If you’re reading this, it means that you’re not sitting on a couch watching another TV show, or another season of whatever series that’s killing you slowly or you’re not laying back while gaming your life away in a virtually fabricated world trying to be the next forgotten hero. Good on you my friend. Very good on you. Keep reading, you’ll either love it or hate it but you won’t feel indifferent at the end of this s%#t.
I’m currently sitting in a plane from LAX to Montreal to attend a few important meetings for our Company and decided that the word “risk” needs to be addressed. It needs to be highlighted, it needs to be yelled at the top of your lungs, it needs to flash while flying above the city on a blimp, it needs to be drilled in your brain and even better, patched on your beating heart.
I hear friends, family, acquaintances, fellow entrepreneurs and even strangers congratulating me for the current success Sofdesk is having, which in all fairness, we are definitely moving in the right direction. Thank God for that, I can slowly but surely reach a broader audience and hope to inspire a couple more people on the way.
I’ll tell you straight, as much as receiving props makes me feel good for a moment, it makes me want to scream something to anyone dreaming of a better tomorrow, any entrepreneur dreaming of a successful project, any lover dreaming of being with this one princess or that one prince, any soldier dreaming of helping or defending others, any motivator dreaming of inspiring the next generation, any believer dreaming of making a name for themselves and any human being dreaming of making a loved one feel proud; for goodness’ sake, if you’re not doing it, take the damn risk and don’t hesitate.
I’ll give you a simple yet important example of “what’s the worst that can happen”.
I used to be on Tinder, yeah the dating app, I tried it, I gave it a fair shot. Swiped left, swiped right, go on a date, throw my A game for a night, go on another date, pull swaggerific moves to impress and feel accepted by this complete stranger, do it all over again, go through the roster until you realise that you can keep going on like this forever. Seriously, even after you meet someone interesting enough to go on 10-20 dates, you always keep the vision of perfection waiting in the back of your mind because you know it’s that easy to have a back-up plan.
So what happens? The smallest relationship struggle makes you wanna duck down & abandon ship because all these other options are roaming in your purse or waiting in your front pocket. It’s that easy nowadays. Wait for the point, relax, it will come…
I’m serious, we don’t have to work as hard anymore. Four generations behind us would stay together forever, three generations behind would stay together for a much longer time than two generations behind and so on and so forth. We’re not being that slick right now, we’re not having a killer game right now, we’re just hiding our insecurities behind a screen because of the level of risk we’re willing to take or not take to make major moves. And that goes on for anything.
You commit to your move or you don’t. You dive in that one project 100% or you don’t, you go out there or you don’t. As long as you keep a backup plan to protect yourself from the pain, from the risk, from the scars and from the potential loss, you will always be a number 2 in that field. Yes, a second class individual. A runner-up. I’ll be the first to admit it, I had a hard time letting go of my first business to commit 100% to my second one but it needed to be done to reach the second one’s full potential. Just like a lover needs to commit 100% to that one person to reach the relationship’s full potential.
Again, I lost in that field as well during my 33 years on this planet. No doubt about it.
Trust me, a lot of people tell me that it’s not everyone that have it in them to put something as valuable as their pride on the line, their bank account on the line, their name on the line, their time on the line…
Well well well, I can understand that there are many things that we don’t select in this life but there are moves that we, as one people can make to create more opportunities for ourselves and I can assure you that this spark will start in front of the mirror; looking right at your own self, at your own soul evaluating what is the real potential loss here. Will I lose everything over it? My life? What is my life really worth if it’s not being lived to the fullest?
I’m getting back to my Tinder example; today, I don’t have the app anymore. Fortunately enough, I never really had a problem walking up to anyone at any time and start a conversation. What’s the worst that can happen huh? She will scream? She will call the cops? She will throw her wine on that crisp white shirt? She might just say “not interested” or “leave me alone you creep”. No big deal. Or, there’s a possibility she might be interested : )
Let me tell you something my dear friend: in 2016, she or he will have a hard time processing what just happened: a real man (or woman) just walked in the real world, spoke some real shit and took some real chances to live some true life experiences. Now we’re talking. Oh yessss, I’m loving this. Wait, I’m gonna get a drink for that one… “Flight attendant, a 7&7 please. Wait, what? You don’t have it? Show me the stash, what? Nothing really? Bring me to the back of this plane and show me everything you got… Oh, you do have it. Well thank you very much”.
