Illustrating a kids book on my phone

I had a breakthrough last night which was awesome, while doing the sketches for my kids book. I’ve come up with a style which I’m finally happy with. It it’s starts with me doing a pencil sketch on paper, then using an app on my phone I can cut that out. I then take that sketch and put it into the adobe draw app on my phone where I can paint it out and make the paint transparent. The great thing about that is I can adjust the transparency to see some of the scratchiness of the artwork in the sketch, which I think is providing a really cool effect. I’m really happy with the look and I think I’ll be able to now continue on finally illustrating my kids books.

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How much time does ‘Document, Don’t Create’ actually take Gary Vaynerchuk?

There is one last way you can create time that I’m overlooking. You can stop sleeping. However I would only recommend this if you want to become the worst version of yourself, You’ll be grumpy, forgetful, stupid and worst of all tired. So I’m thinking the situation is hopeless. But then I got to thinking. What creative work am I doing with my available time? And is it the best use of my time? Does what I’m doing now have the potential to earn me some money to allow me to buy more time, so I can then do more creative work? My creative work that I’ve decided is going to be a series of kids books hit a roadblock. The problem was there was no time, and there was no time because of an idea, a concept from Gary Vaynerchuk that I got confused. He said ‘document don’t create’ and that meant I literally didn’t create anything. I spent all my time documenting my documentation process.

You have time to create… just not much

I’ve been flip flopping all over the place. With the birth of my second daughter. I’ve been taking some time to access this whole career pivot experiment thing, And why it isn’t working.
Why isn’t it working? I could get down on myself and say I’m full of it, but that would go against my whole positive mindset thing. I could say I don’t have time, which is garbage. Everyone in the world has the same 24hrs in the day. That’s the argument. My only issue with that statement is that only some people can afford to outsource, their laundry, their house cleaning, their cooking. When you’re broke, your not gonna outsource your laundry. To give you some extra time so you can work on that creative project that may bring you in some cash in six months or a year or maybe never.
You can only create more time if you have the money. There are some painful alternatives though, I’ve stopped watching TV, playing video games (actually never did – so probably can’t count that) and scrolling social media to give me those extra minutes.

You are the average of the 5 people you hang out with on Instagram live

I listen to so many self help podcasts and hopefully if I listen to enough of them, some of it might sink in. What a lot of them say is ‘you are the sum of the five people you hang around’. You basically got to hang around positive people in the field that you’re in, support them and support yourself and cut out all that negative stuff. So I was thinking, I know all these great people since starting the vlog through YouTube and Instagram. And I thought about them being from different parts of the world, soI thought why not jump on ‘Live’ and invite 5 people on Twitter to see if they are available and have a chat with some positive like minded creative people.

My self published kids book project

Recently I have been uploading some drawings from the kids book and I’m trying to keep a bit of continuity with the amount of work I’m spending on the illustrations as opposed to the work I’m doing on the vlogcast. I’ve set it up so I’m tiling it out on Instagram, one vlog, one drawing, one vlog, one drawing. So it’s got a nice checkerboard effect and to make sure that I’m not spending too much time on the vlog and not enough time on the book and visa-versa. The big thing now is I need to come up with my story. I do have the idea for the story, it’s just a matter of fleshing it out and making it great. Perfection as procrastination is definitely a factor. I don’t mind cranking out videos and illustrations but I’m a bit more of a perfectionist when it comes to the story.

A little taste of what a successful career could be like

I’m at the library because… I’m coming here for some peace and quiet to start with, but I’m doing job applications… that’s right, that’s my career pivot experiment, I’m doing job applications. As I said before, my wife is on maternity leave now and I need to go and make some money. I’m looking for jobs that are going to help me get me to where I want to go. Marketing stuff, social media marketing stuff because I think that’d be a great benefit to what I’m doing, I think I could learn a lot. I did some shooting last weekend which was awesome. Getting paid to shoot with a mate doing a short film, I don’t think it gets any better than that. Unfortunately that was only three days work, so now reality has kicked in. That was my taste of what a successful career could be like.

