I’m training for the Rock â€˜n’ Roll Arizona Marathon in 2018. When I do my long run for the week, I prefer to listen to podcasts instead of music. It’s easier to be distracted from the pain I’m inflicting on myself and find a rhythm with 30-minute episodes rather than 3-minute songs.
Recently I’ve used my training to catch up on the podcast Unthinkable, hosted by Jay Acunzo. I met Jay in 2016 when we were both speakers at Content Marketing World where he spoke about how being different leads to success in business. I always get something good out of every episode.
Be an Authority
This run started with his interview with marketing consultant, author, and speaker Robert Rose. Robert says he prefers to be called an â€œauthorityâ€ rather than an â€œexpert,â€ in part because the words â€œauthorityâ€ has the root â€œauthor.â€ An expert knows a subject, but an author created it. I love this! I am absolutely stealing this for two reasons:
- I love the idea of being an authority on social media law (I did write the book on this stuff), and
- The State Bar doesn’t allow lawyers to call themselves â€œspecialistsâ€ unless you’ve been certified through their process. This gets around that issue.
Be an Exception
Jay says, â€œTo be exceptional, you have to be an exception.â€ Statements like this remind me that it’s ok to be me, and when I embrace and run with my unconventional ideas, things tend to work out. And I don’t do what I do just to be weird, but because it’s what works for me. I’m just being me. When I try to fit into someone else’s box is when things go sideways.
Jay is all about intuition. He highlights people who are successful because they trusted their gut. They ask the right questions and find the answers from within. I believe in this too. My gut feeling is never wrong â€“ sometimes inaccurate, but never wrong. I know when I’m going with my gut, I’m doing what’s in alignment with who I am.
What Am I?
Over the last few weeks, I’ve been mulling over this question. It started back in September when I saw my friend, Ari Kaplan, speak at ASU Law School about making opportunities for yourself. I don’t know what Ari said, but it inspired me to write, â€œI’m an artistâ€ in my notebook.
When it comes down to the basics, I think that’s what I am. I’m a writer, a musician, a creator. I’m happiest when I’m creating, learning, sharing, and when what I do makes a difference.
Looking to the future, I can picture myself taking music lessons and going to ballet classes (in male attire with Rocky’s leg warmers). I also see myself zipping around on my orange skateboard and learning how to be a survivalist (not that I like camping, but I bet it’s handy stuff to know). Being a lawyer pays the bills, but more and more, I accept that this is what I do. It’s not who I am.
For now, I’m putting more energy into being creative. On the wall where I put my to-do items on sticky notes, I added one that says, â€œJust Write.â€ When I saw Ann Handley speak at Content Marketing World, she inspired me to devote time to writing every day, even if no one ever sees it. And I’m listening to more music, pulling from my entire iTunes library, and not just my race day playlist.