On core values, responsiveness, and content

On core values There are a couple levels from which to analyze your activity (or anyone's). The most important is at the highest or lowest level, whichever you prefer to call it. All outward appearances and actions are driven by core values, not the actions themselves. Nobody gives to charity because charity in and of itself is positive. Charity is just an outward reflection of a core value that calls on people to give and be gracious towards others. As you look at your actions and what you enjoy doing now, you should inquire about the values that drive that behavior. Do you write because you value ideas or do you write so you can share your thoughts? Or is it something else? Of the things you're interested in, what is the underlying value that drives your interest in them? Understand how you are pushed and pulled in different directions and you will be better able to stick to your values and improve them along the way.

On responsiveness The only reason you would like to responsive to your emails, texts, and messages of all sorts is because of vanity. You want to be liked by the people who reach out to you so you try to respond as soon as possible. I'll question you on this, then—what happens if you don't respond? Will these people banish you from their lives because you live as well? Of course not, and if they do, you've got a serious problem on your hands. While you should be responsive and pay attention to the people who care to speak to you, you must ask yourself how much of your time is yours. If none of it is yours because you exist at the whims of other people, then you're not living at all—only existing.

On content When does this pay? When does the money come from this endeavor of writing that you dedicate yourself to? Never. Never is the simple answer. The more complicated answer is that you value learning above all. Through your writing practice, you are writing more than most people at any age and, therefore, you're learning more. Is this not more valuable than any immediate payday you might get from writing? Content marketers make mistakes when they put the marketing before content. Focus first on creating valuable things for others and learning while you do it. Being paid to do it comes much later.