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Consumption is the First Step for Production

In the last post–Create My Own Set of Reality–I wrote that consumption is poison and we should avoid it at all costs.

I wrote a blog post about producing and not consuming some years ago as well. Many people read it and left good remarks. However, now I realize that it’s not possible to cut consumption completely, and that consumption is necessary as well.

Without consumption you won’t have any ideas, inspiration, motivation, etc. You get ideas through consumption. You need ideas and inspiration to produce which only consumption can provide.

Tai Lopez targets reading one book per day. It’s because book gives you ideas, inspiration and motivation to move forward. A person who reads 30 books a month and takes a key takeaway from the book is more likely to have a better life than a person who reads one book thoroughly in one month, or who never reads a book because s/he wants to stop consumption.

I used to be that guy who reads one book per month. I’m embarrassed to write that I nearly took 3 months or more to complete a book – Musashi. It was around 900 pages long and I only read some pages everyday. It was also because I read cover to cover, and I didn’t want miss a single sentence.

I think that’s not the productive way to read. Of course, you could read novels that way for enjoyment. But if you are serious about self improvement, you need to consider reading more books in less time.

If we were all given a power, Warren Buffet says he would choose the power to read fast.

He is one of the most successful people on Earth. If he says so, you can guess the power of books and how it will help you succeed.

You need to understand that highly successful people also consume. Without consumption, no human can move forward. You read ABCD’s in your kindergarden. Without that, you wouldn’t be able to write or even read this.

The ideas, motivation, inspiration to produce anything comes from consumption. Consumption is the first step for production.

But you need to be aware of consumption. For example, we can divide consumption into groups. Consumption which helps you move forward, consumption which helps you accomplish nothing, and consumption which destroys your life.

Surfing the net, watching YouTube videos, using mobile phone, using social network, watching TV, reading news, etc are destructive consumption. You want to stop them immediately.

Now we have another set of consumption which helps you progress and improve yourself as a whole: reading books.

By the way, you want to read books that will help you improve, mostly classical novels, biography and self-help books. You should try limiting consumption of modern pop novels.

That’s the next level. First thing is to start. You have to start somewhere either by reading modern pop novels or old classical novels or biographies of successful people.

After you start, you can consider the advice I presented above. All of the advice I wrote are like sign posts in the road. You are the one who’s walking, and I’ve posted sign posts on the road.

So now as soon as you read this, I want you to label all the consumption materials in your life. Either it’s destructive or not. If it helps you accomplish something or not. How much idea does it help you generate and all.

TV, mobile, YouTube, social media, etc are examples of destructive consumption. Remove them immediately.

Reading is a good consumption. Fill all your time with helpful consumption or production. Life’s too short to waste on destructive consumption.

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  1. Your writing is getting better all the time, man 🙂

    Glad you’re into Tai Lopez as well. I find his podcast very insightful and inspiring. I’ve been reading a lot more since learning that he manages to get through a book a day. Last month I started 14 books and finished 16!

    I don’t think all your examples of destructive consumption are valid. TV, mobile, YouTube and social media can all be used constructively. For example, you could watch documentaries on TV, use an app like Headspace on your mobile, and watch educational videos on YouTube. On social media you could opt to only connect with people who inspire you to become a better version of yourself.

    So it’s never so much the medium that’s the problem, but how we choose to use it. Water supports life, but misuse it and you die 😛

    • Yo, Niall!

      Your writing is getting better all the time, man 🙂

      Thanks. You helped me plant the seed for writing. I’m always grateful to you. You helped me establish this blog, motivated me to write everyday and also improve my writing skills. I’ve never looked back since. Everyday, I’m just writing and posting. And as you said, it’s getting better day by day.

      By the way, I’m starting to send out custom newsletters, not the automated RSS anymore. I think this is a better approach. However, I’m still experimenting. 🙂

      Tai Lopez is the man! Glad I found him through one of your Facebook post. I’m also starting to read a lot after I started following him. Almost like 1 book per 2 days. I’m having difficulty reading 1 book per day, but I guess I’ll be able to catch on slowly.

      I don’t think all your examples of destructive consumption are valid. TV, mobile, YouTube and social media can all be used constructively.

      Right on! I had that in mind but didn’t add it to the post. Adding that, even thought it’s a short sentence, would take me more time to write and polish this blog post. I’m concentrating on shipping. Writing something and then posting quickly, instead of trying to create a perfect blog post. One of my weakness is not posting a blog post trying to make it perfect. I figured that’s exactly why I couldn’t publish a book, or at least a manifesto. So, that’s why I’m practicing shipping. Writing what you have in mind and then posting quickly. There are disadvantages (like this one where I don’t explain things properly), but teaching myself how to ship is far important to me than that.

      So it’s never so much the medium that’s the problem, but how we choose to use it.

      Love it!

      • Hi Manish! I recently followed you and like a lot of what you say here.

        I’m an avid reader myself and a lot of what I read falls into the fiction category. Coming from a design and advertising background, I find that the more creativity I open my mind to, the better I’m able to formulate creative ideas. I would argue that books that are well-written and convey worthwhile messages/ideals are books worth reading, especially for creatives, because consuming is key to the mental digestion and information-gathering stages of idea-making. I think this can also hold true to modern pop-lit.

        • Hi Renee,

          Thank you for the follow and comment. Glad that you liked the post.

          I agree with your comment, but it’s not always easy to find books that are well-written which convey worthwhile messages/ideals. When I go out of recommended books, I read books without knowing if it’s well-written or if it convey’s a worthwhile message. So, sometimes I find gold, and sometimes there’s very little key takeaway from the book. But I’m happy nonetheless because it at least helps me practice increasing my reading speed. 🙂

          How to you usually find books that are well-written which convey’s worthwhile messages/ideals?

  2. Amazing article, I definitely try to model myself after Tai Lopez, he truly inspires me to be the best version of myself. I recommend him to anyone seeking guidance.


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