What if?

Every single thing humankind has ever done was the result of asking “What If?”

From H. erectus wondering, “What if I brought this burning stump of wood closer to my burrow?” 1.6 million years ago, to Mark Zukerberg wondering, “What if I created a network on the internet where people can secretly stalk each other and read about the meals their friends ate?” – everything begins with “What if?”

The most terrifying question I never want to answer is “What if I started (      ) ago?”

So I start.  I don’t wait till I’m good or qualified.  I just start so I can become good and qualified.

Successfully preparing pitches, job interviews and presentations means constantly asking “What if?”

“What if my competitor is better?  How do I address that?”

“What if there’s no budget?  What alternatives can I offer?”

“What if I focus on Point C because they’re anticipating Point A.  How can I better position our idea?”

"What if he infected himself and his family with polio to test the vaccine he developed that will ultimately be given away to humanity for free because really, there are scientists and there's Jonas Salk.

But this applies to absolutely everything else as well.

“What if I just read 5 pages a night about the business I want to start?  Can I set aside 15 minutes after the kids go to sleep?”

“What if I just type 500 words a night for the book I’ve been thinking about writing?  How fast would it take for me to finish the first draft?”

“What if I just created something for my own enjoyment and not worry if anybody else liked it?  How great would I feel?”

 

All results of creativity starts with some person asking “What if?”  It’s the greatest open-ended question you can ask because it opens up possibilities.  The single greatest “What If” question I have ever come across was “What if you knew you absolutely would not fail.  What would you do?”  There are variations of this question and all equally profound.  I would love to hear how you would answer this.

I started this blog about a month ago.  I have written every single night.  Sometimes what I write resonates with you and sometimes it doesn’t.  But I still write.  It’s become a habit.  I started this about a month ago after I had a conversation with a friend He gave me a piece of advice.

“Marco, the fewer elements people need to peel away, the faster you can connect.”

That very evening, I started this thing.  I didn’t care who read it and I didn’t care if it risked any future business.  This is as direct as I can be.  For all of you who seem to be a glutton for punishment and return daily – thank you so very much.  A special shout-out to the friend who gave me the advice.

I pondered three questions before I started;

1.  “What if no one reads this?”

2.  “What if people think I’m stupid?”

3.  “What if I looked back 3 months from now and wished I had started?”

To numbers 1 and 2, I answered “Whatever.  I’m going to do it anyway.”

Because the answer to #3 scared the ____ out of me.

 

M