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So I just read the book “Show Your Work!” by Austin Kleon, a very short one that you can finish in under an hour even if you read slow.

The book was written ages ago (speaking in terms of how fast things develop on the net), but there were a few insights that triggered something in me to sit down and write this post.

And since I’m sitting here writing, the book, however short it is, works! The proof is right here.

Austin explains how showing your work, however incomplete it is, actually has great benefits to it.

Most people seem to be interested not only in the “final product” that you create but the actual nitty-gritty of what goes on behind the scenes, the process, which is far more interesting.

This way people are more likely to resonate with you, and you attract the right type of audience that you can deliver value to.

Entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk also says in his videos, that you should “document the process”. This message honestly never sunk into me until I read “Show Your Work”.

I’ll summarize my insights below and who knows, maybe you’ll find it valuable.

You actually start taking action, instead of “thinking about taking action”

Honestly I spend a lot of time thinking, more than I actually dare to admit.

It’s so hard to take action on something if you don’t know if the action that you take is worth it or not.

I mean you don’t want to waste your precious time, life, and energies on something that has 0 return on investment.

But I realized that there is another perspective to it. Just by formulating your thoughts down on ‘paper’ or a blog, you begin to:

  • See things more clearly.
  • ‘Brain dump’ what’s on your mind, leaving space for creativity and lightness.
  • By teaching and showing something, you actually learn something in the process.
  • You get things done, get the wheel turning.

So just by starting a blog, showing people your work, and not expect anything in return except giving value, opens up doors that otherwise would never budge for you.

Another book that spins back to this idea is “The Slight Edge” by Jeff Olson, that by taking small, seemingly insignificant steps, daily, you move towards what you want to achieve. And it all starts by taking action, however small it is.

In other words, the act of starting a blog and sharing your work is fundamental to achieve whatever you want to achieve. Deep-stuff.

It’s actually insane, that with a cold and fever, I’m sitting here typing effortlessly like it’s nothing (note to self whenever you feel stuck).

Remove the fear of being imperfect, be the ‘Amateur’

Honestly, it’s so refreshing to just sit down and share, without the fear of expecting anything, that I potentially can help and give value to anyone reading this.

Free from Keyword Research, SEO, Blog post length, right formatting, affiliate links, and whatnot is liberating. Does this mean that this post will move the needle? Probably not (like 99% sure).

But what I’m finding right now, is that this kickstarts me into doing ‘the other work’ that DOES move the needle, which is amazing.

So how to remove the fear of sharing your work, I’ll let the author explain:

The best way to get started on the path of sharing your work is to think about what you want to learn and make a commitment to learning it in front of others…

…Forget about being an expert or a professional and wear your amateurism on your sleeve. Share what you love, and the people who love the same things will find you.

Amazing and that’s what I’m going to do, let’s test this hypothesis for real.

Even professional MMA fighters that excel in their craft say that, when you enter a Dojo, you are a white belt.

This opens them up for learning, improving, and be just 1% better which does all the difference in a pro fight.

You can’t find your voice if you don’t use it

Honestly, this has bugged me for the longest time, and the above title explains it all in one sentence!

  • What is my voice?
  • What should I talk about?
  • How should I present it?

Austin is right, if you never use your voice, how will you ever get it? So just start doing it, and let the process sort this one out for you.

Don’t be a Hoarder

I’ve learned a lot of stuff during the past 2 years that’s related to self-improvement and entrepreneurship, I even take notes in my journals. So why not share my insights with the world?

In the end, we all have the exact same fate, death.

Now I don’t mean to become all morbid on your ass, but there are so many insights to have if you just contemplate and become AWARE, that one day your life will end.

And if you can share your work and make someone’s life better before the time is up, then you left this world a better place.

This is a point that both Austing, and Mark Manson from the book “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck” goes into in more detail.

Conclusion

That’s all she wrote, 3 great insights from ‘Show Your Work!’ that somehow clicked for me.

This is by no means a book review, but if it was, I would say that the book itself is so-so, intially I was dissapointed until creativity struck me.

You could say it connects a few dots that you might not have seen otherwise.

BUT, it’s not about the length, but the message, and the value. And if there’s just one little idea that resonates with you to take action, then it’s worth gold.

Now over to you, have you read the book?

Or have you learned something from this blog post?

Share your work! (pun intended).

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