Unemployed and frustrated, Einstein gave up and decided to take a job he didn’t want: clerk at the Swiss patent office.

Revolutions > Resolutions

10 values Einstein espoused that can help you successfully create a New Year’s revolution, despite shortcomings, failed should-be mentors and haters.

In 1900, Albert Einstein was a desperate job hunter.

It took Einstein nine years before he became a professor despite best efforts after college. He blamed his difficult situation on his physics professor Heinrich Weber who held a grudge against him and provided unfavorable references.

Einstein said,”I could have found a job long ago had it not been for Weber’s underhandedness.” Apparantly, Weber was an early fan of Einstein in college but changed his mind because Einstein “skived” his lectures.

Weber said,

“You are a clever boy, Einstein, a very clever boy indeed. But you have a great shortcoming: you don’t listen to anyone!”

Einstein, as it’s written, was a rebellious student who didn’t respect traditional schooling and received bad grades (except math and physics).

Einstein was a nonconformist.

Unemployed and frustrated, Einstein gave up and decided to take a job he didn’t want: clerk at the Swiss patent office.

Although Einstein was smart, his life to this point included a string of people in his path who didn’t understand his genius. In fact, Einstein didn’t speak until he was four and was nicknamed “der Depperte” — the dopey one. The dopey moniker seemed to follow him throughout his early career.

“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.” — Albert Einstein

In between clerking at the patent office, pursuing his PhD and supporting his family, Einstein began “batching” his work.

In 1905, Einstein wrote four history-changing papers, the “annus mirabilis” or wonderous year, as it’s known.

The four now-famous articles published were 1) Brownian Motion, 2) The Photoelectric Effect, 3) Special Relativity and 4) Mass-Energy Equivalence. (The Photoelectric Effect won the Nobel Prize.) These papers put his name on the map and changed the way we understand the world — including E = mc2.

In 1909, Einsten finally became an associate professor (full professor in 1911).

This brings us to the question:

How did an unknown, unwanted, unconventionalist become so resolute?

This article shares 10 values Einstein espoused that can help you successfully create a New Year’s revolution, despite shortcomings, failed should-be mentors and haters.

1. Understanding > Knowing

“Any fool can know. The point is to understand.” ―Albert Einstein

Oftentimes the difference between success and failure isn’t knowing what, why or how to do it, it’s understanding who to do it with and when.

2. Be satisfied with the present.

“A happy man is too satisfied with the present to dwell too much on the future.” ― Albert Einstein

You’ll never get anywhere with your head in the clouds if you don’t turn those dreams into present-day forward motion. Show gratitude for where you came by not regretting what you could’ve and should’ve done today.

3. Think independently.

“Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth.” ― Albert Einstein

You’re reaching for a goal you haven’t met. Rethink how you might get there and if there are any un-truths stopping you. You wouldn’t be the first one to realize the authorities on the topic were wrong.

4. Learn how to learn.

“The value of a college education is not the learning of many facts but the training of the mind to think.” ― Albert Einstein

The mind that is continuously learning is continuously earning.

5. Pursue creativity.

“Reading after a certain age diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking, just as the man who spends too much time in the theater is tempted to be content with living vicariously instead of living his own life.” ― Albert Einstein

Producing is more important than consuming in goal achieving.

6. Believe your intuitions.

“I believe in intuitions and inspirations. I sometimes feel that I am right. I do not know that I am.” ― Albert Einstein

Sometimes intuition is more than a hunch. Whether it’s providence or a summation of your life experience, it’s wise to trust yourself first.

7. Use your imagination more.

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.” ― Albert Einstein

Nothing new or innovative is created without a stretch of the imagination.Reach your goals by reaching for the sky with some brain stretches of the imagination every day.

8. Keep moving.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” ― Albert Einstein

Your body is about 60% water. Stagnant water brings disease and mosquitos. Keep moving even when it’s hard. If you can’t move your body, keep your mind fresh.

9. Make yourself a member of a conscious community.

“Although I am a typical loner in daily life, my consciousness of belonging to the invisible community of those who strive for truth, beauty, and justice has preserved me from feeling isolated.” ― Albert Einstein

Despite advances in communications technology, many of us are lonely. Like being lost in a crowd or alone in an apartment. If you’re lonely, consider journaling. Write for a conscious community that understands you or you are trying to pursuade. Imagine your life as a work or an art that can impove and inspire others and it will.

10. Express your opinions and share your goals courageously and honestly.

“Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. The mediocre mind is incapable of understanding the man who refuses to bow blindly to conventional prejudices and chooses instead to express his opinions courageously and honestly.” ― Albert Einstein

Take a stand. Stick a stake in the ground. Courageously and honestly be who you dream you will day be. Now. Before you’re ready. Overprepardeness is the downfall of the well-intentioned. Watch the magic happen.


You may be out of a job, have someone blocking or hating you, keep moving forward anyway. Einstein would, but it doesn’t take an Einstein to do it.

Call to Action

Want to turn your resolutions into a revolution? Get your copy of this free training in front of a live audience to grow your ideas into a personal revolution. Get your free copy of the live personal revolution training on demand here.

Richie Norton is the bestselling author of The Power of Starting Something Stupid. Get your free 37-page action guide to turn your stupid idea into your smart reality at RichieNorton.com. Daily inspiration on IG @richie_norton.


  • Richie Norton

    Adventure Capitalist | Award-Winning Author | I Help Entrepreneurs Create Physical and Digital Products that Make Meaning and Money



    Richie Norton is the award-winning, bestselling author of the book The Power of Starting Something Stupid (in 10+ languages) and Résumés Are Dead & What to Do About It. In 2019, Richie was named one of the world’s top 100 business coaches by Dr. Marshall Goldsmith. He is an international speaker (including TEDx & Google Startup Grind) & serial entrepreneur.

    Richie is the founder of Global Consulting Circle, creating/scaling business models for venture-backed startups. He is the Co-Founder of Prouduct — helping entrepreneurs go from idea to market full service w/ global sourcing & end to end supply chain. Norton founded Edit.Today — a multinational video editing service for vloggers. Millions of entrepreneurial-minded people study Norton’s work & blended learning, modular educational programs (self-directed learning courses, masterminds, podcasts, articles, keynotes, interviews, books, mentoring, university lectures). Executives & celebrities alike seek out Richie to create new value-based products/experiences for their audiences.

    Richie is featured in Forbes, Businessweek, Entrepreneur, HuffPo, Inc., etc., etc., etc. The 2013 San Francisco Book Festival awarded The Power of Starting Something Stupid first in business & grand prize winner overall. At age 29, Pacific Business News recognized Richie as one of the Top Forty Under 40 “best & brightest young businessmen” in Hawaii.

    Richie founded a mentor capital org to help end poverty & establish the Willes Center for International Entrepreneurship — where he serves on the Mentor Venture Capital Board at BYU Hawaii. Richie is published in the Journal of Microfinance & is a ChangeAid Award winner for “outstanding accomplishment in international development, international relations, humanitarian aid and academic achievement.”

    Richie received his MBA from the world’s #1 ranked international business school, Thunderbird School of Global Management. Richie is happily married, has four boys and lives on the North Shore of Oahu, Hawaii.