45 Life-Changing Seth Godin Quotes: Average Is for Losers, Attitudes Are skills

seth godin quotesSeth Godin is best known as an impactful author and a genius marketer.  Through his books and his public talks, not only that he shares his genius about the field of marketing, he shares his insight on how to live with purpose.  A lot of his writing can make you really reflect on a very deep level.  Let’s look at some of his best quotes and learn from them.  


“Instead of wondering when your next vacation is, maybe you should set up a life you don't need to escape from.”

Many people are willing to accept having a life that is not interesting and meaningful enough.  They find ways to make themselves feel like living when they don’t have to work.  If you happen to be one of those people, have you really tried to make your work meaningful?  Try it.  Really try hard at this and it’s going to make your life completely different.  It’s like you are living in a new world that you have never experienced.  


“Art isn't only a painting. Art is anything that's creative, passionate, and personal. And great art resonates with the viewer, not only with the creator.”

To make good use of your potential, you have to make art.  Art doesn’t simply mean making a painting.  It can mean anything that you create.  Create something that means something to you and gives value to others.  


“The job is what you do when you are told what to do. … Your art is what you do when no one can tell you exactly how to do it. Your art is the act of taking personal responsibility, challenging the status quo, and changing people.”

If you want your life to be more meaningful and purposeful, you want to make art instead of just doing a job.  The difference is that making art means doing things when no one tells you exactly what to do.  


“Change almost never fails because it's too early. It almost always fails because it's too late.”

Don’t worry about doing something innovative too early.  It’s probably that the best timing will give you the most money but who would know what is the exact best time to do your thing.  Just do it and push the world forward.  Worry about being late instead if you really want to worry.  


“I define anxiety as experiencing failure in advance.”

Anxiety is not always bad as long as you can keep it under control.  Be aware of thoughts that make you anxious but try not to be bothered by it.  See your thoughts as an objective observer.  Finding the reasons behind those thoughts may give you some hints on reasons that could make you fail.  


“The secret to being wrong isn't to avoid being wrong! The secret is being willing to be wrong. The secret is realizing that wrong isn't fatal.”

If you want to get to another level.  You have to completely understand that being wrong is a part of the process.  If you are willing to be wrong, you get a chance to succeed.  It’s the whole package.  


“If you can’t state your position in eight words, you don’t have a position. ”

The above Seth Godin quote is a very wise one about marketing.  If the position of your product isn’t simply enough to be packed into a short sentence, it’s likely that you have not defined a niche for your product.  


“A group needs only two things to be a tribe: a shared interest and a way to communicate.”

A tribe can be viewed as a strong team.  In this day and age, it’s easy to find ways to communicate.  A shared interest is the absolute key to create a strong team.  


“If you are deliberately trying to create a future that feels safe, you will willfully ignore the future that is likely.”

If you don’t do much to consistently improve yourself, the future that is likely going to happen is that your skills are going to be outdated and your importance in the world is going to diminish.  However, if you intentionally keep improving yourself and create things that give value to others, you have a good chance of escaping the uninteresting future.  


“In a battle between two ideas, the best one doesn't necessarily win. No, the idea that wins is the one with the most fearless heretic behind it.”

Logical people like to assume that the best ideas win.  However, there are so many cases that mediocre ideas executed by motivated people get the win.  


“If you need to conceal your true nature to get in the door, understand that you'll probably have to conceal your true nature to keep that job.”

If you have to pretend to be a boring person to get a job, you will have to continue to pretend to be that boring person to keep the job.   If you are supposed to be an entrepreneur and you want to get a 9-to-5 job so that you are financially secure, it’s likely that you are not going to enjoy your work and waste a big part of your life as a result.  


“Change isn't made by asking permission. Change is made by asking forgiveness, later.”

If you want to make changes, there are always people who are going to disagree.  There is no point to come up with an idea that everyone agrees as there’s no such thing.  If you look at the most successful business today, many of them would be considered stupid ideas by many people when they just got started.  


“If it scares you, it might be a good thing to try.”

If there is one thing that you want to do but scares you, it’s likely that the thing takes a lot of hard work.  It’s human nature to avoid difficult things.  But if you can overcome that scary signal that your brain gives you, you will be able to find a territory that you have never reached before.  


