Do people you’ve helped get so caught up in being a persona and showing the world a certain “scripted” public side of them that they forget to be a real person with those close to them?
Deep question for an email, I know. Well, I’m about to get deeper and elaborate on that…
On this road of life, we all drive, I reached mile marker #50 this summer. And it has made me reflect on a lot of things.
Sometimes I’ve felt like my life and career have been a complete waste. Other than make some money for my family I feel like I’ve been a miserable failure.
The last few months I’ve really been questioning if what I’m doing with my time and talents actually makes a difference in the lives of those around me?
And then I got a message, literally and figuratively.
A reader emailed me to thank me. He explained that he read my book Seeds of Success and it helped him refocus his priorities on what’s truly important to him. He felt taken for granted and unappreciated at his job of many years and the book inspired him to leave and take a position at a new company that respected and appreciated his talents.
With that move he is finally able to be home every night with his wife and kids. Plus, it also affords him the opportunity to coach at his local high school.
I don’t share that to impress you.
I share it to impress upon you that here’s a person not even close to 50 whose figured out the fact that our time is a finite and depreciating asset.
I also share this to impress upon you that the right words at the right time matter.
The one excerpt that he told me hit home the most:
“Go where you’re celebrated not just tolerated.”
Our time on earth is limited and we don’t have time for people who don’t appreciate us.
I’m willing to give my gifts and talents away to my friends but it’s nice to have them truly appreciate me for it, not just issue the obligatory verbal “thank you”.
There are friends I’ve known for decades who I’ve poured into and given of myself to them, their families and teams. And it’s been taken for granted, practically met with radio silence on occasion.
And then there are complete strangers who email or call to extend a heartfelt thank you for something I wrote that changed their life.
They ask if there’s anything they can do in return to show their gratitude. Just the other day, a reader gifted me a web domain because he knew my brand needed it. He had been monitoring it for when the previous owner let it expire and he snatched it right up.
Because he’s a kind, genuine, appreciative person not a personality. And he was touched by an article I wrote back in 2014 that changed his life.
(This was one of the most thoughtful gestures anyone has ever extended to me.)
Often on a day to day basis we may question the impact we have, but thankfully the right words arrive at the right time from the right people.
If you’re questioning whether or not you make a difference, please know that you do and it just may be the case that no one has verbalized it to you yet. Keep the faith, it’s on the way… I promise.
The years of life experience are like water running over rocks- given enough time it softens the edges.
At 50 I’m the same person I was at 25, just a more patient, forgiving, generous and better version of my younger self.
Do people you’ve helped get so caught up in being a “persona” and showing the world a certain scripted public side of them that they forget to be a real person with those close to them?
Time is our most finite and depreciating asset. And at fifty, I’ve come to the realization I don’t have time for personas only real persons.
You don’t have to hit a major mile marker like I did to reflect on important issues like this. You just need to be willing to ask yourself:
How do I want to be spending my time?
Who do I want to spend it with?
And most importantly, please be a person not a persona.
P.S. If there’s a friend, colleague or family member you know who needs a pep talk, I’ve made myself available to shoot personalized video messages for people. Often an outside voice with the right words at the right time can make all the difference. Details are here: VideoPeptalks.com