What I would say to the younger me at age 25?

Strange question to ask, but let me answer it. I’m coming out of the Scale Up Summit in Anaheim, California. It’s been a rich experience, 3 days of valuable information. You’ve heard the following statement; drinking from a fire hose. That’s what happened to me over last few days.

By no means do I claim to be a philosopher, but like I keep saying to my 4 children, I’m not more intelligent than you, I just have more experience. At 58, I consider myself an elder which should make me wiser.

Let’s keep everything in perspective. I’m coming from a family of non-entrepreneurs. My father, who taught me a great work ethic, was a civil servant and my mother decided to stay home trying to do something out of her 4 children. I’m the only entrepreneur in my family, so I had no benchmark. My entire entrepreneurial career started in 2000 and failed miserably. I started again in 2003 and I’m still here.

My career path is not better, worse or more difficult than anyone else’s. It is my path and it had its ups and down like anyone else’s.

OK, enough of the blah, blah, blah and what I would say to the younger me at age 25.

The real school starts when you start working.

If you thought that you finished learning once you graduated from school, sorry but brace yourself. With the reality of living longer, powerful younger and change faster, the real school starts when you start working. College or university has given you a framework of discipline which will help you significantly in your career. But with the speed of change in today’s market, those institutions have a challenge to keep up with it. And here, I’m not only talking about technologies, but the evolution of how we manage time and lead people, has changed drastically.

So, brace yourself. It is so fast that you will need to change and adapt; and part of it will come from new knowledge that you’ll acquire.

You will fall, that is a given.

The only thing that you don’t know is when. The sooner you’ll get out of your comfort zone, the sooner you’ll fall. Knowing that, it’s not how many times you do it but how fast you’ll get up, learn from it and move on.

We all have limiting beliefs or fears.

Some of them are even unconscious. Surround yourself with people who will help you to discover them. Once you know a limiting belief, tackle it head on, look at it in the eyes and manage it. You might not be able to kill it, but you’ll learn to deal with it.

Listen to your internal voice.

But be careful there are two voices. One from your head, and I call this one your co-tenant. What drives this voice is fear and ego. So, try not to listen to it. Rather listen to the one that comes from your heart, commonly called gut feeling. Sometimes it’s scary but trust yourself, this voice is the one of love, kindness and courage.

It’s all about your mindset.

You’ll have detractors, coming sometimes from unexpected places. You’ll have challenges, failures, etc. and everything will depend on your mindset. Do you have an open mindset or a fixed mindset? The first one will carry you further. An open mindset will give you the determination to learn and try new things and the adaptability necessary is this fast paced economy.

Finally, Passion

It doesn’t matter what you do, but be passionate about it, because your passion will give you perseverance and creativity. Two necessary traits in today’s world. If you happen to make a lot of money, it will only be a measure of your success.

So here it is. I could go on, but this is the essential. I invite you to ask yourself the same question to the younger you and share your thoughts.

Thank you.

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