Momentos: February 1st – February 15th, 2018


Reviewing my finances today. $6,448 spent in January. That’s about twice as much as I usually spend in a month. Made me anxious. But then I went through and looked at each expense and couldn’t find anything to regret. All money well spent. Plus, I earned $9,518 in January. So I came out three grand ahead. That’s a damn good month.


Took Gretchen Rubin’s four tendencies quiz and turns out I’m an Obliger.

“Obligers depend on external accountability, with consequences such as deadlines, late fees, or the fear of letting other people down. In fact, Obligers need external accountability even for activities that they want to do.”

Nailed it.


Considering quitting these Momentos. The end of February will mark five years, never missed a day. I like writing and sharing them, along with the photos and videos. It’s a nice way to document my life, and create consistent content for the blog. But I do need to free up some time and energy if I want to achieve bigger goals I’ve set for myself. Might be time to kill this darling.

Breaking our January coffee fast.
Breaking our January coffee fast.


Travel plans shaping up like this for the year: Bulgaria (where we are now) > Moscow > Las Palmas > Spanish road trip > Gran Canaria > Moscow > St. Petersburg > Montenegro > UK/Ireland > Amsterdam > Copenhagen > Faroe Islands > Gran Canaria > Ireland > Gran Canaria > Southeast Asia.


My challenge this month is to keep a journal of all the complaints I make. Already I’ve become aware of two things I complain about regularly: being tired, and not having enough time. And when you really think about it, both those complaints are ridiculous. I can always sleep more on my flexible schedule, and I get the same 24 hours each day as everyone else.


Made my first big coaching proposal today. Didn’t receive a yes, at least not yet, but I came away buzzing nonetheless. She fits my “dream client” criteria, and so it felt great just to be on a call with her, listening, sharing, exploring, brainstorming. I was in my element. That’s the Zone of Genius stuff Hendricks was talking about. I know good things will happen if I keep spending time in there.

The start of another snowboarding day in Bansko, Bulgaria.
The start of another snowboarding day in Bansko, Bulgaria.


Still haven’t committed to a coach of my own. Had the decision made but then jumped on a powerful call this evening and came away with a different perspective. Now I’m on the verge of investing $15,000 for the next six months. It’s a different level, investing that much in growth. And yeah, it feels scary. The good kind of scary.


I read The 4-Hour Workweek ten years ago. I remember telling friends about it back in New Orleans, when I was still a 9-to-5er. That book really was a game-changer for me, got me thinking very differently about life and work. Reading it again now, as a somewhat seasoned veteran of this lifestyle design thing. Let’s see if it holds up.


One year since that fanciful flight to Prague to go see about a girl. It felt different from the start, glad I trusted that hunch and took a chance. We’ve been to nine countries together now, exploring hidden beaches, mountain shrines, big cities and small towns. Ryan Holiday once wrote that the best life hack is finding an amazing life partner. Seems he was right.

Bansko after a night of snowfall.
Bansko after a night of snowfall.


Last day in Bansko. It’s been good. We’ve been here long enough to find a few favorite places, become familiar faces. There’s Baba Vuna downstairs, a family run restaurant serving hearty local food. And the cafe across the road, Vlad there every day whipping up the lattes. Those looks of recognition, those knowing smiles… makes a place feel like home.


Minus five in Moscow as we zip along a snowy highway, cruising between plow trucks, over a white river. I’m not exactly excited to be back in this city, especially at this time of year. But I’ll get to spend more time with herself and can knuckle down and get a good chunk of work done. I’m off to a slow start on a 90-day money game. Time to punch in.


Another coaching call. Spent $600 on this one, for an hour of his time. And it was good, definitely worth the money. I could stick with him and pay the same each month. That would be the safe choice, the comfortable choice. But I don’t believe safe and comfortable will get me where I want to go.

Hello Moscow.

Posted by Niall Doherty on Sunday, February 11, 2018


Heard on a podcast today: scary and dangerous are two different things. Many scary things aren’t dangerous, and many dangerous things aren’t scary. One dangerous thing that isn’t scary is working a ho-hum job. You have to be careful with that. Because if you’re not, you wake up one day and you’re sixty years old and you wonder where your life went.


