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Here's some tough love:


If you want to be creative, be an artist, you need to get over it!
Worried about looking bad on your social media or your blog or YouTube channel? Check out this article on 6 famous writers who wrote insane pieces of trash early in their careers.
Or Google Larry the Cable Guy's early work before he developed the character/persona that made him a mega millionaire. "I don't care who you are, that's funny."

Anything you want to do, be, or create -- do, be, or create it. Start now.

Don't worry, you're probably not going to piss people off more than I did when I was doing my character research for how to communicate my climate change research with impact and empathy -- as a prolifically crass far right conservative white heterosexual male who:
  • expressed angst for benefiting from a "racist institutional policy" due to my diversity status as a Hispanic, 
  • put pseudo-scientist atheists in their place with a picture of the last paragraph of Stephen Hawking's book where he states in unequivocal terms that if the Big Bang is true then God must have created it. Cheeky Brit literally wrote "God" as the last word in his book, lolz, what a pun-y guy, 
  • outed certain religious scholars as knowingly miss-communicating the big-bang theory, and the scientific method in general, to be divisive for their own political/power purposes,
  • told the religious and scientific communities that if they don't want humanity to turn into the Borg by the end of the century then they better quit their immature politicking and come up with a cohesive narrative (which they're working on and promoting now, good job, my fav community!)
  • called the post-election science marchers "a bunch of button-pushing fluff writers who couldn't science their way out of a paper bag", and then went to a peace and love rally wearing nothing but American flag underwear, and posted pics giving free hugs to strangers by the light rail, with the Mother Theresa quote,  “I was once asked why I don't participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I'll be there." Here's a recent pic of me collaborating with students in my cohort, who were advocates of the science marches, literally science-ing our way out of a paper bag. LOL, good times. =)
  • told some bigoteering anti border security person to tell the families of the people killed in the 911 suicide bomber attacks that they're being "islamophobic", and posted pictures of the twin towers on fire,
  • then converted to Islam for a month to practice Ramadan, including no food OR WATER during sunlight hours, in June in Arizona, and then basically called other Muslims pansies for getting out-performed at their own religious practice by a crass gun-toting American. Don't worry, no tried to blow me up. None of my Muslim friends got upset either, but rather enjoyed the unconventional positive PR and follow-up conversation as I was asking them about the Koran, which I read every day during Ramadan. Good stuff. I'll write more about that later.
  • wrote that I don't get sexually involved with women who self-identify as feminists because contrary to popular prejudiced female-victimization and man-bashing rhetoric, I require my relationships with my sexual partner(s) to be mutually-supportive and growth oriented.
  • compared Trump and Hillary to Perseus and Medusa--and more broadly 3rd/4th wave feminism--with--let's just say a lot of colorful artwork. Btw, more and more prominent women are stating that they do not self-identify as feminists, e.g. of top women in STEM here
  • wrote that about 9/10 of the academic and government papers that I've reviewed on climate change -- in my Doctoral studies at ASU, where I've found math or statistics errors -- have had those errors in a way that made the results look more significant. e.g. CEC staff paper here (industry gold standard) which details the error in the ARB Climate Change Scoping Plan, the 20ish papers in this national-level study of climate change impacts on coal and natural-gas plants, and the 20+ years worth of climate change research papers I cited in my first academic publication where I invented new math to better quantify global warming and the actual risks to electric power reliability. My intention was to develop my prior conference paper on potential for systemic outages in the electric power sector into a more thorough and comprehensive piece for a Journal, but upon realizing that the relationship between air temperature and peak demand was the most critical factor, I decided -- to the dismay of some and the delight of others -- that there weren't any methods published good enough to build another layer of estimations on top of estimations yet. That they were all speculative correlation, with no engineering-based causality theory of how the man-made infrastructure system works. So I made my own. Validated it. Got my committee to accept it as my comprehensive exam, give me some good input/feedback on fleshing out the narrative in a palatable manner, and got it published on first submission in a top-tier academic journal with only minor nitpicky clarifying comments about the language in a few places. Martian style. (True story: I took an astronaut's electric power system's course in 2011, and got an interview with him to do my doctorate -- obv did not make the cut; he was in overwhelm anyway picking up students as friend/colleague & my would-be advisor recently passed away. No hard feelings.)
  • provoked a juvenile cyber-spat with an actual crass far right conservative, and climate change denier, and then met him at his church the following month, where we both apologized and shook hands. Btw, here's a powerful provocation for anyone who would deny that environmental impacts or climate change is a problem, "Okay, go in your garage, leave the door closed, and turn on your car. Feel free to stay in there for as long as you think emissions from burning fossil fuels are harmless."
  • called out a lot of fear-mongering divisive rhetoric as being just that, and more...

Thank you for your service.

And I'm still alive to tell about it! So don't worry. "Those who mind, don't matter, and those who matter, don't mind." Keep shipping content.

Remember President Barack Obama's first appearance on Jay Leno's show, where he made fun of himself (bowling I think it was) and how he could be in the special Olympics? Guy visibly bit his lip on camera after he said that, and then Leno just moved the conversation along like the world-class interviewer that he is. Wait a sec... Google searching, and yes, here it is, including Obama's apology. Where was the outrage? No one cared. And neither should you. Keep shipping content.

