The Passion Project: An Interview with Bobby Umar | Part 2

Bobby Umar is an inspirational speaker, a branding & speaker coach, and a leadership influencer with an impressive list of achievements under his belt. To name a few – he is a 5x TEDx speaker; was named one of Inc. Magazine’s Top 100 Leadership speakers; he is the founder of DYPB – Discover Your Personal Brand (North America’s largest event dedicated solely to personal branding); he is a best-selling author; he is a Huffington Post contributor. With over 500,000 followers, Bobby uses his social media community to advocate for authentic connection and leadership.

Q: How do you find out what you are good at? How do you really gauge where you are and what you are good at?

A: Start with your support network. Ask your boss; ask your friends; ask your parents. What do they see you are good at? What they see you shine in? A good chance is that if enough people say the same thing, they may be right and you should take their feedback into consideration. They might see something that you don’t see.

Q: What are you most passionate about what how has that translated into your daily life?

A: I am passionate about my Why Statement, which is “There are lost, stuck and unfulfilled leaders everywhere”. It drives everything I do daily. I would say I am passionate about helping people. I am passionate about my children. I am passionate about personal branding. Passion to me is about what we talk about the most everyday and what we act out the most every day. Passion is not something we just talk about and not do. Passion lies in our actions.

Q: How do you define success now?

A: I define success as reaching fulfillment in the areas that matter to you.

I have found that we all find fulfillment in 4 areas: people in our lives; the work that we do; our passion pursuits; and our spiritual/mental exploration.

I talk to a lot of people and some of them seem to think that it is okay if they are fulfilled in one area and not happy in the rest. I say that success to me is working towards or achieving/reaching fulfillment in ALL areas. Don’t settle for any less. Success is not about money for me; success is about feeling fulfilled in my daily life. On another note, fulfillment could also involve pain. For example, I am fulfilled in raising kids but sometimes they make me worried to my stomach. That doesn’t make my fulfillment any less. It comes with the journey.

Q: If you could have a giant billboard anywhere with anything onit – what would it sya?

A: It would say: “Fight for your life; fight for the life you want; fight for your career path; fight for the love of your life; fight for your health ; fight for your beliefs, values, story and legacy. If not now, then when? If not you, then who?

Q: What is one of the best or most worthwhile investments you’ve ever made?

A: The most worthwhile investment would be getting my MBA, although I wouldn’t suggest that now to anyone. The reason why it was a worthwhile investment for me at the time was because it was the one thing that re-built my confidence. I graduated with high-honours in high school but graduated with a low GPA in my engineering undergrad. I started to believe that I wasn’t intelligent anymore and lost most of my confidence. Obtaining my MBA, getting mostly A’s, becoming the class President and then graduating at the top of my class as a valedictorian showed me that I could do anything if I put my mind to it. Having confidence in yourself is the most important thing.

Q: In the last 5 years, what new belief, behaviour or habit has most improved your life?

A: Practicing mindfulness. That means being mindful at the dinner table; being mindful connecting with my kids; being mindful talking with my wife; being mindful at work. It’s benefited me a lot because it really slowed life down and made it enjoyable.

Q: What are bad recommendations do you hear in your profession or area of expertise?

A: It would be: “fake it till you make it.

I don’t believe in this because while you may be able to make a lot of money or achieve a certain status by faking it till you actually make it, but will you actually be happy? When you fake something, you are not necessarily going to find fulfillment from it. Plus, you have built entirely something that is not authentic.

I suggest starting with your own set of values and then go after those things that will actually make you feel fulfilled rather than chasing after something you later on will feel miserable about.

Q: Would advice would you give to fresh graduates out of school?

A: Build a supportive network. Show interest and talk to everyone out there. Be genuine and be kind to people.

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