“How do you do it?”
That’s the question I’ve been asked over the last few years, in which I’ve been able to produce over 500 articles and videos, land the #1 post in the world on CNBC, be featured in Apple News, Inc. Magazine, and the Huffington Post.
Truthfully, most people aren’t looking for the how, they want to know what I use to do it. These are my best recommendations:
I’ve used Evernote for the last 5 years or so, ever since I heard about it from Michael Hyatt. These days, I mostly use it to capture my stream-of-consciousness writing. That’s a little embarrassing, since it can do SO much more.
Yep, this is the one area in which I NEED a physical product. My moleskines will be my legacy. They hold everything from new ideas to personal reflections to meaningless doodles.
If you are looking for writing prompts, Quora is the best place I know of. When you are an active participant in Quora, you will never wonder what to write about again.
Here is where I do the majority of my blogging. What most people don’t know is I built my early following of several thousand people on Medium without a website. Medium lets you get back to what matters most – writing.
The very first email I sent from Convert Kit, I received over 30 replies from my readers. I didn’t receive 30 replies in two years combined with Mailchimp. Once I made the switch, I wondered why it took me so long. For more information, here’s a thorough post of the benefits.
The industry standard as far as I’m concerned, though probably not for the reason you think. You must have a home base to make traction online, and WordPress will help you build one.
Again, the best to get you started, and I’ve found the hosting to be completely reliable as I’ve grown from 0 to 2,000 or 3,000 visitors weekly.
Ben and his team are phenomenal. They always make sure my site is speedy and flawless. Whenever it breaks, they have it back up in less than 24 hours. Always. Honestly, it’s worth the price for me to not have to think about it.
Adobe Premier Pro
This is what the team and I use to edit Finish Friday. Final Cut Pro is also a good tool, but I find Premier is a lot more accessible to the average person (like me).
This is what I use to create all the call outs on my show as well as the YouTube thumbnails. If you’re looking for a free alternative, try:
This is a free Photoshop alternative with almost all of the functionality. Like Audacity, this tool has plenty of tutorials online and can get you started with graphics editing fairly quickly.
This is a free audio editing tool with TONS of free tutorials and resources available online. I don’t use it for my videos, but with any audio-only content, it’s my first choice.
My wife talked me into upgrading from an iPhone 4 because she wanted me to have something more reliable. I had no IDEA how much this change would also impact my writing and business here. I use this to film the show, cut short videos for social media, write posts, send emails, etc. People are always shocked when I say this, but I bet a good 25% of the work I do is done mobile.
You see this in my show as my “notes.” Other than a reading device, that’s about the only thing I use it for these days.
This thing is SWEET. I used the pre-order royalties from my book to purchase this microphone and record the audio book in my home. It was a bit of a splurge for me at the time, but much cheaper than a studio. After a bit of research, you’ll have no problem making your own setup.
I found this Tripod for phones to be enough for what I was looking for when I started the show. It fits great for my iPhone and is sufficiently stable.
I have 3 basic clamp lights up in my office to film Finish Friday. A friend of mine gave them to me for free, but they are pretty inexpensive anyway.
Yeah, yeah I know. You expected to see a mac here. Truth is, I’ve got a Lenovo that is WAY juiced up with the help of some friends. It’s like the Incredible Hulk of Lenovos. It’s not the best if you have a lot of audio content to record, but other than that I haven’t had problems.
Books / Podcasts
This is the only book I recommend which actually sent me the WRONG direction. Once I recovered from trying to make a physical product, though (yuck), I found the principles in here to be invaluable.
Want the truth? I only read this book because it was free and all I had was a kindle at the beach. But BOY did it change my life. If you are an aspiring writer, I consider this a must read.
This is probably the first book I read in the personal development genre. One exercise in particular changed the way I think about life to this day.
Money isn’t everything. Money management is everything. My parents raised me on Dave Ramsey, and I find his approach to be straightforward and simple.
When my health fell to a million pieces, I literally could make no progress. This body is the only one I have, and I will not be casual about it.
See above 🙂 Shawn Stevenson is one of the best podcast hosts I’ve heard, and the information here is incredibly helpful.
Although I typically steer away from “entrepreneur fuel,” this podcast is one of the few I listen to because Eric Thomas and his crew talks about more than just business.
Know about something I don’t? Email me your favorite tool any time: firstname.lastname@example.org
Much love as always: