Why You've Been Lied to About Where to Put Your Time, Energy, & Focus | Seth Godin on Impact Theory

Last updated: Jun 1, 2023

The video is an interview with Seth Godin discussing his new book and the importance of practicing and showing your bad work, as well as the brainwashing of the industrial education system and the impact of media on society.

In this video, Tom Bilyeu interviews Seth Godin about his new book and the importance of practice, generosity, and breaking free from the brainwashing of the industrial system. Godin emphasizes the need to show up and ship work that makes things better, regardless of the outcome, and to focus on learning rather than just acquiring status. He also discusses the negative impact of media companies on our peace of mind and well-being, and how the internet has both given everyone a voice and created chambers of noise. The book has been in development for three years and aims to help creatives break free from the constraints of the industrial system and make a profound impact with their work.

  • Showing bad work is important for practice and improvement.
  • Generosity is key to shipping work and making things better.
  • The industrial education system brainwashes people to follow instructions and not think for themselves.
  • The media has a huge impact on society, making people feel inadequate and like they need to buy things to be happy.
  • Practicing and showing bad work is important for improvement and focusing on creation rather than seeking validation.
  • Intention is important in doing something with purpose and making a change.
  • Generosity is important in creating art that changes people and has an interactive focus.
  • Doing work with a generous mindset is important, but it's also important to do the work with a practice that ignores the guarantee of success.
  • Starting with a side hustle or practice before quitting your day job is important in integrating generosity into real life.

Why You've Been Lied to About Where to Put Your Time, Energy, & Focus | Seth Godin on Impact Theory - YouTube

Why You

Practice involves showing your bad work

  • Show your bad video, public speaking, counseling, therapy, engineering designs, etc.
  • Effort, process, and practice matter to get great outcomes.
  • Belief that if the outcome won't be great, don't even bother is wrong.
  • Showing up with practice and getting better is the only way to get great outcomes.
  • Practice involves several things all woven together.
Why You

Generosity is key to shipping work

  • Stop the mindset of hustling people to get more than your fair share of attention.
  • Approach it with generosity because the purpose of shipping the work is to make things better.
  • The principle of generosity shows up a lot in the book.
  • Shipping the work is not so you can come out ahead.
  • Shipping the work is to make things better.
Why You

Brainwashing in the industrial education system

  • The industrial system needs us to be acquiring status seeking cogs in their system.
  • The factories are so efficient they just keep making more stuff.
  • You can pick yourself and show up and ship work that makes things better that you are proud of.
  • You don't need anyone's permission.
  • The brainwashing runs really deep because the industrial system needs us to be acquiring status seeking cogs in their system.
Why You

Why You've Been Lied to About Where to Put Your Time, Energy, & Focus | Seth Godin on Impact Theory - YouTube

Impact of media on society

  • The internet gave everybody a microphone.
  • Voices previously unheard were not heard before and now they are.
  • The media companies got ahead by dividing us by creating breaking news that isn't breaking that isn't news.
  • Calling people friends who aren't friends and buttons likes that aren't likes.
  • The media worked against all of our peace of mind and well-being for the last 15 or 20 years.
  • It took a toll and we're feeling that toll in politics but we're also feeling that toll deep in our soul.
Why You

The Power of Practice

  • Practicing and showing your bad work is important.
  • The Inside the Creator's Workshop changed lives deeply.
  • People wrote every day for 100 days without missing a day.
  • The writing isn't the point, it's the practice.
  • People gave and got 500 pieces of feedback a month.
Why You

The Importance of Intention

  • The human animal is the ultimate adaptation machine.
  • Understanding that improvement is a strategy we've picked as a species.
  • Doing something with intention is important.
  • Asking three simple questions: who's it for, who specifically am I seeking to change, and what change am I seeking to make?
  • Being on the hook is the best place to be.
Why You

The Power of Generosity

  • The old Turkish custom of putting a loaf of bread on the hook.
  • If you buy two loaves of bread, you can put one on the hook for someone who's hungry.
  • The phrase "on the hook" usually associated with fish.
  • The fish doesn't like being on the hook, and it's not a generous act for a fish.
  • Being on the hook is selfless, but it's not sure if the fish goes on to live another day.
Why You

The Brainwashing of the Industrial Education System and the Impact of Media on Society

  • The industrial education system brainwashes people.
  • People are taught to follow instructions and not to think for themselves.
  • The media has a huge impact on society.
  • The media is designed to make people feel inadequate.
  • The media is designed to make people feel like they need to buy things to be happy.
Why You

