Tilt

Does anyone else get incredibly frustrated at the fact that they aren’t perfect yet? Because I sure do.  I know I know, it’s supposed to be about the journey, but sometimes, it just gets frustrating.  I was reading this book (from a new genre: startup fiction– yes that IS a thing now) and it talked about entrepreneurs being in “tilt”. Tilt, as they defined it, was when you are basically downward spiraling.  It’s a completely normal thing that happens all the time, you just have to recognize when you are in it, and course correct.  It’s almost like you’re a doctor, diagnosing yourself (i.e. WebMD but for your own neuroses and ticks).  It recommends figuring out what you do when you are spiraling downward, recognize it and overcompensate the other way so that your business doesn’t suffer.

Which is awesome if you are a robot, which clearly, the startup world is trying to make us all into.  Just kidding, but sometimes it feels that way.  I don’t know how they do that- just ignore all the pent up frustration and pretend it doesn’t exist. That’s the part they don’t talk about how to deal with.  And it’s crazy because it’s the little things that get to you, because you think you can ignore them, and then they add up to very big things (or at least in your head they are very big things).

Schedules are so tight that if one thing goes off, the whole day is in tilt.  And I haven’t scheduled any room for..I don’t know, fixing the mess. It’s sad (or maybe good, I don’t really know), but somehow work always gets done.  It’s all the other things in my life that suffer. I need to figure out how to fix that. Sometimes, the things that get me into tilt just amaze me though.

So I got bitten by a stray dog, which bit through my only pair of workout pants I have.  So now I own no workout pants.  I haven’t made time to go buy any, because I just figure it’s ok because I only really need pants if I don’t go to the salon enough (which I promised myself I would!)  EXCEPT I was talking at this college in Tamil Nadu this weekend, and I was supposed to come back on Sunday (to run errands which included going to the salon) and of course the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu HAD to be convicted and sentenced to jail  the ONE day I was there, and they started rioting and burning buses and ish so I couldn’t come back to Bangalore because I might DIE.  For real. So we had to wait until the next day, but of course all the tickets were hella expensive to get out of Tamil Nadu and back to Bangalore, so the only reasonable ticket we could get was to fly into Chennai from Trichy at 2pm and leave from Chennai to Bangalore at 10pm.  Which means I got back home at midnight and spent all of Sunday at the airport.  Which was not so bad, except I went to bed late and then got up late,  so of course I was late for my first meeting (and didn’t eat breakfast), and didn’t get to catch up until 3pm today.  I finally got everything done at 8pm, but then I had to choose between salon and the gym and man I hadn’t worked out in a few days (again, the whole riots and burning buses and not getting back in time thing) so I picked the gym.  But because I hadn’t made time for the whole buying pants thing, I had to go with sprouty legs, which, I mean, I guess I’m not supposed to care about, but I totally do (so sue me) and I felt weird the entire time.  And it’s frustrating because I mean if a) I didn’t get bitten by that stray dog OR b) riots did not break out the EXACT time I was in that one city (I swear I was supposed to be there less than 24 hours!) I would have been fine.

They seem extreme but I feel like there’s always some sort of random act of whatever that throws a wrench in my perfect plans.

But I guess that’s the point.  I need to get over the fact that there will be no perfect plans, and I really just gotta roll with it.

Stray dog bites, rioting, and king cobras in your house and all (wait, did I mention there was a king cobra in my house and I had to call a snake catcher and all that jazz? Yeah, that happened).

I guess all I can do is keep calm and carry on.

 

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Acceptance and Adulthood

Since I’ve been on vacation this last week, I got to do quite a bit of thinking.  One of the concepts I’ve been working on with Ruth is this idea of acceptance, and how that applies to my work life.  But I was talking with one of my co-founders, and we had this great discussion about how the essence of adulthood, at the end of the day, is really about acceptance.  It sounds quite counterintuitive, but I think acceptance is the first step, in a long process, to a happy adulthood.

On the flip side, if the key to adulthood is acceptance, I think the key to staying young is learning how to be happy about it.  How to stay excited.  Finding reasons to get up in the morning, despite all the things you don’t have control over.

I made my list:

I accept that there are things I have to do that I don’t want to.  Let me rephrase that.  I accept that there are things that I choose to do because I have the power to make each moment beautiful, and I have the power to create wonderful memories for others around me.

I accept that there are very few things that I have control over. Let me rephrase that.  I accept that I have the power to choose how I behave, how I make others feel, and how I handle myself in any given situation.

