Want to make more of yourself? Want to be happier, healthier and more confident?
Of course you do: pretty much everyone does! The only difference is that some people are willing to admit it and then do something about it. These are the people who enjoy self-help and who read lots of books on the subject to try and learn how to improve their lot in life.
Actually though, self-improvement advice comes in many forms. If you really want to get more from yourself and to increase your skills, knowledge and happiness, then actually there may be better mediums to turn to that offer faster results.
More importantly, these are the people who then put that advice into action and are willing to work to get the results they want.
Want in? Here are some YouTube channels, some websites and some apps that will help you to get started…
Something that can make a massive difference to your confidence as well as your success in life generally, is your dress sense. This doesn’t mean that you need to blow the bank on lots of expensive clothing though – it just means that you need to put a little time, thought and effort into what you’re going to wear.
Alpha M is a YouTube channel that helps you to do just that with short and well-produced videos discussing a wide range of topics. These range from how to tuck your shirt in properly, to how to wear a suit, how to wear a scarf – you name it.
This channel essentially demystifies the topic of style for men and gives you some very simple and easily actionable style tips that you can put into action right away.
Art Of Manliness is a website that delivers high quality content that is aimed squarely at men trying to make the most of themselves in the modern age. That means the usual topics – like fitness and style – but also some rather less obvious ones like how to be a gentleman, how to get the most from traveling, how to use kitchen knives and how to make great conversation.
These are not just fascinating posts that are a lot of fun to read, they also delve a little deeper than the average into topics that can help you to discover more about yourself and what it means to really be a man in this day and age.
Headspace is an app that is quickly becoming popular among those who struggle with stress, who lead busy and hectic lives, or who just need a little more down time to reflect.
Headspace essentially provides little sessions of guided meditation along with animations/video and a great design all intended to help you unwind. These are short little bursts and meditation that typically will last around 10 minutes, which makes them much easier to fit into a busy routine (and harder to get out of!).
Unfortunately, the app is not entirely free and after your 10th session the price will ramp up rather severely. However, for those looking for a gentle introduction into the benefits of meditation it can serve as an excellent primer. Give the 10 free sessions a go and then decide whether you want to stick with it or move to a cheaper service.
Another great app is Fabulous: Motivate Me. And the app certainly is fabulous too. This is basically a tool to help you set and meet your goals but it’s all presented in a beautiful manner that adheres to Google’s ‘Material Design’ principles and is filled with charming animations.
As well as setting yourself routines and habits that the app will remind you to carry out, you can also accept challenges to help better yourself, write to-do lists and get useful feedback and information.
If you’re more interested in a straightforward app to offer you a basic to-do list though, then Todoist is probably the one to check out. This is a very simple to-do list app on the face of it but it does house some powerful features under the hood. Integration with additional tools like IFTTT means that you can do things like update an Excel spreadsheet as you work through tasks, or even have your to-do list emailed to you each morning. It works both on the phone and through your browser too, so you can access it surreptitiously at work or conveniently first thing in the morning from bed.
When it comes to self-improvement, there are few figures quite so prominent or so accomplished as Tim Ferriss. Tim originally rose to fame for his book The Four Hour Workweek and went on to enjoy further success with The Four Hour Body and The Four Hour Chef. Those three books pretty much sum up the topics covered on his site – which range from everything from fitness and weight loss, to productivity and business, to lifestyle and developing skills.
Other than his insightful blog posts, one of the main draws of the site is the podcast. Here, Tim enjoys interviews with all manner of incredible figures. Guests so far have included the likes of Arnold Schwarzenegger, Ramit Sethi, Tony Robbins, Maria Popova and Elon Musk.
Speaking of Maria Popova, you should also pop over (sorry) to her website ‘Brain Pickings’. Here you’ll find a ton of fascinating articles that cover book reviews and musings on neuroscience, philosophy, morality, creativity and more. It’s a little more heady perhaps than your usual reading and something that might hopefully get you to do some thinking.
Brain HQ is a website/web app that aims to offer useful brain training games to help you give your grey matter a workout. While Luminosity has recently been in the news for the wrong reasons (basically for making claims that it can’t back up), Brain HQ is based entirely on real research and is the closest thing we have to a proven-effective method for improving our mental prowess.