What school didn’t teach you, part 6: Creative productivity and success for artists

Become a confident beast with my Shamelessness course on Udemy

High school and university failed us all. While they taught us things like algebra and history, we weren’t taught any of the things we actually needed to know to create a successful, high quality life! In this series of 6 videos, I’ll try to teach you what school failed to do:

1) How to build self confidence

2) How to be good with money

3) Dating and relationships skills

4) Confrontation skills

5) Critical thinking

6) Creative productivity

In this sixth video, I explore how school let you down – despite being highly structured and disciplined, you never learned how to be productive and creative at the same time. The world is missing out on great artistic talent because school squashed it, and people don’t know how to make money from their art while still enjoying it.

Dan’s Top Resources


Dan has 3 bestselling non-fiction books available in both written and audio form:

  • The Naked Truth, his latest release, shows you how radical honesty builds self-confidence and relationships
  • Nothing to Lose explores how to build confidence from the inside by correcting the programming in your brain
  • The Legendary Life is a very practical, action-focused guide on how to plan and execute a life plan that brings you your ideal lifestyle

Online courses

Dan continues to put out high quality online self-paced courses through the Udemy platform

Full transcript (unedited)

Welcome back to brojo online. Today I’m going to record a podcast that will also be a series of videos about what they failed to teach you in school. Alright, the final lesson that they didn’t teach you in school, there’s others I could have thought of, but I can’t be fuck doing a longer podcast on this. And that is disciplined in product of creativity. Now, despite the fact that they do teach art at school and artistic pursuits and creative pursuits at school, and they do really structure and discipline students, somehow, artistic creative people come out of high school without being disciplined and productive, and must have fucked that up. It’s mostly because arts are shit on by schools, aren’t they creative pursuits are seen as an optional extra that you should do in your spare time, that won’t make you any money. In spite of the overwhelming interest. That’s one of the best ways to make money. So school is full of fucking shit on this one. And you’ve got to dismiss that squashing of creativity that schools put you through, you have to understand school was wrong about the creative arts very, very badly wrong. And that actually, the person who’s bold and willing to put on the work when it comes to creative pursuits, is more likely to be successful than the person who did well at school supported studies. Creativity isn’t just some wild thankless painter for splashing stuff against the walls and doing whatever they feel like requires discipline to be productive creatively. Think of it like a chessboard, you can move the pieces any way you want. But there’s rules about how they move and where they can go. And that’s what creates a good chess game. So creativity requires boundaries and structures and disciplines and habits, for actually the full artistic form to take place. If you’re just wild, you’re not going to produce shit, you’re going to face a lot of barriers to being productively creative. Mostly all the school conditioning stuff you can have shame about it, you’re going to think that it’s going to ruin you financially, you’re going to have fear of failure and judgment, you’re gonna feel like you should be doing something serious and steed is going to feel like it’s wrong to have fun, so on not going to be able to cover all of those in a single rant. But bear in mind that those are all conditioned program problems that were given to you by school and by society, and they are all fucking bullshit. Just look at Beyonce, right? I mean, just look at the artists who don’t have those beliefs. mega mega successful never have to work a day in their life. Now they have structure and discipline that we’re going to talk about here, but they just don’t have that shame, bullshit beliefs that school gives most people is how to be a productively creative person, versus the ABCs, which in my business means always be coaching. What it means is always be pumping out content, no matter what quantity is actually the key to quality. Wherever you’re at former’s, you should be practicing it every day, you should be creating pieces every day. Forget being perfect. Forget getting it right drafts, draft after draft after draft. If you’re a painter or an artist, you should be doing at least one full picture every single day, even if it’s total crap, and it goes straight in the bin. If you’re a musician, you should be coming out with new riffs and new song lyrics every single day. If you’re a sculptor, you should be playing with putty in your hands every single day should be putting pieces out just pumping them out. I don’t know how many fucking hundreds of videos and podcasts are put out. I’ve done two books or two more on the way three more on the way, pumping, pumping, pumping, because all of this is your experience. It’s your education. It’s how you become a master of your craft. It isn’t about getting one piece perfect at the beginning. It’s about doing so many pieces that you end up being the master do it for you to avoid that fear of judgment. So whenever you go to create something, give yourself permission to not share it. And you might change your mind and share it later. But initially, just do a few just do it to practice your craft to enjoy the results. Whatever it is that you do it for. Without this pressure like this should make me money other people need to like this or whatever, maybe nobody else gets to see it or hear it or whatever, that’s fine. Give yourself that permission so that you’re free to create without restriction. Structure your art into your day. You know, Stephen King, the author has pumped out over 80 novels is one of most prolifically