“The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.” —John Milton
Life is a series of one-time only moments never to be replicated. Small signs, synchronicities, and pivotal experiences are often the bread crumbs that show us the way — our way. How many of us disregard these moments as…nothing? How many of us rationalize our way into the same old, same old? Don’t rock the boat. Follow the rules. Stay the course.
What if we shifted our gaze however? What if we took heed of the inner cues that are always tugging on our hearts? What if by paying attention and following the signs, our purpose would become more clear?
While sitting in a college economics class, 19-year old Jake Ducey followed a sign. Unhappy with a classroom conversation about the Federal Reserve, he asked a simple, yet challenging question. It was shut down…silenced. A louder sign. Get out. Now.
That’s exactly what he did. In that moment, Jake realized that the American Dream of happiness, success, and fulfillment would not be his path. He left behind a collegiate basketball scholarship, dropped out of school, and set out on a worldwide adventure.
Inspired by the movie, Into the Wild, he documented his journey and released his first book titled, Into the Wind. Without a publisher or any significant budget, Jake managed to self-promote his book to Amazon’s top 300. Considering Amazon’s vast database, this is no small feat.
Spring-boarding off the success of Into the Wind, Jake was invited to speak on the TEDx stage. He’s since built a loyal on-line following. Jake also piqued the interest and subsequent mentorship of superstar Chicken Soup for the Soul author, Jack Canfield. At 23, Jake has since become the youngest author to score a motivational book publishing deal at a major publishing house with his most recent book, The Purpose Principles.
One of the most beautiful parts of Jake’s story is what he considers his greatest accomplishment. With some of the money he’s since earned with his books, he’s helped build an orphanage in Guatemala. Not only does Jake follow his heart, he acts from it.
After watching Jake’s TEDx talk, I was hooked. I knew that I had to have him on the show. He’s wise beyond his years and has an infinite plethora of wisdom to share.
This week, we explore topics such as:
• Paying attention to the signs that lead us to purpose.
• Asking questions rather than regurgitating information.
• Internal alignment vs. external conditioning.
• Saying yes to yourself.
• How it’s better to appear strange to others than to be a stranger to yourself.
• The power of curiosity.
• Seizing pivotal moments.
• What is happiness?
• The simplicity of life in a complex world.
• Showing up as a leader in our lives…and in the world.
• The things we fear the most are often the things that will set us free.
• The freedom of forgiveness.
• The foundation of social justice is spirituality.
• The link between purpose and activism.
• How fear can either paralyze us or make us stronger.
• Purpose is not what you do, it’s how you show up in the world.
As Jack Canfield said to Jake, “Jake considers me his mentor – a role I relish, but just as important, I consider Jake an inspiration in my life.”
I can honestly say that I feel exactly the same way. Enjoy this week’s powerful conversation with Jake Ducey.
Note: I feel it fair to mention that the audio for today’s conversation is a bit spotty. Jake and I tried to make Skype work, but it was funky that day, so we opted for his cell phone. I did my best to clean up the audio and it’s definitely better. My unsolicited invitation is to stay with it. Once your ears attune to the audio, you’ll be blown away by what he has to say.
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