Create more than you consume.
That’s it. That is THE key to productivity.
Thanks a lot for reading this blog post. I’ll see you later.
I recently downloaded a self-help book (it was being promoted for free) entitled Create Or Hate: Successful People Make Things. At the time, I wondered at my interest in it, because I am already creating. I have stepped into my purpose and know I am going to eventually make good money from it.
But Holy Spirit is wonderful at getting my eyes on just the right material at just the right time. There is one gem in that book I needed to hear, and it was summed up in one of the chapter titles: “Create More Than You Consume.”
I didn’t actually read the chapter. I didn’t read most of the chapters. You see, I set a boundary for myself a few months ago that the first time I encounter the “f” word (yes, the one that rhymes with “buck”) in a book, I would stop reading it and remove it from my Kindle.
This book is apparently peppered with variations on the word. I actually gave the author a second chance and kept reading after the first infraction, because the content was otherwise really good.
But alas, he had to write it again. Then I looked at the chapter titles and found that he actually has a title with the “f” word in it.
Sorry, Charlie. It is gone off my Kindle.
But I got out of the book what God wanted me to, and that was the truth that if you want to be productive, and therefore increase your risk of becoming successful, you need to create more than you consume.
The great evil of technology
People think life today is so great. You can download any number of books from Kindle every single day without paying a dime. You can talk to any number of people on the Internet social networks. You can look up anything, anytime – as long as you’re in a place that has decent Wi-Fi – with your smart phone.
You can spend hours entertaining yourself with YouTube videos and reading debates on online forums.
While all these various tools that modern technology has brought us have their advantages and can be very helpful, they have led to a national epidemic: wasting time. How?
And the unfortunate thing is, people stop right there. They blame an inanimate entity on their failure to produce. What they don’t think about is that this failure to produce is what leads to failure, period.
Self-discipline is just a spank away
Another excuse – much older, by decades, at least – that people make for lack of productivity is, “I just don’t have the self-discipline.”
Well, the first step is connect with your heavenly Father, the Creator of the universe. Because in doing so, you receive the wisdom and power of His Spirit. One of the fruits of walking with that Spirit is self-control.
Hmm. Makes me think that a lot of people who claim to be connected with Father really aren’t. (?)
But I digress. Achieving self-discipline does NOT require any of the following:
- a degree in rocket science. I do not have one, and I have had many people comment over the years on my level of self-discipline.
- attending conferences led by self-help gurus. I’ve never attended a single one.
- reading dozens (at least) of books by self-help gurus. While reading a few books to get you inspired is a good thing, reading dozens or more every year is a procrastination technique. (Remember – create more than you consume.).
- shelling out your life savings to a so-called dream/life/whatever coach. Then again, when you learn to discipline yourself, you become your own coach.
What achieving self-discipline does require:
- time, and
In other words, you need to develop good habits and healthy routines.
And here is where the proverbial spankings come in. Change is painful.
Even positive change.
Do I have lecture you about the great benefits of making positive changes over the pain of giving up bad habits? Thanks. I didn’t think so.
Let’s mosey back over to that “create more than you consume” thing.
I read this on the wall of a third-grade classroom
When I first started teaching, it was in third grade, and one of my colleagues had a banner on her wall that read, “What is the best use of your time right now?”
You’ve probably heard that before. Some employers have a poster with the same question up on the wall in order to inspire their employees to higher productivity.
I want to amend that saying. Make it specific: What is the best use of your time right now, if you want to be as productive as possible?
There are two things you can do with your time:
- Consume, or
When you read books, you are consuming. When you are catching up with all of our friends and family on Facebook, you are consuming. When you are actively listening to music, you are consuming. When you are watching videos, movies, or T.V. programs, you are consuming.
You are creative and don’t know it
What about creating? What does that look like? When you writing a report for your employer or supervisor, you are creating. When you are writing a blog post or book, you are creating. When you are dancing, you are creating. When you doodling, you are creating. When you are drawing a picture, you are creating. When you are painting a room in your house for decorative purposes, you are creating.
When you are writing a poem, you are creating. When you are building a birdhouse, you are creating. When you are planting a garden, you are creating. When you are improvising a favorite recipe, you are creating. When you are having unprotected physical intimacy with a person of the opposite sex –
(Okay, just seeing if you’re still paying attention. 😉 )
How many of us actually spend more time creating than consuming?
I don’t. Or, I haven’t. But I’m working to change that.
That’s why I’m writing this blog post now. I am writing it while I drink my smoothie instead of reading a book.
Well, let’s look at a few what if’s, shall we?
- What if you spent an extra hour a day writing that novel you think you haven’t had time to write?
- What if you spent an extra hour a day practicing the art of oil painting?
- What if you spent an extra hour a day whittling toys?
- What if you spent an extra hour a day choreographing music?
- What if you spent an extra hour a day blogging?
- What if you spent an extra hour a day making crafts or sewing clothes?
- What if you spent an extra hour a day inventing new recipes?
- What if you spent an extra hour a day playing an instrument or singing?
What do you think? Do you think God would look down and see what you were doing with your gifts, talents and skills and say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been a good steward over little, so now I will reward with much”?
What do you think?
Want your life to change? Create more than you consume.