The word aggressive gets a bad rap and there is constant pressure on people, especially men, to be less aggressive. In fact, the male hormone testosterone is often associated with violence, when in reality men with optimal testosterone levels are anything but violent. According to top strength coach Charles Poliquin, it is men with low testosterone that are often violent as they try to over compensate for having low testosterone. Moreover, let me remind you that it is old men in offices that start wars, and old men are not known for having high testosterone. Ironically they start the wars, and then send young men with high testosterone to fight the battles.
While aggressive can mean violent, it also means to move forward with strong intent or purpose. That is what this book is all about. My book is a slap in the face, it will force you out of your comfort zone, and will help you remember what you need to know to move forward with purpose. It is about taking charge of your life, and striving for greatness, rather than accepting mediocrity, or a life of quiet desperation. That is what it means to live life aggressively! It means to live with strong purpose and resolve. This book covers areas that few have the courage to talk about, and that is the problem. It is the white elephant in the room that everyone wants to ignore. Instead of confronting this problem, most people waste time watching nonsense like American Idol and Glee.
To be honest, I think self-help books are garbage, and this book is definitely not a self-help book. Most, if not all self-help books are overly complicated compilations of nonsense, which fail to offer anything that you can use to improve your life. Will saying daily affirmations help you improve your life? Probably not. Will faking it till you make it help you get to the Promised Land? Lets ask the ladies, how many of you actually enjoy faking it? Don’t raise your hands all at once. Will books that encourage men to act like women, and women to act like men, really help either sex? Absolutely not, and the current wussification of America is all too evident of that. Will books that tell you to write down your five, ten, or twenty goals really help you? No, because they distract you from being fully present in the moment and this moment is all you have. The past is dead, and the future is not here. As if we don’t have enough to worry about now, we have to worry about where we will be in the future as well. Americans worry too much as it is. Being fully in the moment is the best thing you can do for a bright future. No one knows what the future has in store. As the saying goes, want to make God laugh? Tell God your plans.
Self-help books are so focused on making you feel good about yourself, that they fail to help you be honest with yourself. Without brutal honesty you will never move forward. Without a strong sense of purpose, and passion, you will never persevere through the inevitable plethora of hard times that are coming your way in life.
It is time to get real and cut out all the fluff. Decide what you want to do in life, put together a plan of action, and execute that plan. If the first plan does not work, come up with another plan. If that one fails go back to the drawing board and come up with yet another plan. If that one fails, well you get the idea. If it is important to you, and something you genuinely want, not something others think you should have, you will make the necessary sacrifices. Want to know something crazy? You will actually enjoy the process. People that do what they love work harder than anyone else, and they love the hard work. Forget about vacations! Who needs a vacation from the thrill of waking up and doing what you love everyday? Nothing takes the place of doing what excites you for a career. No relationship can take its place. No material gain comes close. Accolades from others cannot compare. Those of you that are already doing what you love know exactly what I am talking about. Those of you that are not there, have no clue what you are missing out on. Life does not have to be drudgery with a few happy moments. Life does not have to be boring to the point where you have to drown your miseries with drugs and alcohol every weekend. You do not have to settle for just getting by. You can strive for greatness. It is the striving that is the juice, not the achievement. This is something many fail to realize, even though every spiritual practice discusses it.
As important as following your bliss is, it is not the only thing that matters. Real success comes from knowing yourself and what you are capable of. True happiness comes from taking the time to do the necessary self-inventory to evolve. Perfection is not possible yet in some ways there is something all too perfect about imperfections.
This book is not about how to get rich and make millions. I am not a millionaire nor do I care to be one. Not to say there is anything wrong with being a millionaire. Sure I love making money and having a great income. Making lots of money is fine if that is your goal. However, I think you will find that being attached to goals makes it impossible to really be happy, and that is what real success is all about. It is not about keeping up with the Joneses, expensive vacations, or acquiring material things that you don’t need or genuinely want. It is about being free to live your life and to not be at the mercy of circumstances. It is about waking up every day and enjoying a career that makes you excited, and empowers you and others. It is about not being a chump in life and taking charge. Not waiting for others to tell you what to do but deciding for yourself what makes you happy and having the courage to pursue it, even when it seems that all the odds are stacked against you.
