It’s useful to have role models to guide us, but don’t waste time trying to become your role model. Instead, focus on being the next you . . . the Best You.
The Next Bob Dylan
What do you want to be and to do? Some people say things like “I want to be the next Oprah” or “the next Hemingway” or “the next Tiger Woods”. There is a different way. How about being the next You?
When I was about 12 years old, I had an experience that had a major impact on my life. I heard my first Bob Dylan song. This was my stepping stone for going from childhood to adolescence. Dylan’s songs and his singing had a lasting influence on me.
One of the effects was on my choice of a career during my teen years. This is a conversation I had in 12th grade during a meeting with my guidance counselor.
Counselor: Have you given any thought to what you want to do as a career?
Me: I want to be a folk singer.
C: Ah. And will you accompany yourself on an instrument?
C: Do you play the guitar?
C: Do you play the piano?
C: Do you have any musical abilities?
Me: No. But I’m going to be the next Bob Dylan!
Become The Best You
As you may have guessed, I did not become the next Bob Dylan. I became something better . . . I became me. Now I don’t mean that in a boastful way but what I do mean is this: I became aware of my own unique talents and inclinations. I followed the things that held interest for me. And I developed skills that enhanced my natural abilities. I became (and continue to become) the best Steven Huskey that I can be. (And . . . I eventually learned to play guitar, too.)
You came here with a purpose. You have a combination of talents, innate abilities, and inclinations that are totally unique. No one living today or who has ever lived has your same abilities. Why would you try to imitate anyone else? You are a great You!
What To Do With Your Life
Sometimes people say, “I don’t know what to do with my life.” The simple answer to that is “Live it!” Develop your talents, follow your interests, and build skills around them.
If you don’t like to cook, you are probably not going to choose to be a chef. (And if you do, you won’t be happy and probably won’t be a very good chef.) If you can’t stand the sight of blood, a career as a nurse or doctor is probably not your best choice.
Yet, sometimes we allow ourselves to be influenced in the things we do by well-meaning family and friends, or by our own daydreams. You may dream about being the next Shaquille O’Neal, but if you’re 5′ 8″ and have trouble walking and chewing gum at the same time . . . friend, it ain’t gonna happen.
The good news is that you can be successful, happy, and live a fulfilled and gratifying life by following your own star. Listen to your inclinations. Typically you will want to do those things for which you are best suited and you won’t be interested in the things for which you have no talents. This doesn’t limit you — there are an endless number of things you can do and ways you can develop and still be true to your own abilities, talents, skills, and likes.
In his book, Manifesting Change, Mike Dooley compares infinite possibilities and infinite probabilities. While we all have an infinite number of possibilities open to us, the probability of doing most of them is very small. There is a much smaller area of probabilities of what we will do. However, there are ample opportunities to be and to do in that area of probability.
The Next You
Why spend time and effort in trying to be or do something for which you are not well suited, when there are any number of ways you can put your own unique set of talents and abilities and desires to work for you and for the world? Why spend time and effort in trying to be the next Oprah, the next Shaq, the next Beyonce’, or even the next Steve Huskey? Instead, choose to be the next You! That is embracing Excelerated Life™!
Excelerated focus™ — aligning your actions with your true desires — is one step in creating your Excelerated Life™ , a life of flourishing, of well-being, meaning, and purpose.
Dooley, Mike. Manifesting Change: It Couldn’t Be Easier. New York: Atria Books, a Division of Simon & Schuster, 2010