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Beware! The Wonder Twins of Epically Bad Life Advice

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Anything related to matters of the mind

MJ DeMarco

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Reprinted on Medium...
Chapter 29 on UNSCRIPTED

Beware! The Wonder Twins of Epically Bad Life Advice

In 2005, Steve Jobs gave a legendary commencement speech at Stanford University. He echoed over and over, “Love what you do.” The now-famous statement has morphed into its syrupy cousin, “Do what you love.” And every time I hear it, I lose another millimeter off my molars.

Jobs’s universally accepted maxim exemplifies just how impervious a misinterpreted sound bite can become when eulogized literally — unite a survivor bias and narrative fallacy together and, wham, you get horrific life advice incontrovertibly ordained. And suddenly hordes of people want to jump off a building because someone famous told them to.

But wait, there’s more.

Do what you love” also has a twin: the pithy proverb “Follow your passion.” Again, another perilous dose of direction, usually dispensed by unknown bloggers with unknown track records who unknowingly don’t know the theology is hogwash.

Put ’em together and what you get is The Wonder Twins of Epically Bad Life Advice.
 
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Iammelissamoore

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Those wonder twins are overly popular in the Scripted world, we even hear seasoned businesspeople pushing it. I've had personal experience with that expression ruining a business I thought I had - baking cakes. Oh I LOVED baking cakes, back when it was a hobby, I'm happy I've left that aspect of business (actually I shouldn't even refer to it as a business) it was simply a job that had no cut off point. Now, no one can pay me any amount of money to get me to bake, what I was once "doing what I loved" I hate now; if I built a better business model around it, challenges and all, I would have fully understood loving what I do as I would have uncovered the proper ways, through a well-thought out business model, to bring customer-value into focus.
 

XxThelionxX

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It's like a dopamine spike!

It actually is a dopamine spike. And our brains get hardwired to feel good once we get accustomed to working!

I love the feedback loop that MJ talks about in the book! And a strong why start's the loop. I've been acting off of this hunger. But now a why is my next step!

I just read that it was a strong why that starts the process.

I'll have fun experimenting with this why! I've never had a strong why. But my family has been in such poverty. I'd love to be able to buy them a house if I wanted to! Atleast buying my sweat dear mother teeth.
 
D

DeletedUser0287

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Whelp, guess I’m the odd one out in this group. Actually following my passion and doing better than any other business venture I did before.

I find it hard to believe that all these top guys are wrong. Gary Vee is pro passion. Passion only works if you are good at what you do. I do see a lot of successful entrepreneurs that are the spitting image of their ideal customer. They are their own customer archetype. They design for themselves (selfish) first before designing for customer.

Funny thing also, how everyone here says nobody cares about your passion. But when I exclaimed to my customers the passion I had for what I was doing, sales increased.

Edit: If you ain’t passionate, you’re a money chaser. I also find it so much easier to give value to others for free with passion. Not with some BS sales funnel either. It is giving without expectation.
 
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MakeItHappen

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I find it hard to believe that all these top guys are wrong
That's a bias.
These guys where just lucky to love what the marketplace rewards.

You don't listen to motivational speeches by people who followed their passion and failed.

I know people that love what they do for a living and they a good at what they do. All of them have a hard time to make ends meet.
 

MakeItHappen

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I also find it so much easier to give value to others for free with passion.
I guess Steve Jobs wasn't passionate about Apple then, because he SOLD his products.
 

Kid

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That's a bias.
These guys where just lucky to love what the marketplace rewards.

You don't listen to motivational speeches by people who followed their passion and failed.

I know people that love what they do for a living and they a good at what they do. All of them have a hard time to make ends meet.

Yeah.

It's like - ask millionaire how to make a million dollar.
He will answer : do good at job.

And people somehow omit the fact that millionaire's job was to make million dollars and Scripted job is to make ends meet.

Both jobs can be done equally well. Monetary outcomes differ.

Same for passion and love.

As soon as those phrases will wear off, another will be created.
I guess next one will be "Do what you believe in".
 
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D

DeletedUser0287

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I guess Steve Jobs wasn't passionate about Apple then, because he SOLD his products.

I'm selling my products too. I was referring to the fact that most people give free value for sales funnels and upsells. People have trouble giving this free value because they are constantly focused on the money they are losing, giving free value.
 
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DeletedUser0287

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That's a bias.
These guys where just lucky to love what the marketplace rewards.

You don't listen to motivational speeches by people who followed their passion and failed.

I know people that love what they do for a living and they a good at what they do. All of them have a hard time to make ends meet.

Aren't you on a bias as well? Ignoring people that have succeeded with following their passion?
 

MakeItHappen

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Aren't you on a bias as well? Ignoring people that have succeeded with following their passion?
Maybe.
I believe passion is a good thing to have in business if there is a big enough need in the marketplace.

Passion in it's own isn't of much value in business.
 
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Jon L

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Maybe.
I believe passion is a good thing to have in business if there is a big enough need in the marketplace.

Passion in it's own isn't of much value in business.
I think MJ is saying something different from what you're responding to. His beef is with "Do what you love." What he doesn't like about that is that if you focus on answering the question, "What do I love" when figuring out what kind of business to run, you're gonna end up with something that isn't profitable. How many personal trainers out there exist because they followed that path? Quite a few. And very few earn enough to live on.

MJ says to figure out what the market wants and go do that.

Your point, 'be passionate about what you do,' is equally valid. If the market wants pink lace by the yard, and you can't figure out how to be passionate about that, then you're going to fail. However, if you can get passionate about building a pink lace business - doing deals with suppliers, hiring employees, setting up systems, then you've satisfied your passion criteria even if you're not really passionate about the pink lace itself.
 

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