Creation vs Consumption
Balancing creation and consumption is key for growth. Learn how to optimize both in this episode from hosts Zach Hammer and Charlie Madison of The Real Estate Growth Hackers. Discover practical strategies to turn more consumption time into creation time and boost your business results.
Tune in to gain insight into tracking and adjusting your creation-consumption ratio for a more productive life and work.
Other subjects covered on the show:
- Why overvaluing consumption activities tricks people into thinking they’re doing productive work.
- How creation is the only place where business value is produced.
- Keeping consumption in check so it serves its purpose rather than becoming an obstacle.
- Practical ways to document and track your daily creation vs consumption time.
- Turning some consumption activities into creative ones (e.g. thoughtful comments on social media posts).
- Improving the quality of both your consumption and creation activities.
- The concept of “dollar per hour” activities and focusing on high-leverage creation.
- Different types of recharging activities and their impact on energy and creativity.
- Using your individualized creation-consumption balance to get better results.
- Assessing information intake based on the Kolbe Index to optimize productivity.
AND MORE TOPICS COVERED IN THE FULL INTERVIEW!!! You can check that out and subscribe to YouTube.
If you want to know more about Zach Hammer and Charlie Madison, you may reach out to them at:
[00:00:00] zach-hammer_1_09-25-2023_140645: Welcome, welcome, welcome to another episode of the Real Estate Growth Hack Show. I am Zach Hammer. Here with me is my co-host, Charlie Madison. Welcome back to the show, Charlie
[00:00:13] Track 1: It is good to be here. Happy Monday.
[00:00:17] zach-hammer_1_09-25-2023_140645: Indeed.
[00:00:17] Track 1: I am excited once again about today’s topic. When you told me about it, I was like, I want to know how you handle this.
[00:00:26] zach-hammer_1_09-25-2023_140645: Yeah. Sounds good. Yeah, so what we’re talking about today, what we’re gonna dive into is a concept that I employ in my own life that I think it makes a difference in life in general, but it definitely makes a difference in business. And it’s the idea of keeping a balance, and balance may not even be the right word, but the interplay of creation versus consumption and how we have to really keep those in check and make sure that we aren’t going too far one direction. And really why that’s gonna make a difference in your business?
[00:00:55] And it’s one of those things that I think very often people fall into a misguided idea that [00:01:00] they’re doing work that’s gonna help their business, but they’re overvaluing it because they don’t realize that they’re in a consumption mode rather than a creative mode. And value is only ever created in the creation mode, right? That’s where value is generated. If you’re going to ultimately grow your business, increase the value that you’re producing in the world, it is done through creation and not through consumption. Now, consumption has its place, and we’ll talk about that, but consumption was only ever realized as valuable when it’s put into creation.
[00:01:26] So let’s go ahead and dive into that. So let’s go through some foundational concepts here, just what I mean when I’m saying this, defining these terms.
[00:01:33] Zach Hammer: So creation. When I’m saying creation, I’m talking about any time that you are deploying your creativity in the world. That could be done in all sorts of ways. That could be talking, that could be writing that could be taking some form of action. Like literally creation could be walking outside of your door and going into the world and interacting with people.
[00:01:53] That’s a kind of creation, right? Where you’re not just passively taking something in, you are an active participant [00:02:00] where your intelligence, your Person has to show up in order to be part of the process, whether digitally or physically. So that’s what I mean when I say creation.
[00:02:09] Consumption, consumption is anything that’s the opposite. It’s you sitting back and taking something in. So it’s you engaging with somebody else’s creation generally is what it is.
[00:02:19] Watching Netflix, watching YouTube, going to real estate classes, anything that you’re doing where you’re taking in somebody else’s creation is consumption.
[00:02:28] Charlie Madison: And so what..
[00:02:29] Zach Hammer: Boom. Roasted indeed, And so the key thing that we’re looking for here, the key thing that we’re looking for here is making sure that we’re keeping these things in balance in the right way.
[00:02:40] And when I say in balance, that doesn’t mean equal. Equal isn’t the right thing. Very rarely do things like, equal is typically not a good metric, right? But in balance, what I mean is not tipping too far in one direction. And most often, Charlie, let me know if you agree with me, but most often in the real estate world, if I see people going [00:03:00] too far one direction, it is almost always in the consumption phase that they’re really busy watching YouTube videos about how to do marketing or they’re going to classes learning more, or they’re going to networking events and just listening to the speakers, et cetera.
