What’s up, guys—this is going to be a really deep blog post on how to enhance your life using upward spirals and self-amplifying feedback loops.
I go fairly in depth in the video above, talking about things like my early life, and why the rich get richer, but I thought I’d take some time to elaborate a little bit more.
See, what you’ll often find is that success breeds more success. People who succeed in one area of life, generally tend to succeed in others.
Now, obviously this isn’t always the case—there’s plenty of financially rich businessmen with emotionally poor lives, but in general, success tends to breed success. Here’s why.
I’ve introduced this concept in previous blog posts, but the idea is that when you hit a certain critical point in your self-development journey, everything starts to feed upon itself.
A SAFL is an acronym for a self-amplifying feedback loop. It’s basically when your entire life is designed to improve itself continually.
Sound confusing? Let me explain. Say that you decide to start improving your life, and like most men, you start with your nutrition. You start following the Bulletproof Diet, like I recommend, and after a month or two you begin to really feel the effects:
Now, because your health is much better, you can expend more energy and focus on improving your financial situation. You start reading books on how to get rich, and you start using their advice.
Now, not only is your diet much better, but your financial situation is much better, too. So now, not only are you more energetic and more focused, but you have more money.
This excess of money will allow you to stop working so much at your job, and maybe you can now down-grade to a part time job. Then, because you have so much free time, you can start focusing on learning game and building a social circle.
You use your new found energy and focus to go out and meet women—eventually, after some months of effort, you have a thriving social circle.
This then makes you happier and gives you more connections, which improves your business life and health. Do you see the point?
It’s a self-amplifying feedback loop. Success in one area creates success in another, and you use that success to succeed even more, ad infinitum.
The flip side of this, is that self-amplifying feedback loops can also be NEGATIVE. Using the same layout as before, let’s delve deep into a very common negative SAFL that most guys get themselves locked into.
Say that your diet consists mostly of junk food. Well, what does this do to your cognition and overall health? It destroys it. You’re not as energetic, you’re not as focused, and you can’t think as clearly.
Then, because your health isn’t that great, you find it harder to excel with your finances—you can’t stay focused on business projects for that long, and can’t put a whole lot of energy into improving your business or getting promoted.
So then, your finances start to suck—your health is terrible, your finances start going down the toilet, and you’re in a bad mood because of it. Then, this makes it difficult to find the energy to go out and learn the art of cold approaching girls.
So now, your health is bad, your finances are bad, and your social life is bad. This makes it even harder to find the motivation to improve your health, so it sort of traps you into a negative lifestyle where just improving a little bit is extremely difficult.
Do you see the point? It feeds on itself and ultimately brings you down until your life is awful. Don’t fall into this trap that 99% of men fall into.
Initial inertia is basically a term I’ve coined that describes the process of getting the ball rolling at first. As anyone who’s tried to start a habit knows, it can be very difficult to do.
This is because of initial inertia. Think of starting a habit or changing your life as if you’re trying to get a giant boulder rolling. It’s going to be pretty difficult.
But, that’s the thing with inertia—once you get the ball rolling, it tends to get easier and easier as you get more MOMENTUM. Ideally, this is what you want to start doing in your life as early as possible.
The best way to succeed at life is to get into a self-amplifying feedback loop (otherwise known as an upward spiral), but this takes time. It takes a lot of effort initially to get the ball rolling.
But, the sooner that you start, the sooner you will begin to see results—this is why, a lot of the time, guys with really fucked up early lives can sometimes become wildly successful.
Look at Andrew Carnegie, for example—the guy was born a peasant, who shared a single bedroom apartment with his seven family members. By the time he died he was worth well over $300 billion in today’s money.
Why is this? Well, it’s because he got started hustling, grinding, and improving at a very young age. He knew that if he didn’t start improving NOW, that he would die a peasant.
This is the mindset that you should have: start improving now, because if you don’t, nothing will change.
In order to effectively get into a positive self-amplifying feedback loop, you need to isolate the “critical point.” This is basically the area of your life, that if improved, would make everything else easier.
For example, if you’re trying to learn game, but can’t even afford the cover charges, you should probably focus on getting your finances down. If you’re trying to improve your financial situation, but can barely focus for more than 3 seconds, it may be a good idea to start meditating.
In order to isolate your critical point, ask one simple question: “What’s the ONE thing that, if I improve, would make everything else easier?”
This one thing is usually one of the following:
For most guys reading this article, if you don’t know where to start, developing your masculinity is a great place to start; it will improve nearly every other area of your life over time as you learn to develop the characteristics of assertiveness, decisiveness, and confidence.
If you’re really lonely, and this is making it difficult to find motivation to do anything, maybe consider focusing on building a quality social circle and learning how to seduce women. Or maybe you should meditate and learn to let go of some of your negative emotions.
Other guys are sluggish and have zero energy all of the time—for them, the best place to start would be to improve their health. Start working out and eating a healthy diet, so that you can finally have the energy you need to improve other areas of your life!
Do you see the point though? For every man there’s typically one area of his life, that if improved, would enhance every single other area of his life.
Find this area of your life, and fucking improve it.
Part of the reason why I urge you to start early, is because positive self-amplifying feedback loops tend to work exponentially. Depending on where you’re starting, it can take a while to see some really great results—but once they start coming in, they REALLY start coming in.
Let’s use me as an example. When I was a kid, I started getting into working out—as I detail in Body of an Alpha, my life was absolutely terrible. A dysfunctional upbringing had made me extremely depressed, socially awkward, lonely, broke, and scrawny. But, I decided to make a change, because if I didn’t, then nobody would.
I decided to start with working out—it was difficult at first, because I had no idea which routines to follow or diets to use, so I just kept experimenting. But eventually, I started getting more and more jacked. I had way more energy, I could focus for longer periods of time, and I started to become more confident.
Because I was in such a negative place, this took a few years to really kick in—but once it kicked in, I could really feel it. I started getting more success with women, because of my confidence (and admittedly my muscles helped, too). This in turn made me even MORE confident.
I decided that I should read more, because I want to have a healthy body and also a healthy mind—so, I started reading every single day. It took a while to build the habit, but once I built it, my mind started improving by leaps and bounds.
Then, I decided to get my financial life in order—I used my newfound knowledge to get several high-paying jobs, to trade the stock market, and more. My finances improved, which allowed me to spend more on seminars and education, supplements, and healthy food. The SAFL had begun.
Now, years later, I’m just starting to see the accelerating returns of my positive SAFL. I’m healthier than I’ve ever been, I’m happier than I’ve ever been, and I’m making more money than I ever have (not to mention the number of girls that I’ve slept with).
It took me years to get to the point where I could really start to reap the rewards, but this was because the place I started at was so fucked up. Most guys will notice a huge change within just a couple of years, some within just a few months.
Overall, however, my point is this: it takes TIME to get into a positive self-amplifying feedback loop. It takes time to reap the rewards. SO START NOW!
You have all of the tools that you need to start now—figure out which area of your life needs to be improved the most, and start improving it. If you don’t know how to improve it, then just read through my blog and you’ll probably find your answer.
Just decide to make a change, and take action to make that change—bringing about a transformation in your life is part thought and part action. This article consists of the “thought” portion. Now it’s time to take action.
If you guys have any questions, comments, or concerns, feel free to let me know. Otherwise, I hope you guys have a great day, and as always I’ll see you next time.
Jon Anthony is a dating coach, fitness expert, and self-improvement guru. He dropped out of college to start Masculine Development in 2015, and has since been self-employed, helping men across the world achieve their best lives. You can best reach him on social media, or via email for questions.