You’ve Got to Stand for Something or You’ll Fall for Anything

I read an interview with Kenneth Cole the other day. I loved one of the quotes…

“It’s great to be known for your shoes, but better to be known for your soul.”

Nice play on words – soul, sole – but great life and career success advice.

Members of my career mentoring site know that I’m a big believer in the power of personal values. I devote several tweets in my book Success Tweets: 140 Bits of Common Sense Career Success Advice, All in 140 Characters or Less to the importance of values.

Your personal values are important for a number of reasons. To use Kenneth Cole’s language, they define your soul. They can help you determine the types of people with whom you want to spend your valuable time. They can help you determine which company you want to join. They can help you make decisions in ambiguous situations.

“You’ve got to stand for something, or you’ll fall for anything.” If you know your rock and roll, you know that this line comes from John Mellencamp’s song “Stand” – one of my favorites. And it’s true. You, me, all of us, need to stand for something if we’re going to create the life and career success we want and deserve.

Your personal values are what you stand for, they define your soul. They are your anchor. They ground you. They center you. They keep you focused on what’s important. If you haven’t taken the time to clarify your personal values, you need to do so – the sooner the better. This is some of the best career advice I can give you. Clarifying your personal values will help you deal with the ambiguity and complexity the world throws at you.

Become known for your soul and you’ll succeed. Stand for something.  Clarify your values, then live them every day.

Your career mentor,


PS: I write this blog to help people create the life and career success they want and deserve. Now I’m going one step further. I’ve created a membership site in which I’ve pulled together my best thoughts on success. And, as a reader of this blog, you can become a member for free. Just go to to claim your free membership. You’ll be joining a vibrant and growing community of success minded professionals. I hope to see you there.


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