[00:03:16] Like, people very often get into these phases of consuming something else that somebody else has put on or something that somebody else has done. Do you see that as well where that’s a common way that people fall into this trap?
[00:03:27] Charlie Madison: Yeah I think it’s one of the failures of the industry. And I think one of the reasons is a lot of brokers, they think, oh, the main value I provide is training. And so they want you to come to the sales meeting every week. And then, their big conference coming up and they want you to go to their conference.
[00:03:47] ’cause they know that’s where, you’ll learn a bunch of stuff and you’ll get connected more to their culture. And so, I know for me, like I had to get away from the industry to realize, oh wait, you know what? If I’ve got [00:04:00] a closing. Like I’m gonna miss this little training to go to my closing ’cause that’s really what I want.
[00:04:06] And yeah, so, I think that’s a problem with the industry with most brokers, that’s what they feel their value is versus the most valuable thing is in context training. Like when I’m with the client, I have an issue. I wanna go to the broker, to how do I solve this issue?
[00:04:26] That’s the kind of learning that I want. And otherwise you can get, there’s a million different ways to do it. So like I was drowning in information.
[00:04:39] Zach Hammer: Right.
[00:04:40] Charlie Madison: And debt. When I got out of the office and I started creating conversations and then I was, really working a system and then I had people I could go to when I had questions actively like that’s when I started making money.
[00:04:54] Zach Hammer: Yeah. And absolutely. That’s the key. So as somebody like, shoot, we right now are recording content. We’re producing content [00:05:00] that hopefully somebody’s gonna listen to, and I hope they find it valuable. Authentically, I have to believe that there’s some value in this, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to bring myself to do it. But there’s a key to this, which is keeping it in check and understanding that consumption of any content, even if it’s good, even if it’s valuable, it’s only so valuable in as much as it causes you to take action in your life.
[00:05:23] And that’s not the goal of all consumption. So as for instance, I don’t have anything against people watching good shows, good movies, good entertainment, that sort of idea. But it’s important to understand that it needs to serve a specific purpose in your life, in your goals that serves those goals.
[00:05:39] If you’re watching something just for entertainment purposes, know that the goal that you’re likely trying to achieve there is a rest phase, mentally is a recharge so that you’re then equipped and ready to go out and do more later. And it’s all about trying to keep that in balance so that you don’t lean too far. If you’re going through a series of working out rest [00:06:00] is important. It’s actually just as important if not more important sometimes than the work that you do in the workout. But rest by itself is useless. If you work out and you never rest, you won’t actually build muscle. You’ll destroy yourself. You’ll hurt yourself.
[00:06:13] Charlie Madison: You’ll burnout.
[00:06:14] Zach Hammer: Exactly. And so there is a balance and what that balance is, I think is, you are going to be more familiar with that personally than somebody else’s.
[00:06:22] So I don’t have a specific like formula, but that’s what you’re looking to keep in check is am I doing too much consumption? How much of this consumption is actually effectively recharging me versus how much is, if that’s the purpose or if the goal is to learn something, how much of what I’m learning am I actually putting into action?
[00:06:37] Am I giving myself the space and the time and the opportunity to put what I’m learning into action or not, and am I doing something with it? And that’s really the question that we’re talking about here. In terms of like why this is important, the biggest reason to me why this is important is is that we do, we get misguided, right?
[00:06:54] Just like you were saying. You come to an organization and they offer tons of training and that’s good, that’s valuable, that’s useful. [00:07:00] But if that’s all you do. You’re not going to grow your business if you are only consuming the training and thinking that you’re doing good work. You’re diluting yourself and not actually getting where you want to go unless you tie every time that you go in and you take some time to learn something, that you also try and take some time to put it into practice, to create something, to do something with it. That’s where consumption turns into value.
[00:07:26] And so as you’re going through and you’re looking at what you’re doing each day. If you’re thinking, man, why am I not growing? Why am I not achieving what I want to in life? This is a good thing to check, to see at a basic level what is my ratio of creation to consumption?
[00:07:43] We all have the same amount of time each day. We all have the same number of days in a week and weeks in a year, and all of that, right? So I can look at a day by day level and I can look at that ratio. I could say, how much time did I spend creating? How much time did I spend consuming? And there isn’t a right or wrong [00:08:00] answer to that, but the key is that whatever that ratio is, chances are you will start getting where you want to go if you turn more of that consumption time into creation time.
