A friend and I made an agreement to produce content on a weekly basis. He music, I writing.
This is going to be a journey.
The hardest part about the exercise is all the history. The moment you produce a piece of content, you're anchored. All it takes is one.
If that work was dreadful, you'll begin your next work with a little dread. As Ira Glass once articulated, the gap between your taste and your production ability has been revealed. Nothing upsets motivation like a little dread.
If that work was great, things might be even worse for you. You now have your Standard. You can ignore every other work in the world. But it seems as though you can't ignore your own.
So you'll hit a stumbling block in this exercise. It came very early for me.
I spent over five concentrated hours today trying to write something. I have four separate entries that are all partially composed. I just couldn't pull any of them together.
Two people know that this site even exists. I am not composing a press release for the investors of Pepsi Co or for subscribers to Nature.
I know a few successful creators. They didn't start above the pack. The only thing common between them is they didn't really seem to exude the same shame as a regular person. I don't know if it was confidence or a lack of self-awareness or even just bad taste. But it makes sense. One of the best ways to produce better content is to practice producing content. One of the biggest inhibitors is your little critic who's clamoring about in your frontal lobe's recliner.
For us regular people, this weekly exercise is an exercise of trudging through the critic's commentary and producing content anyway. Maybe you'll eventually show him and he'll shut up. Or maybe he'll be a fair-weather fan and start rooting for you when everyone else does. Or maybe he'll just keep getting louder and louder as he has more and more Standard to obsess over.