I accept that I can’t control what people say around me.  Let me rephrase that.  I accept that I have the power to choose what thoughts I think, what I choose to believe, what actions I take, and what I choose to say.

I accept that there are very few things I have control over.  Let me rephrase that.  I accept I have control over the most powerful force I know: my thoughts, my actions.  And if I learn to exercise this power I can control, I think I would have achieved something great in life.

Which is why I want to focus on this one thing  And be happy about the small victories, because honestly, those are probably the most important ones anyway.

Welcome to adulthood

Happy Monday

The Fluidity of Life

Being an Indian female, I was sort of under the impression that life ended at the old age of 30 when you had to get married and have kids.  Then, as I grew older, I decided that life didn’t necessarily end after you got married, but when you had kids you were basically a slave to them, so you could kiss all your dreams good bye.  But I figured by that point you didn’t have any dreams anyway so it’s fine. Ha.

Which is all really strange, because I realized that my whole perception of the world was binary.  Or at least in boxes with clear beginnings, middles, and ends.  It’s funny, I spent so much of college wishing I was more engineering like (because honestly, I was terrible at it) and now I realize that I am plenty engineering like.  It helps when you’re trying to dissect business problems, or problems in general- because yes, you need to define boundaries, figure out the problem, and architect a solution, but for your actual life, this philosophy, when taken to the extreme, is more detrimental than not.  I think.

Being in London, I realize that I want to come back here for extended periods of time.  Being in India, I realize I want to be there too.  And being in the US, I realize I want to spend time there as well.  Maybe if I visit Paris, I’ll feel that way too, who knows (I have this weird obsession with Paris, and the more people tell me how horrid and dirty it is, the more I really want to go- yes I’m just weird like that).  And I was thinking to myself, jesus, how am I supposed to pick where I live or what I’m supposed to be in life, or who I spend the rest of my life with, or anything important like that?  And then I just asked myself- why?  Why does it have to be this or that?  Why does it have to fit this mould that I have seen others follow? Because so much of my life has been so unconventional anyway, why would I be under the assumption that I’d have to pick doing this OR that?  Yes, I understand the reality that we only have 24 hours in the day, and our life is finite, and we will be unhappy if we try to do to many things and don’t do it well, but at the same time, there is so much between THIS and THAT, I think it’s really worth exploring the in betweens.  Really exploring that empty space between here and there.  Because I think that space is incredibly vast, way bigger than we think.

I’ve never had a problem coloring out of the lines, but the problem was that there was a box and I was always aware that there was a box I was not coloring in.  So I always thought of my life in terms of how badly out of the lines I was coloring. It was always measured by this finite thing.

But maybe that’s the wrong way of looking at it.  What if you get rid of the idea of lines and boxes, and just think of coloring, not in relation to anything in particular, but just for the sake of coloring, wherever you feel like coloring.  Mostly because it feels like the right thing to do.

Which pretty much means you won’t know what your picture will look like beforehand, which is pretty scary, I must admit, but it’s probably a better way of living.  And chances are, you’ll turn out with a way better painting.

Freshman Year, First Semester of Adulthood

I got that terminology out of a book I read a long time ago and I quite liked it.  For some reason I decided that adulthood started at 26 (I decided that in college and hold that it was the correct age to start expecting things from me- not anytime sooner, I was still warming up).  Now that it’s winter holidays, I thought I should give myself a report card.

Freshman year of adulthood was exactly like Freshman year of college.  I moved from Hubli to Bangalore.  It was crazy.  There was so many things to do, and so little time to do it.  NextDrop wasn’t dying.  In fact, we were growing.  And that was stressful.  Is stressful.  I tried to make friends, but learned from the last freshman year that I went through that I have a tendency to overdo it.  I didn’t want to be a people pleaser.  I just wanted to hang out with people I genuinely wanted to hang out with- not out of obligation.  Which I did.  I am proud of myself for that. But life still feels like a mess.  Sort of like Katrina all over again (and FEMA decided not to respond this time.  Oh wait…)

Luckily we’ve employed the MIT system and all Freshman are not actually graded- just given a Pass/Fail.  I passed. HURRAH!

Focus on next semester:

Slowing down.  Finding my center.

That’s what I messed up for so long.  I find it easier to go faster, wilder, never say no, never slow down.  It’s like slowing down will kill me. Slowing down is scary.  Now I know that I don’t slow down not because I won’t get things done, but I am scared of what will happen when there is empty spaces in time to fill.  How do I fill it? I have to be in my own head- I have to be in the moment.  Zen.  Scary.

I’m actually convinced that if I can do this one thing, work, and life in general, will be infinitely better.  I have done it a few times and I think to myself, wow, why don’t I do this more often?  But it’s super difficult to get to that state.  It takes me a whole day or more (and usually removing myself from Bangalore) to get to that point of centered-ness.  So now, I want to focus on getting me to that state, every day.  In my own settings.  (Because lets face it, I can’t drop everything and go to Kerala every time I feel un balanced now can I? In case you thought I was richer than I actually am, the answer is no).

The plan:

Dance (or yoga) every morning.  Sacred time.  Which means getting up early- like at 5 am.  Its so wonderful at that time- the world is asleep and I have it all to myself.  I WILL HAVE ANU TIME IN THE MORNING.  (Caps because I am trying to yell at myself/emphasize that this is really really important).

Work is from 9:30am to 6:30pm.  Keep focused and get the work done! It’s possible if we don’t get sidetracked and distracted.

Have Anu time after work.  Either dancing, yoga or gym before going home helps separate work from home.  I tried going home right after work and it was absolutely awful.  It was so much better having dance class right after.  The LEAST I can do is go to Gold’s Gym and either lift or cycle or…whatever. Something that says, hey, work is over and now you’re transitioning to home time.  This also means I need to go to bed around 10pm.  I can do that.  I think I can I think I can…

Rinse and repeat.

I want to keep it simple.  Just 3 simple rules to live by.  I think if I can do that, I will be better human being.

At least a nicer one to the people I work with….

Dance Dance Revolution: Lean Startup Body (II)

Basketball used to motivate me to do a lot of things.  It used to motivate me to lift weights, interval training/wind-sprints on the treadmill, and most importantly, do it on a regular basis so you could see actual results.  It was awesome.  I’m also freakishly competitive so the fact I was getting better and stronger and more skilled just made me workout even more.

But then since I’ve been in India over the last 2 years, it’s been difficult.  Basketball over here is just..different.  It’s not as motivating as it used to be.  At least motivating in the sense that it makes me lift 3 days a week and train the other 2 days.  I can’t explain it, but it’s just…not helping me get in shape.

Which is why I think I’m on to the next stage in life: Dance.  I’ve talked about it before, but now that I’m actually spending more time in Bangalore, I’ve signed up for classes and such.  And man.  Are they amazing.  Humbling, and awesome.  I signed up for contemporary dance, and I’ve never done it before but I love it.  It was everything I thought it was going to be, and then some.  And the best part is that there are all these things my body can’t do because I’m not strong enough, which now means I”m gonna hit the gym to get it right.

And I started classical Indian dance classes as well.  That’s a different story in that…it reminds me of what I used to be able to do, but what I can’t do now.  Which sounds really sad, but it’s actually kind of cool.  I know that if I practice, I can do it.  And the best part is that I know I can be better than what I used to be.  I used to be all right. But now that I”m starting over, I want to be great.  Or at least significantly better than before.

The weird thing about all this is that it’s actually made me appreciate my body so much more.  It’s strange, and it probably deserves its own post, but I like my body so much more now than what it was 10 years ago.  I used to be a size 0 ten years ago, and let me tell you, it was terrible.  I definitely weigh at least 30-40 pounds more, but would never go back to the way I used to be.  I feel stronger, healthier, and just…more able to do things.  I like the muscles that I’ve earned over the years, and yes, the excess cake that deposits in places around my stomach and hips and thighs and other parts I probably missed.  Whatever. I feel like it makes me human.  Mostly, I like the feeling like I have trained my body to do anything- that I can take on the world.

 

Step 1: Admitting You Have A Problem

What happens when a 23 going on 24 year old gets (almost) half a million dollars to run a company? (Wow, that looks so strange written out!) What does this person look like 2 years later?  Yes, that would be me.  And after an amazing conversation with an amazing friend from high school, I get to see where I am, and how far I still have to go (it’s so funny how high school friends have the ability to put a mirror up to you and say hey, look at you now).  I think the first step is just saying, wow, proud of myself for…surviving….but there is still a long long LONG way to go to be where you want to be.  To be honest, it’s only now (2 years later) that, since I have an amazing team, (and I can go on vacation without worrying the company will die) I have the luxury of really taking a deep dive and looking at myself critically.

