The Mind Unset - Episode 025 - Everything's an Audition

Episode 025 – Everything’s an Audition

“Your audience doesn’t care that your authentic. And they don’t care that you’re having a bad day. They want their expectations met. They want the best version of you.” – Seth Godin

In today’s world, everything you do is an audition. If you put something out there that doesn’t represent the best version of you, you shouldn’t be confused about why it didn’t have the impact you expected or reach the people you hoped to reach. 

Sometimes, while trying to put forth the best version of ourselves, we make things more complicated than they need to be.  It’s in our DNA. We’re complex beings but also much more than just the aggregation of 100 trillion cells. 

This episode was dead in the water. Just 18 from the time it was to publish, I was staring at a blank page, working in a frigid Philadelphia library, and about to take my frustrations out on an equally frustrated heater repairman. 

Then, he said something that made me want to hug his big fat face. 

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Until next time, be nice and do good stuff.

Welcome to Episode 025. The Mind Unset is officially six-months old. Thanks for hanging out with me. 

As we come to the end of Season 2, which is just two weeks away, I’m going to ask for your help with Season 3. 

Stick around for the details at the end of this episode. Right now… Let’s dig in. 

Yes, I’m back in Philly and working in the library. The heat is not…working. It’s about 40 degrees 

Now, If it seems like I’ve been on the road since Season 2 began, it’s because I have been. I’ll explain briefly, if only for the sake of context.

Back in November, I was in the area to celebrate my mom’s 90th birthday. It was a fabulous event. But, a couple of days after that celebration, she ended up in the emergency room. 

There was a lot of back and forth to the hospital then… to cardiologists and other speicalists and I did an episode all about creating in the midst of chaos. Episode 19, Brain Weeds & the Joy. 

The main takeaway was that nobody cares to hear your excuses about why something didn’t get done. Just dispense with the whys and what-fores and get the thing done. 

Something else I learned from that episode, you guys don’t like cryptic titles such as Brain Weeds & The Joy. 

Here we are two months down the line, more doctors, more chaos and episodes looming. The plan to get ahead of the production schedule evaporated.

This one… Episode 025… almost didn’t make it. I was seriously contemplating an apology episode because as I sat there, typing away in coat and scarf, I was completely blank. 

The tanks were empty and I couldn’t see myself coming up with anything worthwhile in the 18 hours left before the episode is supposed to drop.  

I was preparing to eat my previous words about making excuses. 

Then, I heard a guy…Reuben, he was the guy sent to fix the heat.  

Reuben was explaing to an administrator that the previous repairman made the system more way more complicated than it needed to be and created a mother of a mess. Those were his words. 

[Ding!] Soundeffect


Now, I’m going down a road here that begins simple enough but just as Reuben the repairman warned… I’m going to make a mess of things. 

But let’s see if I can explain most of it with a simple analogy. Coffee. My entire universe can be explained through the brewing of coffee. 

{Coffee sound effects} Find them in Episode 3

To make a cup of coffee you start with beans. The beans get roasted, ground, and infused with hot water to get the end result…coffee. 

It’s an easy process. Let the grounds steep in hot water. Separate the grounds from the resulting brew. Drink it.

But can we leave well enough alone? No. We can’t. 

In our quest for the perfect brew, we’ve complicated things so much that brewing a simple cup of coffee damn near requires a PhD in engineering. 

  • What type of beans?
  • How course the grind?
  • What ratio of coffee to water?
  • What temperature and for how long?

If you don’t drink coffee, search Google for a Belgian Siphon. I’m pretty sure just looking at that thing will confound you enough that you’ll never be tempted to brew a single cup of coffee. Ever

We love to complicate things. And one could argue it’s in our DNA. After all, we are ourselves, complex systems, made up from over 100 trillion cells. Maybe our complicated structure is a key factor when it comes to the struggle between complexity and simplicity.

Personally, I’ve made simplicity my life’s mission. And while I think I’ve done a pretty good job, I am still prone to overthinking.

And the more I learn why people over think, the more I arrive at the premise that over thinking isn’t always a bad thing. 

Here’s my logic. 

In today’s world, everything you do is an audition. If you put something out there that doesn’t represent the best version of you, you shouldn’t be confused about not reaching the people you hoped to reach.

I recently watched an interview with Seth Godin. If you don’t know Seth Godin, you’re missing out. The man has written 20 New York Times bestsellers and beyond that, he’s an amazing human. 

Seth said, several things that affected the way I view this show moving forward into season 3. First, he said, “If you don’t know who you are serving, the work will suffer.” 

This explains everything. It’s why I struggle with my solo episodes. I want to help people. I feel like if I’m struggling with the topics I talk about then maybe other people are as well. But I don’t know who those people are and that leaves me to question whether the show has any value. 

That questioning makes me over think every episode I write. 

Second he said, “your audience doesn’t care that your authentic. And they don’t care that you’re having a bad day. They want their expectations met. They want the best version of you.” 

This was pretty telling and while I do believe it’s mostly true, I think a certain amount of vulnerability creates trust. Now, is there an over abundance of false vulnerability and emotional manipulation out there. Sure. 

If I can use another analogy, I’ll use sailing. When I hear someone as successful as Seth Godin dispense his wisdom, it’s like a wind shift. I’m sailing along trimmed for the course I’m on and then the wind shifts. If I want to keep sailing, I have to adjust the sails.

I can’t ignore it. Or… I can ignore it but at my own discomfort. 

Back in Episode 19, Brain Weeds & The Joy ended with the sentiment, nobody paid $15 bucks to hear your excuses. Seth Godin confirmed that…your audience wants their expectations met. 

I’m not sure this episode did that. But Seth said something else, action moves the needle. 

Hey, thanks for listening. I need your help going into season 3. If you’ve been listening to show, I wanna hear from you.

Is there a specific topic you want me to talk about? Any pressing questions? Angles of conversation?

The best way to reach out is through That’s also the place to go if you want to get on the email list or  find out how you can support the show –It’s all there. 

Okay, that’s all I got but I’ll be back next week, I hope you will to. Until then, be nice. Do good stuff!


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