What is the Next Level?

Today is day 2 of the Problogger ‘Get back in your blogging groove’ challenge and the challenge is to write a FAQ post, a post that answers a frequently asked question and post it up in 24 hours.

For me, this challenge was hard to find a suitable topic for. I do get a lot of questions from people but it’s rare to get anything relating standard questions just now as I am slowly rebuilding up my audience. Therefore, I have decided to pick the main theme for my blog and to answer the main question most will consider when they read the name of my website … ‘what is the next level?’ and how does one know when they have reached it and how to know when they are a Next Level Guy? So let’s get into it …

Where do I fit into all this?

To understand the concept behind my website, you would need to understand my weirdness and how I felt growing up. To be frank, I doubt I am your standard guy. When I was younger, I never felt like I fitted in, drinking at a pub/bar bored me rigid, football/soccer lost it’s appeal quickly unless I was playing it and with chronic OCD and low-level depression, I was unable to fully apply myself to perform at the level I knew I was capable at and that stopped me playing as I self-sabotaged myself at every turn. Social events became a nightmare as I felt like I was wasting a day and always fantasizing about what I could be doing or how I would have acted in numerous movie scenes and how I would have acted had I been the character.

As time went on, I noticed that if I pretended to be in the movies or video games and took on the profile, mannerisms and characteristics of the various characters, I could accomplish things that my anxiety, depression, and OCD would normally let me bitch out of.

Slowly but surely, things happened. I started small, accomplishing small goals, goals which took serious effort to do. However, as momentum started to build, I looked for bigger and bigger goals and challenges, many of which fell away before me.

Like a video game, I looked at each challenge as a level of life, where you can progress in skill, talent, and enjoyment. To get better, you needed to beat the level boss of fear, nerves, and lack of ambition. I loved that by considering all aspects of your life, regardless of your race, sexual orientation, cultural upbringing etc, all aspects of your life from cooking to fitness, to relationships to career and everything in between could have levels. Each aspect of your life could be made better, level bosses to beat, skills to be upgraded, life to be made better and yet you could always learn more and get better in general regardless of where you were and where you wanted to be. Life threw out so many possibilities for me and you to undertake, all we needed to do was find the next level, defeat the boss and repeat the rewards.

My life rapidly changed as I started to look out at life with this outlook. I became happier. I accomplished more with my days. I tried things I would normally have shyed away from to remain in the ‘normality pack’ of my friends. I put myself out there, I talked about things that interested me that were seen as weird or strange by those more reserved or complying to the ‘lad culture’ lifestyle. My life was changed by this outlook and the thought started to eat away at me … if it helped me, would others be interested in doing this too?

How does this apply to you, as the reader?

Yeah, I know, it’s a lovely story but why should you care? We all have things in our lives that we aren’t happy about.

No matter what you do, you never seem able to get them from your mind. You may work out hard, you may throw yourself into your work, you may even drink to the extreme or take drugs to forget, but they are always there at the end of the day. You can’t escape that feeling that you aren’t happy and want more from life.

I felt this way for years. I tried to be like the rest to fit in, I worked the traditional jobs, dated local girl and got jobs that everyone else did. I never pushed outside of the social norm as like most men, I feared change and the chance of failure if I dared step outside of my comfort zone.

After the death of a grandparent, I was shocked to my core. To see the life of someone that I had grown up with be extinguished was terrifying. It burst me out of the bubble that I had been living in, almost as if death happened to everyone else and not me or my family. The pain of it was deep and it left me in a dark place for a while as I grieved. However, in the darkness, a spark was lit. I decided I wanted more from life and I wanted to stop settling for the things that my comfort zone allowed.

I tried numerous things to get the life that I wanted but I kept failing. No matter what I tried, nothing seemed to take hold and I slipped back to the start again and again. To find the answer I needed, I turned to a trusted friend,  Mr Google. I spent ours searching online to find the answer to help me find and achieve what was missing in my life. The answers however couldn’t be found, no matter how hard I looked.

It was at this time that I had a brain wave. It was like being hit by a thunderbolt of intellect through the cloud of mediocrity. If I was looking for these answers then so must be other guys. The desire to start a website took hold.

