How To ‘Do You’

Tools from a hip-hop hero to help you succeed

Hip-hop and business mix very well; just ask Russell Simmons. The mogul took the music and fashion worlds by storm, establishing success on his own terms. In his latest venture, he shares how he did it and how we can do it too.

Do You! 12 Laws to Access the Power in You to Achieve Happiness and Success (Gotham; $25) is Simmons’ offering of the strategies he has found most effective over the years. The book tackles topics such as sticking with your idea from development to execution, having the right people in your corner, being consistently in the present, remaining grounded as you pursue your goals, and focusing on the effort rather than the results.

Simmons lets you know up front that many of these laws are not new. However, he hopes that by hearing it from him, “you’ll be able to unlock the potential for success that’s already inside of you.” In addition to the conversational tone, he gives context to each law by sharing his personal struggles and experiences. Think of it as a refresher course, taught by someone able to relate to young and old alike.

In this excerpt from Do You! 12 Laws to Access the Power in You to Achieve Happiness and Success, Russell Simmons explains why you should never
give any less than your best:

“When you understand that your happiness comes from the process, instead of the results, it becomes much easier to embrace the importance of working your hardest at every job. … I know that’s tough … but no matter what you’re doing, try to work at that task like it’s your dream job.

Your happiness ultimately comes from the way you work, not where you work. No matter what sort of job you have, take responsibility and pride in it. If you accept [an unwanted job], don’t say to yourself, “Oh, this ain’t me, I’m just doing this to get paid.”

The fact is, whatever you’re doing at this moment is you and you have to give it your all.
When you start to take shortcuts, you’ll not only disappoint your customers and your boss, but most importantly, you’re disappointing yourself.”

Want more? Here are some of the other laws featured:

  • Successful people stay open to change.
  • There are no failures, only quitters.
  • Surround yourself with the right people.
  • Stop frontin’ and start today.
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