What does that actually mean, practically?  It means that I acknowledge that there are lots of things that are holding me back from being the leader, executive, startup person, I want to be.  And being ok with that.  And knowing that I need to slow down and explore all those things, so that..I can overcome these mental roadblocks.  Because that’s what they are, mental roadblocks.

And I’m also admitting that maybe I can’t do this on my own.  I’m going to talk about a topic that most people don’t like talking about but I’m going to say it.  I think everyone (who can afford it) could use a therapist.  Especially when you have a high stress job.  I count running a startup a high stress job.  I feel like people think therapists are only for absolutely dire situations and for people who are either schizophrenic, bipolar, or suicidal maybe. You get the point.  But I think it’s one of the most misunderstood (and underused) fields that exist.  And it has so much negative stigma associated with it, it’s sort of ridiculous.  I am hoping to do my part to change that, by talking about it.  I want to use a therapist for preventative measures. Nothing is going horribly wrong now (in fact, people may look at my life and say wow you have everything!) but I think if I don’t do something differently, I am impeding my own personal growth, and the growth of our company.  It’s more about realizing that I need help to cross my own mental plateau- sort of like a…mental personal trainer.  I think most of us use our friends as substitute therapists, but really, that’s not their job.  They definitely help and keep you afloat (and I’m sure we all agree that we don’t know where we would be without them), but at the end of the day, if you are dominating conversations with your own problems, most of the time, I don’t think that’s healthy at all, and I think that’s the time the therapist comes in.  I’m not sure if I will actually have enough money to get one (gonna cross my fingers and hope I find someone I like at a reasonable price) but I don’t know anyone who can’t use a non judgmental, impartial/third party observer, who listens to you moan and cry and whine about your problems and asks you questions like, “how does that make you feel” and you go on and on about how that makes you feel ( for an hour a week).   Sounds pretty rad to me.

I have no idea how it will work out, and maybe I’ll find this is the worst idea ever, but right now, I at least feel like I’m doing SOMETHING to move in a positive direction.  Getting myself a mental-personal trainer.

But you know what else is therapeutic?  Writing about it. And hoping that other people who feel the same way will feel less alone, and say hey, yeah, that sounds like me too.

This Moment of Clarity

No matter what you do, you probably can’t get most people to like you.  Mostly because there is no objective way of ‘being’.  Everyone’s truth is so irreconcilably different, trying to get some sort of consensus would prove exponentially difficult- so difficult, in fact, that if this were a dynamic programming problem, it would be so computationally complex that no modern computer would have the capacity to compute this solution and would therefore be deemed unsolvable (yes, I still think of the world in terms of math problems, sorry).

But the fact of the matter is that no man is an island, so it never made sense to me when people said, don’t worry about what anyone else says.  Of course you should care about what SOME people say, because then you’re just floating about the world with no anchor in any sort of reality you believe in. The trick, I think, is picking WHO you care to listen to.

I believe in the Fave 5 (my favorite Sprint commercials from way back when, with Charles Barkley and Dwayne Wade) I pick 5 people in the world who I listen to, when it comes to the serious stuff (well give or take, but you get the idea).  And everyone else, well…you know.  There’s a wall (sort of Berlin style), with a virtual assistant who gets to screen commentary and issue entry visas, with the boss deciding, ultimately, what comments get permanent citizenship and which ones don’t (yes, it’s actually that militant).  But without that anchor (and really that wall), you’ll be pulled in so many directions that you don’t even know what to think.

So who’s in your Fave 5?

Defining our Worth

I’ve been thinking about this a lot, mostly because when you’re raising money, the question that everyone inevitably always asks is, what’s your valuation?  And I never really know how to respond to that.  Let me rephrase that.  I know how to “answer” that (i.e.  the appropriate response in the startup community) but at the back of my head, I just think it’s such a strange concept.  Mostly because you have two parties involved that usually have completely different ways of looking at life.  In addition to that, not only is it trying to put a “value” on something that, lets face it, at such an early stage who knows what to make of it, you’re adding a business layer to that which is, lets try to get the best bargain for myself  (on both sides).  Is anybody really interested in trying to get at the true “value” of whatever it is we’re talking about?  I don’t know.  And more importantly, does it even matter in this context?  In this day and age, how are we really measuring value anyway?  I mean, just look at the acquisitions that are happening, and the way a few new age stocks are trading at unheard of P/E ratios.  We’re totally ok with all of this, and we’re encouraging it.  So really, who is to say what is worth what?

