How to Decide How You Want to Make an Impact
When asked about the secret to his success and the world-changing impact of his work, Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom shared the three simple questions he used to guide his journey:
- What do you love to do?
- What are you good at?
- Does the world need it?
In this week’s episode, we analyze these questions and explore the process behind deciding how you want to make an impact.
“It’s really difficult to predict what someone wants to do in life and how they actually end up making an impact. … But the key is, as we learn more, little bit, little bit more about ourselves and we keep that top priority, we’re eventually able to connect the dots based on those three questions.”
But must your three answers always line up? Can you make an impact with a passion you’re good at, but that the world doesn’t need?
“If you are missing one of the three ingredients, it falls apart. And I think it happens a lot, though, where we’re passionate about something and we might even be good at doing it. But if the world doesn’t need it, if there’s not a demand, if there’s not a way for you to give this in a way that’s meaningful and helpful to other people, the first two don’t matter.”
Pulling from famous examples like Gary Vaynerchuk and Michael Seibel, we identify a few ways you can start deciding how to make an impact today:
- Make a list of your strengths. Don’t be afraid to compare yourself to others – it can be a useful lesson in perspective.
- Surround yourself with honest and open-minded people who won’t be afraid to speak up when you might be spinning your wheels
- Be fearlessly self-aware of your weaknesses so you can optimize against them.
“The point I want to drive is, we’re making [a] mistake with our passions. We’re overthinking our passions. … I think when we really focus in on what we intrinsically care about, that’s when the magic really starts to open up.”
In This Episode
- The three questions to ask when deciding how you want to make an impact (03:23)
- What it means to reverse engineer your success (05:37)
- How to figure out what you’re good at (08:49)
- Gary Vaynerchuk, the gift of self-awareness and auditing your trifecta (14:07)
- Understanding your weaknesses so you can optimize against them (18:41)
- The big mistake people make when trying to identify their impact (22:10)
- Mimetic theory and why world-changers don’t follow the crowd (24:30)
- Micro decisions and the dangers of overthinking your passions (27:57)
Resources & Links