THE BASIS POINT

2020 Resolution: Write 366 Straight Days, Ditch 7 Excuses

Julian Hebron The Basis Point New Year's Resolution 2020

Here’s my top work-related New Year’s resolution for 2020: write 366 straight days, starting with yesterday’s Nights, Weekends & 3 Phases of Success.

It’s still holiday quiet period so I’m writing some work/life stuff now.

But stay tuned, my signature deep-but-readable fintech, banking, real estate flow will return better than ever.

It’ll return later today in fact.

Because “today” is my theme for 2020. I must be productive today.

Not yesterday, not tomorrow. Today.

Why? A few reasons.

First, writing the basis of the work I do advising banks, fintechs, lenders, and real estate firms. It’s how I research, interpret, and simplify technical topics.

Second, speed is a necessity and daily practice is the only way go get faster at clear, accurate analysis. I get asked all the time how long my great posts took to write. Truth: the great ones can take days. But I’ve also done many in minutes. The 2020 goal is minutes.

Third, no excuses. In 2019, I rationalized that revenue comes before writing. But in 2020, I want writing (and its associated research and analysis) to be the basis of revenue generating activities.

Below are solutions to my 7 go-to excuses, so I can look at this on weak days in 2020.

Writing Excuse 1: This Will Create Risk

The Basis Point must maintain credibility with audience, customers, and media syndication partners. I froze up Q4 because a giant syndication partner doesn’t want posts like the one I’m writing now. So I created a way to exclude these from the feed. I also freeze up when I think industry players or readers might perceive bias. But I always find a way to make each piece work. I can’t explain how to get it right, I can only show you. Hence the resolution of just writing more.

Writing Excuse 2: Client Work Comes First

Capacity is everyone’s biggest problem. I’ve said The Basis Point is the hub and compass of my professional life, and I must double down on that in 2020. The more work I do here, the easier my client work is. Everything here is a warm up for client work, and no time here is wasted time.

Writing Excuse 3: I’ll Hold This Till Timing Is Right

I always hold off writing/finishing pieces because of news cycle, site order, or attention-getting strategy reasons. My strong sense of timing is a strength that’s turned into a weakness. And my obsession with site order is a joke. Nobody cares about the order of posts like I think they do. I must write stuff as I have the ideas, and publicize posts again whenever timing reasons become relevant. Which goes to another weakness: I’m a terrible promoter. Also must solve that.

Writing Excuse 4: This Can’t Publish Without Artwork

I’ve been militaristic on this one to a fault. But one positive is that I developed an arsenal of branded content franchises in 2019, which means every post can have an art element even if it’s not original art I do with our creative director Dennis. So I have no “but I need art” excuses left in 2020.

Writing Excuse 5: I Must Perfect Post SEO First

I learned in 2019 that ignoring SEO for the sake of speed was a huge mistake. So I started to take it seriously (using Yoast) at the post level, and I get obsessed with obtaining green lights for both SEO and readability. The SEO discipline is useful, but I need to chill on readability. I think following a machine algo on readability can strip voice. And it definitely wastes time.

Writing Excuse 5: WordPress Is Bugging

All my WordPress is custom thanks to my developer Alex. But all custom jobs need tinkering. Yesterday while we were working on some newsletter functionality (yes a newsletter is finally coming 2020!), it broke how I like to write. I had to use visual instead of text editor. No big deal for most. But I paused until it was fixed because I found it too distracting. Must learn to live with such distractions.

Writing Excuse 7: I’m Traveling

I travel all the time and I hate writing on planes. Spotty plane connectivity is excruciating and exhausting. I need to get over this immediately. For now, I’m going to experiment with writing offline.

If you have suggestions on this last one, I need help here!!!

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Hope this helps you as well.

And hope you follow along with The Basis Point’s Money, Homes, Tech, Work, Life themes.

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