Tag Archives: Transparency

What is it like to follow your passion?

I gave a talk on following your passion at PressNomics 6. This is the companion article that I wrote for it.

Most of us dream of following our passion. We want to do things that we’re enthusiastic about every day. We hope that, by doing that, we’ll bring eternal happiness to our lives.

But is that how happiness really works? And what is it like to try to follow your passion that way? Can it even lead to success?

I’ve dedicated the last few years of my life to “following my passion”. It’s been an eye-opening journey full of interesting choices. It did bring me happiness, but it definitely came at a cost.

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How I marketed and published a niche WordPress book

A few weeks ago, I released my first book “Discover object-oriented programming using WordPress“. The book had $11,040 in sales during its launch week. This went above and beyond the expectations that I had for how well the book would do. (I would’ve been ecstatic if it’d made even half of that.)

But before I go any further, I want to do a small preface. What I am going to talk about isn’t anything that I really figured out myself. All that I did was read a lot of what others had done and then tried to do it myself in my own authentic way. (That last part is super important though!)

I’m especially thankful to Nathan Barry and his book “Authority“. (Sadly, he doesn’t sell just the book anymore.) I’m also super grateful to Paul Jarvis who’s inspired me to have my own quirky voice through his newsletter. He and Justin Jackson (not the basketball player!) taught me that marketing didn’t have to be this slimy thing if you were authentic about it. (Justin has a course on marketing for developers.)

That’s also why I’m taking the time to write down all my thoughts about this experience while everything is still fresh. (Much like my year in reviews.) I was only successful because other people shared how they approached marketing and self-publishing a book. I want to do the same by sharing as much information as I can for anyone interested in marketing and publishing their own book.

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2018 in review: A challenging year

We’re almost at the end of 2018 and, like everyone else, I l do a review of my year. It’s been a few years that I do it now. My first review was for 2012-2015. I’ve done one for 2016 and 2017 since then.

As usual, I’d like to open up by talking about why I do these years in review. If this is the first time that you read one of them, you should know that I write them mostly for myself. I find it useful to have a historical record of what I was thinking during the year. So it’s important to write it while it’s still relatively fresh.

I also do this so that I can be transparent with you. I live a pretty non-standard life. I don’t want people to think that it’s just all sunshine and rainbows. It’s useful to see that there are always tradeoffs and that it’s not for everyone.

And finally, it’s a way for me to also keep track of my progress. Progress towards what? As I’ll talk about later, the answer to this question isn’t as clear to me as it was the previous years.

But again, that’s the goal of doing these reviews. I love documentaries where you can see how someone’s experiences shaped their path through life. It’s always my hope that these reviews also help you reflect on your own as well.

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2017 in review: YOLO

2017 is coming to a close and with it comes the shower of yearly retrospectives. Well, I’m no different from everyone else in that regard! I did my first year in review two years ago covering 2012-2015. And I also did one last year for 2016 only.

If this is the first year in review of mine that you read, you should know that I do them for transparency. I want a historical record of what I’ve done that’s as faithful as I can make it. That means writing it down as close to the time that it happened as possible. I don’t keep a journal (nor do I want to) so this is as close as I’ll get to that.

It’s also a way for me to keep track of my progress towards where I’d like to see myself. I don’t keep a yearly goal list or anything like that. But I definitely have a vision of where I’d like to be and whether I made progress towards it or not.

Needless to say, that this article is more for me than for you. But I think there’s always something to learn from other people’s life experiences. (That’s why I love documentaries like “Abstract” and “Chef’s table“.) I hope that me sharing this helps you through your own journey through life.

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How I setup my 2016 MacBook Pro

So this is another article that I’m doing for myself and also to be transparent. I don’t change my computer often (My old computer was a mid-2011 MacBook Air!) and I usually use the opportunity to review my workflow. This time around I wanted to document the process in some way.

The initial plan was to do something like this. That said, a few people told me that it would be something useful to write down. So this is what this article is going to be about.

Since everything is still quite fresh, I can walk through my thought process. I think it’s useful when you’re trying to make decisions whether this tool is useful for you or not. We don’t all work the same way so my workflow might not fit yours.

It’s also worth pointing out that this is going to be macOS centric. I haven’t developed on another operating system in a long time. So you might not get as much out of this if you’re using Windows or Linux.

Alright, so you have your new MacBook Pro box in front of you! You’re ready to get going. You unbox it, boot it up, set up your account for the first time and get to the desktop screen. What’s next!?

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2016 in review: #Carl2016

Well, we’re almost done with 2016! Around the same time last year, I did my first year in review. (In reality, it was more of a 2012-2015 review!) I want to continue this trend by doing a review of this year.

It’s a way for me to be transparent about what I’m doing. It’s not something that I’m good at. (The most common question I get is still “What do I do?”) It also lets me document what I’m doing to see if I’m making progress towards where I wanted to go the year before.

This means that this article is more for me than for you. That said, I think there’s a lot of value in reading how people are navigating the complex game of life. (Not that game of life!) That’s why I like reading them!

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2015 in review: Teaching everything I know

I feel I should have done this a few years ago. I know that it’s pretty common for writers to do these “year in review”. At this point, I think it’s good for me to be open and transparent about what I do. I always admired Buffer and their values so it’s my way to emulate them a bit.

That said, it’s also useful that I have something written down. Our memory has a tendency to alter facts when we just tell the story over and over. This creates a historical record that I can refer to. (Why yes, I am a history geek! What makes you think that?)

In order for this review to make sense, I’m going to have to give you a bit of a background on my current situation. I don’t want it to appear to you that I got to where I am overnight. There’s a story and that story will give you some context about where I am today. It’ll also help you understand how I’m reviewing my year.

With that out of the way, let’s begin!

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