My Plans for 2020 (and beyond)

My Plans for 2020 (and beyond)

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17 FEBRUARY 2019

written by Mike

my plans for 2020

 

Long time, no see.

I haven’t been uploading anything for a while. It would be easy to blame it on work, business or life, however looking back I have to admit that it just wasn’t my priority.

Not only that. I was also contemplating why I even keep the website, and what should I do with all of it.

To cut the story short, after a few months of thinking, I’ve decided to change a few things. Before I get into the details, I wanted to talk about what prompted me into further action.

After attending podcasting meetups and workshops here in the UK, I’ve noticed that not only the space is vibrant and exciting, but also there is a massive opportunity for growth and development.

Because in my work, we usually deal with the US market, it seemed that podcasting is a matured industry. With big companies, spending and marketing campaigns.

However, when I looked at the UK and Australia, I noticed that the medium is not where the US partners are, and it is still finding its voice on the global stage.

Having the privilege of my experience in the space, I thought, how can I help and be a part of the evolution?

With that in mind, I developed a plan for this year. It will move me into the direction of growing this website as well as available resources in the podcasting space.

Here are the areas that I will be working on going forward.

 

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WORK

The work on Casefile will still be a priority and the main thing that I do daily. We have a strong team of highly skilled and capable people and are planning on creating more of what we do best – high quality, in-depth true-crime podcast.
Besides that, we also have several projects under Casefile Presents umbrella. All of them being produced by talented and passionate people, from many different backgrounds. With the Casefile Presents projects, I will be taking more of a ‘head of production’ role with the final feedback and say on the content. However, in a couple of the projects, I will be taking an active part in audio producing and possibly music composing.
It looks like it’s going to be a busy and exciting year.

WEBSITE

The website is being redesigned with a new look. More sleek, modern and kind of a Blade Runner vibe. There won’t be many changes in terms of the content here, just a facelift.

BLOG

I don’t have massive plans for the blog. The idea is to (maybe) release a new article per month.
I am keeping with the style that I developed in the past – audio, podcasting and work topics. However, it depends how much time I will have left after the new venture that will be taking a chunk of my day.


YOUTUBE

I thought about starting a Youtube channel for a long time. I’ve even released some video tutorials in the past on Youtube (they are gone now), but it never felt like a good time to start.
Few things aligned lately. Moving to a new house, I finally was able to secure small dedicated working space for myself, where I could see the videos being filmed there.
Two, I finally felt that I was ready to talk about podcasting ideas and problems as I think that my experience taught me a few things over the last four years.
Three, my brother wanted to move from his primary skill, photography, into video making. As we live together, this presented an ideal situation for him to learn the ropes and for me to get the production for a ‘family’ rate.
And four, I thought that if I don’t start now, I will never do it. It seemed that there wasn’t a similar channel about what I want to do and I knew that once the Casefile 2020 schedule kicks off in February, I won’t have time to do the Youtube. So during our break from work, I prepped everything and laid the foundations for the channel, which will make the work streamlined throughout the year.

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BOOK

For a long time, I was bothered about the fact that my book wasn’t properly edited and proofread. I’m not a native English speaker, and I knew my writing wasn’t as good as I wanted it to be. Therefore I decided to send the manuscript to a proper editing house.
I’ve also added a few updates as the book was written in 2017 and a few things have changed since then.
The book will be updated with a new cover on the Amazon store.

COURSES

The first thing I wanted to do is to take the course off the Udemy platform and move it to my website. I will be doing that in the coming weeks. It will offer me more control and better conditions for future courses.
I’ve written another two courses – both about podcasting. I’m planning on recording and releasing them here this year.
I also have vague plans for another two (on podcasting again) however I will see how I get on with other tasks.

EVENTS

There are quite a few podcasting and true crime events planned in the UK this year. I will try to attend these and in some cases, have a small exhibitor’s table too.
Networking is something that I want to work on and getting out of the house will be in no doubt helpful!

These are my plans when it comes to the professional side of life. There are some changes, but it is more about doubling down on podcasting and my work.
Ultimately we will see how it all develops in the coming years, with the acquisitions, consolidations, rules and maturity of the medium. I am excited for any new challenges that it brings.

That’s it for now!
The first Youtube videos are out now, and there are many more planned. It’s an exciting experiment for me, and we’ll see how it progresses over the year.

Thanks for reading. Speak soon!
Mike

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Discipline equals Freedom

Discipline equals Freedom

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17 MARCH 2019

written by Mike

DISCIPLINE EQUALS FREEDOM

 

When I first heard the phrase ‘discipline equals freedom’ said by Jocko Willink – ex-SEALS commander, author, businessman and podcast creator it immediately spoke to me.

Can these different terms be somehow related?

Can discipline be the ultimate ticket to a good life?

Most people value freedom, how much, they only realise when it’s taken from them.

During the war or under oppressive dictatorships, it’s easy to define freedom, and it’s easy to fight for it – the enemy is clear.

But what about fighting for it in 2019 in the UK, one of the strongest economies in the world?

There is no call to arms, the government is elected with a democratic vote, and most people are free to choose the life they want. In my opinion, there are still freedoms we all fight for, but on the personal, individualistic level and discipline can help to win that fight.

