So this guy after 30 years working at the same company, was invited to breakfast with the founder of the company. He had never met the founder in the 30 years he worked at said company. He had listened to the founder give investor feedback many times to staff and outside investors. That’s as close he had ever gotten to the big boss. But today was different, as he donned his only suit. This suit had been to many funerals and just about to as many weddings, and today; it was about to add a new milestone.
Today, things were different, the world seemed just that bit brighter. He got off at his bus station and tucked his newspaper firmly under his arm. He had a bit of swag about him, perhaps today is the last time he rides the bus. Surely, with the pending promotion there will be more money and stature. Bus equals zero stature, he chuckled to himself as he waved Keith the bus driver goodbye. He looked up and for the first time noticed the birds outside the gate of the firms entrance. Hmm… he wondered to himself, why do birds stay in the same place if they could fly anywhere in the world? I guess there is nothing like the stability of home and family he answered himself.
When he arrived at the Boss’s office for the breakfast meeting, the personal assistant directed him to the boardroom where coffee, croissants and other breakfast canapés were waiting. What a beautiful spread he thought trying not to look too impressed. The room was big and had wood paneling and black leather chairs. Having worked his whole life on the factory floor he had never been up here, on the 5th floor.
As he sat down wondering what he was going to eat first, the door opened. The founder of the company walked in and greeted him by his surname. He sat on the plush chair across the table from him and clasped his well manicured hands. Those hands have clearly never run the STE 6000 downstairs at the factory floor.
The rest of the one and a half hour breakfast was a haze. He had been given a retrenchment package and a meal. They called it early retirement but it was a retrenchment. There were no amount of croissants in France that could soften this blow. As he left the firm’s offices for the last time and dropped off his access card, he was bitter. Angrily he looked up as if to curse at God, but instead got distracted by the chirping birds he had seen earlier when he arrived. And suddenly it dawned on him that HE could have flown any where in the world and done so many things, but instead like the birds he had never moved. Like the tree he had stood in one place for all his life. The salt to the wound was that the tree had a good excuse.
On the bus ride home he couldn’t shake the fact the founder of the firm didn’t look any special, he didn’t come across like he was preordained by a miracle force from somewhere. The guy was just normal, nothing special. In truth the guy reminded him of himself. He could have been the one sitting on the other side of the table had he followed his passion and dreams. The only difference that he could not deny was that the man across the table from him was a lot more confident. I guess money buys you confidence, he consoled himself.
An excuse I hear a lot from people who have great business ideas and dreams is that they just don’t have time to start now. They say timing is not right. The kids are too young. They say they like the company they work for. They say they need to raise more capital. They say a lot of thing. All excuses. Last night I heard myself make some of the same excuses. I used to judge people who make excuses and say grow a pair. I had forgotten the false sense of comfort that comes with a great excuse. To be a great liar you need to believe your own lies first.
Saying grow a pair! Is not a tool to teach someone how to move from an excuse to execution. You see if you want to actually jump and start something or face your fears, you have to lie to yourself. You have to tell yourself that you are the chosen one. You have to tell yourself that the God you believe in, will be very pissed off if you don’t go ahead and fly. Whilst the nest is comfortable you need to spread your wings otherwise your maker would have not given you a pair (of wings).
You have to lie to yourself everyday till YOU start believing your own lies. Believe you are great and soon everyone else will too. This is a powerful tool that you can put into practice today. I think it was Mohamed Ali who said I believed I was great before I was. This is no BS, it’s true. #Fakeittillyoumakeit
I often stand on a stage talking to hundreds of delegates, and think I am such an imposter. What gives me the right to tell all these people about entrepreneurship when I haven’t even figured it out myself. I often feel like such a conman. Strong word that. The word conman evokes all kinds of emotions; fake, fraud and imposter.
Do you know the origin of the word conman? It comes from Confidence Man. People with confidence change the world, from the famous Steve Jobs to the infamous Bernie Madoff. Confidence like anything can be used for good or evil but one thing for certain, you can buy success with just confidence. You don’t even have to be smart, and in fact the best conmen are not even intelligent by societal standards. Their confidence is such, that they don’t know that they are not smart. Their confidence surpasses and dwarfs their limitations. How many people do you know that are leading multi national companies or countries and you think to yourself really?! One such guy is a leader of the supposed free world, Donald Trump.
Believe in yourself and quit today, then bet on yourself and never quit again.
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3 thoughts on “Quit today and never quit again!”
I think ‘fear and quitting’ are related if not siblings! The two are spoilers of great dreams!
Great blog Miles
I can testify to this having recently quit and bet on myself.
I had the same realisation…that no one actually looks like they are preordained by some miracle force from somewhere. Lol…
The biggest hurdle of all is as people, we tend to worry a lot about WHAT IF? We have been conditioned to only believe in tested ideas and products. Almost all successful entrepreneurs have gotten a “ahhh you,… what do you want to do?…ahhh, you are crazy”. This monotonous mindsend seems to be a serious stambling block to many. Whilst having being exposed to the many few striving entrepreneurs’ coaching, I still get the same fear of the unknown. Over the past weekend two of my separate friends reignited my light and said ” You create your own market”. So its not all gone and lost
Let’s keep playing this song…