When I first quit my job to start my own business, I didn’t treat creative work seriously, or as seriously as I take it now.
I would let people distract me from my work, I would roam around during my most creative hours looking for dates or doing groceries, and I got embarrassed when people would tell me I didn’t have a real job.
I bought it upon myself.
The problem was that I thought that I wasn’t working on a full-time job anymore, and therefore, I started behaving as if I were on a perpetual holiday. Thankfully, that didn’t last long, because I realized I had to start making money soon or move back in with my parents. And I was not moving back in with my parents.
Now, my mentality towards my business is completely different. No matter what else is going on in the world, my business and my creative work comes first.
The First Thing I Do Every Morning Is My Work
I don’t have a boss breathing down my neck, nor do I really have any deadlines. I don’t have colleagues who are relying upon me, and even the people who wait for my videos, blog posts, podcasts, and more, wouldn’t be highly upset if I missed a few or even stopped doing them completely.
The reality is as a business owner, the only person who is reminding you constantly that you need to work, produce, and put stuff out there, is you. No one else cares.
I work from home, so everyone assumes that I spend all of my time, watching Netflix, or crocheting sweaters or dog clothing. But, if I did that, I would have to find a full-time job very soon, because I wouldn’t be able to survive longer than a year or so.
My mornings, my precious creative mornings are dedicated to working. I wake up, do my morning routine, and then as soon as I have some food in my belly, I am off to do my work.
My important work. The important things on my to-do list that cannot be postponed for anyone.
There might be an earthquake, there might be an apocalypse, or there might be a dinosaur rummaging about in my backyard.
But as long as there is a proper internet connection going, I am doing my work, without fail every single day. No excuses.
People Will Try To Distract You – That’s What They Think They Are There For
Most people have never worked for themselves. That’s why they have no concept of time or focus or concentration.
I mean, even people who have their own businesses, most of them don’t focus for long periods of time in the morning and afternoon on their businesses. They catch snippets of it here and there, in between people distracting them.
I am a strong believer in swiping away and pushing distractions away as soon as possible. It’s really important.
Distractions are part and parcel of daily life. Especially if you are working from home.
People assume that you are just browsing Facebook anyways, or you are just dilly-dallying about on the Internet, and they can call you to wash dishes, or they can ask you to go on a walk with them, or all of that nonsense.
Now some of it is a good thing because if people didn’t distract me, I would literally never get away from my desk, except to eat, poop, and sometimes sleep.
But a lot of it is just nonsense. As soon as you are distracted from your work, it means, that it will take you 20 minutes or so to get back into concentration mode. Most office workers are distracted so many times a day that they spend all day long in distraction mode.
I don’t want to do that. I don’t have time to do that.
Not having hundreds of employees means, that I have things to do, and all of those things are going to be done by ME.
Only me. No one else.
I can’t fend it off to someone else. I have to do it all myself.
Treat Creative Work Seriously – No One Else Will Do That For You
I treat everything I do like a business. My creative work. My YouTube channel. And my science fiction novels.
Everything! They are all serious work. They are all important.
Without them, I would be nothing. And without them, I would feel the wrath of death even more.
They are important things. I am not doing them for fun or to pass time or anything like that. All of this is important to me.
And if I don’t take it seriously then who is going to treat creative work seriously for me? There’s no one else.
No one else will care about this work as much as I do. No one else will put in the effort that I do. I can’t outsource it to anyone else – I don’t want to outsource it to anyone else.
But I am serious about it. I don’t make jokes about it. I don’t let other people make jokes about it either.
If you are not going to treat something I take so seriously, seriously, then you are out of my life. My creative work is so important to me, it’s even more important to me than my own life.
Now, I implore you to do the same. Take your shit seriously.
No one else will do that for you. You are the only one.
Stop wasting your time and everyone else’s time. Do it properly. Go on then.