I am not here to motivate you. I am here to make you think. That is what this book is all about: provoking thought! Will you agree with everything I have to say? I hope not, because if you do then only one of us is thinking, and trust me I think all the time! I do not want to be a guru, or someone that you come to for advice. I am not a life coach or a motivational speaker, and have no desire to become one. I do not have all the answers and have never claimed to. However, I do know what it is like to be miserable, and living without passion. I also know exactly what it is like to be genuinely happy, and fully present in the moment. Trust me on this one, if you do not remember anything else in this book remember this: it is much better to follow your passion and work harder than you have ever worked in your life, then to sit back in a cushy job and be a minimalist for the rest of your life. Embrace the struggle, the person you will become in the process is worth the necessary suffering. The struggle is where you know yourself fully!
This book is essentially a compilation of many articles I have written over the years. Many of the chapters were articles in my online magazine. Others have never been revealed until now.
I find that the best books these days are compilations of many articles. For example top strength coach Pavel Tsatsouline’s best book in my opinion is Beyond Bodybuilding, which is a compilation of articles that he wrote for a variety of fitness magazines. Another excellent example is Randall Strossen’s Ironmind: Stronger Minds, Stronger Bodies. When people write books they tend to include way too much filler and not enough real information. They fail to get to the point, and waste a lot of time. Lets face it, time is in short supply these days so we need to be careful with it. With articles, writers tend to get to the point, and I have always found I learn more from articles than books these days. This book is fluff free and fairly concise at just over one two-hundred and fifty pages. It is meant to be accessible, and not something that occupies too much of your valuable time. I realize that you only want to spend so much time away from Facebook, texting, and having high quality conversations at coffee shops.
Some of the chapters are long and others are brief and that is on purpose. This is not a book that you have to read from start to finish. Pick a section or chapter that catches your interest and start there. Each chapter covers a theme so you can easily read one chapter a day for a metaphorical kick in the ass when needed.
There are three main categories to this book. Section one covers what self-help gurus should be telling you. Section two is my favorite section and covers the importance of taking self inventory, and being brutally honest with yourself and others. Section three covers my thoughts on success and happiness.
There are very few unique ideas in this book if any. Much of it is common sense that has been forgotten, while other ideas are things that I have learned from studying all the great religions and philosophies in college, and through my many life experiences. Everything that one needs to know about how to succeed, and evolve in life has been said, and definitely has been articulated better than me. That being said, it can never be emphasized enough, and the more you see, hear, and feel it, the better.
Mahatma Gandhi once said that, “Whatever you do in life will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.” If one of the greatest men of all time thinks what he did to revolutionize a country is insignificant, you can imagine where you and I fall on the spectrum of importance. This is something to remember when we live our lives consumed by our illusions of grandeur. Regardless, we all have a duty and getting my story to you is part of my duty. What you choose to do with it is your duty.
Table Of Contents
Foreword By Steve Cotter
Introduction By Ken Blackburn
It is Time to Live Life Aggressively
Section One: What Self-help Gurus Should Be Telling You
Why You Must Optimize Your Hormones
Is Having a Positive Attitude Overrated?
The Necessity of Negative Thinking
The Danger of Always Accommodating
Don't Rely on Your Illusory Memory
Networking Myths! It is More Than Who You Know
Don't Ever Get Involved With Network Marketing Companies
Why Your Need for Praise is Holding You Back
Are We Becoming a Nation of Orthorexics?
Are You Prepared to Actually Take Advice?
Being Attached to Results is Holding You Back
Doing What You Love is Hard Work
Your Flawed Decision Making Process Is Why You Fail
Addiction to Constant Entertainment Makes Success Impossible
Are You a Research Addict or An Action Addict?
Section Two: The Importance of Taking Self Inventory
Do You Have the Courage To Evolve?
The Real Battle Is Within
We Are Great At Kidding Ourselves
The High Price of Ownership
Eleven Reasons Why We Make Mistakes and Why We Keep Making Them
Fear Is the Ultimate Manipulation Method
Are You Capable of Evil? Yes You Are
Embrace Compassion Fully or Be Destroyed By Anger
Section Three: Happiness And Success
The Necessity of Exceptional Thinking
Use Pressure to Be Successful
Being a Great Teacher Is Not Easy
Jealousy is a Wasted Emotion
Being Risk Adverse Makes You Success Adverse
Will You Let a “Knife” Prevent You From Conquering Your Goal?
Is Experience Overrated?
