[Creators Spotlight]: I define success as freedom, that is the ability to spend your time however you want - Nabil Alouani
In this series “Creators Spotlight”, we are asking our creators about their journey. Watch out for them sharing their journey and getting candid with us. Today we have with us Nabil Alouani. Nabil, a consultant, writer, and speaker, shares an inspirational story about his physical transformation and talks about his love for writing.
Creators are the heart and soul of Tealfeed. As they continuously work towards feeding us more information every day, it's only fitting to bring out their journey for the world to know.
In this series “Creators Spotlight”, we are asking our creators about their journey. Watch out for them sharing their journey and getting candid with us.
Today we have with us Nabil Alouani. Nabil, a consultant, writer, and speaker, shares an inspirational story about his physical transformation and talks about his love for writing.
Continue reading to find out more!
Who has been the biggest influence in your life? What lessons did that person or those people teach you?
The biggest influence in my life is always the author of the book I’m reading when someone asks me this question. Right now, I’m reading Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s books, and he’s definitely leaving a hell of a mark on my mind.
Taleb taught me two major notions and a long list of implications that derive from them. For instance, the notion of Black Swan refers to extremely rare events that have massive effects on the world. The name comes from the fact that humans used to think all swans were white until they found black swans in Australia.
The tricky part about Black Swans is they seem predictable and even reasonable after they happen. That’s because humans are very good at weaving coherent narratives to explain random events. Psychologists call this phenomenon the hindsight bias and we experience it all the time.
For instance, the rise of the internet is a Black Swan. Looking backward, it makes perfect sense that the tech is literally everywhere. But if you read newspapers from the 1980s, you’ll find that many journalists predicted that the internet was just a whim for nerdy people. They thought it was nothing important, let alone powerful enough to change the entire world.
Black Swans aren't only positive though. You have negative ones like the 9/11 attacks on the two World Trade Center towers. Similarly, the attacks tend to seem predictable in hindsight, but the reality is much complex than that.
The second notion is Antifragility but I won't develop it here. I wrote about it on Tealfeed though.
Tell us about your childhood, what was the best part? Is there any specific incident that has largely influenced the kind of person you are today?
I grew up as the fat kid of the class. As if that wasn’t enough, I was also nerdy as fuck. It was so easy for other kids to make fun of me. Then one day, I stood naked in front of a mirror and made myself a promise.
The next day I subscribed to a Kung-Fu club and started to run on a regular basis. I lost over 30 kilograms (66 pounds) in three months. This happened during the summer and I was 14 or 15. On the first day back to school, people didn’t recognize me. It was like one of those movies where the fat character disappears and comes back fit and well-dressed.
I still remember the looks on people’s faces. I also remember myself thinking: “What are you gonna say now, shitheads?”
That episode of my life taught me two things. One, life is much, much easier when you’re fit. Two, nothing worthwhile comes easily. Nothing.
Where is your hometown, and what was it like when you were young?
My home town is in Tunisia, a country in North Africa. I was super lucky to grow up in a house with a big garden. I played with sand all day and made up some imaginary characters in my head. I’m also ultra grateful that the kid of the neighbors was my age.
We became best friends and we both happened to love computers and video games. Those days were pure gold.
How important a role does content play in your life? Are you a full-time content creator? Why you started creating content?
I started writing full-time in late 2020, one year after I accidentally decided to try my hand at it. The trigger was a suggestion from a friend.
He noticed how excited I’d get about all kinds of stuff I’d discover in books, podcasts, and YouTube. “Hey dude,” he said. “Why don’t try writing that shit on a platform?”
At the time, I had no idea that suggestion would change my life. But it did.
I also have a few side gigs that involve ghostwriting for clients and helping them with decision-making and marketing.
What are you up to currently and what are your long term career goals?
I’m building an email community where I share decision-making tips, business-related advice, and tech news.
I’m also working on an ebook that’s coming out by the beginning of 2022 (hopefully).
I don’t believe in long-term goals. I believe in systems. My current system is simple: write every day, learn useful and cool stuff, and stay open to possibilities.
So tomorrow I could be running a podcast, helping a startup, or consulting for companies.
What drives you to create content regularly?
One of the best ways to build a better future is education. I’m not talking about going to schools and getting degrees. I’m talking about self-education, pursuing your genuine curiosity.
My job is to give people who follow their interests the tools and ideas that can help them achieve what they want to achieve.
I also love writing so fucking much.
What’s success for you and when you would consider yourself to be successful?
I define success as freedom, that is the ability to spend your time however you want. That’s why I’m a big fan of wealth-building. You see, money buys you time and if you learn how to spend that time wisely, you reach success.
This doesn’t mean beach all day and party all night. That’s rubbish.
You want to spend your time on the things that matter like family, health, passion, meaningful work, creativity, and curiosity.
What’s that one aspect of being a content creator no one talks about?
Research. Whether your audience is composed of dozens, hundreds, thousands, or millions of people, you realize that what you say matters. That's why you want to be careful about your explanations and your reasoning. Sure, there's always room for personal opinion but your personal thoughts should derive from an objective starting point.
For example, fact: nuclear energy produces less carbon footprint. Opinion #1: we should prioritize it and find solutions to deal with the waste, like sending it to other planets. Opinion #2: Nuclear is still dangerous. We shouldn't consider it as a solution. We should use all of our resources in renewable energy tech.
In both cases, you start from an objective statement and derive a subjective statement.
Research first, opinion second.
What’s the most satisfying part of being a content creator?
When you learn that people you admire read your work.
What’s the most challenging part of being a content creator?
Balancing quantity and quality. You need both and sometimes finding the right ratio can drive you crazy. If you focus too much on quantity, you produce work that you're not really proud of. If you focus too much on quality, you end up procrastinating because it's hard to get everything just right – and so, you keep delaying.
If you want to get shit done, you have to compromise, and compromising is hard.
How do you make sure that you aren’t affected by nasty comments and negative things said about you?
I pay attention to criticism against my ideas. That type of negative feedback is amazing. For instance, I’d say “Tesla’s bot is useless,” and people would contest that with concrete arguments. That often leaves me excited to learn more and grateful for having thoughtful readers.
In contrast, I do my best to ignore criticism against me personally. That type of feedback is toxic and doesn't help. If someone tells you that “Your bald head looks like a monkey’s butt,” just ignore them. Nobody won anything by insulting others, except politicians – and let’s be honest, most politicians suck.
Anything else you would like our audience to know about you!
I love pizza and decentralization, to a point.
Who’s your favorite creator?
Oh, I have a couple of them. I like Mark Manson and Darius Foroux a lot. I also enjoy the content of Un Créatif, a French-speaking Youtuber. Nogi-san is my favorite artist on Instagram. She uses the traditional Japanese ink style in an extremely creative way.
What made you opt to become a creator on Tealfeed?
It’s a knowledge-sharing platform, exactly the type of place where I want to be.
How would you want people to remember you?
I don’t want people to remember me. I want them to remember my words, especially these five: “True masters are eternal students.”
To every individual who’s planning to start out as a content creator, what would you like to advise them?
Consume good quality content. Create. Analyze your work. Repeat.
Few maintain consistency, few remain unique, and fewer are the ones who do both of these right, and earn a spot in Tealfeed Spotlight.