I still shoot videos

There is nothing better than doing work you love with friends and getting paid for it. That’s exactly what I’ve been up to this weekend shooting a short film. And you know I was so close to sabotaging this whole thing. Because I was unsure I’d be cool with using a pro-camera 15 years since the last time I used one. Last time I shot it was on miniDV tape and now it’s all SD cards. But after a slow start it all came back and I’m so glad that I stepped outside my comfort zone on this one. And hopefully in the next month I hope to upload it to my channel. I’d love to add similar projects as well, to potentially get me more work shooting because I find it great fun.

Do I still shoot videos?

That’s the way it is when you are doing creative work. One day it’s there, and the other day it’s not. There’s basically no more work for me to do. But then I get a Facebook message from an actor friend of mine who I haven’t had any contact with in 10-15 years. Yeah I know I’m a shit friend. And he asked me if I still shoot videos? Now essentially I do, I shoot them everyday on my phone. But I get a hint of where this is going and I tell him straight that I haven’t shot on a professional video camera for about 10-15 years… and I might be a little rusty. He’s fine with that and wants to pay me to shoot a short film this weekend.

Exciting News… things are gonna be different

Plan for your plans not to go as planned and you’ll never be disappointed. As I mentioned this week I received my first pay-check for video editing work. I’ve been working one day a week because I’m still essentially a stay at home dad. But my stay at home dad role/position is gonna flip back to working dad because my wife just started maternity leave. Yes we are gonna have another baby which is extremly exciting. So a new season of my life is gonna start in about 7 weeks. Now back to my plan. I was gonna go from 1 day a week video editing up to 3. But that’s when I got news the video editing work has just hit a lean patch. Basically there’s no more work for me to do.

When do you know you’ve found your drawing style?

As well as research potentially being a massive procrastination tool, another one which is potentially leading me down the path of Procrastination is finding my style. Now I’ve been trying to do drawings as often as I can, hopefully every day, in an attempt to get faster at it, to get better at it, and also to find my style. The question is then when do you decide you’ve found your style? Because this kind of thing… you could be finding your style your whole life. So I think you need to develop it to a point where it’s good for your current project then you can move on. Then if you want to advance your style more then do it for your next project. I think I need to ask myself every step of the way, is what I’m doing now moving me closer towards my goals.

Is it Research or Procrastination?

I never would have imagined I could get paid to be video editor but here I am, helping create stories with vision and sound. I certainly love the process of telling stories and working out the best ways to put together the pieces of the puzzle in the edit room to best do this. I’ve also been researching for my kids book, yes it’s finally under way. I’m researching because there’s certain information I need to get right. But I suppose the key there is to put a limit on that, because I can easily see research blowing out timewise and becoming yet another procrastination tool.

Success is a mind game… and hard work

I’m addressing my anxiety now and hopefully I can find my way through. But when so many self helpers say success is a mind game I believe they are 100% right, you’ve obviously also gotta put in the work. But if your head is not right you are not going to succeed. Because every time you get to a place where you think you are getting ahead and you start to succeed you’ll always find a way to smash it down. Because somewhere in my subconscious my instincts are telling me I need to be struggling. Because that’s what I’ve set myself up for, that’s what I’m familiar with and as a creature of habit. I’d weirdly like to stay with what I’m comfortable with, even if that does mean struggling. But you know things have improved. I just got my first pay-cheque six months since my career pivot, and I’m getting paid as a video editor.

The Self Sabotaging Cycle

You may have wondered where I’ve been recently. Because In the last two weeks I’ve only created a weeks worth of content. I suppose that’s what happens sometimes when you lay your values out as health, family and career. I’ve had to see a doctor and set up a mental health program. Because my anxiety has been coming back with a vengeance. And for those who don’t know, stress and anxiety can present itself in many different ways. And recently for me I’ve spent about the last four weeks feeling like someone’s giving me a bear hug or sitting on my chest, while at the same time squeezing their hands around my throat. And I figure It’s all part of this self sabotaging cycle that I need to try and break through. So if this is what’s happening, I must be doing something right.

