Friday, April 17, 2009

Soap Box Friday: Are We All Just A little Bit Lazy?

Good Morning Everybody,
At least it's still morning in my part of the world. After a nice meeting with the Albuquerque photogs last night, we slept in a little later this morning and are heading leisurely to Santa Fe for a day or two of R&R before we head to Denver. Yep, lots of driving - lots to see.

I have to say, the last two Soap Box Friday's sure got plenty of play in the "Comments" section. Those that chimed in and voiced your opinion - it is much appreciated because that was the intent. I wasn't trying to pick a fight as much as I was attempting to instigate some dialogue going on about those topics - and the dialogue sure came through.
What I liked about the dialogue is that it did bring to bear some different perspectives on both subjects that have been missed in previous discussions. So, thanks to all who took the effort to post your comments. So, let's get right to today's Soap Box Friday.

Are We All Just A little Bit Lazy?
I hope today's post is another thought provoking topic. As usual, I have some strong thoughts on today's topic so here goes. Are we all a little lazy? The easy answer is that we all are at some time or another. I know that's true some of the time but I want to dig a bit deeper than that.

I hear all the time that we are all so busy and don't have time to learn new information a new software, a new camera technique..... I have to giggle a bit because people say, "I don't have time to read your blog every day." My quick remark is, It takes longer for me to write it than does for you to read it but I still write it every day." Don't get me wrong here - I'm grateful to all of the DPT readers. I crack this comment more as a "tongue in cheek" remark.

The fact of the matter is that many of us may be more involved too much with the busyness of our lives instead of living our lives.

I think the reality is this: If we want to be successful at anything we do, we need to invest some time and effort into the "success" process to get the results we want. Back in 2001 I was touring with my buddy, Ralph Romaguera. Ralph is a Photoshop guru - I wasn't even close at the time.

Ralph made a remark that has stuck with me all these years. I asked him how he got so good at Photoshop. He said he woke up an hour earlier each day and just practiced Photoshop - no phone calls, no interruptions, not much going on at 6:00 a.m. He went to "Self Taught Photoshop School" every morning for years until he became a PS guru. I knew if I wanted to get better too, I should take a hint from Ralph.

A few months ago, I read Malcolm Gladwell's new book, Outliers. The book discussed the most successful people in the world and the steps they took to achieve that success. One of the books observations was that many of these people had applied the 10,000 hour rule to their success. Simply stated, it takes 10,000 hours of study and practice to get really good at something! That's like 250 weeks or 5 years of work 8 hours a day everyday!

What are you doing right now in your own life to achieve your success? What kind of time do you invest in your success plan each day to reach your goals?

The answer for most is not much time at all. Many of us just move from day to day in our lives doing exactly the same thing, and that "same thing" usually has nothing to do with any kind of success goal or plan.

My favorite time of the day is between 6 a.m. - 8 a.m. That's generally when I work on the DPT blog, surf the web for new stuff, or just plain play on the computer trying something new in Lightroom, Photoshop, or what ever. That's the time that's best for me. By the time the day is in full swing, the phone calls, and interruptions of the day tend to negate any real effort I try to make. For others, it's the end of the day after the kids and spouse go to bed, the TV is turned off, etc.

Anyway, the point is to find the time that works best for you to work on your success plan and then pro-actively pursue it. Strive to maintain a "perfect attendance" record for yourself as you work the process. After a while, the process becomes a habit and is much easier to maintain. And, once you've got that "perfect attendance" record going, you don't want to break it - that in itself becomes further motivation to keep working it.

So are we a bit lazy - yes, I think we are. If we want change in our lives, it's time we change ourselves. I heard a quote not so long ago that's speaks straight to that wisdom. It went like this, "For you to get what you are not getting, you've got to do what you are not doing, and think like you are not thinking."

Just Food for thought---

Hey gang, that's it for me today. LaDawn and I are going to nap a little them explore a little of the enchanted lands of New Mexico over the weekend. See ya' in snow covered Denver on Monday, -David


  1. David,

    This is my first post since I started reading your post after the workshop in Tucson. I have a similar quote to the one you used today: "If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got".

    Thanks for the terrific seminar.

  2. Great post! I sometimes feel guilty about sneaking out of bed after my husband falls asleep so I can spend a couple hours in Photoshop improving my skills. Time to shake that guilt and see it for what it is--an investment in our business and "me" time doing what I love best.

    sandi miller
    Queen Creek, AZ

  3. I think this is the first time I've ever felt like commenting on any blog anywhere but you had me right bewteen the eyes with this one - perhaps my wife is right after all, with all the hours I spend reading and practicing, I will eventually become a real photographer.

    Thanks for bringing hope back into this I'm-nothing-but-a-hopeless-hack-project. :)

  4. Your blog is one of the few I so look forward to EVERY Day! I gain so much from your post and I hope to attend your seminar when you come close.

    This post really hit home with me. I hope most importantly that it woke me and everyone else up.

    Thanks for all your wisdom and inspiring all of us to climb the mountain!

  5. I agree with Christy Lynn. If you do not come to Europe then I have to come over to attend your seminar one day.

    I just read a book by Bo Sanchez "8 secrets of the truly rich". He is a phillipino priest, that have some of the same points of view as you. The book is written for poor phillipinos and he states, if you are poor, it is because you can not imagine yourself as a rich person and because you are lazy.

  6. I can't tell about how others feel, but I get up at 5 AM everyday, rain or shine, weekend or holiday is the same to me, to work on my Photoshop & Corel painter skill, for the last couple years. All that and reading your blog has help me tremendously. I guessed it's possible that people just mentally tired, coping with all recent bad news in society. Otherwise, it's more fun to do some creative than anything else.
    Thanks for sharing your life & knowledge with us.


  7. Good advice, David. The 10,000 hour rule is another way of saying 'little and often'. It is equally important to plan or allow for recreational time. Great blog; do you have any plans to instruct in England?

    Balliolman :)

  8. Hi David,
    Delurking to say thanks for the food for thought. It was something I was pseudo-aware of, but sometimes it just takes someone else to specifically mention it to really drive the point home...if that makes sense. Anyway, just started your Kelby training videos! They're great..thanks for sharing all your wisdom with us =D

  9. David,
    Thanks for the great inspiration. I always read your blog first each day. I can't wait for your workshop, only one week away!!

  10. Great post. Your quote below reminded me of great article I read on Lifehacker, Jerry Seinfeld's Productivity Secret. The link is below.

    “Anyway, the point is to find the time that works best for you to work on your success plan and then pro-actively pursue it. Strive to maintain a "perfect attendance" record for yourself as you work the process. After a while, the process becomes a habit and is much easier to maintain. And, once you've got that "perfect attendance" record going, you don't want to break it - that in itself becomes further motivation to keep working it.”

  11. Hi David,
    Just getting through my RSS feed. It's been a genuinely busy few weeks, with a trip to Scotland, and a TV show with a week of 13 hour days. So busy with business rather than busyness.

    excellent post. When you're getting up, I'm just going to bed (albeit 8 hours ahead!), usually after my quiet time of reading and studying. I do need to be ore active with study though as I have a long way to go with things. On the list is InDesign, Javascript and PHP for Lightroom books and plugins.