You've successfully subscribed to Ali Abdaal
Great! Next, complete checkout for full access to Ali Abdaal
Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.
Success! Your account is fully activated, you now have access to all content.
Success! Your billing info is updated.
Billing info update failed.

Deep Dive #11 UnJaded Jade on YouTube, Gap Years and Odyssey Plans

Jade is a YouTuber and content creator whose channel discusses academia, veganism, self-confidence and positivity.

Ali Abdaal
Ali Abdaal

Jade is a YouTuber and content creator whose channel discusses academia, veganism, self-confidence and positivity. She aims to motivate and inspire others to become the best versions of themselves and in our conversation we discussed a variety of topics from starting out on YouTube to the value of gap years to dealing with imposter syndrome.

Here are some of the highlights from our discussion:

Preparation can be key to building an audience quickly on YouTube. Although making videos and experience is helpful, taking the time to prepare and learn before launching your channel can lead to more immediate success. However, this does depend on in-depth preparation which involves identifying your own strengths as well as taking the time to identify a niche that is underserved on the platform but which you could provide value to.

Despite the stigma, gap years can be extremely valuable. There is an assumption that you should be going straight to university. We live in an age of hustle culture where people question what you are doing if it doesn’t have some sort of outward, monetary value but taking a break between school or university, or even after university, can serve as a useful period to clarify your life purpose and your real goals.

We often consciously ignore educating ourselves on ethics and environmental issues. That said, there is a danger in proclaiming that you are an environmentalist because everyone is hypocritical in some way or another. The perfectionism around movements such as veganism can be quite harmful because it discourages people from even making slight changes. By changing our approach and challenging ourselves to make temporary changes, we can start to make small adjustments which can have noticeable effects on our lives.

Our propensity to help or donate to a cause comes down to a feeling of urgency and how personal it is to you. Whilst not everything can be personal to you and things like the environment are quite intangible, it is the degree of personal, emotional and physical connection that is the primary influencing factor on how we behave and who or what we choose to help.

Being an influencer changes how you approach what you share online and what opinions you express publicly. You are under greater pressure to adhere to the moral responsibilities of society and under a moral obligation to make tangible change by encouraging others to make tangible changes.

Meditation is not just about sitting quietly for a few minutes every day – it’s about training the brain to filter out negative thought processes that hamper us daily. It works on the subconscious level so we don’t even know it’s there but creating consistent routines around meditation can have ripple effects and help to provide greater clarity and focus throughout the day.

The Odyssey Plan, used at eminent universities like Stanford, is an effective exercise that requires you to think about how you would like your life to look in the future. It serves as a tool to clarify what is meaningful in your life because it requires you to look at where you are at now, assess your options and get in touch with what you actually want to be doing. It involves three steps:

  • At first you write down how your life is going to go if you continue on this exact same path for the next 5 years.
  • Then you have a plan B where you map out what your life would be like if you made a particular decision like switching your degree or decided to take a specific job.
  • And then the last idea of the life plan is that if money wasn’t an issue and societal expectations didn’t matter, what would you actually want to be doing in 5 years time?
Deep Dive

Ali Abdaal

Junior doctor, YouTuber, web designer, aspiring musician. Trying out this blogging thing.