You Are What You Do

Posted By on Dec 7, 2014 | 11 comments

Through the years, I’ve met tens of thousands of people. Each one of them is a unique story.

Some of the stories are grand, wild tales of how they got to where they are. Some are simpler in nature.

No matter where I go, people are looking to change their story. Not everyone, mind you. But there is a dissatisfaction in many lives with the way things are.

Many friends have told me how they would like to write books like I do. Others have said they wish they could change careers and become something else.

There is only one way these kinds of changes can happen. That comes through doing.

Take Positive Action

The truth is that most people have a huge dream in their minds that if they can just arrive at the point where they wish to be, things will magically be better. The problem is that they don’t necessarily want to have to do the things to get there.

One friend was telling me that he wanted to be a writer. Of course, at the end of that sentence he added the word someday. 

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, there are seven days in the week and someday isn’t one of them.

I told the friend that the only way to become a writer is to start taking positive actions toward that end, and actually start writing.

It couldn’t be simpler.

By the mere act of sitting down and writing every single day for a period of time like a week or more, you have become a writer through that positive action.

I call it positive action because it is action that propels you forward. It doesn’t leave you wondering what you need to do or allow you to worry about technicalities.

There are, seemingly, a billion blogs out there that talk about taking action. When I first started blogging four years ago, I heard that term all the time. “Just take action.”

To be honest, I never really knew what those people meant by that. The phrase “take action” seems a little nebulous to me. Maybe I’m not the brightest bulb in the batch, but I needed a little more specificity than that.

The answer came to me at the end of the 2013 soccer season. I coach a high school men’s team and the main theme of that season was instilling belief in the hearts of those young men.

Most of them come from poverty, in a town that would rather sweep them under the rug than celebrate anything they accomplish. That’s the way small towns can be.

But these guys deserved better. Through the course of the season, I pounded them with the idea that no matter what happens in the game or in life, the only thing that matters is that you take the best positive action possible in every single moment. If you mess up in one moment, the good news is that you have another one right after that where you get to take decisive action again.

That is how winners are made in sports and in life.

People who take consistent, positive action, will be propelled forward to reaching the goals they so deeply desire.

You Are What You Do

I am a writer. Not because I have books or some blogs, but because I wake up every day an hour early so I can write. Writing every day makes me a writer.

I am what I do.

The most frequent question I get is in regards to finding time to write books and blogs when I have a full-time job.

The answer is always the same. I take positive action that will propel me forward as a writer.

I’m also a runner, and a cyclist, and a speaker.

If you’re a doubter, I know what you’re thinking.

You’re thinking, “Sure, you can do all those things, but until you make a living at it, you aren’t really a writer.”

That statement contains a huge amount of irony. And I get it. I’ve thought the same thing before.

The truth is that if you decide to take positive action every day toward your goal, you instantly become that which you wish to be, and the more times you take that action, the closer you get to achieving sustainable success.

In other words, by getting up and writing every day, I am not just a writer now, but I am getting closer and closer to becoming a writer full-time.

Make sense?

With each book I write, each blog post I create, I am becoming more a writer than I was before, and I am building that career as I go.

No one just wakes up one day and is magically making a living from books they’ve never written.

You are what you do.

What do you do?

Do you hit the snooze button every morning instead of getting up and exercising, reading, writing, or taking a positive action you know will get you where you want to be? Do you make excuses, or do you take positive action?

Is there something you want to be that has been itching at you, deep down inside? Are you desperately trying to figure out what it is you want to do?

Write it in the comments below. There are a ton of supportive people here. It’s time to do what you want to be.



  1. I’d like to post a video blog (minimum) weekly to help me in my real estate business. I’m hung up on all the how and what to say along with getting good at handling the video and sound details.

    I’ve literally been saything this for years. I do a little bit then hit some kind of road block and fall off track. Really want to make 2015 the year ths I don’t give up but consistently make strides in doing this and becoming good at it.

    Post a Reply
    • Awesome comment, Nancy.

      I love it!

      Send me an email. I’d love to talk more about this directly if that’s okay. I’ve got some ideas and some resources that might just help you get over the hump and start getting momentum going. 🙂

      Post a Reply
      • My best friend is a videographer. He did a professional (that’s the key) video of my property and home that I wanted to lease.

        He came in and “staged” my home. In other words, I didn’t have to clean it or rearrange it. He did everything. He moved a few things to make my home look less cluttered, because he knows what looks the best on video. He’s been doing this for years and has lots of experience and a great eye.

        My home leased in FOUR DAYS! The people that leased my house are great.

        Feel free to contact me if you’d like his name and number. Having it done professionally and knowing where to put the videos on line is key.

        Happy (almost) 2015!

        Post a Reply
  2. I, like a lot of people, have a bucket list. Wanted to be on Oprah – check, wanted to have a great career – check, wanted to have two children, a boy and a girl – check and check. I am so very blessed.

    I have one main thing left on my bucket list. I’m sure you’ll never guess what it is. I want to write a book. My life didn’t turn out like it was supposed to. Does anyone’s? Yes. I think it does. However, I learned very quickly never say never. I want to write this book for two main reasons, (1) to share it with others and maybe it will help them with their elderly parents and (2) to get it straight in my head.

    My problem is my story is so over-whelming, detailed, unexpected, heart breaking and long, I just don’t know where to start. I’m completely overwhelmed. I’ve tried an outline. That didn’t work. I’ve tried to just throw facts on paper, that didn’t work. How do you get started? TRULY STARTED? Please don’t tell me the beginning. It’s all so tangled.

    I have no idea how the process works. I would appreciate any guidance anyone can give me.


    Post a Reply
    • Big questions. I see that you emailed me so I will respond to that soon.
      In the short term, I never start a book at the beginning. I start at the end. If you don’t know where the story finishes, you will have no idea how to get there. It would be like getting in your car with no destination in mind.
      So start by writing down the end of the story.
      Example: For my last novel, I wrote down that the story would end in the Ionian Sea, along with the things that needed to happen at the end.
      Once I had that destination in mind, it was easy to drive the story there.
      Make sense? 🙂

      Post a Reply
  3. Just the push I needed.
    So now I’m writing my first blog entry since August. I kind of got off the train and never got back on.
    I’d like to reference you with a link from my blog back to yours. Would you be ok with that?
    I can send you a draft before I publish if you’d like.

    Post a Reply
  4. Ernest you have a great blog…
    I am really a newbie to this all,just start to learn computer at being 68 years “young” have self published my first book in my native language Croatian some years ago,and did self publish another great self help classic titled A Touch of Greatness by my late friend Frank Tibolt,I have all publishing rights for this book.My goal is to share this book with the world,and using social media,which I have never used before,so yes,there is a lot to learn,just come across your blog,which I find to be inspiring.Wishing you all the best,Ivan Zitek Brampton,Ontario.Canada

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  5. I strongly believe that you should stick to what your passion truly is because how you do something will greatly affect the outcome. Then the outcome will greatly show your personality. Your actions are what people see and how you live can tell what kind of person you are. So it’s true that you say that you are what you do, then I absolutely agree with that.

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