“Don't find customers for your products, find products for your customers.”

What’s the point of creating products?  It’s to help people.  Know what your people need and help them with things you create.  


“The opportunity of a lifetime is to pick yourself. Quit waiting to get picked; quit waiting for someone to give you permission; quit waiting for someone to say you are officially qualified and pick yourself.”

If you wait for someone to say that you are good and you are supposed to create your own thing, you probably will have to wait forever.  Don’t waste your finite time waiting for someone to give you the permission to do something amazing.  Everyone can be amazing if he or she chooses to be.


“People have come to the erroneous conclusion that if they’re not willing to start something separate, world-changing, and risky, they have no business starting anything. Somehow, we’ve fooled ourselves into believing that the project has to have a name, a building, and a stock ticker symbol to matter.”

The project, product, or business that you are working on doesn’t have to sound amazing to everyone.  If it’s meaningful enough to you and the people you are targeting to help, it’s a pretty good one.  You don’t need to be fancy to succeed.  


“How dare you settle for less when the world has made it so easy for you to be remarkable?”

We live in a time when we can easily create and market your product with just a personal computer at home.  It’s unbelievable.  Living in a wonderful time like that, we should learn to think bigger and strive for creating our own things that can really help people.  


“Perhaps your challenge isn't finding a better project or a better boss. Perhaps you need to get in touch with what it means to feel passionate. People with passion look for ways to make things happen.”

If you can learn how to live with purpose, you won’t ever use your boss or your work as your excuse for not succeeding.  Remember, you don’t need permissions from others.  


“Learning is not done to you, it is something you choose to do.”

It’s true that we do still learn and improve a little bit as we live and work everyday.  However, that improvement is very tiny.  You will need to deliberately learn and practice in order to see any significant improvement.  


“Never quit something with great long-term potential just because you can’t deal with the stress of the moment.”

Don’t let instant gratification bet you all the time.  If you can learn to be mindful and be aware of thoughts that are valuing little short-term benefits over greater long-term benefits, you have a chance to beat your thoughts.  


“The problem with competition is that it takes away the requirement to set your own path, to invent your own method, to find a new way.”

It’s actually a good strategy to imitate success projects and people.  However, at moments and in cases where imitation doesn't work, don’t be afraid to do something different.  


“Quit or be exceptional. Average is for losers.”

Don’t aim for being mediocre, it still is going to take you a lot of effort but it’s not worth it.  


“Persistent people are able to visualize the idea of light at the end of the tunnel when others can't see it”

If you want to learn to be persistent, it’s important to visualize your end goal.  Indeed, it’s wise to know clearly your end goal and then work backward to derive what tasks you should do daily in order to achieve the end goal.  


“If you’re remarkable, it’s likely that some people won’t like you. That’s part of the definition of remarkable.  Nobody gets unanimous praise - ever. The best the timid can hope for is to be unnoticed. Criticism comes to those who stand out.”

Don’t ever let negative comments take away your motivation.  There are no remarkable people that don’t have any criticism.  If you want to be remarkable, ignore or deal with the criticism.  


“Attitudes are skills.”

Your attitude is a big part of how you would deal with obstacles.  Being persevere is one of your most important skills.  


“The magic is that there is no magic. Start where you are. Don’t stop.”

The secret to succeed is quite obvious but is also difficult to do.  Start your thing and work on it consistently for a very long time.  


“Creativity is a choice, it’s not a bolt of lightning from somewhere else.”

If you choose to write songs, just start writing one.  You don’t have to wait for the perfect moment.  How rare is it that you are going to have a one-month holiday when you can fully commit to one thing.  Reserve some time everytime to do the thing that you said you would do.  There’s no magic and you don’t need magic.  


“When you choose to produce creative work, you’re solving a problem. Not just for you, but for those who will encounter what you’ve made.”

Why is creating things important?  It’s because that’s how you can contribute to the world by helping people.  


“Waiting for a feeling is a luxury we don’t have time for.”

It’s not that we don’t need to be in a certain state of mind to create.  It’s just that we are all capable of creating a good enough environment where we can do our creation.  That’s no perfect environment but we can all make a good enough environment.  


