The Most Valuable Thing You Keep Forgetting You Possess

“But I ‘m no expert.”

Funny how people go into instant confidence annihilation as soon as opportunity knocks.

And here’s more ammo:

“Who is going to listen to me?”

“There are so many other people out there doing this already.”

“What if I fail?”

“I have to go back to school.”

At a recent New York literary event, I was talking to the woman who put everything, and I mean everything, together.

This room was filled with best selling, award winning authors, their friends, family, a Nobel Laureate, philanthropists, screenwriters, producers and people who love literature.

Hors d’oeuvres were passed.

Drinks were clinked.

Money was raised.

Great buzz. Great event.

And yet, she was worried.

“I’m thinking of going back to graduate school.  I really need to learn more about grant writing and fundraising,”  she confided.  “What do you think?”

I put my drink down before I dropped it in disbelief.

Should I put a gun in her hand and tell her to shoot herself in the foot?

That is so not me.

My right brain was ready to explode with reasons why this was not a good idea:

  • You will learn theory, not practice
  • Nobody gets hired because they know theory
  • Nobody deserves your valuable time and money without giving you a job in return
  • Nobody gets hired because they have a fancy diploma

But true insight comes from self awareness.

She needed to arrive at the answer herself.

So I said, “Do you need to go into debt to learn how to beg for money?”

Then I leaned in with a meaningful wink, “Bad idea.  Bad for you skin.”


She took a moment before she answered me.

“Let me get you another drink and introduce you to someone I think you will love talking to,”  she smiled and we did a shoulder samba over to a young French filmmaker with soulful eyes sipping a flute of Veuve Cliquot.

Confidence is the only pedigree you need.

You go grasshopper!