Make it easy

Books can affect you differently depending on when in your life you read them. Bad example: Oh, the Places You’ll Go! will be different for a high school graduate than it will be for an elementary school graduate.

Podcasts aren’t exactly at the point where you hand a graduate a card that says “Congratulations, listen to this.” followed by like a URL.

One episode has had that kind of effect on me: episode #159 of The Tim Ferriss Show, where he chats with Chase Jarvis. If this episode were a book, I’d sit it face out like people do with A New Earth or Unlimited Power. Or Web of Spider-Man #100 when I was graduating elementary school.

I’m writing this as a note to myself if I have the following thought: I’m trying to be creative and I’m struggling right now. Why am I doing this again?

Just listen to the first fifteen minutes if you’re short on time. Ferriss says two things that really motivated me. One is about starting his podcast:

“What would this look like if it were easy?”

To stay true to this question, Ferriss chose long-form interviews to keep editing to a minimum. He didn’t fuss around with equipment because perfect audio quality isn’t important for interviews. His rule: make it mono and loud enough.

This episode was released in May 2016. Chase Jarvis was on an earlier episode in May 2014. In those two years, the podcast went from one of Ferriss’s experiment to his main creative project. It quickly became one of the most popular podcasts, period.

The second thing that’s stuck with me is also about keeping things simple. Ferriss talks about setting easy writing goals to build momentum:

“Your goal should be two crappy pages a day. That’s it. If you hit two crappy pages, even if you never use them, you’ve succeeded for the day.”

The first time I listened to the episode, I decided to write and post daily for 100 days. After finishing that, I continued with 1-3 posts each week up to now.

I learned to show up. Recently, I’ve been recording podcasts and creating video presentations. I want to do another “X something in X days” project.

I’m not sure yet what the format will be. What I do know is that I can build momentum by making it easy.