How to Use Self-Experimentation to Change Your Life

by The Relationship Guy
October 21, 2016

Reading Time: minutes remaining

Tim Ferris is known for what is called “self-experimentation.” It’s a concept that could you change your life in the most interesting of ways, which is what this post is all about.

Nothing changes, until you change. Everything changes, once you change. 

Julian Lennon

The reality is, it can be difficult to change your life.

Uncertainty and fear of potential failure in the back of people’s minds, tend to wreak havoc on many efforts to change.

So consequently, people just avoid changing at all.

Staying the same might be difficult, but the pain of uncertainty tends to be even more unbearable.

But what if you could view your life as a science experiment of sorts?

What if you really COULD change your life in a way that was less “threatening?”

You wouldn’t take the results personally.

You’d just be a scientist observing the outcome.

You could then judge the results and plan your next step.

Well, it’s possible and I will show you how you can change your life in this way.

In this week’s post, we are looking at how to use self-experimentation to change your life.

The idea of self-experimentation has several benefits

One of the most obvious benefits is it removes the possibility of failure.

You’re not testing yourself.

You’re testing the effectiveness of an idea or theory, possibly even someone else’s.

Your ego is safe. No harm, no foul. You’re good.

You’re also actively attempting to change your life.

You have a goal and a plan to achieve it, and you’re taking action.

At the end of the day, you get to judge the results and then seek to find an even better way if the first time didn’t yield the results you thought it would.

Honestly, what could be more effective than that?

Experiment in your life and enjoy the process of discovery

Imagine for a moment what your life could be like if you approached it with more enthusiasm and curiosity.

Instead of beating yourself up for poor results on your part OR believing you’re destined for mediocrity for the rest of your life, imagine seeing life as one big opportunity to see what you can create with it.

What if you truly could not fail what would you do?

What would you attempt?

What opportunities would you go after?

In fact, think about this for a moment – what is the worst that could happen if you actually believed and acted on this?

I’m guessing worst-case scenario, you’d have much more interesting days than right now.

So, here’s a couple of suggestions you can put to work in your life right away.

Choose a theory or two that you’d like to test.

There’s plenty of self-help advice to be found.

Find an interesting theory and test it.

Or test a money-making program.

Or put the program of an Online marketer to the test.

Find something that interests you and has the potential to impact your life in a positive way, and give it a try.

Other ideas include diets, workout programs, changing sleep patterns, dropping bad habits or adding a new habit, meditating, fasting, or anything else you can think of.

You can use someone else’s plan or develop your own to change your life.

It doesn’t really matter, just choose something and run with it.

As long as you stay in the mindset of an experimenter, you cannot fail.

You’re simply testing an idea or theory.

If it yields results, great.

If not, you change something until it does.

So ask yourself,

What interests you the most?

Learn what you need to know.

Now it’s time to get the necessary materials and map out your plan.

It’s great having a focus, but you still need to prepare.

Consider the reasons why you think the program will work.

Also, consider why it might not work.

For example, imagine that you want to see what will happen if you limit yourself to 100g of carbohydrates per day.

You decide to:

  • Track your carbohydrates, body weight, blood pressure, mood, and waistline.
  • You’ll stick with the diet for four weeks and take measurements before you begin and after each completed week.
  • You believe that you’ll be hungry at first and tired. You expect those symptoms will disappear after the first week.
  • You expect to lose 3 pounds per week and lose inches off your waist.

Put your hypothesis to the test.

Next, perform the experiment on yourself.

Follow your plan and see what happens. Find out if you were right or wrong in your predictions.

Keep track of your results for analysis later.

Evaluate your data and formulate a conclusion.

What did you learn?

Could you tweak the process to improve it?

Or was it a horrible idea that deserves no further investigation?

What was good about it?

What was a challenge?

How could you have prepared yourself better?

Where were your “sticky points” (where, when and how you tripped up)?

Did you need support?

How would you do it differently next time?

Consider the next step.

Once you’ve completed the experiment and gathered the necessary data, you have to consider what do you want to do next?

Do you want to continue down the same path or choose a completely different topic?

Do you have a hard time making changes in your life?

Try viewing aspects of your life through the eyes of a scientist.

Create a theory and test it:

  • Will asking out 10 beautiful women each week guarantee a date every Saturday night? Who knows? Put it to the test and find out.
  • Can you do one additional pushup each day until you’ve reached 100 pushups? Find out.
  • Will wearing a suit to work result in receiving more respect? Wear one every day for a month and see.

There’s no reason to guess.

You have yourself to experiment upon.

You can find out definitively what does and doesn’t work for you.

Imagine all the incredible changes you could make after a couple of years of living this way!

The only question now is –what will you try first?

Until next time.

About the author 

The Relationship Guy

Gideon Hanekom is the founder of, a top-50 relationship blog (2021) and top-100 marriage blog (2021) which focuses on providing healthy relationship advice about love and life. He earned a Master's degree in theological studies before training as a professional counsellor almost 10 years ago. He also completed graduate studies in Psychology and is currently pursuing postgraduate Psychology studies at Massey University. He has been married to his wife for over seventeen years and is the dad of two children. His articles have been published on and The Good Men Project.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

more Related posts