If you’re always comparing yourself, you will never feel successful.

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Adeo Ressi is a wild success. In 2009, he started Founder’s Institute, a startup incubator now operating in 165 countries (I recently used one of their tools, and I live in Sweden). Before that, he started a handful of other companies, all of which he successfully sold. Estimating from Wikipedia, he is worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

For a period of time, Ressi worked with popular psychologist Jordan Peterson. At one point during that time, Ressi opened up to Peterson about how little he felt he had achieved in his life.

“How could you possibly be unhappy about that!?”…

You should put your dream life to the test.

Image by the author.

When most people think of a “digital nomad” they picture a person sitting on a tropical beach with their laptop in hand. Or perhaps someone who travels from country to country like it’s a sport — almost as if the goal isn’t to experience those countries but to collect the experiences themselves.

My image of this lifestyle is quite different.

I’ve technically been a digital nomad my whole professional career. I started freelancing after college and about a year ago, I shifted my focus to my remote health-tech startup. I never had to go to an office — but I’ve…

A simple formula for creating purpose by “hacking” your biology

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When we search for a purpose in life, we usually turn inward. We visit the depths of our psyche and ask, “what is it that I was put on earth to do?”, then try to think our way to the “right” answer.

When we get stuck in our heads like this, we tend to overcomplicate things. We forget that part of us is like an organic computer running on inputs, algorithms, and outputs — and computers are programmable!

No doubt, we are more complicated than this in some ways. But a significant part of us still runs on “caveman software”.

Realistic ways you can get your independence fast — yet give yourself enough runway to fly

Young professionals working together in an open office setting.
Young professionals working together in an open office setting.
Image credit: Vasyl Dolmatov.

Becoming a freelancer may have crossed your mind. You’d like to create something of your own and have the freedom and autonomy you can only get from self-reliance.

But how do you build a successful freelance career? And is it even possible for someone like you?

You’ve probably been fed this idea that you have to slave away at a job for years to become an “expert” before you can even think about going out on your own.

While that’s sometimes a smart way to do it (more on that later) — I’m here to tell you it’s not true.

From studying yourself to doing hard things that matter, these are my observations.

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Life is like a huge, non-refundable purchase. We’re all kind of stuck with it, and most of us don’t know what to do. Why doesn’t it come with a manual?

Instead of simply giving us the instructions, each of us must go out into the world and figure it out for ourselves. If we get it right, it can be grand. But life is complicated, and it’s not exactly obvious how to get there.

If we pay close attention, however, we can find patterns in all the data. By observing our own lives and the lives of those around us…

A story about entrepreneurship and being different

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

We met at a tech conference. I had designed the visual identity and was there to see the fruits of my labor. He had been invited as a panelist at one of the events. About 20 years my senior, he was still relatively young for a billionaire. He had made his fortune in tech for the hospitality industry.

At the time, I had just started working on the idea for my current startup. I thought I should get his contact info, so I asked the conference manager to introduce us.

Months later, I asked if he wanted to grab coffee…

In hardship, there is always opportunity.

Photo by Alexandre Chambon on Unsplash

Because I don’t consume any news, I’m usually clueless about the minutia of the world. I like it that way because it makes my life less stressful. When something big happens, other humans are quick to tell me about it (they seem to like worrying about things, these other humans).

I was halfway across the world when I first heard of COVID-19. An old German dude told me on a ski lift in Wyoming, USA.

Shortly after I got back to Sweden, I lost my main freelance gig to the pandemic. I probably should have panicked. …

Feeling hungry after that salad? Maybe you shouldn’t have to.

Photo by the Author.

“I only had a small salad for lunch today,” I hear my mother’s voice say proudly over the phone. It’s not the first time we have this conversation. My response is always the same: Why?

My mom is a typical middle-aged woman. Every day, she is fighting her body’s desire to enjoy food so she can avoid calories and lose weight. In my work as a health-tech entrepreneur, I have interviewed many others like her.

In fact, I was once stuck in the same mindset myself. I struggled with a binge-eating disorder and desperately tried to compensate by eating less…

Why you don’t work as hard as you want to — and what to do about it.

Photo by Simon Abrams

I used to be the kind of person who starts many different projects and never finishes them. I would get really excited about something and immediately get to work, riding the initial enthusiasm. “This is it, this is the thing I will spend every waking hour on until it becomes successful,” I thought. I started picturing myself as my heroes, crushing my goals every day, and earning my place at their side.

But that was never what happened.

Instead, I would reach what marketing guru Seth Godin calls The Dipthe point when everything becomes muddled and hard, and…

Take it from Freud: many of us can’t help falling for the same traps.

Photo by Guillaume M. on Unsplash

“Once we have an experience, we are thereafter unable to see the world as we did before.”

Daniel Gilbert

At critical moments in our early lives, we are forced to confront the cold hard truths of existence and life. Examples include but are not limited to: Unfairness is a natural part of life. Something else must die in order for us to live. There is no meaning to our existence, except for the meaning we create ourselves.

When we are young, these truths are hard to accept. Some of us refuse to believe them. …

Sebastian Hallqvist

27. Co-founder & CEO at holo.health. I write about the intersection of modern life and our natural state of being. Say hi@seb.design or IG:@sebastianhallqvist

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