Today is 2 years ago in 2 years.
Somewhere somebody less educated than you and less capable than you is starting the business you are thinking of. She probably has a full-time job, and maybe a kid or two. But once the kids are down, the computer comes on. She’s learning everything she needs to start the business. She starts the business, and like many part-time bootstrap start-ups, it fails. But she’s learned a few things and made a few new business connections. She tries a second time and the business finds its legs. She earns enough to quit her day job and although not rich, she has the satisfaction of knowing that whatever happens from today, she knows how to create income and not depend on someone to give it to her. She’s turned an idea into something she can sell.
Meanwhile, you see her advertising and maybe read an article about her in a magazine. You say to yourself, “Whatever, my idea was way better. If I had started two years ago, I’d totally dominate the market.”
Everybody has the same number of hours in a day. As my mentor said “Bill Gates and me both have 24 hours. Somehow he’s made much better use of his than me.” Everybody has life to deal with. If you’re in good health, you can do whatever it is you want to do. Just start. If you think those who are living their dreams have had some sort of head start, that they inherited their start-up fund, you’re dead wrong. The vast majority of people who start and prosper started at more or less the same point you’re at. The difference is they wanted it bad enough and they started. Just start. Perhaps the folks who started are blessed with greater intelligence or drive? Nope, most would tell you that intelligence and drive have nothing to do with it. They just determined a goal, took a step, looked at where they were, and took the next step. Ironically, unlike smarter people, they didn’t over think it and talk themselves out of it.
In Robert Jordan’s Book, How They Did It, he outlines 10 things self-made folks do consistently that most of us don’t do.
1. Simple things sell. – It’s easier to sell 1 million simple things at 1 dollar than 1 complex thing at 1 million dollars.
2. They’re always curious. What you think is a problem, they see a potential to sell a solution.
3. Obstacles are temporary. Where it’s game over for most, they think reboot.
4. Problems exist for you to solve. They love to solve problems. That’s when they learn stuff that school never taught them.
5. They take risks. They start. They understand the risk-reward trade-off. While others complain about lack of opportunities, they create their own.
6. Attitude wins. Losers walk around with a scowl on their face all day, thinking the world owes them something. Winners walk around with a smile on their face, wondering how they can better the world.
7. They make money with their mistakes. They developed something customer A won’t buy so they re-jig and sell to customer B.
8. They do not coast. When they’re bored, they break something just to see if can be rebuilt better.
9. They expect hard-work. They KNOW nothing happens over night.
10. They’re students. They seek help from mentors, peers and younger folks. They never go it alone.
I would add Point 11 – Just start. Just start. Just start. Don’t talk yourself out of it. Just start right the hell now.
Two years is a long time. Novels, symphonies, buildings and entire communities are created in less time than that. Today is 2 years ago in 2 years. If you have an idea, start today. With the internet, you have all the information you need to start. You can reach out to anybody. Sure, most people won’t bother to help. But you’re not like most people any more. You’ve started. Most people just think about starting. You’ve started. Once you’ve started, you will meet others like you. Naysayers and doubters cease to exist the very moment you decide to start.
Just start. For the first time in about 14 billion years, ‘Today’ came. It’s gone tomorrow.