[00:08:12] ’cause my guess is most of the people are gonna look and they’re gonna see that a large percentage of their time, if they’re not getting where they want to go, is on consumption and not on creation. So if you start moving more of that time to creation, that’s where you start getting better results.
[00:08:25] So let’s talk a little bit about kind of some of the practical, like how do you do this at a basic level, What I would ask people to do is literally either during the day or at the end of the day, take a look back at your day and think, what did I do today?
[00:08:40] List out what you did that day. What did you spend your time on? Try and account for like how you spent your time that day, and ask yourself the question like, if I had to assign a number to this or, style to this? Was this consumption or was this creation or what amount was it consumption? Or what amount was it creation?
[00:08:57] And you could literally add up those numbers and see, [00:09:00] okay, I had about, this much out of the 24 hours I had about this much time in creation. I had this much time in consumption. Okay, that’s what my number was today. And then you do that over time and you start to see what those ratios look like. And then from there you could start to look and you could start to see, can I dial this in and start figuring out, do I need to dial down my consumption and replace it with creation time? Or in some cases there might even be ways that you could turn consumption into also creation.
[00:09:31] An a an example that I like of this is if you have a habit of scrolling through social media. That by itself is consumption, right? If you’re reading other people’s posts, taking in what’s going on in their life, that’s consumption, but If you make a habit of adding a thoughtful, relevant comment to every post that you see go by, especially when those are people that you know, and trust and you want involved in your life potentially to do real estate transactions or even just, again, [00:10:00] this isn’t just about business, this is about life in general as well.
[00:10:02] Maybe they’re people that you wanna make sure you’re maintaining good relationships with because you actually like them. Dropping a relevant comment is a great way to Add creation into a consumptive exercise, right? And adding those comments makes you show up, makes it that you are actively participating and gets you into a little bit more of that creative mode that can actually benefit your business as well. Does that concept make sense?
[00:10:29] Charlie Madison: Yeah. Yeah, that does. And it makes me think of Naval Ravikant thought and Perry Marshall also talks about in the 80/20 book, which is like dollar per hour activities once I move into creation, like, then my question is, is this a $10 in our creation thing? Like for me, like I can build websites, but the last website I built for real estate, I paid someone $50 on Fiverr to build it [00:11:00] for me.
[00:11:00] And it saved me, probably 10 hours. And, I like the thought, all right, is this a hundred dollars an hour? The truth is if I’m in conversations or I’m working on the five things for a contract those are literally thousand dollar hour activities.
[00:11:14] Zach Hammer: Right.
[00:11:15] Charlie Madison: And my coach Joe, he calls it results time. That’s another way to look at it. Like, am I creating results that get me where I want to be?
[00:11:23] Zach Hammer: Exactly. Exactly. Yeah. Yeah, I love that. And that to me, we recently had a conversation about the goal of any tool that you pay for is going to be, to either increase the number of, relevant conversations that you could have or To help you sort and filter to know which conversations you should have so you have better conversations, right?
[00:11:43] And it either does one or the other or both of those activities. And that’s its role. So it’s a similar idea for this. Typically, most people likely need to be looking for how do I reduce my consumption and increase my creation, but at the same time, It [00:12:00] is also worthwhile to ask the question of both of these things, can I increase the quality of my consumption so that it’s doing more right?
[00:12:08] If I’m like, not all classes are created equal, not all pursuits are created equal. Do I really want to watch this show on Netflix that I’m just basically getting by with? Or is there like a content or a series that serves that need of letting me recharge while really doing it well, like maybe you’d be better served by reading a book on something that you haven’t read for a while. It’s still consumption, but maybe you’re gonna enjoy it more. Maybe it’s gonna stay with you longer. Maybe it’s gonna recharge you better, right? And so, you can be asking those questions. Is there a better way for me to recharge than what I’m currently doing?
[00:12:43] Or if the goal of the consumption is to learn something. Is there a better teacher? Is there a more important topic? Is there something else that I should really be focusing on? Or if I’m going to spend my time consuming something, is there something better or more effective I could be doing that with?
[00:12:58] And then in the same way on [00:13:00] creation, if I’m gonna spend my time actively creating what. Are the things that are the best, most leveraged ways for me to be creating. Where can I uniquely show up that are high dollar per hour activities that somebody else couldn’t show up as readily?
