Wetting your feet in this content creation world may seem confusing at first, especially when you are figuring out your niche as a new content creator. You get hyped up because of the possibilities, but when you sit in front of the computer with a blank word doc, not knowing what to write or what to film, it can get pretty emotionally stressful and demotivating. You turn off your computer or switch over to Netflix to try to drown your sorrows.
First of all, fuck that. We’ve all been there. But it’s time to face your fears and look at yourself straight in that mirror.
I encourage you to invest time in understanding yourself better by doing an exercise called “ikigai.” Ikigai is a Japanese concept that means “a reason for being.” Essentially, finding out what your purpose is. The word “ikigai” is usually used to indicate the source of value in one’s life or things that make one’s life worthwhile. The direct translation of ikigai is also “thing that you live for” or “the reason for which you wake up in the morning.”
The reason for which you wake up in the morning.… this could be even profoundly frustrating even to read because you might be thinking… “yes that is everything that I want, but I am stuck in this 9-5 job and not sure how to get out of it, how to be financially stable, let alone be completely confident that this is a gig I can actually be successful in.”
Being a content creator allows you the opportunity to reflect the present you on what your purpose is to open a new door to a chapter to fulfill yourself. You. This exercise about yourself will clarify and articulate what you can give back to the world, and in this case, content or information to share on the internet. Discovering your ikigai is said to bring fulfillment, happiness, and make you live longer.
“Your ikigai is at the intersection of what you are good at and what you love doing,” says Hector Garcia, the co-author of Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life.
Garcia writes, “Just as humans have lusted after objects and money since the dawn of time, other humans have felt dissatisfaction at the relentless pursuit of money and fame and have instead focused on something bigger than their own material wealth.” This has over the years been described using many different words and practices, but always coming back to the central core of meaningfulness in life.
Ikigai is seen as the center point of four primary elements:
- What you love (your passion)
- What you are good at (your vocation)
- What you can get paid for (your profession)
- What the world needs (your mission)
So now ask yourself these four questions as you are filling out your ikigai with this free PDF print-out downloadable here:
1. What do I love?
2. What am I good at?
3. What can I be paid for now — or something that could transform into my future hustle?
4. What does the world need?
We are all unique. It doesn’t matter if someone has done it before, or something similar. Do you know how many Marques Brownlee (YouTube Tech Reviewer), bestdressed (YouTube Fashionista Ashley), and Casey Neistat (YouTube Filmmaker) there are? There’s actually a lot. But there are also a lot of fricken people in this world who are attracted to certain personalities, styles, and information. They gravitate to certain unique qualities of each content creator. And you, my friend, have a unique quality that the world is ready to see and attached themselves to – they are just waiting for you to make that content.
If you’re starting a channel, welcome to the club. You’re a filmmaker. You’re in the game now. Minus well put in your best effort.– YouTuber Peter McKinnon