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#15: Fear of Creation
#competence #taste #creation #social-media #product-management
👋 Hello and welcome to this week's edition of Pursuit. In a world where we are drowning in information but starving for wisdom, I spend over 10 hours each week learning about living a fulfilling life, productivity, and building great products. I feel grateful to bring the highlights of my findings to you, saving you time in your search for wisdom. So go ahead, give it a try, and subscribe now if you haven’t already.
This week’s discovery:
🏆 In Love with Competence - #competence
🍷 Notes on “Taste” - #taste
🐍 The Fear of Creating Things - #creation
📸 The Overdependence on Images in the Modern World - #social-media
🎢 4 Types of Risks in Product Development - #product-management
⭐ A series, productivity tool, and music tracks…
🏆 In Love with Competence
Most smart, high-achieving people are in love with a specific form of difficulty: the ever-escaping measure of competence. It’s an obsessive, all-consuming desire. Resulting in late hours, large volumes of caffeine, and little sleep. Competence is more fulfilling than love, more delicious than rest — it’s so tangible, measurable. The euphoria of feeling useful, valued. But a question I asked myself recently: who is judging my competence? The more I rely on an internal source of belief and security, the less I’m yanked or seduced by the dominant currency of external approval. Perhaps this is the only way to achieve validation and competence in a way that is internally true and loving. Ask yourself this: In total silence, total invisibility, when no one knows your name, when no one judges, when no one even looks — what do you choose to do, who do you choose to be?
🍷 Notes on “Taste”
Appreciation is a form of taste. Creation is another. They are often intertwined, but don’t have to be. Someone could have impeccable taste in art, without producing any themselves. Those who create tasteful things are almost always deep appreciators. Though taste may appear effortless, you can’t have taste by mistake. It requires intention, focus, and care. Taste is a commitment to a state of attention. It’s a process of peeling back layer after layer, turning over rock after rock. While taste is often focused on a single thing, it is often formed through the integration of diverse, and wide-ranging inputs.
There’s also a difference between expensive and tasteful. If rich people often have good taste it’s because they grew up around nice things, and many of them acquired an intolerance for not nice things as a result. That’s a good recipe for taste, but it’s not sufficient and it’s definitely not a guarantee.
☝🏼That’s why I think people with new money are almost always tasteless!
🐍 The Fear of Creating Things
This is by far the most important thing to realize about that fear of creating: it doesn’t go away. You just get used to it. But that can only happen if you start making things. If you sit around fretting about how scared you are, you’re not getting used to the fear. You’re just making it bigger in your head. You can’t get over the fear until you start doing the thing that you’re scared of doing. And then your clever little brain will say “well, I guess I have to put up with this now,” and start tricking you into not being so scared anymore.
📸 The Overdependence on Images in the Modern World
In our modern world, we are bombarded with images of suffering and violence. We can easily become desensitized to this reality. As members of Western culture, we have developed a Hollywood muscle that allows us to transform even the most horrific events into mere spectacles. We view everything through screens, creating an emotional distance that prevents us from truly grasping the reality of what we see. It's easy to become an image junkie, consuming pictures and videos passively and without thought. But we must be careful not to drown out our emotional response to real suffering. We need to critically examine the images we consume and actively work to maintain our empathy and compassion for our fellow humans.
🎢 4 Types of Risks in Product Development
Value Risk: will the customer buy our solution, or choose to use it? → Responsibility of the product manager
Viability Risk: will this solution work for our business? Is it something we can effectively and legally get to market, sell, service, fund, and monetize? → Responsibility of the product manager
Usability Risk: can the user easily learn, use and perceive the value of the solution? → Responsibility of the product designer
Feasibility Risk: do we know how to build and scale this solution, with the staff, time, technology, and data we have? → Responsibility of the lead engineer
⭐ A series, productivity tool, and music tracks…
I just finished the third season of Godfather of Harlem and cannot recommend it more. Brilliant acting, mobster backstabbing, and revolution.
Akiflow: If you feel overwhelmed with managing your time and get bombarded by emails and tasks every day, Akiflow can be your savior. It uses a technique called time-boxing and with it, you can experience a game-changing difference in your productivity.
🎧 You’ll find mostly Ethnotronica, Organic House, World, and Organic Electronic here:
Previously on Pursuit: