When I was a kid I told everyone I was going to be a movie producer like Dino De Laurentiis.
How did I prepare for Hollywood? I watched Dino’s King Kong (the 1976 version) about 10 times. I devoured every new issue of Famous Monsters of Filmland, and I daydreamed about Ray Harryhausen’s stop-motion dinosaurs, skeletons and centaurs.
I didn’t save my money (or even ask) for a Super 8 camera, write scripts or even model my own clay monsters.
Ever heard of Ralph Waldo Emerson? He once wrote, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.”
To me that means boilerplate consistency violates your innate creativity – the genius inside. And if your plan is to cling to the familiar, well, that’s when you tread water.
I was never smart enough (or well-read enough) to run around quoting philosophers, but I now know, thanks to Ralph, that for creativity to flourish you must get your ass off the sofa.
Do you want to look back at what you didn’t do and blame it all on your under-appreciated creative genius, occupied with busywork?
The clever, but lazy devil with the ass print in the La-Z-Boy? The boilerplate fellow who clings the the familiar because he’s afraid? The guy who can think of a thousand reasons for NOT doing something?
The No Show
I had a master-storyteller friend, full of promises and short on delivery. Gifted at getting people excited, but challenged when it came to follow-through.
Around 1998 he convinced me that my young company would do all the branding for his hatchling software business. They needed a brand, collateral, advertising, etc., and I was his guy.
Several thousand dollars into the job, I lost touch with Jeff. He never returned my calls or emails, and he never paid me.
Later I discovered his bullshit was aided by a drug-addled state and he wasn’t even considered an equal partner in the business.
This is all water under the bridge, because I’m perfect and don’t hold grudges. I’m kidding. I wanted to kill him at the time, when my business was starting and struggling, but time heals all.
Here’s the thing … the combination of little fibs plus no follow-through compacted over time, accumulate into a Kong-sized snowball that WILL annihilate you (I think Jeff is still recovering).
To avoid annihilation you must work to kill the devil inside, daily. The creative do-nothing who philosophizes all day, is full of hot air, and never completes a task.
Yeah, THAT guy.
He continually fogs your landscape with big dreams and false promises.
How do you stab him through the heart?
Well think about it: A “foolish consistency” is doing the same thing you’ve been doing.
And to be 100% honest I’ve been the biggest fool of all, because I let the devil control me for so long. Many days of my life I looked back and realized how I was duped, swindled and beaten like a bad dog, only to do the same ol’ same ol’ the next day.
A wise and productive consistency?
Slap that grand visionary upside the head and make him figure out the next step.
Find strength by dispatching your inner-gremlin. The creep who pokes you with a fear stick and whispers angst-ridden nothings in your ear.
Kill the bisnitch who promises all day but never shows up.
I’ve dreamt up a new site and it’s going live in January. If you are the least bit interested, stay tuned or sign-up below. There’s way more coming and it’s all about you, yes you … breaking out in your own little way.
In James Altucher’s Choose Yourself I read this: “The learned man aims for more. But the wise man decreases. And then decreases again.”
And to me, killing dead weight is not just about material possessions. Overthinking every damn thing — over-philosophizing rooted in fear — can become the heaviest burden of all.
The No Show
I’m putting this clown to the knife. I’m showing up on January 6th with a little red eBook.
2014 will go down as the year I reined in the dreamer, axed the dead weight and killed Mr. No Show.
How about you?
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