I am realizing more and more that a big part of a "career" is figuring out how you can be valuable to other people - so valuable in fact, that other people (and companies) will actually pay you money for your time.
The first time it happens it feels a little weird.
We ask ourselves...how are we valuable to others? Why are they taking a chance on us? Are we that valuable?
Once we get comfortable with the feeling, we then try to hone in on it. We try to become more valuable to more people.
For most of my friends, both here at school and all over the world, learning to add value is a constant struggle.
1) It is hard. Most people hate that.
2) There are few clear paths to learning how to add value (engineering/design/etc. are most of them). For most people, these options seem out of reach, so they resort to less technical paths.
The crazy thing is that there are actually infinite ways you could add value to a company or other people. You just have to find what works for you, and aligns with your personal and professional goals.
I tried to accelerate this process from a younger age than most (I think). Early in high school, I started two things - one a business and one a non-profit.
Both taught me so much.
So many details. So many little things. So many people skills. So many unique opportunities.
So many failures.
But more than everything, it taught me how to create. How to create value. How to create experiences.
And that was an invaluable learning - because it taught me that you did not have to be some IVY League Grad to generate value in the world. You just had to have a desire to.
There are infinite resources on the internet for learning how to add value. Some would argue too many (an overwhelming amount).
There is a scarcity in the amount of people using them.