[00:13:12] And so, that’s another part of this optimization cycle. It’s like first start foundationally with making sure we aren’t too overloaded with consumption. ’cause that at a basic level, will always result in failure, right? So start moving more of your consumption to creation. But then as you’re doing that, now you start going in at a level deeper and you start saying, alright, let’s improve the consumption, let’s improve the creation and start getting even better on those ends as well.
[00:13:37] But the way that I like to talk about that is that it’s always easier. It’s like a ship, right? When you’ve got a ship in the water, the ship has to be moving. It has to be moving forward in order for the rudder to do its work. But that rudder, doesn’t have to do much work once the ship’s in motion in order to get a big result. If the ship’s in motion, the rudder moves a little bit and that causes it to turn [00:14:00] right. That changes the direction that so similarly, as we move ourselves from more consumption into creation, it actually becomes easier to figure out how we optimize both the consumption and the creation.
[00:14:12] Because we’re in movement, we’re in action. And so it’s easier to make minor adjustments to make those better. , and those adjustments, they don’t feel difficult. Typically when you make ’em, it’s like you become aware of ’em, you make a minor adjustment, you’re like, oh yeah, this is better.
[00:14:25] And you just keep doing that over and over, over time, and and your life gets better, your business gets better. And we start doing better things. We have our creation versus consumption and check, and we’re good to go. So that’s the concept.
[00:14:35] There was actually in the process of coming up with this this show and this concept you and I both like to dive into AI and and leverage AI for this. There was a metaphor that ChatGPT came back with us for on how to explain this that I think is worth sharing.
[00:14:49] And what ChatGPT came back with was this, which is, think of yourself as a sponge. You could soak up water, IE knowledge, inspiration, et cetera, but unless you’re squeezed, [00:15:00] and do the work of creating the water remains trapped that isn’t used. And that’s the idea that we’re talking about here, is that just adding water to a sponge doesn’t do any good unless you actually take that sponge, apply it to a surface and leverage it to do the work that it’s supposed to do, to actually do the cleaning.
[00:15:17] And that’s the action that we gotta do. We gotta keep those in balance. Similarly if you have a sponge that’s completely dry. It’s not going to do great work either. So there is still value in that consumption. You just wanna make sure that it’s in the right degrees, it’s to the right amount, and it’s actually serving its purpose for you, your life, and your business. So there you go. That’s the concept. Any any final thoughts or takeaways from this one, Charlie?
[00:15:42] Charlie Madison: A couple thoughts. Like one on the recharge portion. I love what Dan Sullivan says he calls ’em free days. And one of his insights that he found is as an entrepreneur, the most important thing is to actually recharge because I know for me, [00:16:00] like I can only do this stuff that like $10,000 an hour stuff like stuff that only I can do when I am recharged. And so he actually has his re recharge activities, he gives them, it’s like medals at the Olympics. Was it a gold, silver, or bronze?
[00:16:18] And so for me, just as an example. I can get lost in Twitter, a few people, especially for hours.
[00:16:28] Zach Hammer: Right.
[00:16:28] Charlie Madison: But what I’ve noticed, when I’m done, I’m not recharged. I’m actually more drained. And like for me, I have to stay away from that unless I’m at a place where I know I’m gonna get drained, and I’m gonna do something else to recharge later.
[00:16:44] Zach Hammer: Right
[00:16:44] Charlie Madison: It is like eating a bunch of chocolate. Like it’s not healthy. I’ll deal with it later.
[00:16:48] Zach Hammer: Yeah, exactly. Exactly. Yeah. So like, similarly for me, here’s a great example of what you do to recharge. I know if I like it is a way for me to recharge [00:17:00] and sometimes this is what’s needed to sit down and watch a TV show with my family, right?
[00:17:04] We’re taking in some good entertainment that we actually wanna see it something that matters to us or it’s something that we’re like, we’re really excited to watch and that could be a great way for me to take in something, recharge and connect with my family. But I’ll tell you what. I connect with my family drastically less through something like that than I do if we sit down and play a board game together. Because I’m still like, it just as a principle. There is more creation happening in sitting down and playing a board game than there is sitting down and watching a TV show.
[00:17:35] And yet I’m still consuming, right? I’m consuming a game that somebody else created. I’m taking in something else that was already created in the world, but what I’m having a talk, I’m having to interact with my family, with my kids. And I find that kind of activity, When I can again, like it’s one of those weird things. Sometimes if I’m really drained, I can’t do that well. But if I’m like, not really drained then that adds [00:18:00] to the momentum and does recharge me, if that makes sense.
