Hi there, my name is Daniel Riley.
I am from the UK and currently finishing my Economics and Spanish degree at the University of Leeds. I find both of these subjects interesting, but I decided quite a while ago that I don’t want to pursue a ‘traditional career’ in either of them. While they may pay well, I know for a fact that they wouldn’t get me out of bed every morning itching to live my life as fully as possible. ‘Work isn’t meant to be fun!’ I hear you cry and maybe you are right. But hearing various stories and doing a lot of reflection over the last couple of years, I realised that work should have some level of personal meaning that also positively spills out to your community, especially if you are to be spending most of your life doing it. As a result, these last few years have seen my life take on a whole new trajectory compared to the standard route I expected it to take for so long. A path that I didn’t even know was available to me until very recently.
Why I started this blog
All throughout high school and the start of university, I never really had any burning passions and felt I was destined for some generic job in finance.
In order to cover my rent, I had to get myself a job in the 1st year of uni and ended up working at a bar/nightclub. I loved the people there and despite some of the smart-looking photos I got of myself making cocktails, I really didn’t enjoy it. The nightshift hours on the weekend came into conflict with my 9am lectures come Monday and I felt awful most of the time. But I had to pay my way.
That summer I trawled the interwebs looking for some sort of alternative to making money. I love sports and thought maybe there is a certain gambling technique that if implemented enough times, works out as profit over the long term. Expected Value if you will. In hindsight, this was a pretty stupid way to go about looking to make money but I ended up stumbling across matched betting. It allowed me to work from my own home, put in the number of hours that I choose and monthly, I was still making a similar amount of money as if I was still working in the bar. It changed my life so much that it was the very first post I wrote on this blog and it’s a healthy 5000+ words at that. The point being, I didn’t even know matched betting was out there until I was actually looking for a solution to my problem.
This made me think, what other awesome, life-changing things are out there that I don’t even know about? It turns out quite a lot.
I can’t exactly remember how, but I ended up buying and reading Tim Ferriss’ 4 Hour Work Week. That completely changed the way I looked at the world, finance, careers, conventional wisdom, life, everything. I cannot recommend this book enough as a starting point if you are starting to question where you want to go and what you really want to do in this life.
I realised that my current path had felt fixed and pre-determined until that point. I was a person who was good at this so should go into something like this. I always knew that never really looking into what I am really interested in would be a massive regret later down the line once I was immersed in the new lifestyle. So I paused for a while. Quite a while actually. In fact, I am still taking time to pause to this day.
I have had a couple of realisations so far though. To me, time is the most precious commodity, because it is the only thing you can’t get more of. You can always make more money, gain more friends or more things, but time is time. And no one really knows how much they have of it. Eventually, the tide is going to come in and wash your sandcastle away, no matter how long you took building it up and trying to perfect it. That’s ok though, that just means that the process of building the sandcastle and sharing it with those who matter is what it’s all really about.
For now, the sandcastle I am building revolves around the human experience. Making each little part of the experience just a little less mediocre. Whether that be physical health, mental health, financial health or spiritual health. Living consciously rather than wandering through life unconsciously. These are all things that I believe will not only assist me in creating the best possible life for myself, my loved ones and community, but are fundamental for that to happen. There is a reason they tell you to put your own oxygen mask on first before assisting others.
Now that I realised is something worth pursuing for the rest of my days.
What I want to help you achieve
It’s all well and good hearing about my epiphany, but why should you care?
This blog is certainly centred around my own experiences, my own thoughts, my own problems I’m facing, my own challenges I’m overcoming and my own best life I’m trying to live. While each situation is unique to me, I know that we have parallels and things in common.
I’m a human, you’re a human (presumably) and as a result, we experience human things. Some of these human things are distressing, others are verging on ecstasy. Others are rarely talked about, others are talked about too much. I write about these human things with the aim of helping you make sense of them in your own life. Whether that be challenging social norms you’ve known your whole life, learning to think in ways that will help you to overcome certain obstacles and hopefully providing content that will help you to live a happier, healthier, more fulfilling and just all around better life.
The truth is that I am just an average dude trying to live a little less averagely every day. If that’s your sort of thing and you are trying to pull away from averageness in your own life, I hope that you will join me on this journey.
I promise that it will be worth your while.
Here are some useful posts to get you started on the path. A few from each category on the blog:
Philosophy and Mindset
Health and Wellbeing
Finance and Business
Got any questions or just want to drop in and say hi? I would love to hear from you. Head over to the Contact Page to do just that.