Blogger Yann Girard – On Planning

Yann-Girard-On-Planning© Yann Girard


Yann Girard is a blogger I’ve been following for a few years now.

He’s German 30-something who lives as a nomad and writes about entrepreneurship and motivation.

Girard first landed on my radar screen about 15 months ago when he seemingly came out of nowhere to establish a huge presence on Medium.

As a relative latecomer to the platform, his rise was notable because many of the “old guard” Medium voices (including Jon Westenberg, Benjamin Hardy, Jeff GoinsTiffany Sun, and others) had already been around for a while. They owned a lot of market share.

I watched as, slowly, month-by-month Yann Girard built his portfolio – and his following – on Medium.

He started his own publication, Thought Pills, for which he remains the sole contributor.

He began publishing short blog posts daily – and re-publishing them to Medium as well as to an email newsletter.

As of today, Thought Pills ranks # 42 on the leaderboard of more than 350 Medium publications, with more than 58,000 followers.

To put that in perspective, more people follow him on Medium than follow Arianna Huffington’s new venture Thrive Global; The Los Angeles Times, Product Hunt, or Buffer.

And every one of those publications use many contributors.

Yann’s Message

In addition to now-daily blog posts, Girard has self-published nine books. I’ve read three of them.

They’re okay, but repetitive, both in their lessons and in his writing style.

Astute readers can glean most of the takeaways after reading just 30 percent.

Girard also admits that he followed Tim Ferris’s advice about a “low-information diet” and for a year or more only read bloggers: Gary Vaynerchuk, James Altucher, and Seth Godin.

And it shows in his writing – for anyone who’s been in the marketing / digital entrepreneurship space for a while –

He sounds exactly like you would think someone would who has read those voices and little else.

The point is, I admire Yann Girard for his work ethic, prolific output, and arguable success far more than for his actual content.

And yet, I still read it…

The Experiments

He also has done some daring experiments with Medium – such as:

  • Using the “email all subscribers” feature to build his off-site following.
  • Finding a format and style that works for his daily posts for more than a year straight now (~60 word motivational Zen koans about putting in the work).
  • Published a full book in 30 day by writing and posting new chapters daily to Medium.
  • Releasing the long-form book as a single post to Medium.

All of this is to say, I admire Yann Girard.

He’s on the short list of maybe three dozen bloggers I follow.

Today’s Post

But it’s a Saturday morning and his post today really moved me:

Please read the original here.

It reads:

Turns out that…

Most people show up right before they have something important to say.

Before they have something important to show.

Or something to sell.

Turns out that when you only show up right before you want people to buy, watch, listen or read, then no one is going to end up buying, watching, listening or reading.

Simply because people don’t know you.

Or already forgot about you.

Or don’t trust you.

Or simply don’t care about you…

So if you want people to buy, watch, listen or read your stuff you’ve gotta start showing up a long time before you deliver that important message or that important work.

As a matter of fact you’ve gotta start showing up before you even know what that important message or work is going to look like…


This resonated with me because I’ve recently accomplished exactly that.

Both my personal and professional lives have benefitted greatly over the last three months from my concerted effort to create and publish stuff online that began in earnest on Jan. 1, 2016.

It took more than 14 months, but today I owe significant parts of my new job and my social life to the portfolio I’ve slowly built up via this blog and other contributed channels.

In Yann Girard’s words, I started showing up more than a year before I knew what that important work was going to look like – more than a year before I had a specific goal in mind for my next steps.

The Presentation

And next week I’ve giving a short presentation that will introduce me to some very important people. Some of them already know me by reputation – others will likely Google me shortly thereafter.

Still others will listen politely and may not interact with me again for a few months.

But that short presentation will shape their first impression with me – an impression that will likely harden into concrete over much of the rest of the year.

The point? The lesson in all this?

I’m ready.

Because I’ve already put in the work.

As Yann Girard wrote – I started showing up nearly 18 months ago.

Be Ready

I’ve posted it before, but Woody Allen sagely noted, “80 percent of success is showing up.”

Whatever your passion, just start.

Begin, show up, and chase consistency.

Because you never know where that journey will take you a year from now…

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