Sometimes it seems like everyone I talk to hears about burpees. I enjoy them. Doing them fills my life with the emotions they support — friendship, freedom, and motivation. I talk to people about leadership, nature, science, curiosity, and so on. I tell people how I figure things out after I analyze things. All these things make me feel good.
Sharing these things — by sharing I mean communicating and behaving consistently with — improves my life.
For this post, you could substitute anything you want for the term love. Sharing what you value, find meaningful, makes you happy, brings you joy, rewards you, etc will give the same results for those things.
Four results of sharing what you love
First, when people know what you like, they know what to share with you. When people don’t know what you love, they don’t know what to share with you. When they do, they’ll tend to share those things with you.
Don’t leave people in the dark about what you love if you want things you love in your life.
Think about it the other way too. When you know what someone else loves, don’t you feel motivated to share those things with them? Do you talk to the parent of a newborn about the stock market or do you ask to see the pictures?
Second, people spend more or less time with you according to how your values resonate with theirs. So the more you communicate what you love — that is, your values — the more you attract people who appreciate your values and repel others. That doesn’t mean you create a bubble of people who agree. If you share that you love people challenging your beliefs, for example, you won’t surround yourself with people who agree with you.
Third, you crowd out things you don’t love from consuming your time, money, energy, attention, and other resources. Meaning you increase the signal-to-noise ratio of your life.
Now, some people don’t know that well what they love. If you’re not sure what you love, start with something — anything, however obvious: food, massages, coffee, etc — and add new things as you become aware of them.
That raises the fourth result of sharing what you love: you become aware of what you love. Then you can fill more of that new thing in your life and crowd out something you love less.
To review, sharing what you love
- motivates people to bring more of what you love
- brings people you want in your life into your life and repels others
- crowds out things you don’t love
- makes you aware of what you love
I used to be reserved about sharing what I loved. I probably figured people already knew. Or maybe, like many, I was scared that sharing my emotions and motivations would make me vulnerable.
Anyway, as you probably would guess, I recommend sharing what you love.
By the way, I’m not sure what happens if you share things you dislike — like if you complain all the time. People do it a lot, but I do it less and less and my life has less and less of it in it, probably a result of my sharing that I like people who love what they do, act according to their values, and so on.
A real-life example
So I stumbled on an example from my life. Let’s look at the effect of sharing that I like people who improve their lives instead of complaining.
Effect 1: people who have stuff to complain about either learn to share other things with me or turn what would be a complaint into a talking about how they can improve it, or something like that.
Effect 2: people who like complaining probably don’t like talking to me. People who fill their lives with joy and such probably do like talking to me and, lo and behold, I have more time, energy, attention, and other resources for them, freed up by people who would complain not using those resources.
Effect 3: the time I spend talking about and behaving consistently with personal development, the less time I have to complain myself. This effect augments the first two.
Effect 4: I realize improving my life improves my life so I do it more.
Learn to make Meaningful Connections
with a simple, effective exercise from my book, Leadership Step by Step.
- Step by step instructions
- Video examples of me and Marshall Goldsmith
- An excerpt from my book