Since I’ve started writing about young professionalism, I’ve been surprised by how many people have reached out wanting to talk about work.
The dialogue goes something like this: “I’m overwhelmed! I thought WFH would bring some relief, but work continues to consume my life. But hey, we’re young. Work should consume everything, right?”
Work should consume everything?
As if millennials are tragic heroes from Greek mythology cursed by the gods to relive the Sunday scaries week-in and week-out.
The fact is, sometimes work sucks because we let it suck.
I’m a commercial real estate broker, one of the more competitive…
When I started commercial real estate brokerage, my mentor told me I had entered the “big leagues.” At the time, I thought he was talking about the breadth of knowledge required to do the job: marketing, sales, finance, etc. Years later I discovered what he actually meant: that you better know what you’re doing or prepare to get ripped apart.
There were days when I felt ripped apart. Boneheaded mistakes and sleepless nights. Experiences that not only made me lose confidence in myself, but sometimes in the entirety of American capitalism.
But for every heartbreak, there were breakthroughs and, eventually…
We need a better mental image of hustle
Gary Vee’s portrayal of hustle can be misleading.
That doesn’t make him wrong.
His YouTube channel paints the picture of a restless, connected man who spends most of his day glued to a phone, bouncing from meeting to meeting, yelling at strangers for taking their parent’s money. One minute he’s recording a podcast with DaBaby talking about NFTs; the next, he’s on a private jet with A-Rod talking about baseball cards.
Critics say he’s propagating hustle porn. I’m not sure where the term comes from, but it means to normalize the struggle…
Respond from the eye of the hurricane
George Mumford, the sports psychologist and mental toughness coach for Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan, and Phil Jackson, has a cool metaphor about mindset during anxious moments. Those days when nothing is going right, when you feel disconnected from yourself, and you receive more boos than applause.
He teaches: “Respond from the eye of the hurricane, rather from the chaos of the storm.”
The surface winds of hurricanes are chaotic, almost hellish, but the winds are strong enough to deflect away from the center, leaving a calm eye in the storm. …
Did you know Henry Ford started the forty-hour workweek in 1926?
The story goes he structured the Model T assembly line into 8-hour shifts so workers had free time to buy consumer goods and, you know, actually contribute to the economy.
Similar to Silicon Valley adopting the open office after Google made it cool, every US organization adopted the 40-hour workweek after the Ford Motor Co — law firms, banks, even government agencies decided maximum human efficiency occurred in 8-hour stints.
Maybe they were right? After all, the United States was the most productive country in the world during the…
It takes a while to catch your stride
What’s so special about 49 articles?
Nothing at all, but also everything. The number doesn’t matter. I’m simply talking about a lot of articles.
49 articles mean you’ve put in the time, conducted hours of dull research, suffered the agony of the first draft, and felt the sting of rejection from that certain publication. The injustice!
If you’re still writing after all that, well, that’s not nothing.
I received a bit of brilliant advice from an entrepreneur friend. It was early 2020, and I had just started a blog that reviewed business…
When you think about it, our twenties are a series of little bets.
We follow what excites us, practice new skills, try new things, and note the audience’s reaction. Some things stick; most fall flat. Either way, we learn something about ourselves and let that guide our next decision.
The writer Peter Sims introduced the idea of little bets in his book by the same name. He demonstrated that innovators like Steve Jobs, Frank Gehry, and Chris Rock didn’t start with a big idea or plan out an entire project in advance. …
I read Cheryl Strayed’s Wild recently. A memoir about a 26-year-old heartbroken, divorced, recovering heroin user who sought spiritual enlightenment on the Pacific Crest Trail. Like most twentysomethings braving the outdoors for the first time, she was overconfident and didn’t study how to properly pack for a 1,100-mile trek. She dubbed her backpack “monster” because it weighed as much as a small bear and required a sumo squat to get upright.
An annoyed veteran hiker eventually dumped everything on a picnic table and separated the wants from the needs. …
Friends who won’t judge you
I’m a terrible friend in many ways.
I ignore group chats because, in my head, I’m above talking about last night’s hockey game. I forget birthdays when everyone remembers mine. I often turn down happy hours because I’d rather watch Netflix.
But I owe a lot to my friends. They’re a progressive, driven bunch. Each with an acute self-awareness and each intently focused on long-term goals.
I like to think some of that has rubbed off on me.
Your friends are your tribe and a powerful source of influence. Stick around your tribe long enough…
“Do What You Love.”
WeWork’s famed slogan used to pull people away from their boring corporate jobs and follow their passion. An effective message no doubt! It basically simplified the American dream: have the courage to follow your passion, and the rest is sunshine and rainbows.
The advice worked for Tiger Woods, Steve Jobs, and Elon Musk. Why wouldn’t it work for you too?
But we all know the truth, chasing your passion does not guarantee success, it doesn’t guarantee anything.
Passion is a guide, but not the journey itself. …