This Week’s BIG Idea
I came across a podcast where Neil Pasricha interviews Quentin Tarantino. In the episode, they mainly talk about books and the writing process for an hour and a half. There are many gems in this episode if you’re interested in listening to it, but there was one topic that caught my attention. At one point, Tarantino is invited to share a piece of advice to aspiring writers. After thinking about it for a few seconds, the acclaimed filmmaker said something along the lines of “Whatever it is that you’re writing, hold nothing back”. This idea resonated with me because I’ve been writing online for years now, but there’s this feeling that I’m somehow hesitating to show the real me or holding something back. As uncomfortable as facing reality can be, I love this idea because it shows potential. It also means I’m willing to have this internal dialogue with myself even if it causes discomfort.
The self-help space is great for sharing ideas but also leaves you vulnerable. How can I reliably talk about certain topics without accepting that I’m struggling with them as well? Although it’s all about you, the audience, I also have to admit that I sometimes struggle in certain areas of my life. Even if I read and write about certain topics for hours, I haven’t mastered all habits. There’s good news though. As I said before, this isn’t about me, so this should give me enough confidence to discuss some subjects, as uncomfortable as they can be. Nobody I know cares about my writing, my website, or my newsletter. This isn’t depressing though; this is liberating. This is a safe space where I can play for hours on end without interruption and without outside noise. When you do some sort of creative endeavor, you should hold nothing back. In other words, nobody cares what I’m doing in my free time. So I need to remind myself this more often and let loose. After all, what’s the worst that can happen?
What I’m Working on
I decided to temporarily remove all ads from my website. There is something about ads that doesn’t sit well with me. Whenever I go to a website that has ads in it, I want to leave. So this made me question why I had them on my site to begin with. I’ve been thinking about monetizing the site for some time. I’d love to have some revenue on the side that I can use to improve it even more. But if that comes at the expense of annoying my visitors I don’t think I can do it. When it comes to the site, I try to be as transparent and open as possible.
On the one hand, I’d like to get some of the money I spend back. On the other hand, ads are ugly and annoying and nobody likes them. As an experiment, I decided to remove them. It remains to be seen if I can come up with an alternative to ads. In the meantime though, I want to improve the user experience as much as possible.
What I’m Listening to
The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck Podcast: Mark Manson started a podcast recently and I couldn’t be happier. Only two episodes came out, but he interviewed two giants: Derek Sivers and Morgan Housel. Housel just released a book called Same as Ever which I’m summarizing. Derek Sivers is working on a book that’s supposed to come out in the near future. So on top of everything else that I’m learning, this podcast is a great resource to find new books to read. As it’s common nowadays, the podcast is available in both video and audio forms. As much as I like to watch video podcasts, I don’t find myself with that much free time when I’m in front of the computer. This means I usually end up listening to the whole thing when I commute to work or when I go on long walks around town.
What I’m Reading
Same as Ever by Morgan Housel: I just finished reading this book and I loved it. In Same as Ever, Morgan Housel (the author of The Psychology of Money) suggests that to understand the world, we have to look at what stays the same. Essentially, this book is a compilation of stories that help us understand the future by examining the past. Same as Ever offers timeless lessons that are useful in many areas of your life.
What I’m Watching
The Five Levels to Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson: I’m only subscribed to two YouTube channels, Ali Abdaal and Mark Manson. I love both channels because I take copious notes whenever a new video comes out. I watched The Five Levels of Not Giving a F*ck as soon as it came out, but I also added it to my watch later list to transcribe the core principles of the video. After reading both The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck and Everything Is F*cked, Mark Manson has quickly become one of my favorite authors. Now he’s also part of the YouTube and podcast spaces, and I couldn’t be happier.
This Week’s Quote
“You’ll stop worrying what others think about you when you realize how seldom they do.”David Foster Wallace
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