We Got Next: Nick Kane
Posted on 08 June 2017
This June YXU has launched our "We Got Next" campaign, highlighting more than 20 young leaders from across the country who are applying their passions to make an impact in their communities. Follow along with YXU on Facebook, @yxulife on Twitter and Instagram and get your We Got Next tee benefiting the Lebron James Family Foundation.
Just so we’re not strangers, my name is Nicholas Kane. I am a recent student-athlete graduate from Cleveland State University with my bachelor’s in civil engineering. Playing sports, especially soccer, from such a young age and all of the competition that arises from sports has a profound effect on you and those around you. Constantly fighting, pushing, grabbing, reaching, pulling, for that extra inch, for just one more breath of energy to put you ahead of your opponent. Every athlete can relate. However, once that competition on the field comes to an end, that sense of competition does not just dissolve away, it is channeled into something even greater.
I took up network marketing and found myself way outside my comfort zone, especially since I was used to sitting at my desk with my head down performing calculation after calculation. I met some incredible people and they opened my eyes to a different way of thinking, sparking new thoughts and ambitions. I soon formed my own LLC and started e-commerce sales. All the while, I still have no idea what I am doing in either of these pursuits. As time passes, you fail, you learn, you shift your focus, and you evolve. Which lead me to begin a real startup company with a lifelong friend and now business partner. Hopefully to be launching in the near future. What you have to remember is that it’s not all about you, so enough about me.
You need to go out, create, document, explore, design your own system, something that screams who you are and never let anyone sway you from it. Stop trying to be perfect because there will never be a perfect time or circumstance, nor will you ever be perfect, so quit it. Just simply, start. Anywhere. Right now. If I were ever to give advice to those seeking it, it would go something like this…
It has been shown by the most recognized icons of our time that what you put out into this world is exactly what you get back from it. Which is why giving back is on the top of every true leader’s list. If you won’t give a dime out of a dollar, you won’t give a million out of ten million. If you truly cannot afford to donate money, your time is worth all the more. I personally use an app on my smartphone that rounds up to the nearest dollar on my expenses and puts that money into a savings account. At the end of the year I take these savings and donate them to a cause of my choosing, and I never even notice the money is missing.
Some may find it difficult to get started. I myself was paralyzed by fear and still am but, I found that asking myself better questions gave me better answers to move past my fears. So, why not you? Your fears of standing out and being different from the crowd will cripple you into submission. Once you jump that hurdle, once you realize that the world favors the bold, endless possibilities will fall into your lap, but to get there you have to consistently live outside your comfort zone. Even if it is just five minutes a day, as long as it is every single day. As entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk says, “If anyone has ever done it, you can too.”
Being a leader is such a broad term that there are thousands of depictions for how a leader should act and what they should ultimately be. To be frank, being a leader is whatever you choose it be. Holding that door open for the old woman walking in, having a conversation with someone who obviously needs it, calling your parents and checking in on them, and the list goes on. Whatever it may mean to you, make certain that it leaves a positive impact in your community, because it is vital to how you leave your mark. Leave your community better than you found it.
So, I challenge you to talk to people. Random people. I challenge you to go into these conversations expecting miracles and watch them happen in front of your eyes. Go into an interview, a meeting, a conversation, anything at all expecting nothing and offering everything. You can never lose.
And if you ever find yourself down or depressed. Find something or someone to give back to. Suffering is just an excessive focus on yourself. Once you see first-hand touching a human being’s life in a positive way, you suddenly have a weight lifted off your shoulders and all of your stresses are forgotten. Remember, it’s bigger than you.
Fail. Learn. Focus. Evolve.