The Importance of Generosity in Creating Art

  • Putting your work out there and being generous with it allows you to shift your focus from seeking validation to simply creating.
  • Being generous with your work is important because it allows you to get out of your own way and focus on the act of creation.
  • Practicing and showing your bad work is important because it allows you to shift your focus from seeking validation to simply creating.
  • Generosity is important for those experiencing writer's block because it allows them to shift their focus from themselves to their audience.
  • When fly fishing, intentionally not wanting to catch a fish allowed Seth Godin to focus on the act of casting and improve his technique.
Why You

The Paradox of Doing Work with a Generous Mindset

  • Doing work with a generous mindset is important, but it's also important to do the work with a practice that ignores the guarantee of success.
  • Education that focuses on the transaction of learning for a grade is not how people learn things that truly matter to them.
  • Practicing and creating for the sake of creating is important because it allows you to enjoy the benefits of your work without seeking validation.
  • Generosity is important in creating art that changes people and has an interactive focus.
  • Commerce is necessary in Western culture, but it's important to start with a side hustle or practice before quitting your day job.
Why You

Integrating Generosity into Real Life

  • It may take a while to create something unique and remarkable that people will pay for, so it's important to start with a side hustle or practice before quitting your day job.
  • Developing trust, reputation, and permission to talk to your followers is important before making a living off of your art.
  • Abby Ryan's decision to paint an oil painting every day is an example of how practicing and being generous with your work can lead to success.
Why You

Connecting People to Your Practice

  • A woman named Abby started videoing her work and teaching people how to do it.
  • As her reputation improved, her eBay sales went up.
  • She was featured in Oprah magazine and people started buying her work because she was really good at it.
  • Real estate brokers are struggling because of websites like Zillow.
  • However, some brokers who know the community and have a point of view are worth more than they charge.
Why You

Trust Yourself

  • The alternate title of the book was "Trust Yourself."
  • The book separates the word "self" into "your" and "self."
  • The verbal, fearful, compliant voice is the frontal cortex, which isn't good at creativity.
  • The other voice that's willing to push us forward is the one that claims to want to be authentic.
  • To trust yourself, you need to listen to that voice more often.
  • Developing a practice that lets that voice show up in your work and life can make them better.
Why You

The Power of Practice

  • If you want to be a runner, you go running every day for 30 days in a row.
  • That is the practice, committing to a method and having streaks.
  • One day, you'll get better at it and be able to serve the people you hope to change.
  • If you want to change your story and shape your identity, you change your behaviors first.
  • Brain science supports the idea that changing behaviors can lead to changing self-narrative.
Why You

The Dance of Both

  • We are a dance of both the verbal, fearful, compliant voice and the one that's willing to push us forward.
  • Trusting yourself doesn't mean doing whatever you feel like and being guaranteed it will work.
  • It means listening to that voice more often and developing a practice that lets it show up in your work and life.
  • Being yourself and being peculiar means owning your private property and being in and of yourself.
  • Systems in our life push us not to do that, but being peculiar can make you irreplaceable.
Why You

Our Narrative Shapes Our Behavior

  • We see the world around us and then make up a story about it.
  • Dreams happen in the moment we wake up, and we try to make sense of them.
  • Choosing a behavior changes our story about it.
  • It's easier to love what you do than to do what you love.
  • Our narrative shapes our behavior, not the other way around.
Why You

Passion as a Choice

  • Passion is a choice, not something to be found.
  • Plumbers can think they found their calling or wish they could sing opera.
  • It has nothing to do with the profession but our narrative about it.
  • Choosing to love what you do means you can be in love with whatever you're doing.
  • It's a choice to love doing something, like writing a blog post every day.
Why You

Learning to See

  • The best creators have learned how to see.
  • They develop good taste and understand genre.
  • Good taste is knowing what your audience wants before they do.
  • Domain knowledge and pattern matching abilities are important.
  • Genre is not generic, and it's important to develop sensibility.
Why You

The Importance of Making Mistakes

  • It's socially acceptable to send proposals and receive rejection letters in the book industry.
  • Learning to see takes time and making new mistakes.
  • Within two years, Seth Godin sold 20 books and did 120 books over 10 years.
  • He could tell about half the time if a book would be successful.
  • Making mistakes helps to develop sensibility and learn to see.
Why You

Seth Godin's Writing Process

  • Seth Godin's first books were "How to Hypnotize Your Friends and Get Them to Act Like Chickens" and "The Fortune Cookie Construction Set".
  • He realized that book people bought books that they were proud of and wanted to talk to their colleagues about.
  • He shifted his focus to making books that would appeal to the gatekeeper and the reader.
  • His blog allowed him to write for his reader without having to please an editor.
  • New York publishing has gone from 20,000 copies being a decent failed book to 200.
Why You

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Why You've Been Lied to About Where to Put Your Time, Energy, & Focus | Seth Godin on Impact Theory - YouTube

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