Opinions And Ramblings By Adam Kmiec On All Things

Are You Reaching Your Potential?

I openly admit that there was a great sense of irony in learning of Steve Jobs’ passing on an iPhone.  Of all the products Steve brought to the market, the iPhone, may be the most iconic.  Sure, the iPod was revolutionary, AppleTV was redefining and the iPad was transformational.  But, a stroll down the street shows you the profound impact that the iPhone has had on the world.

But, this isn’t a post about Steve’s legacy.  It’s not a post about how much I’ve grown to rely on and love his products.  No, this is a post about three quotes…two from Steve and one from Jay Fanelli on twitter last night.

Courtesy of Steve Jobs

Your time is limited, don’t waste it living someone else’s life

Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.

Courtesy of Jay Fanelli 

Every CEO of every company on the planet should pay attention to this right now and ask themselves, “why won’t this happen when I die?”

As I wrote nearly a year ago, Time Is The Most Valuable Currency we have.  It’s a currency that becomes more valuable over time…or if you will…as we have less time left.  And, despite it’s value, it’s a currency you can’t trade and it’s completely finite.  In any given day, you only get about 2 hours of time for yourself…or perhaps we let life dictate that all we get is 2 hours.

If you trace through the annals of history for Steve Jobs quotes, you’ll find several dedicated to the concept of time and making good use of the time we’re given.  Steve, more than anyone had to realize how finite time was over that past few years.  He exhausted every option, with money being no object, to receive a liver transplant in 2009.  Some viewed his ability to leverage his wealth to garner a transplant faster than those with lesser financial means as a problem with the healthcare system.  For a person, who seemed to understand how fleeting and finite life is, one would have to wonder, why was he fighting the inevitable.

I don’t think it was ego.  Quite the opposite actually.  I tend to think Steve wanted to leave knowing he had maximized his gift…that he had reached his potential…that his work was done.  It’s a maddening thing to know what your potential is, but realize you might now be able to reach it.

Time is fleeting.  You get what you get.  You have little to no control over how much time you get.  But, you do have complete control over what you do with the time you do get.  You can’t point a finger at anyone, other than yourself, for not maximizing your time.

We can all only hope to maximize our full potential like Steve.  iMagine a world in which we all strove to reach our potential and were bothered by falling short…even if it was only falling short by an inch?

For me, that’s what I take away from Steve Jobs.  There’s no sense in living if what you’re doing isn’t making you happy. And happiness has a funny way of helping you reach your potential.