“If you will live like no one else, later you can live like no one else.”
Many of you in the Red-Pill community are probably familiar with the term Monk Mode, withdrawing from most social interactions and recreational pastimes in order to focus on completing a specific goal. Many men have utilized this method in order to skyrocket their productivity for short bursts of time, typically anywhere from a week to a month at a time.
The problem comes when you are obligated to be sociable, such as with your wife and kids. Obviously, you can’t just ignore them for weeks or months at a time, nor would many men want to, but there are some ways to work around these obligations while still attaining the state of Red Pill Zen.
Step 1 – Determine Your Goals
This is the most obvious step, but also the most crucial question to answer.
What do you need to accomplish?
Take a notepad and pen and write your goal down. Be specific about the criteria required for completing this goal as well as the excepted timeline and deadline. This will tell you how long your Married Monk Mode (3M) will persist.
It’s best to work on multiple goals at the same time covering different aspects of your life. Perhaps you want to begin paying off an enormous amount of debt as your primary goal. Great. What are some secondary goals that would synergize well with your primary?
Improving your nutrition?
Creating extra revenue streams?
Wanting to create more opportunities for your family to bond?
Find ways these secondary goals overlap with your primary and use that information to create a game plan.
Step 2 – Creating Your 3M Game Plan
Perhaps it’s just my nature, but my plans are rarely black and white. Never do I have in my notepad “3M Goal: Finish X by Y Date.” Rather, I find myself adding in secondary goals, multiple approaches to help me complete my primary goal, and contingency plans in case something goes awry.
While Step 1 addresses what you want to accomplish, Step 2 digs into how you plan on accomplishing it. Take your notepad and begin jotting down the individual steps that you’re going to take to accomplish your primary and secondary goals.
Now here’s the rub…
Unlike the regular Monk Mode, you’re going to have to take your familial obligations into account. At first, this might sound like another obstacle in your way, but that doesn’t have to be the case. Rather, find ways to incorporate them into your 3M goals. Let’s look at a few examples.
- Say your goal is to lose weight and get in better shape. Take your kids to the local park a few times per week. Everyone gets a chance to burn off some energy and your kids will look forward to your outings as a family. They get to play on the slides and swings and you get to do pull-ups on the monkey bars and chase them around. Win-win!
- You might choose dual goals of eating better and saving money to create an emergency fund. Get the wife onboard with these two goals as well and begin making some healthy, delicious, and cheap meals from scratch. We’ll give you one such example at the bottom of this article to get you started.
Just because you have two goals do not seem related doesn’t mean there isn’t any overlap. Find those areas of overlap and capitalize on them.
Find the smallest changes you can implement that will produce the largest results and implement them first (Pareto’s Principle).
Step 3 – Act, Observe, and Revise
Now that you got a plan and got the family onboard, it’s time to implement it. Now is the time to be bold and relentless in your pursuit. You’ve spent time planning it out so there’s no need to dip a toe into the water. Jump in head first and demolish your goals. Remove the petty distractions from your family’s life and regularly check in on your wife and kids to make sure they’re still committed to accomplishing their end of the goals.
It is your job as the head of the household to lead and inspire your family. To successfully accomplish this, you must do two things:
- You must lead from the front, showing your family that you believe in your cause. Rarely, if ever, should there be a time when your wife and/or kids aren’t running to keep up with the pace you set. You should always be sprinting ahead, encouraging them to catch up to you.
- You must possess unyielding enthusiasm for the completion of your goals. Emotions are infectious. Infect your family with the desire to work together in the effort to improve their lives. Celebrate the victories you make. Downplay the losses while encouraging your family to continue on forward.
As you progress towards your goal, make notes of what does and doesn’t work and then adapt the overall game plan accordingly. I have seen some writers employ the Death Ground principle in order to accomplish their goals. Do this BUT don’t be so hard-headed that you refuse to tweak the current plan when needed. Remember, your goal is the focal point, not how you get there.
Tips and Tricks
Obviously when you are going Married Monk Mode, certain aspects of your family’s lifestyle are going to change. This can cause some frustration so it’s best to prepare by making things as low maintenance/easy as possible. Here are some tips to help you get started:
- Automate all your bills. There’s absolutely no reason for you to waste time every month, filling out bills and sending them in. Set up automatic payments and be done with it.
- Buy a dish dryer rack and magic wand for the kitchen. I have a dishwasher, but absolutely hate using it. Why? Because it instills a mindset of procrastination. Not enough dishes to run a full load yet? Guess I’ll just let them sit. Now whenever we’re done with a meal, a few quick scrubs under hot water and the dishes are all clean.
- Invest in a crockpot. This is especially useful if your goals are to eat healthier and/or save money. Crockpots are low maintenance and use a fraction of the electricity. My favorite recipe right now is J. Nyx’s famous fajitas. Simply take 2-3 lbs of chicken breasts, a couple bags of pre-diced frozen peppers and onions, a can or two of diced tomatoes, add seasonings, and cook on low overnight. Easy as that.
- Divvy up the chores. Make a list of the chores and who’s in charge of doing them. This helps eliminate the time spent bickering over who should do what chores. Make sure your kids are doing their fair share as well.
- Create a study. If your 3M goals involve a quiet area for you to work, then make a study for yourself. Make it known that when you’re in there, you are not to be disturbed unless it’s a serious issue. The kids shouldn’t be running through there nor should the wife be popping in just to ask “What’cha doing?”
- Set alarms. Set different alarms on your smartphone with descriptions like “Write in blog” or “Prep meals & lay out clothes.” This is a surprisingly powerful tool to help you stay on track throughout the day instead of just vegging out on the couch.
As you can see, a lot of these tips factor human behavior into the equation. Things like multitasking and not having a clear schedule inhibits productivity, increases stress, and the chance that you will fall off the wagon. By removing the extraneous, trivial matters that arise every day, your energies are free to focus on your 3M goals.
What are some big goals that you could knock out, if you went into Married Monk Mode?
How would you bring your family into your endeavor?
What tricks do you have that are not on my list?
I look forward to your thoughts.