How to Change Your Life in a (Single) Moment
Table of Contents
So how many of us, if we’re being honest, are desperately searching for that one thing… that one book, that one experience, that one… switch…
Where we DECIDE we’re going to develop a skill or habit, improve our physical, or launch that new project – and despite years of repeated failures, that this time we ACTUALLY stick with it until it becomes hard coded into the fabric of who we are.
Where we ACTUALLY make it to the point where the person reflected back at us in the mirror CLEARLY understands something that the person who was there only a few weeks ago WISHED they could understand.
Where we wake up to the feeling that we are finally ‘at home’ with who we are.
And who we ‘were’ is now just a memory – a prior reference point, for this new, TRUE ‘self’ that has only just begun to emerge.
What we’re searching for is an ‘epiphany’ – a sudden, profound insight that fundamentally alters our reality to where what was previously impossible, now becomes effortless.
What Is an Epiphany? (and what it isn’t)
The word “epiphany” originates from the ancient greek word “epiphanea” – which was used to explain when a God or deity appeared before a worshipper…
And THIS is a MUCH better definition than whichever one you currently hold – I’ll explain.
Let’s start with the idea that to experience an epiphany, we first need to worship something.
As David Foster Wallace so brilliantly points out “Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship. And the compelling reason for maybe choosing some sort of god or spiritual-type thing to worship…
is that pretty much anything else you worship will eat you alive. If you worship money and things, if they are where you tap real meaning in life, then you will never have enough, never feel you have enough.
It’s the truth. Worship your body and beauty and sexual allure and you will always feel ugly. And when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before they finally grieve you.”
So, we’re all ‘worshippers’… now consider the following 3 ‘epiphany’ type scenarios:
1. The girl working a cushy corporate job for 100k who wishes they could trade it all in for a life where they travel the world and work online.
2. The boy who has spent years -reading books and watching videos striving towards that ‘moment’ where they finally begin to take action.
3- The dog, who… uh… is a daily reminder to their owner that ‘happiness’ should be experienced here and now – instead of merely existing as some ‘future point’.
What do all three of these people have in common?
It’s that they are all ‘worshippers’ at the altar of the ‘ideal self’ – we all are – and it’s a great thing to worship.
Because we don’t just want money or beauty – we want to manifest our true potential so that we can bring happiness and success to ourselves and those around us.
There’s just one problem… we’re trapped in a reality where we can feel our ‘ideal self’ clawing frantically within us, trying to break free.
But for some reason we’re just… waiting… or searching…. or striving for that ‘moment ‘ when it just, happens.
And let me tell you – when it does happen… IF it does happen, it is EXACTLY like the experience of a faithful worshipper who after years of difficult practice, FINALLY has a divine experience.
Here’s the thing most of us fail to understand – For even the ‘remote’ possibility of an epiphany, we actually NEED to be extremely unhappy, unfulfilled, uncomfortable – we need so much ‘negative’ experience to accumulate that, trapped and with nowhere else to go, we are forcefully routed into a divine space where we are obligated to not only QUESTION reality, but to outright DENY it –
So that we can forge our OWN reality where we are no longer bound by silly, societally derived limits.
How To Have An Epiphany (and how to not have one)
I’ve thought a lot about this, and I would say that the ‘secret’ to having an epiphany, if there is one, lies in taking extreme EMOTIONAL risks –
Allowing ourselves to love someone so deeply that should they leave or betray us, we would be absolutely devastated.
Committing so thoroughly to a career pivot or business idea that we believe in that we eliminate all possible paths of retreat – no plan B.
To go from years of watching fights on TV, to lacing up a pair of boxing gloves and stepping into the ring ourselves.
Basically, to take the sort of risk where we’re doing something that we FEEL we must do, even and especially if it scares the absolute shit out of us.
And that we don’t just do it, but that we go ALL IN –
If we feel the undeniable pull to do something we know to be true, regardless of what our friends, parents, or even society thinks – it is in risking everything that we come to know the true emotional floors and ceilings of our brief but beautiful existence.
I have loved with all my heart, and gone all in on things that I truly believed in, and those decisions were NEVER wrong in the long-term.
‘Risk’ as we understand it is just an illusion of a reality designed to consume us- the true risk is to not take risks.
And if we’re hoping to have an epiphany that enables us to do something so audacious as to rewrite reality itself, then we had better accumulate enough challenging life experience to be able to at least somewhat perceive where the limits are.
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My Epiphany Moment
So my epiphany moment came to me at my absolute lowest point in my life – where after years of on and off depression, I found myself heartbroken over a girl who had left me to get back with a previous boyfriend who was far superior to me.
He was smart, career focused, philosophically and spiritually inclined – i was an emotionally immature loser whose entire existence was revolved around having fun and getting drunk on weekends – she made the right choice.
Anyway, after months of feeling devastated and barely being able to lift myself out of bed – I experienced a moment where I was FORCED to DENY my present reality, where depression was something I had to just sort of ‘wait’ out.
And I instead created a new reality – where I could actually channel all of the ‘depressive energy’ was experiencing into immense positive action… into POWER.
And so in a single moment – I transformed – and suddenly, effortlessly, began to take MASSIVE action – training for an ironman even though I had never run for more than a few blocks, making MASSIVE leaps in my career, immersing myself into ancient philosophy.
Anyway you guys know the rest of the story – fast forward to today and I’m living a live that is beyond what I coil have even dreamed was possible.
And hey, if you want to learn about my story and philosophy – subscribe, click the notification bell, and follow me on instagram @nelsonquest – and check out the description below for a link to my ‘dark mode’ system – which will give you the exact 7 tenets that I practice daily – it’s free of course.
Anyway, so when I strip my epiphany moment down to its core essence, here’s what I’m left with:
I took a huge risk that didn’t work out which threw me into the deepest depression of my life – and it was precisely there where I was ‘forced’ into a divine space where I was able to create my own reality – one where negative emotions, instead of weighing me down, now give me incredible power.
So if you’re someone who feels like they’re ‘waiting’ for that one big moment where everything suddenly changes – Then you already understand the pain of living with regret… question for you…
– do you really think that the pain of going all in on something you believe in, and possibly failing… could be worse?
To CHANGE reality we have to first UNDERSTAND it, which means we need to feel emotional highs as well as lows, and the ONLY way to feel either of those things is to take extreme emotional risks.
If things work out, well hey that’s great, I guess we didn’t need an epiphany in the first place.
If things don’t work out, we gain extremely valuable insights into the things that need to change.
It’s only when we stagnate, when life passes us by while we just sit there and do nothing – where an epiphany becomes necessary.
And so perhaps the greatest epiphany we can hope to have… is that we don’t fucking need one.
This is the path.
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