Stake the Stakeholders and Be Your Own Voice

Stake Holders and Your Success

Yesterday on her blog, Carrie talked about how feeling successful in your career or life is really tied to having your personal values resonate in your occupation, and being guided by those same core values instead of society’s outside metrics about what makes someone a success. 

The blog is here

But on the podcast, we’re going to touch on something we’ve talked about before – stakeholders. 

Stakeholders are all around you. They’re in your past and your present. They have expectations. They project their own crud onto you. They are the people who come to mind when you say, “What will X think if I do this?” They are real people. But they are also voices in your head. 

For Carrie, an example would be when she drew as a little kid and her mom said, “Nobody in our family has an artistic bone in her body.”

That comment from someone she loved stayed inside of her, right? And it made her think she could never do art, but it also could make her go out and say, “To heck with that. I’m going to prove my mom wrong.” 

Or maybe your mom’s dream was to save the world, but she never had the chance to. She projects that dream on you and now your dream is to save the world.

Coming to terms with what YOU want versus what your STAKEHOLDERS want is a really valuable experience in helping you feel successful and fulfilled. 

How to Come To Terms With Your Stakeholders: 

  • Make a list.
  • List all the people who have ever told you what you could do in your career. 
  • List all the people who have ever told you what you couldn’t do. 
  • List all the people who give you advice. 

Now, look at your list. Is that person important to you? Then that person is a stakeholder. 

But stakeholders aren’t just people. Stakeholders can be colleges, institutions, social media. 

Think about when you post something on Twitter, SnapChat, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram. People like (or don’t), share (or don’t), comment (or don’t) and that gives you value and and ideas and judgements of others all meshed in one place. It becomes a stakeholder. 

Our life and our choices are part of intertwined systems and so, too, is our feeling of success. A big first step towards self-fulfillment is realizing when it’s you being happy and satisfied versus other people being happy and satisfied for you. 

Dog Tip for Life 

If your stakeholder’s influence created a fear or limitation, it’s time to let that go. 

And if our idea of success and our career is about playing it safe? About being like the rest of the pack? You might want to rethink that, too. 

There is safety in being like everyone else, in thinking like everyone else, in sticking to the pack and following the same route, but is that really helpful? Is that success for you? 

Writing Tip of the Pod

If you aren’t taking risks with your writing, or taking the risk to be a writer, then maybe it’s time. Ignore the stakeholders that are limiting you. Be who you want to be. Take chances. 

“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.” 

Maya Angelou


The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Night Owl” by Broke For Free.



I do art stuff. You can find it and buy a print here. 


You can order my middle grade fantasy novel Time Stoppers Escape From the Badlands here or anywhere.

People call it a cross between Harry Potter and Percy Jackson but it’s set in Maine. It’s full of adventure, quirkiness and heart.

Time Stoppers Carrie Jones Middle grade fantasy


The Spy Who Played Baseball is a picture book biography about Moe Berg. And… there’s a movie out now about Moe Berg, a major league baseball player who became a spy. How cool is that?

It’s awesome and quirky and fun.


Men in Black meet Buffy the Vampire Slayer? You know it. You can buy them hereor anywhere.


31702754 copy

Thanks to all of you who keep listening to our weirdness as we talk about random thoughts, writing advice and life tips. We’re sorry we laugh so much… sort of. Please share it and subscribe if you can. Please rate and like us if you are feeling kind, because it matters somehow. There’s a new episode every Tuesday!

dogs are smarter than people carrie after dark being relentless to get published


I offer solo writing coach services. For more about my individual coaching, click here.


I am super psyched to be teaching the six-month long Write. Submit. Support. class at the Writing Barn!

Are you looking for a group to support you in your writing process and help set achievable goals? Are you looking for the feedback and connections that could potentially lead you to that book deal you’ve been working towards?

Our Write. Submit. Support. (WSS) six-month ONLINE course offers structure and support not only to your writing lives and the manuscripts at hand, but also to the roller coaster ride of submissions: whether that be submitting to agents or, if agented, weathering the submissions to editors.

Past Write. Submit. Support. students have gone on to receive representation from literary agents across the country. View one of our most recent success stories here


Author: carriejonesbooks

I am the NYT and internationally-bestselling author of children's books, which include the NEED series, FLYING series, TIME STOPPERS series, DEAR BULLY and other books. I like hedgehogs and puppies and warm places. I have none of these things in my life.

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