I’ve been doing a lot of self-reflection the last six months as my life goes through some major changes, some painful and many good. Along the way self-awareness (and a wonderful partner) have kept me between the ditches. But when I came across Sarah Kay’s TED talk “If I Should Have a Daughter” I realized she had just handed me the tools to make my values and beliefs tangible.
After I watch Sarah’s TED talk, I sat down with my Brain Trust – my personal board of directors – and asked them what ten things they knew to be true. Everyone’s list was different, and inspiring, and let me know I was on the right track.
When I first wrote my list of ten things I actually came up with nineteen. But just writing down the titles wasn’t enough, and I wanted to get it down to ten. So I borrowed another technique of “progressive elaboration” from writing (and project management). That was one of the nineteen that didn’t make the final list, although I still know it to be true: “creativity is ideas having sex and making new ideas.”
I wrote a sentence for each truth. Then I wrote a paragraph for each. At each stage ideas merged, emerged, and coalesced. Now I have ten solid beliefs that I want to share with the world. If nobody reads this series, that’s okay too, because I’ll get something out of it. I already have. I’ve made clear what’s important to me in a way I can talk about it.
If somebody else gets inspired, or heck, if people start sharing with each other (like they have at TED, Google, or on Tumblr), then even better! And if you hire me because you have a better idea of who I really am, then fantastic!
So here’s my list. I’ll be writing about each one in the coming weeks and months. I hope you enjoy them all.
- It’s Never, Ever Too Late To Try Again
- I Am Who I Hang Out With
- We All Get a Turn
- Be Angry, Just Don’t Be Cruel
- Big Changes Happen in the Small Moments
- I Can’t Help People That Don’t Want to Be Helped
- I Am What I Pay Attention To
- Success Depends on Being Smart, Working Hard, and Being Lucky
- My Value as a Human Doesn’t Depend on My Job, or My Things
- I Get To Say No, and So Do You
Thanks for coming on this voyage with me. What things do you know to be true?