My life is a series of cycles. One of them in particular has the lyrics “Business; learning; business; learning; business; learning…” I spend a few years building a company or a product, I become successful at it (most of the times), I then leave and cycle back into something I want to “learn.” And that learning period becomes formative in determining what I can productively do in the next business cycle.
Steve Jobs knew about these cycles, and said during his famous Stanford University commencement address of 2005 [7:22 into the video, which you can find on NPR]
“The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again.”
These cycles have nothing to do with whether you get rich or become a bum. They have to do with how you decide to use your precious years. He put the exclamation point on it [12:40 into the same video] by adding
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”