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Uncommon Wisdom: Ivan Neychev

“Uncommon Wisdom” is about sharing those habits or stories that we wouldn’t normally think to share. There’s so much talk about morning routines and self-care practices these days but a lot of it can seem kind of superficial or maybe just predictable and repetitive.

This is why we asked a bunch of high-performing creatives and entrepreneurs a few questions about awareness, energy, and productivity. We wanted to learn something a bit more unexpected, and here’s what we found out.

Who is Ivan Neychev?

My entire life I’ve been interested in strategy and tactics. Naturally I became a professional poker player from 2014 until 2021. In early 2021 I started trading crypto, more specifically NFTs and never looked back. I’m married to a wonderful woman and I’m a proud father of 2 boys. I’ve been living around the world for most of my life and currently reside in my beautiful country Bulgaria.
Ivan Neychev

#1. What's something unexpected or uncommon that made you more aware?

I wouldn’t say it’s that uncommon, although back then such practices were not that popular, but in 2012 I hired my first life coach from the Tony Robbins Foundation and he coached me for 1 year. This is what started my journey towards self-improvement and more awareness. Since then, I’ve read countless books on the topic while trying to apply into my own life some of the concepts I’ve learned and those that have made sense to me.

#2. What's something unexpected or uncommon that gives you energy?

Without a doubt – my dark side. I do have daily routines that boost my energy short-term, however over the past few years I’ve discovered what gives me true energy and drive, or as I call it, a reboot to my system is my dark side.

I believe most people have a dark side and constantly try to suppress it. It’s something I’ve been suppressing for a long time, but lately I’ve been trying to embrace and release it instead. To use it to my advantage. In my case this is going out and getting wasted. Every now and then I just need to go out with my friends or my wife and have a crazy night out. Party all night, restart on the next day, and then back to grinding hard!

#3. What's something unexpected or uncommon that makes you more productive?

If someone looks at me from the outside, they will most likely think I am the most unproductive person they’ve seen. Honestly they will probably be right.

The thing is throughout most of my adult life I’ve been working alone and focusing solely on one thing while ignoring everything else. It’s not the healthiest approach for sure, but it delivers results. My productiveness comes from my beliefs and determination to get things done. No calendar, no organizing tools, no nothing. Lately I’ve been operating in teams and I’ve noticed how inefficient this approach is in such environments, so I am trying to adjust and improve my productivity skills.
Ivan Neychev

#4. What does your morning ritual look like?

My morning routine is a constant work in progress. It has been evolving overtime since 2012.

Currently I aim to wake up between 5-6 am. The first thing I do is I drink a full glass of water, then take a cold shower to awake my cellular nervous system. Afterwards I do quick breathwork or stretching exercises or both if I have the time. Following that, I do some of the these mental practices – visualization, focusing on my breathing, meditation or gratitude. I don’t do all of them, it’s necessity-driven. Finally I try to center my thoughts in the right direction through a series of questions I ask myself. Most days I also try to add some kind of physical training to my routine and a healthy breakfast at the end.

#5. What does your evening ritual look like?

This is where I struggle. I know how important an evening routine is, but I constantly fail it.

My last version looks like this: before going to bed I take a hot shower to relax my nervous system. Cutting food approximately 5 hours before bed is also crucial for me. Staying away from all screens at least 1 hour before bed as well. Lately I’ve also been trying to journal and focus on reviewing my goals and answering a couple of questions. Stretching or yoga has also been a part of my routine. Spending some time with my wife and kids is another way of winding down.
Ivan Neychev

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