“If you want to change your story, change your actions first.”

There’s no guarantee that we are going to see great results every time.  But if we do our part to become the best versions of ourselves, we have a good chance.  


“Art is the generous act of making things better by doing something that might not work.”

If you expect that everything you do is going to work, you are going to be disappointed.  Instead, be aware that every failure is a learning experience.  Learn and get closer and closer to creating things that are valuable to you and others.  


“Being creative is a choice and creativity is contagious.”

A lot of times, you just have to intentionally be creative in order to be creative.  Oftentimes, by being creative yourself, the people that see you being creative want to be creative themselves.  


“Once you decide to trust yourself, you will have found your passion. You’re not born with it, and you don’t have just one passion. It’s not domain-specific: it’s a choice. Our passion is simply the work we’ve trusted ourselves to do.”

Passion is something that can be developed.  If you have learned how to become passionate about one subject, you can make yourself become passionate about another subject.  Learning how to develop passion is such an important skill.  A big part of it is just to understand that you should work on things that you are kind of good at naturally and things that are valuable to others.  The passion part is then going to be naturally developed.    


“Selling is simply a dance with possibility and empathy. It requires you to see the audience you’ve chosen to serve, then to bring them what they need.”

The above Seth Godin quote is another interesting quote on marketing and sales.  Give your target audience what they need.  Keep making adjustments until your product matches their needs.  


“The truth: if a reason doesn’t stop everyone, it’s an excuse, not an actual roadblock.”

Sometimes, the truth is simple and obvious.  We just lie to ourselves that things are impossible so that we can take the easy road.  At least be aware that you are making an excuse when you are making one.  


“It’s hard to get blocked when you’re moving. Even if you’re not moving in the direction that you had in mind that morning.”

If you want to achieve your goal, just start and keep moving.  There are going to be forks in the road that may lead you somewhere else.  But as long as what you are doing means something to you and people you are serving, you are succeeding.  


“No one can possibly do a better job of being you than you can. And the best version of you is the one who has committed to a way forward.”

If you can’t be very specific with what your goal is yet, “working on being the best version of yourself” is a very good goal to strive for.  Think about what you are good at naturally and become great at it.  Do things or make things using that thing you are naturally good at.  


“Committing to a practice that makes our best better is all we can do.”

We don’t have to make life seem too complicated when it comes to what we should do with our lives.  Always do our best is the best that we can do.  


“Transferring your passion to your job is far easier than finding a job that happens to match your passion.”

It’s very difficult and it takes time to find a job that matches your passion perfectly.  While you are still looking for the so-called perfect job, simply make little tweaks here and there for your current job and make your job match your passion or develop a passion for your job.     


“Optimism is the most important human trait, because it allows us to evolve our ideas, to improve our situation, and to hope for a better tomorrow.”

If you assume that everything you want to do is useless and is not going to work, you will take no action.  Be optimistic and realistic at the same time so that you can move forward.  


“Artists are people with a genius for finding a new answer, a new connection, or a new way of getting things done.  That would be you.”

If you want to live a purposeful life, try to create something by solving a problem, improving on an existing solution or combining different solutions.  


“Passion isn’t project-specific. It’s people-specific. Some people are hooked on passion, deriving their sense of self from the act of being passionate.”

It is often considered that “passion” has to be about the combination of a person and a project.  However, it’s more true that “passion” is only about a person, because once a person learnt how to develop passion for one thing, he or she can develop passion for anything.  


“Mediocre is merely a failed attempt to be really good.”

Don’t be afraid of mediocre, but don’t get yourself stuck there.  Take another attempt if that thing truly matters to you.


“If it wasn’t a mystery, it would be easy. If it were easy, it wouldn’t be worth much.”

Everytime you want to give up because it’s too difficult.  Know that it’s supposed to be hard.  


“For many of us, the happiest future is one that's precisely like the past, except a little better.”

This is a Seth Godin quote that is worth spending time reflecting on deeply.   It’s likely that we just want a slightly better future than what we have now, because we are actually reluctant to make big changes.  We will find gold ahead if we can be aware of this mindset and get rid of it.  

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