Breaking through the starving artist mindset

After all this, what am I doing? and why am I doing it? and who is it for? So I suppose this whole vlogcast thing is for me and people like me. Creative people, people with creative urges who have been stuck in the mindset of the struggling artist and have just been getting by as the clock of life keeps ticking. I suppose after reading books like ‘real artists don’t starve’ and being inspired by the boom of creative inspiration podcasts available these days. Something in me clicked and I’ve decided, if I’m going to make my creative work work there has never been a better time than now, especially with all the technology, tools and platforms, we have available to us in our phones. I don’t know how to succeed, but I’m determined to find a way, and I’m documenting it in the hope that others might decide to give there creative talents another shot as well.

Find ways of making work and life coexist

So my creative work comes in third on my priorities list. Some people might call that a losing plan, but for me if I don’t have my health or my loved ones, then I’ve lost as well. So with these values and priorities in place – health, family, work. And as a stay at home parent, which I’m claiming as a full time job, my goal while I’m creating is to find ways of making work and life coexist. I feel that’s the best you could ask for, because I think work life balance is actually garbage. I don’t think i’ll ever truly stop doing the work I love or look forward to holidays away from it. I think that’s what happens when you find work you are passionate about and you work for yourself. Take out the balance part and call it life’s work instead… maybe. Your life is your work, and not the other way around.

Finding time for my priorities

Where time restrictions and values intersect is a massive thing for me. There’s are a few ways of looking at time. Most common is not being bothered doing any extra stuff on top of what you are doing already. You are working your day job, you come home tired and that’s it, there’s no room for a side hustle. One the flip side many entrepreneur’s claim the comment ‘I don’t have time’ as complete garbage. And that you just aren’t managing your time and delegating effectively. Both viewpoints I don’t entirely agree with because when I’m working in line with my values and priorities things get a bit stuck. My priority one – Health, if I’m not healthy I’m no use to anyone. Priority two – Family, I wanna work towards being with my family more. And as a stay at home dad that doesn’t mean sitting my daughter in front of the tv for 8hrs while I get some serious work done. I want to be a present parent…. I don’t wanna become a slave to my dream job. I want my creative work to compliment my life not be my life.

Creating content with your iphone

One of the big things that seemed to surface when I was figuring out my why. Is that I love doing things differently to the mainstream. I’m really inspired by ‘indie’ artists in all fields that haven’t waited for that big breakthrough or deal to come to create their work they’ve just gone out and done it. Recorded a feature film on their phone, recorded an album in their kitchen basically created work with massive restrictions. Because I’ve noticed I get more creative when I have restrictions. It’s crazy, but I think if I was given an unlimited budget for a project it’d suck. So my plan for my first year at least or until I start earning a living from creating, is I’m going to do everything on my phone, my podcast, a book, a vlog and blog all on my iPhone.

Playing the comparison game

I’m having to be out of the house today. My wife, she works nightshift, she’s at home trying to sleep. So I’m out with my daughter doing stuff, so she can sleep. We’re going to the library to get some books swapped over, kids books, so a good bit of research there. I’m driving around to the playground and doing all those kind of things, out and about, out of the house, which is great, it’s fun. It’s not really progressing things forward tho. So what am I actually doing? And what are the big road blocks which have been stopping me from getting anything done? I think the biggest issue is that I don’t really consider myself an illustrator or a writer but that’s what I love doing and the problem is, is that you play the comparison game. You look at people who are amazing illustrators, amazing writers and you think well I can’t do that. When it comes to music there are certain musicians that I love with singers that aren’t great singers. But what they do is, they bring their own unique style to it and they do it with passion and that is what comes through, not the technical brilliance of what they’re doing. I’m using that to try and get me out of this rut and actually get me drawing and writing every day because that’s the only way I’m gonna get better.