Sometimes we need to get to the bottom of things to get what we want in this life. Who cares what the others thought of me during this little plane episode; that’s what separates the ones that are staying quiet while fitting in and accepting their faith from the ones that are climbing to the top getting exactly what they want.
Sorry, I derailed for a moment.
So, once rejection comes knocking on the door, shake hands with it, grab it, hug it, love it, it’s that rejection that will build your character and forge your spiritual sword. I’ve been rejected for a big portion of my life and it’s by keeping the motion moving forward that my confidence level went up exponentially.
I decided to embrace my identity and increase my ability to absorb risk by always asking myself: will this situation (which my mind is dreaming of and believes it’s the right thing to do) kill me? If the answer is no, it’s like a little walk in the park, if the answer is yes, I will still welcome it with arms wide open knowing that I was able to live my life to the full extent of my beliefs and the true meaning of my own values. Now that’s living.
Look around you. You might’ve grown up with some people, went to school with some people, but hear me out: take the time to analyze your environment. When you remove a couple of layers of the onion, you will see that you might have nothing in common with some of those people. They are just part of your circle because life had it this way or you just wanted to fit in so you decided to stick around.
You can take it how you want it but many of the people around you will want you to stay at the same level as them, or below. I will say it again: same level or below. That’s why you gotta make your own moves and surround yourself with people that wants the same for you as you’re willing to wish for them. Still, remember that inside your heart, you know when you have a good friend/partner and make sure you hold on to them because they know your story and they genuinely want the best for you. Here I was about to shout out a couple of my friends but this is not a thank you note, it’s a manifesto.
Now let’s get back to business. If you come from nothing and want to start something, the worst that can happen is you going back to nothing. That means start right now and stop procrastinating. A positive attitude will attract positive energy which will attract a bunch of positive people which, in return, will attract & create positive opportunities.
Be thankful for what you have instead of being mad for what you don’t have. I remember growing up sharing the couch with my brother at my grand-parents’ 1 bedroom apartment for almost 10 years, jeez, when I made my first lil girlfriend at the time…I must’ve been like 12 years old and we would hold hands walking outside and always ended up chilling at her place. She would be like “let’s go to your place, I wanna see your room too, we’re always at my house”.
Shit, I would freeze because I was so ashamed not having a room and live at my grandparents. I would come up with a bunch of excuses to fit in or caress my bruised ego. Anyways, that relationship didn’t last : ) You know what? I used to victimize myself that this life isn’t fair but when I look at it from today’s perspective, I’m so thankful for everything and I’m very much proud of my upbringing. The past will create your future and it’s better to accept where you’re from than to deny it because like Martin Luther King Jr. said, “The arc of the moral universe is long but it bends towards justice... and no lie can live forever”. – I suggest you watch this small portion of the speech called “How Long, Not Long”.
If you grew up with a thousand options and you still don’t know what your next move is, commit to one thing and stick to it until you lived it to the fullest. There’s no other way. If you’re just wasting your family funds not servicing others or making your community better and you’re just consuming materialistic goods while absorbing an infinite amount of food intake in your belly, you should really put your life in perspective. A full 180 might be required here.
To conclude: don’t fall in the traps of comfort, don’t get numbed by the media and all this entertainment surrounding you; every minute you’re putting on fantasizing on someone else’s life, you’re losing on achieving greatness in your own life. Most of this crap is built to act as a sedative, calming you down and making you feel relaxed while staying in the comfort zone… you gotta get outta there. Quick.
If comfort means chilling, it means staying alive, it means you’re not living, it means you’re just there, barely breathing. If discomfort means challenge, it means accepting the consequences of your commitments, if you’re ready to make your big move, may God bless you my friend, it’s time to embrace death with a big smile knowing that you’re doing what you’re supposed to do, and only then; you will fear no more.