This is My Year to Finally do Something About This Shitty Life

Okay, so maybe it’s not so shitty

Jason Weiland
6 min readJan 31, 2023

When 2023 rolled around, I told a lot of people that this was MY YEAR. The word for this year was supposed to be “focus,” but the closer we get to the end of January, the more I realized that this year will be all about change.

‘Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.’ — Leo Tolstoy

I’ve spent my entire life dealing with a worsening mental illness and dealing with the fallout from my trips down the rabbit holes I create. Suicide attempts, self-harm, medication, hospitalizations, loss of family, divorce, and psychosis. It has been a constant struggle to keep my head above water, at the expense of my relationships, health, self-image, self-care, professional life, and personal goals.

Last year, I had two heart attacks, and I’ve been forced to make some changes, but I haven’t done it at the level that it is yet beneficial to me. Still, I improve.

I’ve started eating better. My mental health continues to get better and better, and although I don’t think I am in any way cured, I do feel like I’ve improved enough that I think I can increase my efforts to make my life better.

And even though I improve, I still flounder doing the same things over and over again, year after year, hoping that this year my life will change. Somehow, I will suddenly start making good money, I will lose weight and get healthy, and I will finish my degree — I think I will get everything I dream of without doing anything different than I have before.

I want a healthy and good-looking body.

I want to finally finish my degree.

I want to start training myself to start a business or return to freelancing that will finance my lifestyle and I won’t have to rely on disability anymore.

If I want to start making shit happen for me I have to do like Diamond Dallas Page (DDP) says and OWN IT. I must get started doing it immediately and stop making excuses. I have to continue when I want to quit, and I will want to quit soon because that is how my mind works.

I have pinpointed two things I want to start right now that will get me immediately started on creating a new life. For my body, I will start DDP Yoga, lose weight, gain muscle, and get healthy. For my mind, not only will I apply Dallas’s methods for getting things done, but I want to go back to college and get my degree.

Eventually, I want to work in AI and data science, so there is other coursework I will need to pursue that will prepare me to work in this field.

Starting today, I will follow the DDP Yoga program for one year, relentlessly and obsessively, doing what I must do every day to get stuff done. DDP says I should write down my “why.”

Why did I start DDPY to own my life?

“Why am I starting DDPY now, at 54 years old and 250 pounds? Do you ask why I want to get healthy after having two heart attacks back-to-back and almost dying? Do you want to know why I want to say “fuck off” to my mental illness and stop the yo-yo of weight loss and gain? Why do I want to change my life when I already have heart disease, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes? Why do I think I can be successful when I have failed so many times before because I am autistic, have psychosis, depression, and anxiety, and fall victim to self-harm and suicidal ideation? Why do I want to get off the disability train and support my family the way they deserve to be treated and not just accept what we can afford? You ask why I want to have a healthy body and mind so I can work and create a professional career that will set my family and me up for success now and in the future.

I am starting DDPY now because everything I have done up until this point hasn’t worked. I am a failure at everything so far. I’ve wanted to get healthy, lose weight, gain muscle, and lessen my pain for a long time, and needed to get into a mindset where I can do the things I need to do to make money and earn a living from something that doesn’t involve disability. I know deep inside me there is a thin, muscular, and healthy winner, who can work and make money, and take care of his family.

Finally, I did it because after almost dying last year, I promised my wife and family that I would be around AT LEAST another 30 years.”

Right now, I am reading DDP’s book “Positively Unstoppable. The Art of Owning it” and have been taking notes and doing the exercises within. The first thing he asked besides my why? was what I would do if I knew I couldn’t fail. This is what I would do immediately:

“I would start learning everything I needed to start a business and be financially successful within a year. I would start working out and make plans to fix my fucked-up teeth. I would work harder every minute of every day to make the things I dream of a reality.

I would remove the words “I can’t” from my vocabulary.

I would do everything it took to build a happy and fulfilling life for my family and I and I would start immediately.”

That is what I am doing.

What is it I want out of life? If I made a list of things I want or things I want to do before I do, this would be it.

  • Long life
  • Happy family
  • Happy wife, happy life
  • Money
  • Satisfaction/Fulfillment
  • Health
  • Good posture
  • A great body
  • Nice straight white teeth
  • A business
  • A degree
  • Recognition
  • Travel

It’s a long list, but there is always more I want. I could go on forever because I am a person who dreams big. When things were bad with my mental health, I always had dreams to escape to. I made promises to myself, and those promises are what kept me from death many times.

I am alive today because I was always positive that things would get better.

What do I have working against me? What are the health and mental problems that could make the journey to good health and success more difficult?

  • Diabetes
  • High Blood pressure
  • Mental illness
  • Autism
  • Heart disease
  • Neuropathy in my legs
  • Out of shape
  • Disordered eating
  • Advanced age — 54

Finally, DDP asks that we make a list of SMACKDOWN goals, meaning Specific, Measurable, Realistic, and Achievable, then Keep Going! Here are mine for the next year starting January 30, 2023:

  1. I will do the DDPY program and lose 65 pounds of fat (while gaining muscle) in one year.
  2. I will graduate from SNHU with a degree within 1½ years.
  3. I will start and find success with a business within one year. Success means to me that I can replace my disability income and become debt-free and clear. My family will be able to live comfortably on what I earn from this business and not want for anything.

It sounds like I am trying to do too much, but I am operating under the premise that I cannot fail. If I own it and believe that I will not fail, I can do anything.

What I need this year is change, and this is how I plan to do it. It’s drastic, but every good thing I have in my life was due to one drastic decision or another.

There is more to this story so stay tuned and consider purchasing a paid membership, to help support me in my goals and plans.



Jason Weiland

Personal essays and articles from a guy who never tires of writing about his life -