Getting clear about my ‘Why’

I guess what my ‘Why’ is, is I wanna help creators like me, and I wanna help me too, in the true definition of self-help I gotta get myself ‘Unstuck’, to get out there and start creating and telling stories and getting paid for it, yes paid for it, earn a living that’s my dream. Because ‘The gatekeepers’ the publishers, producers and studios no longer have the power. We can create whatever we want right now just with our phones. Which is really scary because the excuses don’t exist anymore. And that means only thing stopping me, is me.

It’s time to start doing stuff

This week I’m attempting to get clear on what it is that I’m actually trying to do and get started. I had a few days off the vlogging hamster wheel to ponder, and dangerously that’s when the voice of that lazy couch potato located somewhere in the dark recess of my brain is at its strongest. Offering continual excuses as to why I should give up. The kids book I’m actually starting today, progress is probably gonna be slow and it could be complete shit, but at least I will have done it, and in the case of a shit that’s a good thing.

Clarity on my purpose and story

Comments and community are incredible, especially when you have someone like Marilyn McNeal involved. She’s highlighted something to me that I’d subconsciously known but hadn’t acted on because it wasn’t obvious to me, because I was too close to this whole Fork In The Road project. Marilyn wrote ‘So far the story is about the value documenting your story.’ (All good so far) She then says ‘Each post is like a repeated ad for the real story that never comes’ – It’s so true, there’s no story because I feel like there is no story, so I need to address that. Then she says ‘Could you make a 2-3 minute video about something that matters to you and why. I feel like you still haven’t started to share your why.’ I’m totally gonna do that, in fact I’ll devote my week to getting clear, getting some clarity on what it is that I’m exactly trying to do here not just for you guys but for me too.

Finding your story in the everyday – Documenting Your Journey

I want to document my journey, I want to create a story, a brand story. The only problem is that what I’m doing is not very interesting. The fact of the matter is, I’m not really doing any of my work at all. I’m not doing illustrating work at the moment because I’m putting a skylight in my daughters bedroom, and how does that relate? how does it? how can you incorporate that into documenting your journey? Well I’ve been listening to some podcasts and I’ve been thinking about that concept of Tim Ferriss’ where he talks about the four hour work week and he focuses on only doing what your great at, only doing what you love and giving the annoying jobs to somebody else. The thing is that if you’re doing what you love you’ll be better at it. If I gave this job to someone that was good at it, they might love it and we’d both get more done quickly. Even if we are working dollar for dollar – me working on what I like, them working on what they like, we’re both winning. It’s just a matter of finding that fine balance where I actually earn some money and can ask the question, am I better off earning some money so I can pay someone to do the stuff that I don’t want to do and outsource it? Do what you want, do what you love. So that’s an idea of how you can incorporate the story into a seemingly boring day doing menial tasks.

Provide value by telling your story

Essentially a good story is one that you can relate to, the ups and the downs. But that becomes a great story when you can project yourself into the protagonist shoes and be taken along for the journey. But no one wants to just see a hero that does great things, because that’s pretty boring, I wanna know how they did it, because then maybe I can do it to. So I’m thinking instead of a Neo in the documenting your journey story you need to be the Morpheus (the guide character), to get back to that matrix example. Because if your invested in the story you wanna get something out of it, you wanna be receiving value of some kind like instantaneously learning how to do Kung fu or self publish your own book. So it’s not just the story, it’s also about what value can I provide others by telling my story.

