I wrote this seven years ago, while I was a videographer on Tucker Max’s movie tour. It’s certainly not for everyone, but it still rings true for me:I haven’t really talked about this before, but I’ve failed more times than I can remember. I’ve tried starting up several businesses, tried patenting inventions, tried starting up online communities, tried building several websites, tried to win contests… and failed almost every single time. But I never chalked any of them up as failures in my head, because I learned so much in the process each time. So now, when I’ve finally reached a point where things seem to fall into place with less effort, I can’t help but think about all those times where I didn’t succeed over the course of the last eight years. And I look back in fondness, because those lessons learned are the reason I’m here. None of this stuff happened over night — in a way, I’ve been working to reach this point since I was 15 years old.I actually shouldn’t even call them “failures,” because they were really just attempts. Big difference. Everyone has failures, but most people never attempt things just for the sake of trying out something that looks fun, interesting, or challenging. For some reason, a lot of us reach a point where we stop doing things for the hell of it. Why do you think I’m such a huge proponent of free work? Doing work for free forces you to find jobs where you can honestly say, “I would do this even if I weren’t being paid for it.” That’s an expression I took a bit too literally, but it is spot on.My favorite part of The Dark Knight is when the Joker is talking to Harvey Dent in the hospital, and he says: “Do I really look like a guy with a plan? You know what I am? I’m a dog chasing cars. I wouldn’t know what to do with one if I caught it! You know, I just DO things.”And therein lies the best advice I could possibly dispense: Just DO things. Chase after the work that interests you and makes you happy. Stop acting like you have a set path, because you don’t. No one does. You shouldn’t be trying to check off the boxes of life; they aren’t real and they were created by other people, not you. There is no explicit path I’m following, and I’m not walking in anyone else’s footsteps. I’m making it up as I go.It’s harder, for sure, and kind of scary sometimes. But it will allow you to look at yourself in the mirror and know you’re playing by your own rules.
You might also like...
The Best Diet: It’s Not What You Eat, It’s Who You Eat With
We like to obsess over what we eat. And we’re not wrong. Diet matters. But I believe friendship and community are more important. Take the Mediterranean diet, for example. Some nutritionists call this “the ideal diet.” Lots of vegetables, fruits, nuts, beans. Moderate amounts of meat. What they usua
2 min read
This is Why You Need to Call a Friend Every Week
Four years ago, I made a really good decision: I created a Google calendar event for 2:30p on a Wednesday afternoon, to call my friend Jeff. Then I set it to “Repeat weekly.” Jeff lives in California and I live in Texas, so we rarely get to hang out. I hate email, he hates Facebook, so we rarely mes
2 min read
How This 27-Year Old Woman Ended Her Panic Attacks
In the past few years, over 13,000 people have taken my free 10-Day Anxiety Fix email course. I get emails every week from readers who used the course to improve their mental health. But one email recently stood out. A woman named “Mary” sent me this message: It’s been a month! I have never been so
2 min read
How to Sell a Million Copies of Your Non-Fiction Book
Less than 0.003% of books published will ever sell a million copies. This article will show you exactly what it takes to be in that 0.003%.
16 min read
Best Reviews of Play for a Living
My new book Play for a Living just went live on Amazon! Ever since our Kickstarter campaign ended, I’ve been eager to get the book into readers’ hands. So far, people seem to be genuinely loving it. On a level that I haven’t seen with my previous books. There are three reviews, in particular, that h
5 min read