Write every day
September 13, 2021
I've been reading "Overlap" by Sean McCabe. I can't believe he wrote this book in 2 weeks! He touches on so many topics that I need to think about now. For example, getting on the same page as your spouse is not talked about enough in the Indie hacking realm. Making money with spare time is tough!
I know working on finances as a unit is also important. We have been putting it off for quite some time. I often feel that my way is the best way. Getting past that mindset is difficult for me, but I need to realize that Hannah's opinion about finances is valid even if it doesn't align with my opinion.
I digress, learning to focus is the other topic that Sean touches on (so far) that I need to learn. Distraction and interruption have plagued my work for a long time. It's not intuitive that it takes 23 minutes to recover from an interruption and to get back into a state of flow.
This flow state is the holy grail of intellectual work. If I can master getting into a state of flow for multiple blocks of time in a day, I will be able to get so much work done and perhaps change our lives by creating something of value outside of work as well.
But going to bed early, to get up early, to practice writing or programming or music or [insert action here] isn't what most people do. How can I create this habit? When you are full of motivation, it's easy to doing something new and difficult right away. However, motivation fades. If the small actions that trigger the difficult part haven't been ingrained, you will lose traction.
That's why countless people say to start small. Increase the measure of success gradually over time. Move the bar as you improve. Start with going to bed earlier. Then move to getting up earlier. Then finally set the standard to the activity: write 1000 words every morning, implement a new challenge with software, or run 5 miles.
This isn't easy, but that's why so few people do it. And unfortunately, if you do improve yourself in this way, many people will be uncomfortable by your grit and drive. They'll try to pull you down and bring you back to their average level.
Don't let what others think determine your future. Getting out of the loop and breaking the cycle of mediocrity doesn't happen by chance. You have to deliberately work toward your goals or they won't happen.
I've been experiencing this for some time. Lifestyle creep happens without a second thought. If we had found a way to live of off a Gentex salary, we would be able to save a lot of money. But once I got a raise by working for Meijer, it was hard to stay living on less when the bank account had so much money coming in.
Now that I've gotten another raise, I'm determined to cap that lifestyle creep and save. Thankfully Hannah is on board with our plan (AFAIK) so we'll be able to move toward our goal of buying a house one day. We are also planning to send our kids to Christian School so that will be a factor. I'm thankful that it seems quite doable given our current circumstances.
Once I improve myself and start adding value to other's lives consistently, I'll also bring in more income through independent endeavors. This will drastically decrease the time to reach our financial goals.
Right now it feels hard to write so much. My mind starts to run out of things to say. The only way to improve is to work on it consistently though. Deliberate practice is going to systematically bring me to the next level.
Since writing is touted as a necessary skill for most areas of technical work and business creation, I don't view it as optional to learn. Communicating through the written word is paramount to my success as a solo founder or information product creator.
That's a bit scary for me. I've never considered myself to be a great writer. My natural writing tone is very academic at this point so I've been inconsistently working to shift toward a personable, informal tone. I think it's working! But I'm not there yet and it hasn't become second nature yet.
It likely hasn't helped that I haven't been writing regularly. My blog is stagnant. That will change! My struggles with posting regularly stem from my lack of polish in my writing, paired with my inconsistent topic choice.
This writing I'm doing this morning is purely personal and hardly adds value to anyone else's life. It's not centered on a topic. It's just a free writing session. That's what most of my significant writing sessions look like right now.
When I try to write about a specific topic, my writing style becomes academic again and I get bored of writing about it 😛
My hope is that as I write more, my ability to process these thoughts will go up and I'll be able to produce content worthy of publishing.
The only way I'll find out is if I show up consistently and PLAN WHAT I'LL WRITE AHEAD OF TIME.
Simply put, there's no reason I can't get better at this. Countless examples exist of people working toward a goal consistently and finding success one way or another. Their efforts may not result in the exact benefit they planned, but there isn't any doubt in my mind that putting in this kind of effort will reap rewards in some capacity.
Before I wrap up this morning, I want to talk about another idea Sean wrote on. That's the concept of accountability.
I had never considered the various layers of accountability. He mentions 3:
Having all 3 creates the strongest sense of commitment and accountability. I've heard of them all, but didn't put them all together before. He says that putting all of them together is the strongest form of accountability, and I think he's right.
The hard part is actually committing to all 3 and having a goal that's worth that kind of commitment. Reflection has an important role to play in any endeavor, but especially so at that scale.
That's all for this morning, I'll be back tomorrow 🙌