There’s a strange conversation I have roughly 5 times a week via Twitter, Facebook and email. Here is what it looks like.

Stranger: “Hi Jon, I need some career advice!”

Me: “Sure thing, have you had a chance to read my two books focused on career and chasing dreams?”

Stranger: “No, but I’ve been meaning to.”

Me: “You should pick them up at the library, they’d be helpful as you figure out your career.”

Stranger: “OK, but I’d rather just hear it from you. If you could boil down 110,000 words and two books into a tweet that would save me a lot of time.”

Clearly, the person doesn’t say that last thing, but they are definitely disappointed when I ask them to do something that requires work. I’m not asking them to buy the books. Get them at the library, save some money or borrow them from a friend. (I didn’t even link to either book in this post.) This isn’t about sales. This is about creating the best career content I could and then not watering it down in a 30 second tweet response.

Someone you want to work with or for has done the same. They’ve poured out their heart in a book or a business or a speech. Read that first. Watch that first. Study that first. Research your heart out.

Are there shortcuts in life? Definitely, they just tend to lead to places that suck.

Take the long way. Do this first.