my daughter.
Or when we’re at the dinner table.
I try to be for them entirely as much as possible.
I’m still working on this.
Same-day Conflict Resolution
Any relationship will have conflicts.
One rule I follow with my wife is to resolve any conflicts before going to bed.
If not, it’s easy for the brain to make the conflict bigger than it is by working on it sub-consciously overnight.
I call this Musashi Mastery as I first read this in his book.
It says, “Be harder on yourself and easier on others”.
This has helped me improve my relationship with others.
While I am disciplined and follow my habits regularly, I stopped expecting everyone else to be like me.
Instead, I try to take it easy on others and still be hard with myself.
It’s easy to “go easy on yourself” if you read modern advice.
But traditionally, this is not what a man does.
And I aligned more to this advice than the modern one.
Becoming a Role Model
This is the most transformative thing that happened to me.
When I became a father, I knew I had to double up on my self-improvement journey.
This is because children see and become like their parents.
My daughter would see me as a role model for her.
And I want to be the best one possible.
These are 10 mindsets and principles I’m using to become a better man, husband, and father.
I understand this is going to be a lifelong journey of self-improvement.
And building these principles is helping me to stay consistent and on track.