A friend of mine was waiting to turn left at an intersection. Traffic coming the other way was completely stopped for a light. And even though oncoming cars had absolutely nothing to gain by driving 10 feet further into the intersection, one of the drivers refused to stop and let him turn.
My friend flashed his lights and motioned for the guy to stop.
Instead, the guy blocked his turn and flipped him the bird.
My friend’s wife opened her door, stepped out of the car, walked across the intersection to the driver, and kindly asked him to back up so they could turn left.
The man grimaced and reluctantly threw the car in reverse.
That’s what it took to get the guy to do the polite thing. (“That’s the power of a woman,” my friend said with a smile.)
When you believe you must compete for every square foot of pavement – even at the expense of a polite courtesy that costs you nothing – isn’t that Exhibit “A” of scarcity mentality?
Not enough pavement on the street.
Not enough air, not enough water.
Not enough beer in the cooler.
Too many people, too many headaches.
Not enough opportunities.
Not enough money, not enough ideas.
You have to fight for everything you ever get.
I don’t know about you, but whenever I work myself into a desperation mentality, my field of vision narrows and I can’t see anything but problems.
Inspiration never seems to show up when I’m thinking that way.
A couple of months ago, someone pointed out to me that there’s a huge difference between working hard and striving. You can strive and not even be working while you stress out. Or you can work hard and not strive, and instead experience the rhythm and flow.
In Martial Arts they talk about relaxing and holding yourself in a state of readiness. Flowing like water. You can only do that when you believe there’s really going to be enough for you.
Last month at our Roundtable meeting, I suggested an affirmation to one of the members:
“I’m not a guy who constantly strives to force things to work. I’m a wise, agile player who harnesses existing forces to get things done.”
I believe there’s always a path you can carve that sidesteps the desperation mentality. You just need to slow down long enough to seek it out.
Rewind to the Dot Com Crash and consider where the world was at: An enormous amount of money had been poured into the Internet and it all evaporated in the space of a year.
A lot of folks proclaimed that the party was over.
But the smart ones realized that a ton of assets had been built – on somebody else’s dime – and if they kept a level head during the chaos and confusion, real businesses could finally be built.
(One of my smartest friends actually gave up on building real businesses during the Dot Com boom, because there was so much dumb money being thrown at even dumber ideas.)
The downturn became the new season of the smart ideas.
My friend, I am privy to so many things behind the scenes, the de-construction and re-construction of so many enterprises, that I can absolutely assure you, THIS is the age of the smart entrepreneur.
I invite you to join the ranks of the relaxed and the ready.
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