Thursday, December 30, 2010

Peer Pressure

Steven Pressfield wrote that “the highest treason a crab can commit is to make a leap for the rim of the bucket.”

When you commit to building a business, the resistance from friends and relatives might be greater than if you lived in a suburban environment.

Many people in your town are there because they chose a superior lifestyle. But you are surrounded by many people who live there as the default situation. Inside themselves, they know they have more to offer in the city. They are ashamed that they lack the courage to either leave or to blossom where they are. They rarely admit it to themselves, and usually construct complicated, vivid stories to explain their lack of courage.

If you decide to be the crab that tries to crawl to the bucket rim, these people will try to drag you back in, so that you don’t expose their self-disappointment. Here is what they might say, and the translations of their words.

“This plan just isn’t feasible.” = “I wish I had thought of it.”

“That kind of plan never works around here.” = “Why can’t you just work at Walmart like the rest of us.”

“Have you heard about ___’s new business? He always was a little crazy.” = “I hope it fails.”

“If you want some advice, you need to work hard on marketing.” = “Why didn’t they call me? I’m the marketing expert in town.”

“If I were you, I would quit this and just get a safe job.” = “I should have been successful, but it was impossible because of ____.”

Learning to ignore the other crabs is essential.

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