Who Am I?

“Who am I?”

“Who. Am. I?”

I ask myself this question far too often, and not often enough. Depending on my mood or the events leading up to my self-reflection, the answer changes.

When I’m feeling lost, helpless, and disconnected, I respond with, “I don’t know.”

I yell my name during moments of triumph and achievement. “I am Nolan Speaks!” In these moments, I know who I am, and there’s no stopping me.

This morning, I’m lost. I don’t know who I am. I know what I have to do, but my creator is stuck and feels like overeating and binge-watching Netflix. My consumer agrees. Those two bastards have been in cahoots since August.

Now I sit here thinking of ways to feel better, but I recognize that all my ideas are simply avoidance tactics, elaborate as some may be. It’s experience that tells me there’s only one way forward and out of this funk:


Not all the things, just some of them, starting with easy victories that help me regain my confidence. I need to start easy and gain traction over the coming weeks.

Experience also tells me that I habitually take on too much at once, and then retreat when it all comes crashing down, but not this time. I recognize where I went wrong. I learn from the past, I look forward to the future; I can figure this out. I can do this. I will do this.

I am Nolan Speaks! I know who I am.

Consumer or Creator

Every person is either a consumer or a creator.

Consumers spend most of their time digesting what creators make: TV shows, music, books, clothes, movies, jewelry, food, wine, anything. Sometimes what they believe are their own thoughts and opinions belong to the creator. Until questioned, who can say?

Consumers can change a creator’s life.

Creators spend most of their time building. While each hopes for success, it’s never guaranteed. They recognize fear for who she is: powerful, bold, commanding, and beautiful. Instead of sitting on the sidelines watching, the creator stands up and asks her to dance.

Nobody is all consumer or creator, and neither one would exist without the other. But of the two, only one can change the world.