Is there something that you are really good at? Something you can’t get off your mind, and can’t go a day without thinking about?
Everyone has that one thing, including you!
So what is it? Are you really good at sports? Like cooking? Painting? Are you a computer geek?
The truth is, your talents and the things you’re passionate about are what define you as a person. It’s your job to embrace these things and become the real you.
Now, let me tell you a story.
My Story of Lies, Secrets & A False Identity
…okay, maybe that sounds a little dramatic. But I will admit to you that I have not always embraced the things I’m good at. In all honesty, I was afraid to. And it’s easily one of the biggest mistakes I’ve ever made in my life, and I know I’m not the only one.
My story starts like this:
During my freshman year of High School, I started my first business online. I’m a self-taught web designer, and I decided that this is what I wanted to do with my life at the age of 14.
I liked to think I was great at what I did, and thought that the earlier I started, the better I’d get as I got older. I remember sitting in front of the computer for hours learning as much as I could and then spend even more time applying what I learned.
You know you’re passionate about something when you pull all-nighters and lose track of time while doing it. That, and your siblings fight with you so they can get a turn on the computer…
After only a few months, I dove in and started my business as a blogger. I loved it. But, I never told anyone I knew about it.
My parents, brothers, sisters, teachers, friends, nobody knew but me, and anyone who found my blog online.
I was afraid to tell anyone. I was afraid people would think I’m a computer geek, or a loser.
I remember even ditching my friends a few times and coming up with excuses and lies as to why I couldn’t hang out with them. I wanted to work on my business, and learn more about the things I was passionate about rather than going out to party or smoke weed.
I even went as far as using a fake name on my blog to ensure that no one I knew could look me up on Google and find my blog.
Call it obsession, call it being anti-social — I call it passion and doing what made me happy at the time. Unfortunately, I just could not be honest with people about what it is I actually did.
3 Years Later…
My senior year of High School is when I started becoming open with people about my business. Yes, it took me 3 freakin’ years to tell my friends and teachers about what it was I did online.
Of course, my parents and family knew by then. And they couldn’t have been more proud of me. But what surprised me the most was that even my friends were impressed. Hell, some were even jealous.
…not the reaction I would have expected. At all.
As a matter of fact, I was never once called a “nerd” or “loser” (I have actually come to terms with the fact that I am a computer nerd, and I love it) when I told somebody about my business.
Of course, I wasn’t doing any of this to get approval from others, or to get my ego stroked. But to finally be able to come clean and stop living in a lie.
Now, Back to You
My story is not unique, and I’d bet that you’ve made the same mistake in your life as well by hiding things from others.
Even if it’s something as big as a hobby, or something small like a favorite song (it’s okay to admit that “YMCA” is a catchy song, everyone else secretly thinks so too).
The longer you keep your talents and passion bottled up, the less time you’ll have to hone in on them and actually make something of them.
Ever since I started telling people what I did, I’ve flourished. I started my second business online, don’t worry about money, I now travel to network with others who do what I do, and am preparing for my first newspaper interview in a few weeks.
But the best thing of all, is I do something that I love and I do it with no shame. I wish I had told people sooner, because maybe I’d be even better at what I do today. But I’m too happy with what I have now to let all that get to me today.
Use My Mistakes to Make a Better You
If you’re great at something, embrace it. If you ever want to get better at something, you have to be able to tell others without shame. Now, I want you to share your story with the rest of the Life Notion community. Have you ever kept your true talents a secret because you’re too worried about what other people will think? You know my story, so tell me yours. Please leave a comment below (don’t be shy!).