A Facebook exec shares Mark Zuckerberg's 4-step rule for following your dreams and succeeding in your career

Naomi Gleit, Facebook's vice president of product and social impact, remembers life advice Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg gave a group of teens seven years ago.Rich Fury/Getty Images for Teen Vogue
  • Naomi Gleit, Facebook's vice president of product and social impact, has been working at the tech giant for more than 15 years.
  • Over the course of her career, she's had a lot of face time with Facebook CEO and cofounder Mark Zuckerberg.
  • She remembers one time, in 2013, when he shared his 4-step rule to life success.
  • The four rules have two main takeaways. The first is that you have to love yourself before you can build a product or business or career that helps others.
  • The second takeaway is to not worry about the things you can't control in life, but instead focus intently on what you can control.
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Naomi Gleit started at Facebook in 2005, working as a marketing administrative assistant.

Now she's the vice president of product and social impact, leading the platform's efforts to register people to vote, donate blood, pitch in to causes they care about, and other projects to promote people "doing good."

She's spent countless hours working directly with Facebook CEO and cofounder Mark Zuckerberg, but one instance in particular sticks out to her. It was when Zuckerberg shared his top life advice.
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In 2013, Gleit and Zuckerberg volunteered to teach a course on entrepreneurship to a group of middle schoolers in East Palo Alto, California. One of the sessions was specifically on personal growth. Zuckerberg took to the chalkboard and wrote down four rules:
  1. Love yourself
  2. Then you can better serve others
  3. Focus on what you can control
  4. For those things, never give up

"These lessons I still abide by," she told Business Insider. "They're my own life lessons as well."

There are two main takeaways. The first is that before you can serve others, you have to accept and take care of yourself. The second is that it's useless to focus on things outside of your control. Only focus on the things you can control in life, and be persistent in your focus on them, Gleit explained.
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"I just think that's really, really good advice," the executive said.

She's applied it to her own life, and it's helped her in her career. "None of this work is easy — being a woman leader in tech at one of the most relevant companies in the world and determining how we can bring the most positive impact globally — but what gets me through even the most challenging days is focusing on the things I can control," she said.
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