[00:18:02] Anyway, yeah, things are weird like that. But yeah, so like those kinds of ideas where you can classify like how does watching something together compare to playing a board game or even playing a video game together versus watching a TV show could be very different in terms of, they might both recharge you, but one of ’em still has an act of creation, right? There’s an act of, you’re choosing together, you’re interacting together you’re having to show up as an individual in order to make the thing happen. And not just consuming.
[00:18:31] But yeah. So there you go. That’s the idea there. And so what do you do with this, right? What I’d recommend that everybody listening to this, watching this that you do from this, take a look at what you’re doing daily. Document your activities. Categorize them. Were you creating or were you consuming? Was it a mixture? Give a number to each of how much creation versus how much consumption. Maybe it’s on a scale of one to 10, right? So it’s like you got an hour, was it a 10 outta 10 creative? Was it one [00:19:00] out of 10 creative and nine out of 10 consumption.
[00:19:04] Document it, add up your points for the day and just see what that ratio looks like. And just note, there isn’t a wrong number here. Like it’s all about figuring out where it is and then learning how to adjust in a different direction, right? Figuring out what are the places, what are the opportunities where I can add more creation into things.
[00:19:20] And that typically will start resulting in you getting where you want to go, whether it’s better relationships, more leads generated, more quality lead generated, more clients, more closings, all those kinds of things. If you move yourself into the action of what do I actually do to create and show up as an individual in this world, that’s where you’re gonna start getting those results.
[00:19:40] So document them, look at the numbers, and just start figuring out how do I move from where I am? more to where I wanna be. And then after you’ve been doing that for a while, it starts making sense to ask the question of, are there better ways for me to be more creative? Are there better ways for me to consume, to recharge? Et cetera.
[00:19:56] And that’s really what I do from this. There isn’t an exact [00:20:00] right number. It’s not take this time each day to be creative. It’s not that you figure out that right mix for you. There’s probably some good strategies for you, but you figure that out. I think a lot of that is very individualized, but I think the principle true for everybody.
[00:20:13] That if you spend too much time in consumption and not enough time in creation that can be the source of some of the problems of you not getting where you want to go. So there you go.
[00:20:22] Charlie Madison: Yep.
[00:20:23] Zach Hammer: All right. That is the concept of creation versus consumption and how to keep those in balance. Another episode here on the Real Estate Growth Hacker Show. If you want more stuff like this, be sure to check out RealEstateGrowthHackers.com where we have access to a newsletter where you stay up to date on this information. You’re always aware of what we have coming out. We have access to AI principles, SOP prompts or a prompt library of how to leverage AI as well. So make sure that you’re checking that out. If that’s not live yet, when you get access to this episode, reach out to me and ask me when it’s coming and I’ll be sure to let you know.
[00:20:58] But otherwise, if you have questions[00:21:00] or or want to take your business forward and you are a lender you should check out what Charlie is up to at Realtor Waiting List. Where he will help show you how to take what you’re doing very easily and generate a waiting list of realtors that are wanting to work with you. And you won’t have to feel slimy showed up with donuts begging people for business. You’ll get them begging you for business is the idea here. If you are a realtor or real estate professional and you’re looking to leverage some of the similar ideas directly, you could check out Referrals While You Sleep. That’s the spot for for real estate professionals. And yeah. Any final thoughts? Final words, Charlie?
[00:21:37] Charlie Madison: One thing we talked a while back about the kolby the kolby, and that’s one thing to think about is, the Kolby has something on the fact finder. How you deal with information, go back and listen to that episode. Check out the Kolby index.
[00:21:52] If you’re wanting to know, how do I handle the consumer? How do I get information? That’s a really great way to find out how and [00:22:00] where information works, specifically for you. And of course, if you got questions about it, reach out to Zach. We love the Kolby and kinda give you pointers on that.
[00:22:10] Zach Hammer: Absolutely. Absolutely. There you go. Another episode in the bag. Ready to go. There we go. Thanks so much for showing up for the Real Estate Growth Hackers Show. Until next time, we will catch you on the next one.
[00:22:23] Charlie Madison: Bye.
Real Estate Growth Hackers Founder
Zach Hammer is the co-founder of Real Estate Growth Hackers. Over the last 36 months Zach and his team have managed ad budgets well over $100,000, generated over 25,000 real estate leads, and helped create over $50,000,0000 in business revenue for their clients. Zach is also a highly sought after speaker and consultant whose work has impacted some of the top Real Estate teams and brokerages across the country.