Struggling is part of the journey

The great thing about documenting your journey – and I know I’m always banging on about documenting your journey – is that you are storytelling your brand, you’re creating your story in real time. And if you’re being authentic you will be drawing people into that story and not only like I was saying about making your ‘Why’ and your values and all those things well known. I think it’s also important that you put your struggles and difficulties out there front and centre because I don’t tend to believe people that project this perfect life like we mostly see on Instagram, there is no difficulty’s, there’s never a problem. I find that quite hard to believe but if you’re willing to share some of your difficulties, other people will have been having those as well and that way you become more relatable and your story will draw more people in.

Be authentic about your personal brand story

You need to have your story come through in all the personal brand content you do. Much like your ‘Why’ and your values. And just to be clear, when I’m talking about creating and structuring your story I don’t mean making things up or adding explosions and orcs for spectacle. The storytelling approach is to make you quickly relatable by telling your true story and deciding what story structure helps get your message across as simply as possible. But the most important thing is as Fred Blumenberg would say is to ‘be authentic’… I’ll link to his awesome ‘Be Authentic Zone’ podcast below.. It’s totally ridiculous ‘Being authentic’ its something I seriously wasn’t doing on my travelling cinema business. I’d pretend to be some large successful business with a whole crew at my disposal. I’d respond to emails saying ‘we’ll get back to you’ or ‘we’d be delighted’, when it was just me!

Create a blockbuster brand story

All stories can be distilled back to a few common types. There’s the Hero’s journey, the quest, the reluctant hero to name a few. All of these common types of story structure you’ll find in movies and books and if you look at your personal brand story from a distance you might find yourself aligning with some of these. Then you can use that structure to build your synopsis – the blurb on the back of the book or the DVD (not that they really exist anymore). When people see your personal brand they need to know your story in an instant. Because when people see your personal brand these days, they really need to know your story in an instant Because they’re scrolling a million miles an hour and they don’t know who you are, they don’t know what you’re doing, they don’t know what the story is.

Storytelling your brand to build community

Storytelling your brand to build community
#ForkInTheRoad Vlog 165
The great thing about brand is that it’s a story, where as niche is a thing. You can niche down on a thing, and pinpoint your market and you can attract people who are gonna be interested in that thing. But with brand you don’t have to niche down, because as an individual your already pretty niched down. In fact older you get the more niched down you become, I recon. The only problem is the only person who cares about that niche is you. And the only way that you can attract your community is by making them care, and the only way that they are gonna care is by sharing your story, your goals and your mission. Because by telling your story you instantly become relatable. Still the majority of people still won’t care, but the world is still a very big place and you can contact most of its inhabitants in an instant. And those people who have connected and invested with your story in some way will care about what happens and will be interested. Even if they don’t buy what your selling they’ll still may support you by telling others and sharing your story.

Criticism of your personal brand

So how do you know when you’re doing your personal brand right? I i don’t really know, but I do know one thing is that you obviously can’t keep everyone happy. And if everyone is liking everything that you do, all the posts that you do, then I think you obviously might be doing something wrong. I Finally made it on YouTube and I didn’t get monetisation. No I didn’t get 1000 subscribers, but what I did get is a double dislike on my videos. So I think your dislikes should be as equally celebrated as your likes on YouTube. Because somebody has taken the time to watch your videos and actually leave you a response. But what would be next level, rather than just a thumbs up or thumbs down is an actual comment whether your disliking what I’m talking about or liking and then we can discuss it and talk about it and take it further. Because you know, I don’t necessarily know what I’m talking about I’m just saying what I’m thinking about out loud.

What is a personal brand?

Up until recently if you’d asked me what brand was I would’ve thought It’s all your logos and the style of your business and It kinda Is I suppose. But something that I heard recently, something quite interesting which was ‘brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room’ and I thought that’s a really cool idea. Because it’s basically what do you deliver or provide for people. So I suppose, to do that you need to have your values pretty firmly in place and your ‘Why’ firmly in place when you’re putting yourself out there to the world. Because that will hopefully come through when people are talking about you behind your back and that will then become your brand.

