Passion is a powerful thing. But it’s not always strategic. We live in a society where competition creates winners and losers. Unless you apply your passion to a unique purpose, you’re likely to be squeezed out by equally passionate competitors. It’s a cruel world. But it doesn’t have to be if you master “nichemanship”—the art of dominating a specialty that’s unavailable or uninteresting to others.

None of us is born with a purpose, but nature has equipped us with goal-seeking minds that let us perform better in the context of one—a sense that life means something. It’s the belief that we matter, that we’re making ...

Get The 46 Rules of Genius: An Innovator’s Guide to Creativity now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.