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I had a big problem. I was a content consumer junkie, watching YouTube video after YouTube video for hours without any limit.

I bought more than 20 courses on Udemy and Domestika. Their prices are ridiculous, and don’t get me wrong, the courses are GREAT.

I finished a course and immediately started another one. It was indeed an addiction.

I don’t recall the exact moment when it stopped, but I was fed up because of my lack of progress in life.

Buying courses is nice, and learning is nice as well, but acting on them is way nicer than anything else.

I hosted a space about this exact topic. I soaked many perspectives and did my best to tie it all together so it makes sense for everyone starting his journey in the creator economy.

The Challenge of Learning Efficiently

You have two problems when it comes to learning. 

The first is learning too much without doing shit about it, as I did.

The second is not knowing where to learn because there are too many choices. It’s very similar to a restaurant with 200 items on its menu. You are pressured to choose one that won’t disappoint you, and you still keep wondering if there is any other better option when you get yours.

To learn efficiently, we have to ditch the traditional scholar system. I dropped out of college at 19, returned to a private school at 21, and dropped out again. But, contrary to many others who stopped learning after school, I wasn’t one of them.

Seeking knowledge is my eternal mission.

Over the last decade, I consumed approximately 18,250 hours of content. Yes, I did the math.

An average of 5 hours per day doing one of the following:

  • Reading articles
  • Watching YT videos
  • Watching online courses

So, 5 hours per day for 365 days is 1825 hours. Over ten years, that’s 18,250 hours. Crazy, isn’t it?

Of those 18,250 hours, only thousands of them served me positively.

Finally, I understood how to learn effectively. 

There is only a mindset shift that needs to happen. Quite frankly, when you were forced to “learn” something, was there any goal beyond having a good grade? This knowledge went straight to the trash, erased from my mind’s computer.

The mindset shift is to transition from consumer to creator. By creator, I mean someone aware of his actions and who isn’t scrolling through social media to escape boredom.

You don’t have to be a content creator to be “a creator.”

Think of it as if you were creating for your future self or even your future child. Be selfish or be selfless. Both work well.

Becoming a creator unlocks new creative potential.

You start to connect the dots. Everything becomes a source of inspiration.

But it’s not that simple. Especially at the beginning of this transition, obsession can occur very quickly. When it’s a bad obsession, you find yourself trapped in another world better than the mindless scrolling but still not “that better.”

It’s essential to find your balance.

Time to learn.

Time to create.

And also time to rest, reading for the sake of reading.

Watching a show for the sake of watching a tv show.

Entertainment doesn’t have to be eradicated.

It’s a question of balance.

For everything.

To avoid a disastrous transformation. You must determine your goals and level of obsession with a particular topic. Then find 2-3 mentors and cut out everyone else's advice. Take notes of what interests you and what you don’t understand, and frame it from your own perspective.

You can do it with questions:

How is this going to help me?

How can I implement this in X goal?

Next, determine your unwinding activities:

- Walks

- Watching movies

- Reading fiction books

- Whatever is suitable for your to turn off your mind (sometimes you can’t)

When you aren’t learning efficiently, here is what you might have felt:

  • Constantly feeling like it’s not enough
  • Constantly feeling like it wasn’t good enough
  • Constantly feeling like you only need one more course
  • Constantly feeling like you only need to watch it one more time
  • Constantly feeling like you’re progressing, but when it’s time to take action, you don’t feel ready.

A Noisy World of Generic Advice and Niche Opinions

"You should pick a niche"

"You should tweet 3x per day"

"You should leave meaningful comments"

I hated this Niche BS advice; I felt forced to do it. My brain didn’t want to accept it, and I couldn’t do it because multi-passionate brains are wired differently. What works for others won’t work for you.

If a piece of advice from someone on social media doesn’t make sense to you, look up and try to find out if someone feels the same way. Ask!

E.g., I preach the no-niche mentality. All of those successful people who picked a niche are against it. But that’s okay because they’re not multi-passionate.

I didn’t find a single multi-passionate who stuck to only one thing to this day or could stick to it.

I learned from Dan Koe, a lot! But I haven’t consumed his content for a long time to let my knowledge expand outside of his content. When I return, I will approach it with a fresh perspective and see if it still resonates.

You have to find your balance. As Somya Thakker said in the space, you've got to find your Yin & Yang for this content creator journey. Otherwise, it will consume you.

With that being said, how to find the right mentor?

The Right Mentor: Why One Size Doesn't Fit All

Dan Koe allowed many people to gather together and form smaller communities within a bubble.

Here is stellar advice from an interview with Ali Abdaal and (I forgot his name). The guy shared his tactic to learn everything FAST.

He would pick the subject of what he’s interspersed in, look up the top 10-20 people in this particular “niche,” and send them a cold DM or email to invite them to a Zoom call.

Then, he will ask them as many questions as he can about their business and how they learned, and he invites them to a coffee in real life.

My method was to find three masters in the topic based on two questions:

- Is this person where I want to be in the future

- Is this person able to articulate their thoughts

From there, I only learn from them, and if I can cut to one, I do it for a certain amount of time to learn as much as I can about him and his knowledge.

I make a hybrid approach. I hopped in more than 20 calls in the last couple of weeks. And let me tell you, I learned way more than reading books and watching YouTube Videos.

The bottom line is:

1- Pick three mentors

2- Block everyone else’s advice

3- Hop on a call with new people

4- Ask them how did they learn what they know

That brings me to my next point, learning within a small community.

You are the sum of the five people you spend the most time with.

The Benefits of Community: Learning and Growing Together

I had the chance to connect with many people from the Solopreneur Sprint of Dan Koe. It was a fantastic start. I don’t know where I would be if it weren’t for that small community initially. I learned so much from different people, and meeting other like-minded people was a fantastic experience. It opens many doors and opportunities.

I want to clarify some things before I keep going. Being in a community doesn’t mean 

- You have to engage with every single member

- You have to always be present at every event

Here's what I value:

- Genuine people (be happy for others)

- Constructive Feedback (not biased)

- Only engage with the content you like

- Sharing without holding

- Develop lacking skills

- Exchange *expertise*

- Open-mindedness 

I'll add what I hate:

- Unannounced cancellation

- Pressure of engagement

- Pressure of *showing up*

- Pressure of helping

We join a community to evolve and grow, not to put pressure on ourselves. Therefore, it's important to respect each other's boundaries.

I love to help and engage, but I must put my priorities first, no matter what.

When joining a community, I ask myself a question that determines if it’s the right community for me or not: Can I sit in a restaurant with them and have a conversation as if I were with my friends?

If you hesitate to answer this question, it’s not the right community for you.

Luckily, I found the right one, The Becoming Self, built by Adrian Barra.

An incredible individual who I can recommend with my eyes closed.

I invite you to join us here.

You can also schedule a call with Adrian here.

Are you considering getting into the creator economy?

If not, why not?

- Imed

About imed djabi

I explore the intersection of passions and business.

I am a minimalist, and multi-passionate currently obsessed with the creator economy, branding & web design.

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