  
I don't agree with Zig 100% on everything he says, just 99.99% of it. And I say that confidently because I have consumed every one of his intellectual products I could get my hands on after I heard the first one. I would definitely want to hire him if he were still alive. RIP

Still nervous? Remember all the terrible products big "successful" companies have made? Exploding cell phones, broken vehicle accelerator pedals, mad-cow burgers, hair in the salad, that time Tony Robins promoted ionized water, every product recall ever. Somehow they're still in business! So, don't worry about it. You are not going to be perfect, focus on making your product/service, making it better, making yourself better, and keep shipping content.

Saddam Hussein - If you have a person, you have a problem If you don't have a person, you don't have a problem!
 Only brutal dictators have 100% approval ratings.
Because they murder anyone who disagrees with them. =)

Thanks to the internet, high-speed streaming video, and the general decentralization of media influence/power, we have more opportunity to communicate, connect, and publish content than ever before. As Tony Robins would say, "We are drowning in information, and starving for wisdom." So, the last person you should let discourage you from developing your creative voice is some archaic gatekeeper of a troubled institution.


Classic Breitbart. I've written about the problems with MSM before.

In the event that you find yourself facing someone trying to oppress your voice (which is different than tough-love coaching or supportive course-correction -- Jim Van Fleet's Conversation Power has a bunch of great how to lessons on that in an emotionally intelligent manner for when you've got people causing problems in your organization in the future), then remember the following. The predictable thing about people who are fear/power/money-centered, is that you can generally trust them to do what they think will avoid their worst fears or get them the most power/money. So change the incentive structure, change the metrics, change the channel, unsubscribe, boycott, etc and they'll adapt. (or evolve or die). Especially if you're blessed enough to live in this beautiful US of A where we get to breathe the sweet air of freedom every day. Exercise your freedom of speech. If you don't use it you lose it. Because at the end of the day, the people trying to put you down, trying to shut you down, the naysayers, if they exist, are now your followers! They're hanging on your every word. They're the Apple customers waiting in line in front of your store for hours to get your next product release. I'll give you a moment to let that sink in. Think about it. If your content didn't matter, if what you had to say was unimportant, if you were insignificant, then why would they be consuming it!? They wouldn't. They'd be too busy focusing on with their own business to worry about what you're doing. So, again, don't worry about it. Keep shipping content. You are a creator, you are anti-fragile. Don't be afraid to pay the inevitable "hater tax" that comes with your success. Like your first lawsuit, your first haters are just evidence that you're moving up in the world. Congrats! =)


The more you do, the more you're going to fail. The more shots you take, the more misses, but also the more scores too. Training (not practice, training) is the only way to get your percentages up. The bigger the impact you want to make, the higher the stakes, the more scrutiny you're going to be under. Like a spotlight and a microscope -- all -- the -- time. So start now. Start getting used to it now. Start getting used to people hating on you, spreading rumors about you, trying to deceive and manipulate you, politicking against you--feeling threatened by you. Welcome to life. It was insane when I was president of the STUDENT government at ASU. And what did that even matter? One of the many perceptions used against me was that everything I did was meticulously calculated all the time. No. Some things I did/do are... e.g. my formal research. But even that's not perfect. "All models are wrong, some models are useful." On day to day basis, I'm just a guy, who's gotta get the food to his mouth like everyone else. I put some words on my blog like other creative writers, and then I get out of bed and put my pants on one leg at a time like everyone else..


 But without flying lamas. =)

If you have any hesitation about sharing the journey of honing your craft and your character, then, first, I recommend you read more biographies. Second, I suggest you ask yourself, what is the risk?
  1. People dying?
  2. People getting injured?
  3. People getting offended?
If someone makes me chose between 1, 2, and 3, I might respond
Maybe a bit harsh, but so are the working conditions for the field workers who put their lives on the line every time mother nature lets one loose or some of us civilians do something stupid like drive into a power pole. So, you don't have to agree with all the commander's decisions, but you better respect the troops.
 
In a parallel universe, I'm pretty sure I'm a lineman.

"You are a work of art, and an artist at work", so don't be afraid to show the making of you as it's happening. Keep shipping content. Seek all the feedback you can get. Take all the input you can get.  Keep getting better. At 13:00, "You never get so wise that you do not need advice. Stupid people think that wise people don't need advice, and that's why their stupid. Wise people need less advice, and seek it more. Stupid people, need more advice, and seek it less. So here's a great way of knowing where you fall in the stupid-wise spectrum. If you're asking people for input & council in your life, you're wise. If you're just looking for people who agree with you, you're being stupid." Adapt, evolve, pivot. For the love of whatever you want to do with your life, before you die -- keep shipping content.

Happy Black History Month.

P.S. Maybe in another generation (next POTUS or two?) we'll re-brand to "slave history" month. Because liberty is not a racial issue, it's a human issue. And "slave" is the word my high school English lit teacher, and the school's wrestling coach, told us to say to ourselves when we were reading Huck Finn, after he went to a school board meeting in his free time to prevent the banning of the book. Mr. Faust. What a great man. Keep shipping content.







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