Facing Responsibility

Unveiling My New Business

WasteLessNormally, this blog is strictly dedicated to self-optimization on a personal level. I usually stick to topics like optimizing your skills, developing mindsets and breaking the status quo.

But today, I’m going to take a break from that and talk about self-optimization in a broader sense. Because ultimately, in order to truly optimize yourself and your life to the fullest, you need to also target the world around you. Think of it more like societal optimization, if you will.

This concept requires us to step outside of ourselves, and look at how we can influence (and improve) the world around us. How can we make sure that our existence ends up having a net positive impact on the world?

Of course, depending on your specific situation in life, the impact you can have will vary. Some people strive to put an end to poverty, or make humanity an inter-planetary species. But seeing how we can’t all be Bill Gates or Elon Musk, most of us have to settle for smaller feats, like helping our friends and family, recycling our trash or taking part in a local charity.

The point is simply to have the biggest positive impact we can – with the means available to us.

And for me personally, I think I’ve found a way to increase the size of that impact – and actually make sure that I do something positive for the world.

Introducing; my new business.

See, in today’s society, we’re producing a ton of waste – shocker, right? What’s even more shocking though is that, as it turns out, all this waste is pretty bad for the environment. So I figured, if I’m going to start a business, why not start one that’s actually tackling this problem?

And so, WasteLess Scandinavia was born.

WasteLess – the Zero Waste shop of Sweden

When we think about all the waste we produce around the world, it becomes obvious where the majority of this waste comes from; our food shopping.

And I’m not talking just food waste here – that’s actually a comparatively small problem. I’m talking about the millions of tons of plastic, paper and metal packaging that comes along with that food – most of which ends up straight in the trash can (or, best case scenario, the recycling bin).

Historically, there hasn’t exactly been much we can do about this. We all need food, and for most people, there is no way to get that food without a ton of unnecessary packaging.

But that’s where WasteLess comes in. Being a Zero Waste shop, WasteLess wants to offer its customers the option of buying their food in bulk, free from any unnecessary packaging and waste. And the kicker? Only reusable containers allowed – either ones people brought from home, or ones they bought in the store.

Of course, I can’t exactly take credit for this idea – Zero Waste shops have been popping up all around the world in the last couple of years. But, for some reason, we haven’t really seen any in Sweden.

So, spotting a hole in the market – and an opportunity to do something good for the world – I’ve decided to open the first Zero Waste shop in Stockholm, Sweden. Hopefully, this will allow me to increase my positive impact on the world around me.

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When Boredom Takes Over

when boredom takes over

A few weeks ago, I woke up and realized something;

My life is fucking boring.

Now don’t get me wrong – I like my life. It’s a nice life. I’m healthy, I have a well-paying job that I enjoy, I have good friends, and a lovely girlfriend. I have everything I need, and most things I want. On paper, my life is pretty awesome.

But it’s also really, really ordinary.

I’m not creating great things. I don’t go on nearly as many adventures as I would like. I don’t passionately dedicate my time and energy to some awe-inspiring project that I believe in with all my heart. Hell, save for a short, 5-day trip to Britain, I haven’t even left the country in years.

That is certainly not what 18-year-old me would have called an exciting life. It’s a long way from the globetrotting, world-changing, startup-founding trailblazer I always imagined myself becoming.

So what the hell happened? How did I go from being an ambitious teenager who had travelled half the globe and dreamed of conquering the world, to a 23-year-old average Joe with a steady job and a collection of Ikea furniture? (more…)

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Making Yourself Valuable

valuableWe all want the best things in our lives.

We want that perfect, well-paying job that lets us be creative, autonomous and do what we love. We want those millions of followers on Instagram. And we want that perfect partner who is not only good looking and smart, but also rich, funny, talented and great in bed.

Of course, these things are rare and valuable. So of course everyone wants these things in their lives.

But have you ever asked yourself; why in the seven hells should you get any of those rare and valuable things? There are a billion people like you out there competing for these same things – what makes you so different that you should be rewarded with the best the world has to offer?

I know, I know; we’ve all convinced ourselves that we’re perfect and that we should get everything we want from life simply because we’re unique little snowflakes who are special in our own little ways.

But then again, so is everyone else. I mean, let’s look at this from the other perspective.

Let’s say you’re the owner of a big corporation, and you need to hire someone for an extremely well-paying, fun position that also happens to allow for a lot of autonomy and creativity in the job.

Now who are you going to hire? You know that half the god damn world would love to have the job you’re offering. You’re offering something rare and valuable, and you have your pick of literally anyone.

Obviously, you’re going to pick a person who has a lot of rare and valuable traits to give in return – say, a master’s degree in such and such fields, a history of being trustworthy, and a track record of brilliant innovations.

That rare and valuable job won’t go to your random office worker who has done nothing to distinguish himself from the crowd. It will go to a rare and valuable employee who has something to offer in return. (more…)

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Life, and Why You Have no Idea What to do With it

Imagine that you have yet to be born.

You’re just a disembodied soul, floating around in the sky, looking out over the world. As the days go by, you watch all the billions of people down on Earth going about their lives; working, playing, eating, struggling and succeeding with whatever it is they’re doing.

As a bodiless spirit, you can’t help but feel a touch of envy as you look at all these people who get to enjoy life. It just looks so amazing to chase after your goals, feel the grass under your feet, sink your teeth into a perfectly ripe apple, or get naked with your favorite person.

These all seem like fun things to try.

Then one day, you learn that there is going to be a competition for all the disembodied souls – and the grand prize will be to go down to Earth and have a shot at this “life” thing.

Thrilled, you immediately get in line to apply for the competition, desperately wishing that you will be one of the lucky winners to be sent down to Earth.

Before you get to enter the competition, however, the people in charge want to make sure you won’t just waste your shot at life if you win it. So they set up an interview, where all you have to do is answer the following question;

If you got a shot at life, what amazing things would you do with it?

The people ahead of you all seem to have the best answers, confidently saying things like; “I would chase my dream to become rich and famous,“ “I would live my life to the fullest and make sure I made the most out of every second,” or “I would devote my life toward making the world just a little bit better for everyone.”

Then you get called in to the interview, and you’re asked the same question; “if you won the contest and were given a shot at life, what would you do with it?” (more…)

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Achieving Excellence – Putting in the Work

(Note: this is the final part of a longer series of articles on the subject of Excellence. For some context and an explanation to why this whole thing is happening, check out part 1 – Excellence vs. Reason)

So far in the series we’ve talked about the various obstacles we need to overcome in order to have a chance at reaching excellence. We’ve looked into how making exclusively reasonable decisions is holding us back, how our irrational risk aversion severely limits our potential for success, and how our addiction to social support keeps us stuck at a mediocre level in life.

But there’s one aspect of reaching excellence that we haven’t even scratched the surface of yet. And it’s a pretty important component too: putting in the hard work.

Ugh, such an un-sexy phrase. Hard work. That’s not what we want to hear – give us some more tricks or life hacks that promise us instant success! Anything but hard work!

Unfortunately, there is no way around this. Hard work, more than anything, is what determines whether or not you will reach excellence. Because anyone can do what’s easy. Anyone can go for the low-hanging, mediocre fruits of life.

But to go past this low-hanging fruit and reach for that perfect apple at the top of the tree – that’s what separates the extraordinary from the ordinary. (more…)

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