For most people, I guess it really doesn’t matter.  But for the few that do care, I think the really crappy part is that you are forced to take something that you think has intrinsic value for the world and put a number on it.  It’s just like pricing a piece of art.  An artist could have toiled for years and years and years, only to have her genius unrecognized, or (worse I think), sold at a price that she felt didn’t even come close to the blood, sweat, and tears she put in.  But at the end of the day, you can’t live off smiles and goodwill, so you take what you can get and understand that the market may not be the best place to understand true artistic genius.

But then what happens if your business is your art?  It’s the masterpiece you’re creating- your lasting legacy in the world?  It’s your Piece de Resistance so to speak.  What’s the line between business and art? Is there room for that?  I mean, has anyone ever been successful at selling a dream?

In the end, none of this actually matters.  Unfortunately, if you don’t make the money, you don’t make these decisions.  I think the important thing for those of us on the other side to realize is that the only way to prove our worth is to…well, just do it.  But more importantly, I think it’s figuring out how to ignore the outside world, and stay focused on your inner faith, the faith that you can create amazing things in this world, no matter what price anybody has put on your work. I suppose we’ve always been facing that: GPA’s, report cards, Mid Year Assessment Reports from bosses who may just hate your guts for no apparent reason.  So we’ve had practice.

And I think at the end of the day, you fight for what you think reality should reflect, knowing that the results are not in your hands, but you did everything you could to hold your ground.  But the most important thing: whatever the result, don’t pay attention to it.  You know what you are worth.  Successful people listen to that voice, and regardless of external factors, they single-mindedly create their art, their vision for a new and more promising future.

At least that’s what I figure anyway.

Breaking Point

Anybody who lifts weights, or knows a little bit about how the body works, knows that in order to build newer, stronger muscle, you have to literally tear through/break down the old muscle first.  And it’s painful. It’s what the sore feeling is (well, assuming you didn’t actually hurt anything).

Now take that knowledge and apply that to your mental state, and how you perform as an athlete mentally.  In life, I think there will be instances that break you down emotionally and mentally.  It’s scary, and it’s painful.  And most of the time, we think of those as negative things.  But maybe it’s because we don’t know how to recognize them for what they are.  Imagine your mind is a muscle and can be trained the same way.  Isn’t the point to take it to a breaking point every so often, so that it can regenerate and build something even better?

I think what we have to embrace is that life is going to throw us things that break us down, and that’s a good thing.  It’s a muscle that needs to be broken, and then rebuilt, stronger and better than before. I think that’s where the expression, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger comes from.  If you think of it in scientific, muscular terms, it makes a lot of sense.

The only difference is that with exercise, we know exactly how to take care of ourselves after we’ve pushed our muscles to a “breaking” point.  We rest for at least a day before using it again.  What about your mind? What do we do when we’ve been taken to an emotional breaking point?  I think that’s a little less understood and a little less clear, also because it’s probably not the same for everyone.

But that’s for you to figure out.  Once you are broken, how do you get back up?  That’s probably one of the most important things you can figure out for yourself.  What helps you generate emotional energy?  And start incorporating that into your routine, so you can stay at your new plateau.

For me, I thought exercise was that thing that did it for me, but recently I realized that doesn’t work anymore.  I discovered that the new thing, that new thing that keeps me energized, is dance. I sort of always knew it, but I had no idea how important it was to me.  That’s my thing, the thing that brings me emotional energy, and that thing that helps me function at my new emotional plateau.

I think it kind of shook things up for me when one of the people who I was talking to about the grant we won before, won the same grant the year after we did, and recently got bought out by Google.  And I was super happy for them, they are doing incredibly cool stuff. But it also brought things in perspective for me- what I’m doing, or what I’m trying to do, is very very different.  It’s not immediately obvious, the market is incredibly fragmented, and the upside is still in question (not in my mind, but for potential investors, sure). It’s just that…I believe so strongly in what I am doing, and what the potential can be, that I want to spend every waking minute of every day, trying to make that dream a reality.

And it’s tough.  Because I realize that every day, it’s an uphill battle, trying to just push the needle a little bit farther.  Trying to prove people wrong.  And we’ve done a fantastic job so far- most people didn’t think we could do what we’ve already accomplished.  But I want to keep going. I want to take it to it’s completion, or at least, what I see in my head.

Obviously, sometimes, you will break. It’s normal.  If you think about it, it would be really weird if you didn’t.  Anybody doing something outside of their comfort zone is probably going to break.  Because being able to operate at that mental state is a learned skill, not something you are born with, or not something anybody is born with I don’t think.

