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DON'T Fake It to Make It (Do This Instead)

Be yourself.

Two words that are forgotten in school and business. We spend so much time trying to get the perfect grades to get into the perfect school to land a perfect job.

But at what cost?

Schools teach you how to follow the rule book. If you follow it closely enough, you escape with great grades and put yourself in a position to find a perfect job.

Jobs teach you how to follow the rules of a boss and comply with corporate policy.

Where do you learn how to lead and make intuitive decisions for your own future?

The true cost of demand without passion

The CDC recently found that suicide rates over the past two decades have gone up dramatically in every state except Nevada.

Most troubling is that 54% of individuals who commit suicide show no prior signs of any mental illness. This means that individuals who struggle with everyday issues--relationships gone sour, rough jobs, financial setbacks--can break down without warning.

One oversimplified word explains what we all face in the battle to find meaning--pressure.
Pressure: Continuous physical (or mental) force exerted on or against an object by something in contact with it.
You receive pressure from school to get a grade, to master the material someone else tells you is important for your life.

You receive pressure from work to meet company goals and benchmarks that have nothing to do with your individual skills and talents.

You receive pressure from friends and family to keep up the status quo, to act and even dress “normal.”

For Savannah Eason, a child from a wealthy family living in a beautiful home in a rich suburb outside of NYC, life seemed perfect.

But reality struck in the winter of 2012 when her father had to wrestle a pair of scissors from Savannah’s hands as she attempted to cut herself.

The expectations set for her began to feel more like a burden than a blessing.

"Even though I was getting A's and B's, mostly A's, in all my classes — all my honors classes — I still felt it wasn't good enough," says Savannah.

Pressure without passion is no more than a cleverly concealed trap. In order to truly blossom an individual needs to discover their raw talents. Those talents need to be sharpened through practice, not dulled by expectations.

Pressure can lead to pain when that pressure is designed to bend your will to meet outside expectations.

So many of our expectations are designed by outside parties who want us to fit in. Pressure to live up to the family name can cause someone to follow a path that really isn't their cup of tea.

When you follow goals designed by someone else you lose your ability to define your own character.

Pressure can help develop your passion, but it cannot find your passion for you.

True passion attracts followers and relieves pressure

One of the most successful marketing videos in the past few years was the infamous Chewbacca mom.

Youtube
It resonated with millions of people simply because it was not scripted. The emotions were real. The product was not forced down the viewers' throats.

It was one woman's honest reaction to a Chewbacca mask she bought from Kohl's.

For almost 5 minutes after putting on the mask, Candace Payne laughed almost to the point of tears in a Kohl's parking lot near Dallas, Texas. She did it to prove to her kids that the mask was in fact hers.

She didn’t have to force the benefits of a Chewbacca mask on her audience because it came naturally.

Little did she know that less than a month later, her video would reach 150 million people.

After posting her reaction on Facebook, Candace appeared on The Late Show with James Corden.

But her good fortune didn't stop there. Employees from Kohl's dropped off thousands of dollars worth of Star Wars swag at her home.

Then Peter Mayhew, the original Chewbacca, sent her a letter inviting her and her entire family to the Dallas Fan Expo to meet him in person.

Candace also met J.J Abrams, executive producer of Star Wars: The Lars Jedi, on the set of The Late Show before filming.

People can tell when you're being genuine. The funny thing is you will attract similar people and reactions to your own actions and behavior.

Maybe then the best marketing strategy of all time is this: don't wait for things to fail before being yourself.

SOURCES
1. Aubrey, A., & Greenhalgh, J. (2018, June 11). The Perils Of Pushing Kids Too Hard, And How Parents Can Learn To Back Off. Retrieved from https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/06/11/616900580/back-off-how-to-get-out-of-the-high-pressure-parenting-trap?sc=tw
2. Greenfieldboyce, N. (2018, June 07). CDC: U.S. Suicide Rates Have Climbed Dramatically. Retrieved from https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/06/07/617897261/cdc-u-s-suicide-rates-have-climbed-dramatically?sc=tw
3. Kohl's Reaps Marketing Bonanza From 'Chewbacca Mom'. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://fortune.com/2016/05/23/kohls-chewbacca-marketing/
4. Pressure. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pressure

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