Stop Trying to Make a Name for Yourself

I have a sticky note on my wall right beside my desk it just reads “Stop Trying to Make a Name for Yourself.” I honestly believe your passion will direct you and will put you in front of the right opportunities at that appropriate time. When I realize I am not serving my community well all I need is to refer to my sticky note. Troubleshooting in real time! I needed a sticky note because I struggle with this notion in a real way!

This weekend I got the news that I did not make the TED Talks Mile High auditions, to be honest, I knew it was a long shot. I was a first-time nominee, and the Colorado market is highly competitive. People hire consulting firms to write their applications and produce videos for them. Getting in is tough. I was flattered that someone thought to nominate me and I followed up with an application as well. Then last night I got this humungous letter in my email that said all the reason people get turned down. I thought, “Oh this is an excellent example of correction and direction to succeed in the future!” That left me wondering.

I have had a ton of wins coming into 2017. From speaking at SummitLive the largest livestreaming and creator conference in the world to being nominated for Periscoper of the Year for the Shorty Awards for my work on Periscope! Plus having a full agenda for the next six months. I still lamented this one loss as if they told me my passion was just not good enough for them. Like the scoffed at me for even trying. They didn’t by the way! The letter was truly informative and helpful. But still I sulked around the rest of the night, thinking…I tried so hard…my application was fantastic… why…WHY???

If emulation is the sincerest form of flattery, being recognized by other professionals as an “expert” in your work is one step closer to you having to buy an extra seat on the plane for your ego. The opposite is going without any recognition and letting it deflate your ego into a quivering mass of defeat. What I have discovered is your genuine and authentic work to become the expert of your dreams! You don’t need recognition from everyone that you hoped. If you follow the path of your true passion, you might even find acknowledgment and opportunity coming knocking when you least expect it.

There is a balance, however. It is noisy out there. Most endeavors are not unique or groundbreaking. I get hung up here. What I do is help people make their bodies inhospitable to cancer. So what? So is Dr. Mercola, so is Dr. Axe, so is the huge blockbuster series The Truth About Cancer. I am not breaking any new ground here! All that and I am new at this whole thing. I have to claw and fight my way into anyone’s life if I want them to know who I am. Or do I?

If actions speak louder than words, then your passion will SCREAM! I have sent countless emails to people I would love to work with and that I fantasize want to work with me. You know how many responses I get? Maybe 1 out of 50 will take the next step with me, to just chat and most I never even hear from again. That one that I connect with is usually someone that blows me away. They relate to my passion and I to theirs, and we end up friends or even partners on a project. It’s cool!

The destruction of trying to make a name for myself makes me lose focus on my real passion. I end up dropping the ball of the very thing that I want someone to recognize. So I have a sticky note…”Stop Trying to Make a Name for Yourself!” It keeps me grounded and on task to what is paramount to me, helping millions of people learn to make their bodies inhospitable to cancer. What does your sticky note say?

By Leslie Nance

Host Shorty Award Nominated Show “Lunch with Leslie”


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