Financial Freedom

First freedom that most people in capitalistic societies fight for is financial. To be able to know that you have your basic needs covered – shelter, food and clothing.

What is beyond that? Once the necessities are taken care of?

To me financial freedom means being able to do what I want, to buy what I need and to go where I want. To you it may say something different; however, we can agree – it means a worry-free life with enough cash to satisfy the needs.

Discipline helps to achieve that freedom when we budget, when we save and when we track our spending.

Financial discipline means understanding how the money is made and the best way to grow it. It means knowing what delayed gratification is and why buying a new gadget with a high-interest credit card may not be a good idea.

 

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Life Freedom

Another freedom most of us want is freedom of choice in life. To be able to do what we want and when we want it. To be able to take a day off without asking anyone, to have a free evening, to pursue that long-forgotten hobby. There is no one forbidding you to sell your possessions and vagabond through life, be a nomad, to live outside the system.

However, most would like to have that freedom and also enjoy the comfort of well-functioning societies – that is more than likely impossible to achieve. But, disciplined life and adjusted routines can help to achieve the freedom you want.

The first step would be to write down goals and tasks for each day, for a month, for the whole year and stick to them.

The second step would be to get up early. Getting up and doing the essential tasks such as exercising before work, means more free time later.

Third would be set times for breakfast, lunch and dinner and to know what you will eat. It eliminates the need to think and leaves more time for productive tasks.

The rest of your schedule will be empty slots where you can do what you enjoy doing.

Work Freedom

The last freedom that we fight for is to do meaningful work. How many of you had a job when you caught yourself thinking 

What am I doing here? I am capable of much more. I should quit and follow my passion, just like I heard people say.

Well, unfortunately, the world doesn’t work like that. We need money to survive and to earn it we need to have skills that people value.

If you want to be in the position of choosing your work, you need to have the leverage of expertise and authority – disciplined learning will help to achieve that.

An example would be a novice guitar player who can only play few chords, however with everyday practice and right discipline in a place he or she can become master guitar player and have freedom of playing whatever they wish.

 

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The first time I understood the value of discipline and importance of consistency was when I was a teenager, and started attending a music school for guitar.

Like most people, I had many different hobbies, and procrastination being the major one. Before I signed up for school, I had a one-to-one interview with my future to be a teacher. Still, after all these years later, I can remember the exact moment and what he told me.

He said that he could see the passion in me for music and that he would take me under his wing; however, he also cautioned me. He told me that once I get older, go to university, find work and start living an adult life, I won’t have too much time to practice – so the time to do that is now.

If I focus on practising the skill now, it will stay with me forever.

I took it to heart, and for the next couple of years, I stuck to a strict plan that I wrote to myself – exercises, improvisation, songwriting, theory. I practised on average 6 hours a day and got good, fast.

Looking back at that time, I can say that he was 100% right. After I left school, I left the country, studied, worked and lived the adult life. And just as my mentor predicted, the guitar sat in the corner, gathering dust. Even now, being busy with different projects, I rarely pick it up just for fun, and I have two guitars within reach of my hand.

However, when I do pick it up, the memories come back. Of course, I can’t play as good as when I was a teenager, but I wouldn’t be afraid to play in front of you and given a month or two I’m sure I could go back to a better form.

It opened my eyes on what is possible when you apply discipline and consistency to daily life. I’m not going to lie; during my studies, I forgot that lesson and enjoyed living the student life for a while.

However, once I decided to leave work and start a business, I knew that there is only one way to achieve the freedom I wanted – discipline.

So what kind of structure I’m looking at, and how could you apply it to your life?

Everyone is different, what works for me won’t necessarily be good for you, but I promise that some kind of framework and planning will almost always work in your favour.

I try to keep my days open and flexible, but there is a strict structure of some elements.

Waking up in the morning is the biggest one, I get up between 6.45 – 7.15 am depending on a day. Next, it’s coffee and protein shake as well as cold water on my face – it will wake me up if you still feel a bit tired.

I sit down in front of my computer, catch up on emails, news and other things like social media, I also look at my schedule for the day and start working down the list. I keep a record of tasks for the day that I cross off once the job is completed 

About 9-9.30 it’s breakfast time – oatmeal with fruit. I watch something on YouTube or documentary on Netflix during that time.

After that is work time till around midday when I usually go to the gym for about an hour (martial arts training three times a week), after the gym, it’s lunchtime.

From lunchtime to evening (probably around 8/9pm) I work my list of to-dos for the day, with a break for a protein shake and few mini-breaks to stretch and stand up from the computer.

In the evening is dinner time, watching something and reading before bed. Unless I have classes or someplace to be. I try to be in bed around 11 pm.

It may seem like it’s very strict and structured life. However, the discipline also allows me to be very flexible with the day. If my list of things to do for the day is short, I will spend free time reading or doing other fun activities.  And most of the time when someone asks me for a favour, or if I have time to meet up or go out, I can say yes.

Why?

Because I know that I’m not running late with anything, I know that what needs to be done, will get done. I understand that discipline and consistency allows me to have the freedom to say yes.

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