Which is why, every morning, from 6-7am, you will find me in my house dancing to hindi music.  It helps me realize what’s important in life, why I’m doing what I’m doing, and keeps things in perspective.  Don’t ask why, I can’t really tell you. But it makes me ridiculously happy and I am totally ready for whatever the day has to bring.

A Realist’s Guide To Changing The World

I think a lot of people want to change the world, mostly because it’s more than slightly depressing when you take it at face value.  Or at least that’s what I thought when I was 7, and learned about the concept of global warming.  I spent the better part of 2 weeks, thinking I had to singlehandedly come up with a solution otherwise we would all die due to a lack of ozone layer (yes, these are the videos I watched when I was little- I think it explains a lot).  Anyway, after two weeks of intense thinking/worrying/hoping that I would come up with something in time to save the planet, I ran to my dad one morning because I had finally come up with the perfect solution.  I think my overwhelming emotion was…relief.  Yes! I have something and now we don’t have to die!  Phew!  My solution?  Putting a plant at the end of the exhaust pipe of every car so it would suck up all the carbon dioxide before it went out into the atmosphere.  When my dad, very gently, told me that it was a good thought, bur probably wouldn’t solve all our problems, I just broke down and started crying (a lot) because I thought we were all going to die and there was nothing I could do about it.

Where am I going with this?

I think at some point along whatever journey we take, we feel like 7 year old Anu.  It gets really really depressing if you look up and see this ridiculously huge problem you’re trying to solve and get frustrated at not seeing change, or feeling like you’re not contributing, or maybe you don’t even know what to do.  And in this day and age, everyone wants to see results, and everyone wants to be the person that cures cancer, or eradicates poverty, or I don’t know- does something else really awesome.  But sometimes, I would even say MOST of the time, we just don’t see anything. For a really long time, if at all ever.

And it sucks.  A lot.  It makes you depressed and sometimes it makes you cry a lot and sometimes it makes you want to just curl up in fetal position and just sleep for a really long time and eat a lot of chocolate during the periods when you are required to be up because you have guests in the house (may or may not be speaking from personal experience…) The point is, it’s just all bad.

So what do you do about it?

Well, I think the biggest thing is that you can’t pin your happiness on results.  Let me say it again- don’t pin your happiness on outcomes.  This seems counter intuitive right?  But really, it’s the only way you’ll survive.  And if you think about it, all great people who did great things followed the same path.  For example:

  • Google: They were just two guys who were doing this side project and wanted to build this really cool thing. Did they set out to build the worlds largest and most recognized search engine? No.  They just focused on doing what they could do, and they rocked at it.  (Read all about it here)
  • Michael Jordan & The Chicago Bulls:  They sucked ass prior to their first championship in 1991.  And to be quite honest, Michael Jordan wasn’t very pleasant either.  He knew where he wanted to go but he actually took each day as it came.  He didn’t even worry about the next day.  He broke a season into multiple games, and he broke games into 4 quarters, and that’s what he worried about.  How well he did that quarter.  Literally, that’s all he thought about.  Well, that and making his team perform.  But game time was game time.  And that was his focus.  (Read about it here)
  • Paul Graham: In one of his blog posts, basically lays down the game plan for changing the world.  And that’s exactly what he says.  One thing at a time.  Don’t worry about the big picture.  Otherwise you’ll just fail.  (Read the relevant excerpt here on the NextDrop blog at the end of the post)

There will always be work to do and problems to solve, and really, if you worry about the big picture all the time, it’s the fastest way to go nowhere.  So whatever you do, just keep on doing it.  Just make sure you enjoy that bit of it.  If you would still do what you do every day (even if you never see any results) would you still do it? For me, the answer is yes- because it’s not perfect, and nothing may ever come of it, but I feel like I’m doing something worthwhile- and it’s the best I can come up with.  And I truly believe that most people fall into that category- whether you’re an engineer, a doctor, a teacher, a mechanic, an artist, a parent, a friend, whatever it is.  You’re doing your part to keep the world going. By just being a good human being, you’re doing your part.  By doing the best at your job, you’re doing your part.  That’s the only thing you have control over, and that’s the only thing you should really care about.

And if we get lucky- like Michael Jordan or the Google Guys- and we actually see the results of what we do, then that’s just a bonus.

But if we get lucky, or if we don’t, it doesn’t matter.  Because we can at least be happy in knowing we tried.  And that, I think, is the most important part.

Be Good, Be Happy, Be You

Happy Holidays