[Video] You Already Have The Tools For Success


Have you ever thought you didn’t have the right tools for the job? Like maybe if you had “this” or “that” you’d be able to accomplish your goals?

That’s all bullshit and I prove it below.

The content in this video is important. So no text summary. ;)

[If you’re reading via RSS or e-mail click here to watch the video.]

People mentioned in the video:

Shannon Albert

Justine Ezarik / iJustine

Eddie Van Halen

Products mentioned in the video:

Canon PowerShot SD780

Let me know what you think …


  1. I’m a photographer at heart. I’m not perfect by any stretch of the imagination but I can say with confidence that I am good and have a good eye. (Some of my photos can be viewed on my blog linked above. The rest can be accessed through a link on my blog.) I have the skills but my equipment is what I would consider less than ideal. I would love to have one of the Canon Rebel DSLRs but I’m currently shooting with a Panasonic Lumix 7.2 megapixels.

    • Hi Jenna,

      Thanks for posting. But maybe you missed the point. It’s not the tools. I have seen photographers shoot incredible shots with point and shoots and other less than “professional” cameras. Telling yourself you need a better camera is a limiting belief. You don’t need a better camera. Ask an artist (in the art of photography) to use your camera and I guarantee they will shoot amazing photos.


  2. No. I got the point entirely. I was just showing this video of yours to my husband because I do, in fact, agree with you. One day I will upgrade because there are certain shots my camera is insufficient for. I can frame the photo but the quality would be very grainy. But MY skills can still rock it with even this camera. :)

  3. Hi Karol,

    During my time at MI (the guitar institute in L.A.) we had a lot of famous guitarists come in to hold workshops or just be available for group lessons and jam sessions. Robben Ford, Ted Greene, Mike Stern, etc… Scott Henderson was there once a week.

    All those players plugged into the same small Peavey amps we students used to constantly whine and complain about – using them as scapegoats why our improvisations didn’t sound good.

    Guess what – the great players still sounded great. And despite the copying of settings (a common scene after such a clinic) bad players still sounded bad until they got their act together.

  4. I love this example. I was also shocked to see that iJustine just used a point and shoot camera. When I was a freelance programmer, I’d often just use Notepad for writing code and tools like Gimp for images (where as at my full-time job, I’d been using Dreamweaver and Photoshop). Sometimes you just have to roll your sleeves up and do the work regardless of the tools you have available. Love that.

    • Notepad + Gimp = lethal combo :)

      “Sometimes you just have to roll your sleeves up and do the work regardless of the tools you have available” Well put. If we’re not willing to do the work with “subpar” tools we probably won’t do the work with “the best” tools either.

  5. I agree with all of the above. Love the guitar school story!!

    Sometimes working with less than ideal tools forces us to reach deeper and access latent creativity–or open ourselves up to the source and receive. It’s true–if you on’t know how to frame well with a point & shoot camera, no high end SLF, digital or not, is going to save your butt.

  6. I’ve definitely done this!
    I used to have a point and shoot camera, and I learned about manual settings. Before long, I was taking some great pictures.
    Now, I have a Nikon D40. Admittedly better, but not aaamazing or anything. But with my photographs, the first thing people ask is “What camera do you use?”
    Haha a lot of photographers (me included) get annoyed with that. People get so stuck on the tool and not the vision behind it.

    • That’s awesome Steven! I didn’t realized photographers get annoyed when asked about their camera. Now that I think about it it makes sense. When somebody asks a great photographer “what kind of camera did you use?” it’s kind of a back-handed compliment. Like without that camera they wouldn’t be able to create great art.

  7. My Van Halen story…

    I have a realllllly crappy violin. It’s old, poorly made and has been even more poorly maintained. I got it like 7th hand. The face is beginning to crack, one of the tuning pegs doesn’t match the others and has been whittled down with a pocket knife to make it fit, the bow is loose and losing hair. I sound terrible practicing scales on it. Few things sound worse to the human ear than a violin in the hands of an inexperienced noob.

    So I get to thinking, “I wonder if it’s just me or the violin?”

    My fiance’s brother comes one day to visit with his girlfriend who just happens to be a musical prodigy/concert violinist and I ask her to take a look at the violin and tell me what she thinks.

    I figured she would be like. “Ewwww! I’m not touching that thing.”

    She picks it up, plucks the strings and tweaks it a wee bit into tune. Then proceeds to blow our minds with some impossibly complicated solo piece ending with a finish that blurred not only the movement of her fingers, but the also the boundaries between the musical notes and the human voice. What an unforgettable gift she gave us that evening.

    I still make some truly wretched noise with that violin. The key word here being “I”.

  8. This is great advice. I recently started an online cooking show with a friend – http://hilahcooking.com – and we were both totally strapped for both cash and equipment. But we really wanted to do it and decided we were going to make this show with what we had and release an episode every week no matter what. Our equipment consists of a half-broken consumer camcorder, a $20 wired lavalier mic and a $20 lamp we bought at Target.

    So far we have met our goals and have been having a great time making the show. We’ve also built up a loyal audience that I think feels personally invested in the show. So, it’s been rewarding all around.

    I still get frustrated from time to time that we don’t have better equipment, so I stumbled across this post at the perfect time. Would love to hear what you think about Hilah Cooking! The recipes aren’t vegan, but we make sure to do at least one vegetarian recipe a month.

    • Hey Christopher,

      That’s awesome you’re loving your cooking show and did it with the equipment you’re doing it with.

      The show looks great. And Hilah’s personality really shows. She rocks.


  9. Hey Karol,

    Great message as usual.

    I am a photography nut and I can relate to and second all the comments made by the photographers above. Telling a good photographer (s)he has a good camera is like telling Michaelangelo he has good paint brushes.

    I used to get irritated too, until one day, someone whom I considered “an ignorant” person, made the same comment, and I thought, why get upset over a comment by someone who is ignorant of what it takes to create good photographic art.

    Now when someone tells me I have good camera, I just hand them my camera and ask them to take the same picture. They usually get the picture (pun intended).


    • Thank you Rasheed!

      I love your way of subtly (or maybe not so subtly) showing people it’s not the camera, it’s the photographer. :)


  10. Great post Karol. It’s like building a great blog, wordpress, blogger is free and it is up to you to use what you know (tools) to make it successful.

  11. I think we have more than enough tools, for me, it comes down into putting useful tips and strategies into use. I’m not even talking about using 100%. a 10% putting what I have read and learnt would be awesome!
    Actions! Focus!

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