I chose not to choose niche, I chose something else

So if your an artist, creator or lone entrepreneur of some kind I think the personal brand approach is the best way to go, over just niche. Unless you can do both and promote your niche product, service or whatever you are offering at the same time. But if time is a limiting factor, like it is for me I’d suggest building your personal brand and doing that by documenting your journey. It’s a more long term approach, it’s the slower road to niche I think – unless you happen to be famous. But the upside is that it’ll allow you to pivot to whatever you want over your career. You might lose some of your community during the pivots in your career, but you won’t lose everyone. Some people will be interested in what you do no matter what, these are your true fans as Kevin Kelly the creator of the 1000 true fans idea calls them. And i recon you’ve got more chance building true fans with a personal brand, because you are a living breathing person, you are not your product.

Can personal brand be a niche?

If I’m the mobile cinema guy, or I was the mobile cinema guy, I just couldn’t all of a sudden turn around and start making crocheted cat nappies for inner-city felines living in apartments and expect a market straight off the bat. But if I already built a community with my personal brand, there’s no reason why I couldn’t do both. Because you are the brand, your personality, your humour, your values, your attention to detail, your ‘why’ ooze through everything that you do. And if you are being you, if you’re being authentic, your niche is your personality plus you’re interests combined with your values and your ‘why’, everything combined… There’s no one else with that, that is you, you are specific, you are your niche.

Niche or a personal brand?

Niche, nitch or whatever you wanna call it, should I have it over having a personal brand? or should I have both? I kinda had this dilemma kicking around in my head for a very long time before I even started to document my journey. I had all these ideas, or niches, in my head of the things that I could pivot towards but I wasn’t certain that I wanted to commit to any of them. And as all the social media professionals say, you gotta find your thing and niche down, because the riches are in the niches. The problem with Niches tho is you’re then trapped in your niche, like I was the mobile cinema guy with no room to break out.

I got a video editing job

I’m driving to work… I’m driving to work, that’s funny. Because, you know, it’s funny, you put yourself out there you do all this work as your documenting your journey and building your personal brand and stuff and by putting yourself out there a mate of mine who does video production work just said ‘do you want to come and do some editing for me’ and I went yeah totally. so here I am going in to do some work. And it doesn’t really change anything about where I’m going or what my goals are or any of that kind of thing. What it does do is it allows me to get super skilled at premiere pro, it allows me to get extra money in so I can actually put some cash toward the stuff that I’m trying to do as well so it gives me a bit more freedom and I might have the potential to do the work from home a bit as well which is awesome, so this is really exciting. You put yourself out there so people can see what you’re doing and you attract work rather than go out and search for it. so that’s really cool.

Who needs a personal brand?

I want to talk about personal brand, I think it’s important for solopreneurs, creators, entrepreneurs, people working by themselves basically, artist, because that way people get to know your personality, your personality is your brand. They know what they’re getting, and people recognise your work by your personal brand because your fingerprints are all over […]

Will I be using the ‘Don’t Break The Chain’ method?

Yesterday I posted the Vlog with the thumbnail that said ‘no excuses’ and today I spent, pretty much, the whole day with my dad in the emergency department of the hospital. Now I think everything is okay, this is with my dad. And you know it’s funny, as soon as I put something like that out there in the world, something comes up and goes – yes there are excuses! There’s always gonna be excuses and very valid excuses why you can’t get things done. I think you just gotta accept that, and you know, because that’s life, that’s what life is. But I want to include this moving forward, the ‘don’t break the chain’ method. I want to have a little tally at the bottom of my description to see what things I’m succeeding at, and what things I’m not. And hopefully that will be a useful tool for me, to try and motivate me to ‘not break the chain’ and keep going with all the things that I want to be doing.

