You means you!

Man, this You guy could do anything he wants,” I thought as I flipped through the pages of self-help book number 45.

The message flew over my head.

If a self-help author starts talking about you, they mean you — not some other guy named You.

Yes, you.

“What? Me? Oh, no — there must be a mistake. I couldn’t –“

Yes. Really. I mean you. You could start a business. You could learn to roller-skate. You could memorize 2,000 Kanji in less than a year. You could start a podcast and interview your favorite writers.

But only if you want.

How far you lean in when someone starts talking about your potential correlates to how much faith you have in yourself*. When you ignore them, stuff your head up in the clouds instead of paying attention, it means you’re not ready. Not ready to face the harsh reality of having a 1 in 8 billion gift. The gift of your perspective, drive, passion, and care.

How do you feel when you talk about your goals? Do you stumble over your words? Do you hunch over to defend yourself from an attack? That means you’re not committed. There’s still a part of you that’s stuck in the past. A part of you that thinks you’re still not capable.

You are capable.

Go make stuff.


(*I don’t have any statisticians to back me up on this, so I need you to go accomplish your life’s mission.)

Add title

Janitor. Lawmaker. Barista. Chief Financial Officer. Bagger. Publisher. Editor. Manager.

Titles tell us who does what. But they don’t tell us how we do what we do.

Unless we love our job, there will always be a missing piece on our nametag. That missing piece is what we wish we could do if we had the courage to do it. What we wish we could do if our boss would let us.

But our boss won’t let us until we ask. And when we ask, they might say no. Then what? Will we keep managing people the way we’re expected to? Or will we manage people the way we’ve always dreamed of: with more care and push than the employee manual expects?

A company expects you to conform to the way things are done within the company. And that’s good. Conformity creates unity in the organization. Conformity makes sure that we’re all on the right page.

But there’s no need to conform so hard that you extinguish the fire of your personality.