Why You Need to Create More Stuff: Ideas Expire

If you're a creator (whether you're creating written content, videos or anything else), you need to focus on creating a lot and publishing fast.

In this previous post, I've laid out why you should focus on quantity instead of quality for your content marketing and here's a mental reframe you can use if you're stuck in the perfectionist mindset.

Today's video adds another reason why publishing often and fast is so important.

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As with the last video on this topic, I'm trying to demonstrate the point I'm making. Yes, it's a crappy phone video, but if I had planned to make a highly produced, studio quality video on this topic, this video simply wouldn't exist. My time is limited and sometimes, getting the message out is much more important than the production quality of said message.

What's your take on this? Do you enjoy these off-the-cuff videos? Do they inspire you to make more content yourself? Or are you still skeptical?

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P.S.: We recently launched the ActiveGrowth Podcast! Check out the intro episode here and click here to find it on iTunes.

About the Author Shane Melaugh

I'm the founder of ActiveGrowth and Thrive Themes and over the last years, I've created and marketed a dozen different software, information and SaaS products. Apart from running my business, I spend most of my time reading, learning, developing skills and helping other people develop theirs. On ActiveGrowth, I want to help you become a better entrepreneur and product creator. Read more about my story here.

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  • John says:

    I didn’t have too much to say. The video is good and I had to laugh at the idea graveyard idea. That gave me a picture of my graveyard. It’s huge!!! Mausoleums and headstones as far one can see!!! LOL

    I really wanted to try throve comments now that I see it here. So far it looks better to me than jetpack comments but I like the social-sign on feature of jetpack (it actually does increase commenting when I use it)

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      Thanks for your comment, John! Good to know I’m not the only one with a graveyard of ideas…

  • Lorenzo D says:

    You are on fire these days. The thing I wonder when I look at these videos is “how does he keep it all together”? I mean, I could see it if you had only Active Growth – blog posts, often with video, plus content-rich, innovative podcasts, with future series of episodes already planned, and you are constantly interacting with followers, and strategy, experimentation, promotion, probably product creation. Ok, that’s a high-tier but fairly normal digital entrepreneur thing.

    BUT, you are also the main guy in Thrive Themes, which has been growing like a magic bean plant and, I would imagine, increasingly complex to manage. Presumably, you also have a personal life. (Or do you?) And knowing you, I would think you train fairly regularly.

    I’m really enjoying this new AG reboot, the marketing stuff is helpful and inspiring. But maybe, time to start talking about the personal growth side of things again, because I think you are reaching interesting new levels.

    OT: where are we with Thrive 2.0? Time to harvest another 700 comments with one of those sneak-peek posts :)

    • John says:

      Lorenzo, since you brought it up (the TCB 2.0 sneak peek) did you not notice that you are using one of the things mentioned in that video?

      Overnight, they appear to have installed Thrive comments here!

      Still, I want TCB 2.0 AND comments AND the theme!!! LOL

      • Lorenzo D says:

        I seem to remember Shane saying these on AG are NOT a version of Thrive Comments…not yet. Did that change?

      • John says:

        It’s true – way back when Shane did that video, these were vanilla wordpress comments. Last night, however, they changed. I’m surprised you didn’t notice the many clues: 1) the reply buttons are styled and have the author name in them; 2) after you comment, a thank you notice appears and has share
        Links for the article.

        Consulting “inspect element” in my browser reveals that the comments now have CSS classes with “thrive comments” in them.

        So they activated thrive comments last night for this blog.

      • Shane Melaugh says:

        We’ve actually had Thrive Comments active here on and off a few times. But yes, what you’re looking at right now comes from the Thrive Comments plugin. :)

      • Randy Cavanaugh says:

        …AND the Thrive University plugin to replace the Apprentice feature in a few themes… :) P.S. hard to wait patiently!

      • Shane Melaugh says:

        We’ve got dozens of people working feverishly to bring you all of this. :)

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      Thank you, Lorenzo!

      There’s no short answer to your question. It’s a combination of practice, systems and a team of people helping me out. The kind of “productivity leverage” that I do is something I’ll definitely cover on the blog, as well.

      There’ll be more news on TCB 2.0 soon enough. :)

  • Shama says:

    This is a really important concept, that ideas expire. You are so right, I have had many moments when I had a great idea, a great story in my head, but I didn’t act on it because I was waiting for a better time to do something with it. And then, the idea expired. Later I looked at my notes, and couldn’t relate to them anymore. Thanks for sharing this. I will take this to heart!

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      Thanks for your comment, Shama. Good to know that you can relate to this problem as well.

  • Mary says:

    This was an awesome perspective for us perfectionsist out there! I never thought of this like this before, but now that you mention it this has happened to me thousands of times! I’ll remember this post the next time I’m tempeted to leave a nice idea for ‘when I have time to do it better’.
    Thanks a lot Shane, it’s always a pleasure to read/watch your stuff!

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      Thank you very much, Mary! I’m glad to know you found this inspiring.

  • Susan says:

    I have learned so much from the content that Thrive Themes puts out, from Shane and Hanne, but I have to disagree with the use of the term “expire.” Ideas don’t so much as expire as we lose our enthusiasm for an idea. Losing enthusiasm is not all bad, especially when our attention might shift to another subject that we can better explore and showcase. Basically, our enthusiasm might “expire” but, if an idea is good enough to have life and people continue to talk about it, it can always be revisited. Better use of one’s time is to focus on subjects we feel the most confident presenting.

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      Thank you for your comment, Susan.

      I think you’re right that sometimes, it’s our enthusiasm for an idea that expires. Or that somehow, we can’t relate to an old idea anymore.

      Depending on the space you operate in, ideas themselves expire as well, though. I’ve noticed this with some product ideas that I wrote down a long time ago but never took action on: the competition and the market move on and the idea becomes irrelevant at some point.

  • Karen M McCamy says:

    What can I say, Shane??? This message was even more inspirational! Totally hit home with me! So many ideas, but they are not yet realized…because of the reasons you listed! ^Not good enough^… ^I’m not ready!^ ^I don’t know enough!^

    This is now on my “30-Day challenge ” list as well! Thanks for the inspirational nudge!!!

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      Thank you, Karen!

  • Stella says:

    I love ❤️ it! Off-the-cuff is great for me! And it makes me feel like I know you better as well. And thank you for taking us on the walk in the beautiful park with you! I really enjoyed it!

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      Thank you for your comment, Stella! Glad you like the off-the-cuff videos as well. :)

  • Mark H says:

    Graveyard of ideas… Wow! That’s a real wakeup call; for me as well!!

    Here’s an acronym I just made up:

    I deas
    D o
    E xpire
    A s
    S uch

    Shane, it’s such a pity you gotta hold that camera in your right hand, which stops you from gesturing naturally. Hang on… We’re learning to accept imperfection is ok… So what’s my gripe? Lol :)

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      Thank you for your comment, Mark! I’m happy to know that this made a lightbulb go off in your head. :)

      And yes, we’re definitely learning to embrace imperfection here. :D

  • Rajavanya S says:

    Cons is that, I have loads of unfinished projects. Things I have started because I had an emotional spike.

    • Shane Melaugh says:

      That’s not unusual, I think. Realistically, you’re not gonna finish every single thing you start. But I think it’s better to start on something you may not complete than to put things off for later all the time.

      Also, I should clarify that I don’t think you should pursue every project or idea that you ever come across. Focus and knowing when to say “no” are very important. But this kind of thing where there’s an idea for a piece of content or something and you put it off for later, that’s not really a problem of focus or priorities.

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