THE GOODS IN LINE ONE: If you have an idea then you need to share it with your people.
Not everyone will come with you on the long trek through the desert. But some will, and it’ll be just a few. After all, only Joshua and Caleb made it to the Promised Land. What’s worse, most will stay at home and say, “so and so is full of shit” and then some will go a bit further and say, “so and so is an arrogant prick.” And before you get pissed about the stay-at-home-camp of folk, just think how many times you’ve had the same exact knee-jerk reaction when someone approaches you with ANYTHING new? You blow them off. I do it all the time. And I’m just starting to realize how right Jerry Maguire (Tom Cruise as a sports agent in what could be his greatest film of all time, but I digress) was when he said, “We live in a cynical world, a CYNICAL WORLD…” Well, we are extremely, highly, crazyyy fucking cynics – thanks Jerry.
We don’t trust each other very often. We trust our neighbors until our Amazon package goes missing. We trust our grocery clerk until they ring up our $9 coconut water for a second & third time. We trust businesses until we discover that our baby powder carries carcinogen, asbestos. And finally, we trust our government until it poisons public water. There really are few things or places where we can confidently place our trust.
And yet, we have to trust. Nothing can move forward without the threat of some party violating their end of an agreement. And business, at its core, is an agreement and a transaction of trust between two parties. I offer products with “x” stated value-proposition and customers trust that I will deliver on “x.” I MUST deliver “x.” It’s the only thing that matters in business. And in order to do that I have to tell customers exactly what to expect; I have to educate the market, in very clear and concise terms about the value I intend to deliver. I have to become an evangelist of my value-proposition. And in truth, it requires a giant leap of faith because eventually I am approaching strangers that just don’t give a damn about my offerings.
But, YOUR PEOPLE will care. You will find people to support you. They may be your wife, boyfriend, sister, grandfather, best-friend, college roomies etc. It may be just one person. And if you’re lucky, this person or people will believe in YOU more than they will believe in your concept. Trust me, you have people waiting in the wings, just begging for you to jump off the cliff. They want you to attempt flight because they want to jump off the cliff too. We all want to feel alive. We want to take the risk. And we too often find ourselves incapable or lacking the courage. But if one person does it, then maybe a second will follow. Maybe a better world is possible. Maybe we can all follow our dreams and society will still be directed in an orderly fashion. Or maybe it’s impossible, a pipe dream, a crazy utopian notion. Perhaps society stops functioning when we all decide to do “our thing.” If we all risked too much and followed the faint-voice in our head asking us to try our passion, it is very possible that our current societal paradigm would collapse. American society (and hence, capitalism) is fundamentally structured on extreme obedience. But why are we all so obedient to a system that we suspect may be broken? I don’t have the answer to that, but what I can say is that the world will not collapse if you follow your dreams. Instead, you’ll find a small cohort of people ready to cheer you on and on the other side of that equation will be a faceless mob of the status quo screaming at you to fall back into your place. Listen to the few and smirk back at the mob. The few care about you, the few love you, the few got your back. And the faceless mob, well, they are worthy of our pity; they lack the courage to be free and for that we can forgive them. We were all there at some point.
The point is, the winds of change are upon us, let yourself be swept away and make life an adventure again. Yes, life is a glorious adventure. It is not a sterile TO-DO-LIST sent down from televised pastors, corporate gods or the faceless mob. They’re asleep at the wheel. You're back in the driver’s seat and your PEOPLE are nearby reminding you of all your childhood dreams. Here, take the wheel for a while, I’m drunk with the thrill of adventure.
Thanks to all who have cheered me on. You rescued me.