Kurt Donald Cobain was born 50 years ago today.
When I was an early teen, his band Nirvana was crazy popular. His music was for a generation of kids (and adults) trying to find their way in the world. Nirvana was created in 1987, and their first record was released two years later. However, it wasn’t until the early 90’s that Smells Like Teen Spirit made them nationally known.
In the animated video above, we get a fun (yet sad) glimpse into the early life of Kurt Cobain directed by Drew Christie. You might remember Drew Christie as the creator of the Sundance Selection & New York Times Opt-Doc animated ALLERGY TO ORIGINALITY.
It is already over a week into 2017.
You might be reading this halfway through the year or the end of the year… It doesn’t matter.
Procrastination is a Persistent Plague
Procrastination is something we all face and is ever-present. Even a prolific writer and content creator, such as Tim Ferriss, has battled procrastination throughout his career.
This video has some critical and creative steps to be able to produce more without getting side tracked.
1 – Break down goals into smallest action steps possible.
This includes having a timeline and specific tasks that are required to complete the project or goal. Write these down to make your life easier.
Give yourself tiny assignments with low standards.
I like the example he gives of having the goal of “writing two crappy pages per day. I do something similar with my daily vLog. Even though it isn’t linked to a bigger project, I find putting out one “unpolished” video a day makes me less nervous about sharing my art.
2 – Set-up tasks to make extremely easy to do.
This has also been described as removing the barriers.
For example, when I do video editing I often get sidetracked while waiting for my computer to start Adobe Premiere (it takes forever). By leaving the editing program open or requiring myself to launch the program before I can go make coffee helps me get through that period of boredom.
3 – Have constraints
Do 25-minute sprints (Pomodoro Technique) to force work done in restricted time.
It is interesting how our minds work.
For me, having a limited time (25-minutes) I can get work done because I think, “it is just 25-minutes” and this time is for this thing. If I give myself a full day to do something, I will often never get started.
These time limits also work well with the tasks created in step one. I try to make each of my action steps a task I can complete in 25-minutes or close to that.
Many have their version of this, so feel free to explore and test.
4 – Accountability
Another important technique to get things done is to find ways to include accountability. This means you are doing the tasks needed to get it done, but also to get a reward and avoid punishment.
Accountability can be as simple as telling someone what you’re going to do and by when. The social anxiety of having to admit defeat is often enough added incentive to get started and complete tasks.
You can also use “lose” or “shame” as Tim Ferriss mentions in the video. Making a small bet with friends on who is going to complete their actionable goal can mean the difference between “do or do not.”
NOTE: If you pause the audio, you have to click the “x” in the upper right to hit play again. This is something Sound Cloud does, and it has taken me a few years to figure it out. So, if you hit pause and can’t figure out how to hit play again, check the upper right corner for the “x” and then the play button is in the top left corner (very confusing).
That download mentioned can be grabbed at Fizzle Show #194 – Goal Setting Sucks! Here’s A New 5-Step Approach.
Over the years, I have come to hate “year end reviews” and “goal setting.” I can understand how it would be helpful for someone like me (someone who is always jumping from project to project) to have a clear plan on how projects fit together and when things need to get done.
I love that they mention the downward spiral caused by missing milestones a few months after the goals are made. That is why I changed my goal setting process this year. You can read about my experimental process at How to end 2016 & Bring on 2017.
–> Brain Dump (10 – 15 min)
–> Last Year Worked &/or Didn’t List
–> Yes to & No to Lists
–> 10 Goals, Why, & 3-6 steps
–> Go Back over everything looking for a word for the year
I love the idea of having a word for the year. As I mentioned in “Where to Focus 2017“, this year I will be putting most of my energy into creating YouTube Videos.
If you are looking to sell your creative projects, your services, your soul™, or anything online, Fizzle.co is a place you should be. They have a crazy number of business courses about designing a website, getting things done (productivity), making videos, etc., etc.
They are offering a 5-weeks for free to try it out at Fizzle.co.
It is important to note that this is an affiliate link, but I have been a member myself for years. If you have any problems or issues (which you won’t), let me know and I handle it personally.
I can’t enough say how awesome they are.
Now, let’s get planning 2017!
The audio is too quiet for the first 10 – 20 seconds, but it is still worth listening to. The sound problem is fixed quickly, and the rest is an excellent inspirational audio recording of Alan Watts.
The things said are a bit hokier than I normally like to share.
The real deep down you is the whole universe.
The idea of “waking up to who you really are” or “You are all galaxies”… These are all beautiful metaphors, but a not reality.
I would describe what Alan Watts is saying as a poem instead of a science discussion.
The point of me posting this video isn’t to argue the existence of the world outside ourselves or you being a part of an everything that has and will exist. I posted this video as an inspiration.
“That’s about all I have to say about that.”
Let me know if you find these type of posts helpful. We are trying something new and if you like it, let me know in the comment below (I think that rhymed).
This is a fascinating discussion with Tom Waits on “making it big”, being in entertainment, and art.
It is full of nonsense with the meaning to life in traditional Tom Waits fashion.
You can take from it what you will.
This video is by “Blank on Blank” a YouTube channel by PBS. The interview was by Chris Roberts
“You just write. You don’t try to make sense of it. You just put it down the way you got it and you don’t try to organize it or put meaning to it.”
– Tom Waits
If you haven’t read How to end 2016 & Bring on 2017, go read that article before this one.
It is 2017!
So, we have 364 days before 2018.
That is 364 days to complete projects, have new experiences, and enjoy life.
Unfortunately, this is a lot harder for me (and maybe you) to do than it sounds. I am one of those people who ignore all the amazing things I have accomplished and think about how much debt I am in and all the projects I have yet to finish.
This year I am trying to be kinder to myself.
Instead of making a long list of projects and to-do’s that I expect to accomplish, I am picking one thing… You heard (read) correctly.
I am picking one thing based on that list of accomplishments I created in the How to end 2016 & Bring on 2017 article.
Go ahead and finish your list or go back and make one for yourself.
The One Thing You’re Most Proud Of?
This part of your planning has only one step and it is super simple.
Ask yourself, “what on my list of accomplishments am I the proudest of.”
For me, it was all the achievements around making YouTube videos.
So, my focus is going to be on that.
As I plan out my days, my weeks, and months, I keep my 2017 focus in mind.
When I think about the comic books I want to make and the books to write, I can still work on those projects but need to understand or create a way that they can fit within creating YouTube videos.
Not that easy 🙁
We all need to pay bills, live healthy lives, and fulfill the standard living and surviving requirements.
These things can and should take precedence over your 2017 focus when needed.
Paying bills is a big one. While I have made a few dollars on YouTube, I am far from a full-time YouTuber. So, I have to plan accordingly and figure out the best way to fulfill these obligations while working towards achievements I will be most proud of.
For me that means:
- Record more of the fun stuff I do with my family at Jason Loves Life YouTube channel.
- Putting on more Animation Workshops, which I post on the Learn to Animate Channel.
- Experiment with new types of videos and see what gets the most views.
- Find new ways to make money with my videos.
It takes a little work, but it will change the way you plan your year.
If you do this process, I would love to hear what your 2017 focus is going to be. Feel free to post it in the comments below.