I Never Saved Anything for the Swim Back
Waiting For Permission Is a Sure Fire Way To Fail
The Timing Is Never Perfect
Is Happiness Determined By Our Genetics?
Is Happiness Determined By Our Genetics? Part Two
Stop Complaining and Take Charge of Your Life
What Are You Prepared To Do Now?
Recommended Reading List
If you are in a rut (and don't lie to yourself most of us are) and you don't have the emotional muscle to pry yourself loose this book "How to Live Life Aggressively! What Self Help Gurus Should be Telling You" will give you a shove. While reading through the book I found myself irritated, and I wanted to blame the author but I realized that the irritation wasn't the author directly but rather his ability to strike a nerve in me and cause me to examine my life and to ask myself, "is how I'm living enough?" The answer, "NO it isn't!!" I was born for more than this. I didn't wait; I started making changes immediately, changes that make me both nervous and relieved all in the same breath. I thank the author Mike Mahler for having the courage to live his own life aggressively as an example and for writing this book, so that we too may benefit from living life to the fullest; AGRESSIVELY!
--Sassy City Girl at amazon.com
If you are looking for your typical "Self Help" book, this is NOT it. This book gets to the heart of living in the moment, and being the creator of your own happiness. The chapters in the book are straight to the point and very thought provoking. Mike's wisdom and insight shine through and really make you question why you are where you are in life.
--HC at amazon.com
Mike is a unique, modern-day, self-made Renaissance man. He practices what he preaches, is always ahead of the curve, and is wise beyond his years in numerous topics. Reading Live Life Aggressively is like gaining access to the most valuable life, health/fitness, and business/career lessons you need to know to succeed, achieve your goals, and be happy in the process. Mike shares his own hard-won experiences--challenges and successes--in a candid manner which is sure to resonate with anyone who reads his book. Having personally met Mike in person, I can guarantee that you would simply be amazed by his presence, strength, character, sincerity, authenticity, generosity, and sheer passion for everything he does. It would downright inspire you.
Mike is a "real" guy who had to overcome many obstacles and work very hard for what he accomplished and he started from scratch without any handouts or freebies. You can quickly benefit from his many years of experience because Mike has summarized some his best ideas in Live Life Aggressively. In particular, Mike has so much insight into health, training, and sports conditioning that I would guess Mike is among just a few people in the world who possess as much knowledge in these areas as he does. I simply can't recommend LLA (and Mike's other programs) highly enough.
--Rohit Kalra-- www.rohitkalra.com
Mike makes it clear from the very beginning that Live Life Aggressively is not a self-help book, rather it is a book that will make you think about and reflect on your life as whole. Instead of telling you what to do with your life, Mike honestly shares situations in his life, both good and bad, and shares with the reader how he handled that situation and the results of his actions.
Live Life Aggressively is a book that shares the reflections and lessons learned by a man who has been through situations that everybody goes through. This is where the brilliance of Mike's writing comes out. Because of this, you will find topics that you can relate to and others you may not understand yet since you haven't been in that position. You will continue to learn more as you yourself go on with your life and experience these things.
I can't stress enough If your going to buy any self help book this year buy this one, It's def a re read! It makes so much sense Mike's humbleness and to the point no BS is a nice change..holding ourselves accountable for our actions and decisons. I love it!
I rather like the sub-title, "What Self-Help Gurus Should Be Telling You." It speaks directly to the problem we have world wide when it comes to so-called self help experts. It's about time someone called them out. Many times out of morbid curiosity I have picked up one of these books at the bookstore. Flipping through them I find a subject that seems interesting. Two paragraphs later I have put it down in disgust. It would appear that none of these people have ever lived in the real world or dealt with serious adversity. Their advice is worthless and I am convinced that the drivel they write causes more problems for everyone who reads them. Live Life Aggressively stands in stark contrast to that book genre. Live Life Aggressively is a manual about you, your life, real life, the challenges many of us face and how to approach the problem from an angle that will yield positive results. Be prepared to face some uncomfortable truths and take a hard look in the mirror. But hey, that's where the progress actually happens. Until that moment, everything else is wasted effort. All thrust and no vector...
In the end folks, life is about survival. Then it is about advancing and evolving to make life better for you and your family. If that is going to happen you have to deal in raw facts and real solutions. No other book is going to give it to you straight and honest the way Live Life Aggressively does. If you're done burning holes in the ozone, you'll need this book as your in-flight checklist.