Yet what was I going to call this wonder of the digital age. Time passed as I thought long and hard about the name. The focus, I knew already. It was going to be a site that helped me become better in my life in the various aspects but a site that other men could use to help and better their own lives, as pompous as that sounds out loud!

One night the name hit me as I thought about life. I was engaged in a conversation with a friend and she mentioned how people are never happy with what they got. I thought about how modern day man was wired. It seemed that no matter what we achieve or get, we are never satisfied and I remarked that ‘we can never be complete, only reaching the next level’ and the name was locked in.

I bought the domain and the site was born.


So What is the site going to focus on? 

My site is about helping men become the best that they can become, seize the sense of adventure in them that may have become dormant and explore the real them away from social conditioning. This site is about taking you to the Next Level in your life, regardless of the level of your life you are currently at.

The focus of this site is to find out how we can achieve the life that we desire. To silence the nagging cravings we all have for a better existence and to complete the goals that we long to do. I know I am no guru nor will ever pretend to be one. However, I have learned a lot about what doesn’t work and will share my ‘wisdom’. For the rest, I will do what I do best and question those who have the life that I want.

It doesn’t matter where you are in life right now as we can never be complete. You can also improve the situation you find yourself in. We can always get a better job, learn a new skill, find someone to fall in love with, get a better body and so on. There is always another level to reach. You are never complete in any area of your life. That is what makes life so much fun. Opportunities are limitless.

We just need to know the general path to begin on and this site will hopefully show you the way to begin. The destination is up to you.

What it isn’t: This site isn’t a sales catalogue like some magazines have become. There is no £400 pound watches or £300 tshirts like you will find in some magazines and other sites. This site is an educational guide, that provides concrete action steps that will show you how to better any part of your life you want and take your life to the Next Level!

As I slowly lose interest in writing, my focus has shifted towards interviews, which I enjoy the most, when compared to the other styles of posts on the site. I discovered how much I love interviewing experts in the various fields of things I am interested in and asking them the questions I was interested in, I noticed I got the best results and the most views. Therefore, I decided to do what I enjoyed the most and focus on being a podcasting hero and start my own, writing and reviewing as the whim took me. ‘The Next Level Guy Show’ was born and shit got real!

The Next Level Guy Show

Click the image to visit the podcast … it will make you sexier to the opposite sex every time you listen to a NLG podcast and more if you leave a review too!

Apart from this amazing site – What else is there for me to play with?

I have all the usual social media platforms, like all the cool kids have. Here, I throw out links to cool stuff found I find on the web on thousands of different topics and interests. Some of the links might not be suitable for reading at work but all will make you a class guy!

Pick some goals, decide what the next level is in your life and go for it. Start small if you need to but start today.

About Ian


I work full time as an Operational Assistant for a Graduate School at a large Scottish University. I run the administration protocols, resolve queries, assist with events and revamp procedures etc. However all that is the normal stuff.

It’s my spare time where things get so much better! I’m the owner of the Next Level Guy website. I am a blogger and entrepreneur who writes to help men develop and better their lives using examples from popular media.

My personal journey has been marked by awkwardness and awesomeness, OCD and ‘OMG’. I’ve done a lot of stupid things that I write about and help others. At the moment, I’m currently residing in the United Kingdom where I also have been known to help lambs being born.

My Amazon Wishlist is available here

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About the Author
I would modestly describe myself as a Website Badass, Blogging Guru and Self Improvement Wizard! I'm a blogger and entrepreneur who writes to help men develop and better their lives using examples from popular media. My personal journey has been marked by awkwardness and awesomeness, OCD and 'OMG'. I'm 33, a Teuchter and currently resides in the United Kingdom. I've set my own foot on fire whilst reading and been a midwife to sheep! I also run www.iandawsonmackay.com for your website needs!

One comment on “What is the Next Level?

  1. Rosana Hart says:

    Enjoyed your post and the theme of your site. Weirdness makes for more interesting life! In my family, “normal” was said with a slight sneer, as in “Well, he’s very nice but he’s quite normal.”

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