Excuses don’t get you an X

So it’s my first day of ‘don’t break the chain’, productivity method where you gotta get all your tasks in a row, keep on going, keep yourself going, keep yourself motivated and I must say It’s about 1 o’clock today so far and I think I’ve only done a couple of things, one of those things is including sleep. Then there’s the journaling and creative writing, and I try and, I like to try and get that done first thing in the morning before my daughter wakes up. Now the only issue is that she woke up before me today and It’s thrown the whole thing out. Exercise, haven’t done that yet. Vlogcast, I’m working on that now. Diet and fasting, I’ve lumped in together and so far I’ve succeeded on that goal. And seven minute drawing challenge. I’m onto that one, I’m on, I am, I’m gonna get on it straight after this. The good thing is about this challenge is it doesn’t listen to your excuses, an X is an X. You did it, or you didn’t do it.

Accountability for your productivity

So can I do the ‘don’t break the chain’ productivity good habit method without a physical calendar for everything I want to turn into a habit? I think the best solution is to incorporate it into something that you do already. Which for me is the daily vlog. Now I don’t mean I’m gonna list off what I’ve done and what I haven’t done every vlog, that would get a bit boring. But at the bottom of each description I can list where I’m at. For instance meditation, I can say I’m on 45 consecutive days and if I break the link something more severe happens, I go back to day one. Which is something I picked up from Michael Warth’s 7 min drawing challenge. I think this method is even more inspiration not to break the chain. No one wants to go back to day one. So starting tomorrow you’ll begin to see a little tally at the bottom of my description.

Don’t break the chain and create good habits

So the ‘Don’t Break The Chain’ method for creating good habits and being productive is pretty simple. You get a calendar, like a wall hanging calendar with puppies on, not a virtual one on your phone. And then start marking out big crosses on on every day you succeeded completing your task, probably in a thick red felt tip, for visual effect, because I think it’s a visual thing. You get a warm feeling inside when you see all those big red caterpillars lining up on your wall, pure, unbroken productivity. And the psychology is, the more days you do, the more you are likely to keep going. You basically guilt yourself into keeping on going because you want that calendar to be a solid page of red x’s and if it’s a physical calendar hanging on your wall, and if you miss a day. You’ll have to live with that for the rest of the month. But I’ve got a problem. What if I want to get lots of different things done every day. Do I have to do all of those things to get my X, or do have a wall with 10 calendars. I’m thinking of doing something else.

Habits that move you toward your goals

Why do I always brush my teeth at the same times everyday? Eat popcorn while watching movies – not that I do that anymore? Constantly check my phone? Use the same public toilet cubicle when i’m at the shops? Because I know it functions, usually, it’s clean and the door locks. Title We are all creatures of habit, it’s just a matter of making sure we are creating habits that are gonna take you closer to your goals not further away. And a tactic I already used to consistently get work done was the don’t break the chain method. I didn’t even realise this was what I was doing but with the almost daily vlog I was creating a habit, a good habit. Apparently it takes 18-264 days to create a new habit, with the average being 66 days. Jerry Sienfield, the comedian invented, called it the ‘don’t break the chain’ method, it’s no joke he really did.

My top 10 daily hacks to success

What have I discovered to be the most useful daily tips and hacks for me? What ones are gonna move the needle and get me one step closer toward my goals? 7-8 hours sleep, pretty basic but it’s essential. Creative writing in the morning. Run or yoga everyday. My own little creation the – if this, then that or task sandwich work schedule. Fast twice a week. Using my screen time function as a Pomodoro task timer. Diet, for me it’s, no sugar, no grains, no dairy, and… caffeine, sadly it just doesn’t mix well with anxiety. Quickly writing my Goals, what I’m grateful for and my why when I wake up first thing. The Seven minute drawing challenge. Breathing time. These are the things I wanna make a part of my daily life. I know these things work for me. So why don’t I do them? I get distracted, I don’t have time, I forget about them. So Tomorrow I’m gonna figure out how to turn all of this into a daily habit.

How do I create good habits that stick?

