A few days ago, I was jamming out to some music on my iPhone when I saw one of the most beautiful events in nature that I have ever seen. In the center of urban Austin, Texas a hawk sighted a squirrel, attacked it, caught it, and ripped out the innards perched atop an oak tree. Sure, we’ve all seen it on Animal Planet, but seeing it in the flesh (pun intended) was a totally different experience. Some were grossed out, others couldn’t care less, but for me it was a beautiful “eat what you kill” moment.
Eat What You Kill
I started to think about the same instinct within the human mind that is largely underutilized by most individuals. The same instinct to improve our chances of survival exists deep within every human being. For generations our DNA has held these traits, but only recently have they been abandoned. The social structures and technology that we live with does not require that humans tap into this primal instinct. The people who can tap into this evolutionary instinct can be infinitely more successful than their peers.
This does not mean that you and I should give up our jobs in order to hunt squirrels and pick berries.* Indeed, the ability to cultivate food in mass quantities has allowed humans to progress rapidly over the past few thousand years. However, bringing the “eat what you kill” mentality into your life can still be beneficial.
The large majority of people work for companies that provide them with a secure and steady paycheck every week or month. Like robots, these people become reliant on the steady paycheck rather than attacking every potential opportunity as if their life depended on it. In effect, these people are suppressing the natural instinct to do whatever it takes in order to eat.
The Challenge Fosters Growth
Entrepreneurs and freelancers, on the other hand, are forced into this primacy every day. As a business owner myself, I am reliant on my efforts alone in order to feed me. This reality has helped “flick the switch” in my brain to behave like our cave men ancestors thousands of years ago. Of course, this occurs out of necessity and provides an immediate result in my business so that I can afford to eat.
However, the more important realization is that I am more driven in everything that I do as a result. I have thus entered the “primal mindset,”** which is a mental state where complacency in any aspect of life is perceived as a disadvantage for survival. Tapping into this primal mindset in one area of your life will undoubtedly benefit you in the others. While I am in the gym or preparing to cook a meal, the motivation to work harder and to stay healthier is so much easier in the primal mindset.
That does not mean you have to quit your job and try to create your own business. Just be aware of the evolutionary traits deep within you that can improve your life. In a world where most people do not or cannot tap into these instincts, the few who do are bound to succeed.
* Though I do want to take part in killing, butchering, and dressing an animal.
** I will explain this theory/concept in another post in more depth.