My Journey In Self-Improvement As A Teenager

Felix Tikkanen
4 min readMar 12, 2022

During journaling today I asked myself “How did all of this start? How did I get into self-improvement?”

Photo by Victor Freitas on Unsplash

So here I am writing this article about it, in the hope to structure my thoughts on it. So that when someone asks me that question, I can refer them to this post :))

My journey — brief overview

2020 March, covid pandemic hit Belgium.

Schools closed on Monday 16th of march. I remember my happiness so vividly. I had all the time to game and do whatever I liked without any schedule. Back then, I thought I’m more productive without a strict schedule. Hah funny I know right.

So what happened? I worked for school a couple of hours a day and gamed the rest, living the dream. I ate multiple bags of Doritos a day. Why? Because I could, and my excuse was it helped me with stress. What stress? Don’t ask me, I don’t even know.

Photo by Axville on Unsplash

After a couple of weeks, I felt like complete shit. Was this the pinnacle of life? Sitting in front of my computer screen gaming, fapping, eating like shit? Nope. I wanted more, I wanted to achieve something great, and the only thing I was achieving at that moment was cranking 90’s faster than my friends on Fortnite.

During all that, I saw a video of Gary V saying that if you are not working on your side business right now, you would’ve never done it. You have no excuses whatsoever to do it right now. You have all the time. And he was right. I started to learn how to code and made a lot of cool small projects. Yep, a 30s Gary V clip saved me from a life full of degeneracy.

I even started reading a little bit. A good friend of mine bought me books to read that would’ve helped my self-improvement if I implemented the advice, which I didn’t.

Photo by Mikołaj on Unsplash

My self-improvement kind of ended there for that year. But it was the first step I needed to take.

2021 September, I joined The Knowledge Society.

TKS was the catalyst I needed. I applied for the program since I plateaued on everything; I stopped coding and I stopped reading. TKS teaches all kinds of cool tech stuff like AI & Blockchain, which I wanted to learn. So I applied, and to my surprise, I got accepted.

That year they had an acceptance rate of 10%. So that was a big accomplishment for me already. Something I didn’t know about TKS was that it doesn’t just teach us cool tech stuff.

Mindsets are an integral part of TKS. I learned about stoicism, self-discipline, done>perfect, anti-fragility, etc. I have a section about mindsets on my monthly newsletter, check it out here.

Without realising TKS made me change all my habits, I started waking up at 5.30 am to be more productive. Why? I saw all these students achieving cool shit that I wanted to achieve too.

My stupid competitive self couldn’t handle that so I started writing these articles, made cool ass projects, posted all that on LinkedIn where I met and talked to cool people.

On top of that, I joined velocity, an opt-in TKS program where they push you even further. I suddenly started eating more healthy, quit porn, went to the gym, read every day, did meditation & journaling, listened to educational podcasts, etc.

Side note, TKS doesn’t even advocate all of the things mentioned above, some are mandatory yes but others are just me realising what I can become if I put in the effort now.

The realisation I made was that I have two options in life:

  1. I enjoy my earlier years and suffer later since I miss all the fundamentals to become successful, which is my ultimate goal.
  2. I put in the work now and ‘sacrifice’ my earlier years and enjoy later when I’m a successful adult.

Then it’s a matter of choosing what kind of level of enjoyment I want.

saDo I want the immediate not that special one? Since, as a 20yo you’re still broke and can’t afford the nice things in life.

Or a delayed and a very special one, since I know if I put in the work now, I’ll become successful later. Might sound cocky and naive, I know. Don't care :))

I chose the latter at that moment, and every single day since then. And you should too.

To be 100% honest with you, I’m the happiest I’ve ever been right now.

Contact me via my website if you want to know anything more in detail.

Wanna see what kind of work I did alongside the United Nations? Subscribe to my monthly newsletter here :)



Felix Tikkanen

Just trying to become the best. I write about blockchain/crypto and self-improvement.