Praveen Ramesh

I write about things I learn from books, and my observations on being a creator

I recently had an epiphany.

Often people speak about “Trust” being central to any successful relationship. Upon appropriate maginication, I realised that trust is never gained or lost by a single incident. Like everything else, building trust needs consistent efforts.

And when I mean efforts, I don’t mean pour yourself to seek validation and all that jazz. It just boils down to two things

  1. You doing what you said you will do

  2. And doing that over a long period of time.

Just by doing these two things, anyone can become reliable. And reliability leads to trust.

Let me explain it with a two random examples

Image Credit: Randa

Starting a YT Channel

Say you want to make it big on YT. And you’ve been putting a video a week for over 3 years. Here’s how it would look

  1. The algorithms will trust you and promote your content more. Because you’ve done it for 3 years.

  2. Your newer subscribers will trust you that you will continue to add value if they subscribe (because you’ve done it for 3 years)

  3. You start trusting yourself, and that acts as a great intrinsic motivation lever ;)

At Work

Say you take up a big project every quarter (or month), and you keep shipping the projects with best efforts and intentions.

  1. Your manager and team starts to trust you. Even though some campaigns/projects bomb, they know that you have the company’s best intention in mind.

  2. They trust you with bigger projects when the opportunity arises

See the pattern? While sticking with “Being realiable” is sort of redundant and old school, it’s the simplest muscle to build.

On a fuzzy Saturday afternoon, I logged into my inactive Instagram account. Unsurprisingly, all I found was an ad in every second scroll.

Many ads were selling how I wouldn’t be “Happy” with what I had. How ugly/unhappy/lonely/obsolete I am, and how buying “a product” would make my life instantly better.

In the past, I have given in to temptation and bought a few stuff. Unsurprisingly my mental state would’’t change after the purchase.

I was always left wanting more. And wanting to make things better than they are. Just like how seeing the NEWS makes me anxious and leaves me wanting for more!

Makes me wonder, ads especially the ones that offer comparisons are distributing dissatisfaction! Isn’t it?

How many people read your blog? Why do you keep putting out videos to a few 100 subscribers?

I keep getting these questions. For context, I’ve written 75+ blogs and produced 50+ videos.

People usually expect me to give a goal-based/outcome-based answer. Like “I want 100,00 subscribers”, “I want a passive income” or “I want to have 100,000 email subscribers” etc.

The questions come from an assumption that I’m striving to reach something or somewhere. And most of them are bored by my answer.

What keeps me going is the act of doing. I write and I put out videos because I like doing it. I would be lying if I say I don’t look at metrics. But that’s NOT why I write.

Every number that comes out of this is just a by-product. Not my goal.

If you like something, give it a URL.

A word doc, A drive, A notion page, A website, or a Youtube Channel. Whatever works.

Your ideas are NOT real, until you don’t put a link to them. And unlike the stone-age, there’s access to things at $0.

So what’s your reason?

I often catch myself trying to recall a random idea that occurred to me during the course of the day. And I promise myself that I’ll work on it later.

It’s 9 AM next day, KA-BOOM I realise that I don’t even remember the trace of the idea, the train of thoughts or anything remotely related to what I was thinking.

I overcome this with a simple hack

Write everything down. However stupid or trivial the idea is. Write the keywords connected to the idea.

Because we always overestimate our ability to remember things. I rather use my energy to process information, than store information.

Across personal and professional life, we’re stuck in 3 kinds of scenarios

  1. Know it- One where we know the answers. We’re confident about it, and we feel we can wing it.

  2. Clueless- We can seek answers or stay curious about various questions. Relentless questioning always leads to better outcomes. Nobody ever knows the ‘right’ answer on a consistent basis.

  3. Know-it-all- We tell ourselves we know everything and close out the opportunity to seek answers.

It’s not procrastination if you’re not able to allocate time for it.

It’s not procrastination if you’ve not blocked time to do it.

It’s not procrastination if you’re not drawing energy from an activity and doing it feels like a chore.

It’s not procrastination if you’re in the middle of a breakdown.

It’s not procrastination if you’re doing it against will.

Far too many times we press the “Try Harder” button when we’re undergoing resistance to do something. The real cause could really be something else.

Fears drives a lot of my decisions (or drive away a lot of decisions). I was always looking for an answer on “How” I can overcome my fears. I was just looking for THE magic bullet. But there’s isn’t one.

At appropriate magnification, if we choose to pay attention and decide to care, each of our fears exist for a different reasons.

We need to get in touch with them. It means looking deeper, introspecting gently and mitigating the specifics. Always ask

What’s the worst that can happen?

Because sometimes not realising the worst case stops us from acting on fears. After all, you might end up realising that the worst case isn’t that bad after all!

Don’t stop with the question! Start acting.

Image source: Jon from Unsplash. If you’re reading this fine print, why don’t you subscribe?

Disclaimer: This is an observation from my anecdotal experiences. If you’ve serious conditions dealing with stress or mental conditions because of your fears, please get a consultation from an expert.

Are you making a choice from a point of awareness? Or from a point of ignorance/negligence?

Most of my choices have been driven by the latter.

I took engineering because I didn’t know any other “safer” option.

I held on to relationships because I didn’t know they were draining me (or I was being the sucker in a few)

I binged content because I didn’t know what else to do with my time.

I invested in conservative instruments because I didn’t know any better.

How many of your decisions are driven by awareness?

Most consumers wouldn’t even recognise that we are putting out a work that we’re 100% NOT satisfied with.

But you would. That’s the beauty and curse of being a creator. Or creating. Successful creators don’t wait until they’re 100%  satisfied.

Because they know it takes far more courage to put yourself out there, and feel great about it. With deliberate practice, your 96.5% could well become aspirational for a lot of consumers.

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