By Suman Saha
November 24, 2017
I’m in an ultra-creative field today so needed to send this over to you with a ton of appreciation for your highest potential…
…and with a heart overflowing with encouragement for your greatest IMPACT.
If you’re amped to access your hidden talents, become uncommonly true to you, install rare-air audacity and learn how to transcend what terrifies you, check out this Mastery Session on Leaving The Cult of Average.
And please remember: it doesn’t matter where you start, only that you begin.
Your fan always,
For over twenty years I’ve had the great blessing to work with billionaires, NBA stars, film icons. People operating at the highest level of their crafts, at the highest level of their industries, and in some cases, the highest level of humanity. If there were 4 words I could summarize what world-class people do, what great performers are all about, these would be these 4 Magic Words I’m going to walk you through right now:
Oscar Wilde said so well: “Be yourself. Everyone else is taken.” And Warren Buffet: “There will never be a better you than you.” What about Jack Welch from General Electric: “Don’t lose yourself on the way to the top.” One of the great sadness’s of life is that we are born into this genius, this originality, this authenticity, and yet the world sort of beats it out of us in some ways. We’re little kids and we have this great dream to be an astronaut or a poet. Our parents, well intentioned, say, “Become an accountant. Become a lawyer. Be more practical.” We get to school and we’re sort of speaking in our own voice and we’re singing out loud and we’re dressed in this way we want to dress as little kids. What do the teachers say? “Be like everyone else. Talk like everyone else. Think like everyone else. Don’t be a disrupter.”
We are born into the genius, but as we grow through life there’s this resignation and almost seduction into mediocrity. Then when we are thirty, forty or seventy years old, deep inside we’ve lost that sense of originality. You really want to play in rare-air and you want to have the energy that you’ll want to have. You want to do world-class work. You want to have fine levels of prosperity. You want to have a life full of meaning and richness. Ask yourself, “How can I make my return to originality?” Too many of us, without even knowing it, have become card-carrying members of the cult of average. My invitation for you on this first magic word, find your originality again. Find your authenticity. Walk your talk. Live your values. Do your dreams. Remember your hidden talents, not the hidden talents of your neighbor or the person in the office next to you. Be true to yourself, because as Oscar Wilde said, “Everyone else is taken.”
Whatever happened to people’s energy? Whatever happened to people’s audacity? The great high wire walker Papa Wallenda said it well: “Life is lived out on the wire. The rest is just waiting.” I believe that the greatest risk is riskless living. Too many of us have dimmed down our light. We live the best years of our lives playing small because we’re avoiding the things that frighten us. My encouragement today is for you to start being audacious in the work that you do, in the love that you give and in what you expect of yourself. The starting point is really doing the things that terrify you. Fear is nothing more than bravery training. The things that you’re frightened to do are the things that you need to do because they carry your greatest growth. Just remember, fear is your opportunity to grow. Fear is your opportunity to become braver. Be audacious and do the things that frighten you.
All of us are going to get to the end (and I wish you a long, beautiful, productive, creative, high-contribution life). On the last hour of your last day, I do believe that what will break your heart will not be all the risks you took and all the fears you faced, but all the risks you didn’t take and all the things you didn’t do. All the projects you didn’t start. All the books you didn’t read. All the sunrises you didn’t watch. All the conversations you didn’t have. Take the time today to get onto the journey of being audacious.
When I look at the game-changers and the rare air performers, the best of the best, they’re good people. We live in a world where sometimes being a hater is almost celebrated, or a cynic is almost encouraged. I just want to remind you, some things never go out of style. Being a person of humanity is always being a rock star. Be the nicest person in every room that you are in. In a world where a lot of people talk-talk-talk, about how much they do and how much they have… Do the opposite. Go different and just be a great human being. Humanity, what does it mean? It means be loving and ego-free in every room. Be humble and punctual. Give more than expected. Be kind to strangers. In a world gone digital write handwritten thank-you notes. Remember the Good News Greeting, every time you see another human being smile at them and start your conversation with some good news. Ask them, “What’s great in your life today?”
When I was in South Africa there was always someone driving me around from every event, he was just a man of humanity! Often we have to suffer a lot before we really reconnect with our humanity. The greatest amongst us have suffered the most. That is the value of suffering. I could just tell this driver was a good human being, I said to him “You know, tell me. You seem to be so excited every time you see another human being.” He replied “Well, the person in front of me is a live person. They’re not a dead person, so I’m happy.” I went a little confused and he added “You know, in my life Robin I’ve seen a lot of dead people. I’ve been around a lot of tragedy. Now every time I see another human being alive in front of me, that is a gift in my day. I’m optimistic, I’m inspired, and they feel my happiness.” Humanity.
The final word is one of my favorite words, mastery. Be the Michelangelo of your craft. One thing you want to do before you die is going to Firenze and see Michelangelo’s David at the Galleria of Academia. Commit yourself to master your craft and become the heavyweight champion of the world on your field. Get a mentor, do the studying and don’t become the best in your field for the applause. That’s just ego drive. Do it for the pride you feel on a job well done. Become a master of your craft for who you become, the potential you bring out into the world on the journey to mastery. The confidence, the self-love that you breed within yourself by knowing that when you go out into your work life you bring it on. You don’t mail it in. You birth great value into the world and inspire many, many people.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this Mastery Session. Remember these 4 Magic Words: Originality, Audacity, Humanity and Mastery. Which is my great encouragement for you.