“Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.”
How often have you been told what to do with your life?
Most people who give you unsolicited advice have good intentions but it doesn’t mean that what has worked for them will work for you.
“Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own.”
It’s easy to get lost in all the things you “should do,” as people will tell you, while forgetting about what you actually want to do.
It can be extremely difficult when it seems like everyone else is doing what people say you “should do”, like going to college, but it’s not for everyone.
Here are some people who didn’t go or dropped out of college:
Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Ted Turner, Tony Robbins, Richard Branson, Ellen DeGeneres, Rachael Ray, Michael Dell, Jack Dorsey, Russell Simmons, John D. Rockefeller, Henry Ford, and many others. Find a list of 100 here.
Remember this quote from Mark Twain whenever you are thinking that you should be doing what others are doing:
“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”
If you’re struggling in an area where you see others succeeding in, it doesn’t make you dumb, it just tells you that that area is not for you, unless you’re passionate about it. You can learn & master any skill you want through relentless practice.
“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
A variety of life experiences & hobbies can help you figure out your passion.
Maybe it’s writing, acting, speaking, athletics, designer, teacher, attendant, horse trainer.
But people say, “you can’t do that, no one makes money doing that.”
Except they do…
If there is anyone doing what you would love to do, you can do it too.
You may have to take some side jobs as you focus on getting paid to do what you love, but if you are passionate enough about it, you will find a way.
“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
You are unique.
People find the most happiness when they embrace their uniqueness instead of trying to please people & fit in.
Maybe you learn best visually while someone else learns best verbally.
Or aurally, physically, logically, socially, or solitary.
Which way is best?
There is no “best.” There is only what is best for you.
Find out how you learn best & don’t judge yourself.
I think I learn best visually—I like demonstrations especially when I am able to get involved.
“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.”
There are many crossroads in life, leaving you with multiple choices. The easy path is to follow what others are doing.
A nurse who spent years working in palliative care, taking care of people in the last 12 weeks of their lives, researched and wrote the top five regrets people have on their deathbeds.
The most common regret was “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.” Find the article here.
“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Use what works for you, not what works for someone else.
Quotes to help find and follow your bliss
“You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don’t make money your goal. Instead pursue the things you love doing and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off of you.”
“If it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, go out and sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures. Sweep streets like Handel and Beethoven composed music. Sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry. Sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will have to pause and say, here lived a great street sweeper who swept his job well.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.
“The people who make it to the top – whether they’re musicians, or great chefs, or corporate honchos – are addicted to their calling … [they] are the ones who’d be doing whatever it is they love, even if they weren’t being paid.”
“There comes a time when you ought to start doing what you want. Take a job that you love. You will jump out of bed in the morning. I think you are out of your mind if you keep taking jobs that you don’t like because you think it will look good on your resume. Isn’t that a little like saving up sex for your old age?”
“I think the foremost quality – there’s no success without it – is really loving what you do. If you love it, you do it well, and there’s no success if you don’t do well what you’re working at.”
“When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bounds. Your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction and you find yourself in a new, great and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be.”
“The law of work seems unfair, but nothing can change it; the more enjoyment you get out of your work, the more money you will make.”
“Everyone has been made for some particular work, and the desire for that work has been put in every heart.”
“Yes, I’ve made a great deal of dough from my fiction, but I never set a single word down on paper with the thought of being paid for it … I have written because it fulfilled me. Maybe it paid off the mortgage on the house and got the kids through college, but those things were on the side—I did it for the buzz. I did it for the pure joy of the thing. And if you can do it for the joy, you can do it forever.”
“I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”