There are some things that you simply have to do for yourself. No one can do these things for you, nor should you ever allow anyone to do so.
- Discover why you are here. Mark Twain said the two most important days in your life are the day you were born and the day you figure out why. You don’t have any control over the first one of those days. But you have to do the work to make the second one a reality. You can get this wrong for a long time believing you have it right only to discover a bigger “why” later in your life. It isn’t easy to discover why you are here, but doing the work to figure it out is an excellent adventure. You must do this work for yourself.
- Discover what success means. The culture you live in tries desperately hard to define success for you: money and fame. But at the end of your life, you won’t care about money, gladly forfeiting all of it for a single day more with the people you love. You won’t care that you were known by people who don’t care anything about you at all. You’ll only care about the people you love. By all means, make the money–you are going to need it. But define success for yourself. Do the work to discover what a life well lived looks like for you.
- Discover your potential. You have no idea what you are capable of. There is so much more inside you, so much room to grow. Your only real limit is the limit of your imagination and your willingness to act. You can do more, and you can be more than you are now. When you have reached what you believe to be the pinnacle of success, you will have only just taken the first step. While you are here, it is your job to grow into your potential, of which there is still plenty.
- Discover how you will make a contribution. You are here to contribute. You have something to offer the rest of us, some song inside you, some dance, some business that will change the world for some people somewhere. You are here to make this a better place, even if only in some small way. Your contribution is going to matter. It is going to make a difference. You are here to discover what that contribution will be.
This is the work you have to do yourself. This is the recipe for happiness. When will you start doing the work you’ve been avoiding?