published authors on earth. He writes every single day for at least a couple of hours in the morning. He has a structure that he follows. So he doesn’t actually write that many hours. He just does it every day frequently at the same time. At least that’s what he says. This is the key to being productive artist every day should have a chunk of time blocked out for you to do your art and peace and quiet without interruptions. And just pump out stuff all the time sharp at the studio no matter what mood you’re in. Try to pump something out, show up again tomorrow. Repeat, repeat, repeat, focus on piecemeal improvements, you know, forget terrorists, maybe today we’ll just focus on a slight deviation to your picking technique. Or if you’re an artist, maybe going to try a new different shade of blue to see how that works. Or maybe if you’re a coach like me, you might try and pick a more aggressive person than usual. See if you can coach them, just can’t say pick a tiny element of your art to work on and focus in on that rather than trying to be a better artist as big general thing that will intimidate the fuck out of you. Just pick away at all the different elements of potential improvement that you can whatever interests you. Like, I remember playing a song and guitar, but I can’t quite get there as triplets. So I go to video like how do you do triplets and I had to spend a day doing triplets just so I could play this one song, right? attack it and these tiny pieces based on what you need to learn next, or what you want to learn next, rather than trying to become something big in the future, constantly research successful artists, but not to compare yourself and feel bad about yourself. Because that’s a little trick artists like to do to give themselves an excuse not to keep going rather look into the history as to how they did it. How did they make it as an artist? What exactly were the steps from zero to hero, at some point, they were just a kid playing around and the parents backyard or whatever. So they were zero at some point. And then something happened, they did something now what you’re gonna find is very few of them discovered overnight successes, almost none of them were you going to see is there’s patterns and trends to how they did things different to how you’ve been doing things, you’ll see that they, for a lot of them, they didn’t get conditioned in that way from school, or they got out of school early. So they weren’t programmed into thinking that there was something to be ashamed of, or they lived in a neighborhood that supported that. So you can think, Okay, let’s start with the idea that what I’m doing is okay, let’s treat it like there. And then you’ll notice other trends, they do lots of hard work, they courageously promote themselves, they get rejected 1000s of times, they create connections in the industry that break the rules of their art and do something new. And you’ll see, well, they’re all doing stuff that I could do. There’s nothing about the path to success as some supernatural thing that I can achieve. And it’s not even really about good luck either. It’s about hard work and consistency and structure and discipline over time. That’s all, I really believe that anyone with a natural talent, any particular art form, could be successful enough to create a full time income from it. If they follow the principles that other artists have followed. It’s as simple as that. And I think deep down, you know it to be true, but you try to use other people’s success is like an excuse, like, oh, they just got lucky. And so I can’t do it. It’s bullshit, there’s a school conditioning, like there should go, it’s not true. Create each piece of art for a single person, keep a single person in mind, try and make their day think of a gift you want to give somebody, you might never actually give it to them. Rather than trying to create something that will be popular or trying to create something that will make money. Just think of serving a single person. You know, you’re a musician, you know, somebody really struggles with anxiety. So you create them this really like peaceful song that they can repeat when they’re feeling really anxious. You’d be amazed at how popular song like the count. You know, when I create this podcast slash video series, it’s because one person commented, I wish they taught this in school. And it made me think a bit that person would like if I did a whole range of things they didn’t teach in school. So I’m making this for their one anonymous person. I’ll put it out to many more people just in case, but I’m willing for this to go unnoticed in history. I’m just making this one person because it makes me feel good and keeps me pumping stuff out, some of that stuff becomes very popular, some of the dies and internet death, it doesn’t matter. I’m just going to keep pumping out because usually I’m serving at least one person. And that’s good enough for me. And lastly, and I think this is a good one to finish on. Because it applies to all the things they didn’t teach you in school, you have to face your fear of death every single day, you have to look in the mirror every day. And say if this is my last day, am I okay with the way I’m living? In terms of being an artist, you say? When I lie on my deathbed one day in the future, and I look back at today. And I saw that I chose not to do my art because I was too tired. How will I feel about that decision? Constantly remind yourself that you’re going to die. And that all the decisions you’re going to make are going to be reviewed one day as you look back on your past. I mean, you’re already doing it when you look back on your past. So don’t you want to be proud of those decisions? So the biggest thing school did not teach you was how to face your mortality and do what’s right rather than than what’s easy or what numbs you or what gets approval from society. I hope this podcast and series was very helpful to get in touch if I can help you further We talked about coaching or I can just answer your call Questions or whatever I’ll see you next time

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