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Be a Factory, Not a Warehouse

china dog street photography

Images shot with Super-Takumar 28mm f3.5

One of the podcasts I regularly listen to is the Joe Rogan Experience.

It’s probably not for everyone (but then what is?), but I enjoy getting lost in the 3-hour episodes. They’re a great escape when I’m on a crowded Shanghai subway train.

Today I listened to the episode with Steve-O, who I guess is best known for his time on Jackass.

Based on not knowing what he’d been doing since those halcyon days of stapling his balls to his leg and whatnot, I was imagining this podcast would be three hours of dude-ish crudeness.

Steve-O’s stuff on Jackass was always a little bit too much for me, and I thought I might not make it all the way through this episode.

However, what I found myself listening to was genuinely funny, heartwarming, surprising, and inspiring.

monochrome chinese roof

His story isn’t mine to tell, but certain aspects resonate.

Like the ongoing act of getting sober and remaining so for 8 years, and working selflessly to help other people do the same.

I like a drink as much as anyone, but 8 years alcohol-free sounds brilliant.

Think how much more you could get done with 0 days lost to hangovers and post-drinking blues and regret over the next 8 years.

Just once a week would be over 400 days.

A lot of lost time.

The difference in potential output is scary.

monochrome wuxi china canal

Listening to podcasts by people like Joe Rogan and Tim Ferriss means certain themes crop up again and again as a result of the type of people they interview.

That is, successful people.

And one thing that always comes up in these people that have massively achieved, Steve-O included, is a regular meditation practice.

Regular meditation keeping everything focused.

There’s no doubt swapping out drinking for meditation would be life-changing.

Or if not swapping out, at least doing less of the former and more of the latter.

Small steps, Lee. You’ll get there one day.

Think of the output.

monochrome doorway street photography

Be a factory, not a warehouse

As good and inspiring as the Joe Rogan / Steve-O podcast was, it hadn’t moved me to write this until Steve-O came out with something whilst discussing stand-up.

“Be a comedy factory, not a comedy warehouse.”

I’ve googled it and think it can / should be attributed to one Adam Carolla.

I don’t do comedy myself (shut up) but I don’t think it’s a stretch to remove comedy from that statement and replace it with whatever it is you do create.

For me, that’s photography and writing.

The warehouse could be one of two things. It could be my head – ideas left in there and never acted upon.

It could also be this site. Too few new posts means it becomes a warehouse of the older ones.

That can’t happen. It has to be a factory.

It’s nothing without regular creation.

china monochrome street shot

Think about your own creative output.

What’s stopping you from turning your warehouse into a factory?

What can you swap out and what should you replace it with?

Or, what can you do less of, and what should you do more of?

It probably won’t be alcohol and meditation, but feel free to go with that.

What really needs to change might be a mentality issue. A creative lethargy, or a fear of criticism, or a sense that nobody cares.

Replace it with enthusiasm, or courage, or confidence.

Whatever works for you.

Whatever you need to get creating.

Don’t remain a warehouse.

Become a factory.

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Don't let your ideas sit in your head, and don't just rest on what you've already done. Create more. As much as possible. Be a factory, not a warehouse.

 

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