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There Is Only One You

By Robert D. Smith, author of “20,000 Days and Counting: The Crash Course For Mastering Your Life Right Now

Prince, what you are, you are by accident of birth; what I am, I am through my own efforts. There have been thousands of princes and will be thousands more; there is only one Beethoven!***

*** According to tradition, from a letter, which Beethoven wrote to Prince Lichnowsky when the prince attempted to persuade him to play for some French officers on his estate in Silesia. Beethoven went at night to Troppau, carrying the manuscript of the (so-called) “Appassionata” sonata, which suffered from the rain.

– Beethoven: the Man and the Artist, as Revealed in his own Words, By Ludwig van Beethoven, edited by Friedrich Kerst

There is only one you.

You must get this. Understand it. Digest it. Make it a part of the essence of your very being. You have to celebrate this one enormous fact. There is only one you. Period.

Until this fact is burned into your brain, your heart, your soul — you will continue to sputter along hitting one speed bump after another on a daily basis. It won’t be long—maybe a few years—before you look around and see that none of your dreams have come true. As a matter of fact, you will be no better off than you were when those dreams/desires first came to you. You may even be there right now.

Now is the time to figure this out.

Stop what you are doing and decide NOT to conform. With whom are you not conforming? YOU. That ‘s right. Stop settling for a basic, bland, non-exciting existence on a daily basis.

How? It is time to go to a mirror.

Go right now. Look at yourself. Really look at yourself. It is time to change right now.

Let’s start by smiling.

Bigger smile. Now hold it. This is the way I want you to see yourself. Smiling. This is the way others are to see you. Smiling. Feel this smile. Deep within. This smile will become your permanent cue that this smile is THE only one on planet earth right now. And you own it. It is all yours.

Once you realize you are one-of-a-kind — you can do one-of-a-kind stuff.

That speech you want to write (or have written) could have only been done by you. And if you don’t do it, it will never exist and no one will ever hear it. Ever.

What about that book? If you don’t write it, it will never exist and no one will ever read it. No one will be inspired. Ever.

IF you are married, there was a reason you married that person. No one else was like them. Not to you. Another one of a kind.

If you are a parent, your children have only ONE of you. No one else could ever fill who YOU are to them. No one.

Smile 21 times today, and you will have it.

That it will be permanently implanted in your being. But that is not true—psychologists tell us if you do this for 21 days in a row, it will be yours. It will be a habit.

But don’t think that is true either.

I did it for 21 days. Then 30 days. Then for five years. Every day. Why? Because I’m slow. Possibly even stupid. Slow and stupid is a great combination.

Truth be told, I have to practice this at least 21 times daily. And knowing you as I do — you will need to do the same. For the rest of your life.

I assure you, if you get this simple, easy to do, but hard to master habit down, you will feel you have been catapulted into your future with blazing results. And you will be surprised at who you became, by knowing who you are. With guaranteed FUN along the way.

I am smiling at you… and with you.


Author of “20,000 Days and CountingRobert D. Smith is a leader in providing life-changing entertainment resources, a global customer service rep, and a favorite uncle. For more than three decades, he has managed and overseen the career of Andy Andrews, a three-time New York Times best-selling author and in-demand speaker. He has served as a private consultant to numerous best-selling authors, speakers, entertainers, and cutting-edge organizations.


This is an article contributed to Young Upstarts and published or republished here with permission. All rights of this work belong to the authors named in the article above.

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