So I’ve gone ahead and committed to that six months of deep coaching. Sent the first $5,000 payment last night. Noticed before bed that a stress spot had broken out on the rim of my eyelid. Trying to breathe through the anxiety, not get caught up in negative thought patterns, scarcity mindset. Let the good feelings flow. Don’t Upper Limit yourself.


If a penny saved is a penny earned, then I “earned” almost $90 in five minutes today. How? By asking my Airbnb host for a discount. Almost didn’t ask, thinking I might be pushing my luck too far, but then remembered that I’m the same guy who wrote a whole blog post urging people to always negotiate. Actually, shit… I really should have asked for a discount on that $5,000 coaching fee as well.

View from my Airbnb in Moscow.

Posted by Niall Doherty on Friday, February 16, 2018

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  1. Will you still publish something similar to the Momentos if you pack the current format in?

    I find they’re very motivational – proof that you’re still living a day-to-day life like everyone else while being able to do what you do (though obviously that may not be a good enough reason to continue writing them)

  2. Long time follower

    1. Congrats… 10 grand/month is a long way from scrambling to buy a sandwich in Peru 🙂 Would you attribute this to the switch from an ultra mobile to a more semi-permanent lifestyle?
    2. Interesting link, thanks for sharing
    3. Been following your Momentos since 2013 after finding your blog via your Cost-of-living-in-HK vid. They are a pleasure to read, thought-provoking and prompted me to buy one of your books earlier on.

  3. I hope you won’t stop your momentos or at least keep something similar going. You seem to be on the brink of upping your game level by investing into a mentor. Would be awesome to follow your journey. Heck I would even pay for that. Why not releasing it as a Patreon bonus for people who donate $X

  4. Moment is are your own feedback on your life and it’s direction and progress….dont stop!

    As for the $5k on coaching…think about putting your next 5K into a Vanguard low cost Index Fund and adding to it every month….then you will have a VERY tidy old age financially!

  5. Also enjoy the Momentos very much, but I can see how they might get in the way of other goals.

    Hope you find a good solution that gives you the space you need and allows us to continue reading your thoughts 🙂

  6. #3. It’s a tough choice. I’ve been following you since March 2012. You have been very open and sharing for 7 plus years. Your followers are part of your success, but only a small part, your biggest success is learning and growing and it has been inspiring to watch. When you stopped traveling, your momentos were what kept me coming back to see what you were up to. Then you launched 3M1K. I’ve bought your books, guides and courses, mostly just to support you in your adventures. I would be sad if this relationship is ending, but for all your wonderful success in your 7 plus years, financially, you are probably not where you would like to be (like most of us). You will be successful in what ever you attempt. So although the momentos will be missed, you got to do what’s right for you. Support you whatever you decide.

  7. Hi Niall,
    Really liked number five, writing down every time you complain. I am going to adapt this practice. Imagine the change in the World of everyone did this. Holding one’s self accountable!
    Thanks for all you do!!

  8. A nice collection of distilled reflections on everyday life, man – just a pleasure to follow them as always. Hope that you’ll find a good balance between noting down the special moments in your life without letting the writing process take too much of your time.

    Regarding #13: if your podcast app only could handle 3 simultaneous subscriptions, which subscriptions would you choose to keep?

  9. Another Long Time Fan

    I’d love for Momentos to continue. Really enjoy them. It’s a great marketing tool and is the main reason that keeps me (and others I assume) coming back to your site. I read your book as a result and although I haven’t signed up to the 3M1K, I’m happy to receive the marketing emails for this and other products of yours. Alternatively, I’d be happy to pay €1 a month on Patreon. If you did go down that route, you’d have more revenue from Patreon but would you lose some readership and thus sales from 3M1K, coaching, other product etc. Which option is best? Only you know the answer to that one. Best of luck whatever you decide.

  10. Hi Niall, I’m on the email list and I didn’t even know about the Momentos! I quite like them – you make a vivid picture in few words, but it must be time consuming. Wishing you the best. PS complaints about tiredness and lack of time must relate to traveling so much! It’s hard to always be adjusting.

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