After 150 vlogs and 20 podcasts I’ve uncovered a lot of tips, strategies, mindset tricks and hacks. And I’ve actually found some of them quiet useful, but how many am I using right now tho? One, maybe two a day when I think of them, but certainly not enough to help me as I try and create a successful career for myself. So how do I create good habits that stick? It’s pretty easy to create bad habits, maybe because they are usually the path of least resistance to get you to that quick fix. And as many people say you’ve gotta get out of your comfort zone to grow and if getting out of your comfort zone consists of doing good things then I suppose it’s time for me to get uncomfortable. It’s time for me to figure out how to make the good habits that I already know are going to help me towards my goals and find ways to make sure I’m doing them every day.

Can you self-help your way to success?

Tomorrow I’m going to be – Instead of just listening to podcasts watching and YouTube tutorials and getting all inspired and worked up about stuff about, you know, all the things I can do and how I can have a successful career. I’m gonna start implementing each of these strategies. I’m gonna give each strategy, hack, tactic, mindset thing, whatever it is, give it a whole week examine it deep dive into it. Then at the end of the year I’ll be compiling all that I found helpful on my path to having a successful career. Because hopefully I’ll be considered successful at the end of the year, you know maybe not, maybe it has to be two years. But either way I want to compile a book which becomes useful for creators like me. I wish someone created a book which compiled all of these ideas in the one kinda thing on someone who’s starting at the very beginning and follows them to the point of success.

How to promote yourself as an artist

So I want to piece together a useful book for creative people. That promotes, promoting yourself as an artist and how to do it. And by promoting yourself hopefully creating a successful career, where you can earn enough money to spend more time doing what you love. And piss-off those crappy time wasting day jobs that you have to do to pay the bills and just do what you are best at, and focus on that. I’ll be implementing hacks, strategies and anything I can find, I’ll be a human guinea pig, finding out what works and vlogging it, podcasting it, and adding it too this book, hopefully in a logical order. One vlog, one podcast, one paragraph, one minute and one day at a time.

Pivoting towards passion and purpose

So where’s my pivot? As SimpLee Beth on YouTube asks. The pivot has mainly been a mindset shift for me. I had created 143 vlogs and 20 podcasts while I was just finding my feet. I knew the kind of thing I wanted to be doing and just started doing that. Then the days turned into weeks, and the weeks turned into months and in my most recent vlogs – I felt that I was just coasting down the desert highway after my tank ran out petrol a few hundred meters back. I was doing all this stuff, creating without direction or purpose. Then I thought about my ‘why’ that I discovered at vlog 50 which was ‘Empowering storytellers to think creatively about getting their story to world’. Then I thought if I can create a successful career doing something that I love, and document how I did it in a book, then maybe you’ll be able to do it to. Either that or I’ll be documenting my slow descent into madness, both of which will be publishable.

Turn your passion into a successful career

This vlog, podcast and blog is going to be my book, written and recorded out of order as life happens and then reassembled into something that’s hopefully useful for storytellers and creative people, who just never thought it was possible to earn a living from your passion. It’ll be a self published book, not just about my midlife crisis… maybe about my midlife crisis. But about my midlife career pivot experiment that I turned into a successful career. Catchy title, maybe a bit wordy. Now I just have to work on that successful career bit of that title, but I believe it’s achievable, at least some days I do. Some days I just feel stupid as I wonder why I never got a proper job, a more secure job. But then I realised many of the proper jobs are also becoming irrelevant and that there’s really no such thing as a secure job anymore.

The only thing stopping you, is you

If you are an artist, an entrepreneur, storyteller, or as Gary Vee would say ‘ a smurf collector’, you need to be documenting your journey now. Because your hobby, that thing you enjoy the most, and know ridiculous amounts of stuff about, could become how you earn a living. Which is great news for me as a storyteller, because I’ve come to realise the publishers, producers the gatekeepers for artists are now irrelevant, now the only excuse, the only thing stopping you, is you. So I’m determined not to let this great moment in time pass me by. So I’ve started to write a book, this book.