If I Could Share One Piece of Advice…

If I Could Share One Piece of Advice...I had a unique opportunity to be part of podcast targeted at entrepreneurs under the age of 30 hosted by Chiedo. What a fun experience! (I’ll share the link with you once it’s aired…) In preparing for this, Chiedo sent me the following:

Step into your imagination. You just stepped into the world-stage machine. It makes a few noises. Boom. Crackle. Bam!
And all of a sudden, you’re on stage. All of the leaders and could-be-someday-leaders in the world under the age of 30 are listening.
You can share one lesson. One piece of advice or question. You can say anything you want. But you only get one sentence. You’re handed the microphone. What do you say? How do you make the most impact with your time on the microphone? If your message is related to a unique experience you’ve had, that’s a plus.
After thinking through this for a few days, this is the response I sent him:
If I could share one piece of advice or wisdom in one sentence, it would be: Develop a habit of learning, seek out multiple mentors, ask lots of questions, and be intentional about applying each lesson you learn to your own life and career.
Wouldn’t you know… When we sat down to record the podcast, Chiedo actually challenged me on that statement, asking how I had personally applied that piece of advice!

Twenty years ago, I was working hard as a press operator in a factory; making quite a bit more than most of my friends the same age. I certainly wanted to do and be more but I had absolutely no plan for it, very limited direction (that I was willing to listen to), and more than a few habits that stood in the way of me achieving anything significant.

John opens the first chapter of The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth, The Law of Intentionality, by saying that “Growth Doesn’t Just Happen!” Oh, how true! I had been taught the value of a strong work ethic at a relatively young age, and I’d like to think that gave me an advantage over a lot of my peers. On down the opening page of this first chapter, John goes on to say, “But working hard doesn’t guarantee success. And hope isn’t a strategy.” Since he waited until 2012 to release this book, and I wouldn’t have even considered reading in those days anyway, I didn’t have that perspective! But I was blessed to have a few mentors in my life that were beginning to make an impact.

I struggle to put my finger on any one piece of advice or any one action step at that time that made a huge impact; it was more of a progression. As I look back on that process, it followed The Law of Intentionality. There were several things that occupied my time that I really enjoyed doing but would have never given me the results I hoped for. Most of the advice and action steps those mentors suggested were not things I enjoyed at the time, or even wanted to do.

In talking with Chiedo this morning, I told him that I’ve often heard be say that you have to enjoy what you do. I don’t necessarily agree with that. In most cases, all of us will have to develop habits of doing many things we really don’t enjoy so we can at some point earn the opportunity to do what we enjoy! A bit of a contradiction, I know… I’ve heard John say that his dad always told him that in life, you can pay now or pay later. You will always pay, and the longer you wait the higher the price will be.

How intentional are you about your own growth and development? How are aggressive are you at applying the lessons you’re learning to your own life and career? And who are you working to impact as a result?