The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur Reading: October 2 [Podcast]
Find a Consultant Become a Consultant

The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur Reading: October 2

The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur Reading: October 2

By John Jantsch

Marketing Podcast with John Jantsch on The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur – October 2

It’s time for another episode of The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur. Once a week, I’m coming to you with a reading from my new book, due out in October 2019. The book is structured around 366 daily readings from some of the great works of the mid-19th Century, and then I share my thoughts on how that quote relates to the modern entrepreneurial journey.

Today’s Reading: Done Growing

“Lord, when shall we be done growing? As long as we have anything more to do, we have done nothing…Lord, when shall we be done changing? Ah! it’s a long stage, and no inn in sight, and night coming, and the body cold.”

Herman Melville Letter to Nathaniel Hawthorne – published in Memories of Hawthorne by Rose Hawthorne Lathrop (1897)

Here’s another question to ponder, when shall we start growing? Melville admitted in an earlier letter to Hawthorne, “Until I was twenty-five I had no growth at all. From my twenty-fifth year I date my life.”

Growth requires change, change is hard, so growth is hard. 

Stop growing and life stagnates, but as Melville seems to express, it’s exhausting at times. Mainly because growth doesn’t happen by hoping or even setting audacious goals. It happens when you admit where you are now and accept all the chapters in your past without regret.

From this lucid place you can chart your growth.

Wouldn’t it be awesome if we got a cake and celebrated each step in our personal growth, you know instead of simply acknowledging we lived another year. 

Admit we don’t know it all—cake, realize we don’t have to react—cake, decide to leave a toxic job—cake, hug more, forgive sooner—cake, learn how to listen to and support team members—cake, admit, without blame, that our parent’s shortcomings don’t define us—cake.

Maybe those are our real “birth” days?

Final Thoughts

There’s a lot to unpack there! One of the things that became clear to me as I was doing research for this is how much the writers of that time knew each other and spent time with each other. A lot of the writings that I came across were letters back and forth amongst these famous authors, and it’s interesting to get that private perspective on these very public people.

But now to focus on the content of the reading itself. Wouldn’t it be amazing if, instead of getting a birthday cake just because we’d aged another year, we instead celebrated moments of growth? Maybe some years we’d get seven or eight cakes on our birthday, if we had a particularly growth-filled year. It’s worth paying attention to the fact that we are never going to be done growing. While change and growth can be scary, they become less scary when you consider the alternative.

And now for today’s challenge question: Do you tend to focus on the positive or negative traits of others? Why?

Want to learn more about The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur? Click here.

Like this show? Click on over and give us a review on iTunes, please!

This episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast is brought to you by SEMrush.

SEMrush is our go-to SEO tool for everything from tracking position and ranking to doing audits to getting new ideas for generating organic traffic. They have all the important tools you need for paid traffic, social media, PR, and SEO. Check it out at

Free eBook 
7 Steps to Scale Your Consulting Practice Without Adding Overhead

The Duct Tape Marketing Consultant Network has helped me to grow my business by over 40% in the last 12 months. ~ Michael Quinn - Michael Quinn Agency, Fargo, ND

Productive Flourishing Podcast – The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur
John Jantsch sits down with host Charlie Gilkey to discuss his latest book, The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur. Jantsch founded his own marketing firm nearly three decades ago, so he’s been on his own entrepreneurial journey for quite a while now. While he’s written several books on marketing, this latest book is a departure. He knows that […]
The FearLess Business Podcast – The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur
John Jantsch sits down with host Jamie Lieberman on the FearLess Business Podcast to discuss how to find resilience in your entrepreneurial journey and his latest book, The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur. While he wrote the book a year ago, the concepts of self-reliance and resilience feel particularly relevant in this current moment, as we face the […]

Subscribe to the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast

If you know your small business needs marketing, but don’t have the time or resources, look no further. The Duct Tape Marketing podcast covers everything from earning referrals to managing time and being more productive.