US Special Operations
CEO, Alpin Gruppe
Self help books that tell you like it really is are few and far between. I've read many of them and most are sugarcoated psychobabble nonsense. I didn't want to be coddled when I bought those, I was looking for the tools I need to get ahead. Fortunately I bought Live Life Aggressively and found what I was looking for.
Mike pushes you to make a real, honest self assessment of where you are. He then gives you many tools to help you along the way to where you want to go. The journey will be hard but Mike uses many examples from his own life to show you how to overcome potential problems. His honesty is refreshing and gives a more realistic picture of what it takes to succeed. I felt I was listening to someone that had been there.
Besides the self help aspect, the book also functions as a manifesto for those who believe in being strong. Physical, mental, and emotional strength is becoming a rare thing these days and those dedicated to being strong have few resources to bolster that way of life. Living Life Aggressively makes you realize that you aren't the only one who believes this way and makes a good read when you need a little steel added to your spine.
One final note, Mike did a good job of listing the various books that influenced him and I've enjoyed tracking down and reading a few of them. You will, too.
I've read my share of "motivational" books and I knew, almost instinctively, when I was reading a book like "The Secret" (just to name one) that it could not be true...nothing is that easy. And I was right. Unfortunately most self help books fall into the catagory of "feel good" books. LLA is the opposite of a feel good book which might be why it made me feel good. It speaks to the inner voice inside your head that tells you to do right instead of wrong...the good angle, the true angle. Because you know, in your heart it takes a lot of hard work to achive anything so when Mike spells this out for you (time and time again) your almost relieved because you know this is the truth. You can wrap your head around it because it's a solid fact. Like any good piece of music; you dont need someone to sell you on this fact it great, it hit's you right between the eyes...no need for outside validation. Like a great meal, you know from the first mouthful, this is the real deal. That's how I felt a quarter of the way through Mikes book.
The other think I really enjoyed were the analogies and examples Mikes uses to illustrate his point. He really colors it in for you. The book is deep, it forces you to think and take stock of yourself and touches on everything from Ghandi to Vanilla Ice.
All I can say is buy this book, you will not be disappointed.
--Kenny at amazon.com
Mike has created an outstanding collection of essays in this book, all stating in various ways to take charge of your life, stop whining, and handle your challenges, phobias and health. In 30 or so chapters, he covers subjects that range from hormone optimization and fitness to overcoming depression,taking charge of your life, real world networking, work place politics, and much more.
This book made me stop and think several times, and gave me a couple of wake up calls as well. Definitely made me evaluate daily actions such as going along to get along, work place politics, and getting too complacent with my life. The book also pulls no punches regarding taking responsibility for your life and it's challenges without excuses or rationalizations.
This is my first review, and I highly recommend Live Life Aggressively! It's definitely not feel good, but if you take action on the topics that apply to you, YOU will feel good and proud of your accomplishments!
--Bob Beckman (amazingtrader)
This book exceeded all of my expectations. It was an interesting, motivational, informative, and humorous read. I've read plenty of self help books but this one smacked all of the others in the face. This book really helped me realize my on shortcomings and potential. I think everyone could benefit from the words Mike Mahler put on these pages. He's straight forward, honest, and funny; that kind of personality kept me reading and thats something I really appreciate. Get this book today, you wont regret it.
I love books written by real people who live a real life and "Live Aggressively" is a book everyone should read. Live Aggressively is a book that will make people think, and probably piss off a lot of people. When someone tells how life really is and goes against the grain really seems to get people pissed off. If more people had the guts to tell how life really is and what it takes to live a meaningful life more people would take responsibility for their lives.
Mike did a great job, and I have never written a review but loved this book! Get "Live Aggressively and stop making excuses!
If you are looking for the usual "Self-Help" book, i.e. one where some out of touch "expert in wellness" waxes poetic about how to live a better life, THIS AIN'T IT. Mike's book is a great resource for anyone who is invested in putting in the work needed to create your own happiness, a BETTER YOU, a better LIFE, etc. Live Life Aggressively is very much to the point, honest and always intriguing and thought provoking.
I highly recommend that everyone get this book...and someone give Mike his own talk show..seriously. I could spend an hour a day watching Mahler talk over Dr. Phil any day! (And, Mike would be a million times healthier to boot! :))