10 cool things I did in Colombia
It's been a while since I wrote an article on here. With the book and the new company...I've used less and less time to write blogs.
The upside to that is you don't have to see my stupid face in your inbox as much. The downside is so much has happened to me in my personal and professional life lately.
This post will share 10 bite-sized events and lessons I've experienced since living here in Medellín, Colombia. If you want me to expound on any in particular, email me and let me know.
1) I hung out with close friends I met in another country.
When I was in Buenos Aires earlier this year, travelers told me I'd make friends and meet up with them elsewhere. That sounded silly to me.
But then I became close with a few guys in Argentina. Over the summer, I coordinated with two of them—one from Sweden, one from the UK—so that we'd be living in Colombia at the same time.
You meet some people abroad. And though you don't know when (or where) you'll see them again...you're certain you will at some point.
2) I prioritized my physical health.
It's a value of mine to look and feel like an athlete. I never want to tire after walking uphill or climbing a couple of stairs.
But I'm no health nut. I've just stuck to a few simple changes and routines to keep my body (and therefore my mind) sharp and ready.
a. I bought a Whoop strap.
This thing is incredible. It tracks your daily recovery, sleep, and strain (effort).
What's more impressive though is all the data it collects on you. You create a daily journal to feed it information about how what you do affects your body.
How do things like meditation, caffeine, and stress affect your recovery? Well, here are some examples from my Whoop:
Which brings me to...
b) I seriously cut back on drinking.
The times in my life when I felt most foggy, unmotivated, and depressed...booze was always a part of the mix. There were two weeks here in Medellín where I was drinking two to six cocktails a night. By myself.
Andrew Huberman does an excellent job breaking down how alcohol impacts the brain—in both the short term and long term. Basically, any more than two drinks per week results in noticeable negative effects in...
thinking and behavior
I was drinking frequently. My mood was all over the place. My sleep was trash. I was tired all the time.
But after using the Reframe app to track my drinking and learn about the neurobiology of drinking habitually...my lowest sleep quality was 86%. I wake up every morning feeling energized and ready to go.
c) I lift weights three times a week and eat mostly clean.
I'm nothing close to a fitness or nutrition expert. So aside from the obvious, I never tell people what they should or shouldn't do.
The obvious being:
avoid eating processed foods (stuff with a billion ingredients)
do some form of regular (preferably difficult) exercise
keep caffeine and alcohol consumption to a minimum
go outside and get sunlight on your skin and eyes
People don't do any of the basics and wonder why they're overweight and feel like garbage. I was one of those people.
3) I started a company.
After running a solo coaching business for years, I wanted to build something that scales. So I put a team of coaches together.
Grindstone is accountability coaching for content creators. We make it easy for folks to do their work.
I started the journey with a good coaching buddy of mine. He's been amazing. And Grindstone's first phases have gone quite smoothly.
We reached out to people with warm outreach and took on our first five members for completely free. That got creators into our community and onto our calendars.
As the CEO, I'm eager to level up my leadership, delegating, and team-building skills. Stay tuned.
4) I live with my girlfriend now.
After a summer of long-distance....we finally began our relationship.
It's exciting to see how we coexist in the same apartment. How we have uncomfortable conversations. How we constantly find ways to laugh and explore.
Most of my life was spent as a single dude. No one to consider or care for other than myself. Learning to put someone else's desires above my own at times has been a humbling and deeply rewarding experience.
My life was already phenomenal before she was part of it. Now I feel like I've ascended into Nirvana.
5) I can speak Spanish like a child.
In Ubers. At restaurants. Out and about...
I can get by, ask for directions, and have low-level conversations in Spanish. I remember the achievement I felt when I could do the same in German after studying abroad.
Jetzt schpreche ich in bischen Deutch. Y hablo un poco español.
The biggest lesson from both language pursuits: 80% of learning a skill is the willingness to look stupid along the way.
And I sure do look stupid.
6) My favorite entrepreneurs replied to my tweet.
We dressed up as Alex and Leila Hormozi for Halloween.
She retweeted it and he commented. I am now successful.
7) I made a Twitter account.
Slowly growing. But having a blast.
It's an easy way to meet other entrepreneurs and creators. I also enjoy how you can customize your feed so you only see posts from valuable, positive, and educational accounts...if you want to.
End my search for happiness and follow me @dillanroytaylor.
8) I toured a Colombian coffee farm and learned all popular coffee is rotten garbage.
I never cared much about the process of making things like wine, beer, or coffee. It all tends to sound like esoteric clubs I'm not cool enough to get into.
But then my girlfriend took me to this gorgeous coffee plantation just outside the city.
The guide took us from step 1: picking the coffee grape from the tree and planting the seed...all the way to roasting the finished beans, grinding them, and drinking the finished product. Delicious.
My biggest takeaway...
You know how chicken nuggets are just all the gross leftovers from the chicken? Tendons, bones, tissues, etc.
Well, conventional coffee (Starbucks, Dunkin, McDonald's, and beans sold in grocery stores) is made from all the bad coffee beans that weren't good enough to make it to the end of the process. They mix it in with a little bit of quality Arabica to hide the bitter taste. Or they flood it with artificial flavoring (hazelnut, vanilla, caramel). Or they serve the coffee super duper hot so your tongue can't actually taste it.
Long story short: I'm better than you now.
9) We went on an MDMA weekend retreat to Guatapé.
Big rock. 900 steps up. Lots of lakes. Jetskis. Friends. Fun.
10) Two close friends flew to stay with us for a week.
It's the first time friends from the States have made the trek down to South America. I love it.
I took the week off and we planned hikes, tours, and meals at our favorite restaurants. It's thrilling to give my buddies experiences they've never had before.
It also gets me excited to do this more and more in the future.
We'll be living in various South American countries next year. Then in the fall, the goal is for my girlfriend to start her PhD program in Europe. I can already imagine all the friendly visits and excursions to be had: Spain, Italy, Switzerland, etc.
2023 felt like I packed three years into one. I...
found a lady I love
became a CEO
learned a new language
expanded my global network
became 10x committed to my work and my health
Life is good. If you have any stories or wins to share, please send them over to me.
I read every email.
And lastly, if you want to follow along with more bite-sized ideas and insights, follow me on X @dillanroytaylor.