The Most Lucrative Opportunity is the One That Makes You Feel the Most Alive
The tech industry raised me and informed much of my early perspectives and frameworks. When I ask my entrepreneur friends what motivates them many of them answer “maximizing impact.” Ambition is highly regarded in the tech industry which leads to this impact optimization mindset. For example, back when I was a part of a student venture capital fund, we wouldn’t invest in startups unless they were tackling a $1B+ opportunity.
Influenced by my peers and background in tech, maximizing impact became my earliest definition of success. And while this mindset served me early on, eventually it became a hindrance because I was constantly searching for the most lucrative opportunity. Earlier this year, for instance, I was convinced that my next step as a writer was growing an audience. The playbook for growing an audience is simple: find a niche and stay consistent. I chose my niche, created a vision, and outlined a 10-step plan for how I’ll get there. The idea logically made sense and many people validated it was a great idea, but I couldn’t get myself to write the first post because deep down, I didn’t care. Even if this succeeded, even if I built an audience of 100k people with this idea, I still wouldn’t care. This experience taught me that instead of pursuing impact, I’d rather pursue what makes me feel alive.
Reflecting on the trajectory of some of my heroes, one pattern I noticed is they didn’t chase impact but they chased their innate curiosity which led to obsession, then results, then impact.
The difficult part of chasing what makes you feel alive is that it’s a long journey and there might not be external returns either. But what you will gain, more important than money, power, or status, is you become inspired, you come alive, and become free.