Sunday, June 19, 2016

Fear vs. Faithful Friends

"...'They became revolutionaries despite themselves.' In the years leading up to the war, John Adams feared British retaliation and hesitated to give up his budding law career, he only got involved after being elected as a delegate to the First Continental Congress."

"George Washington had been focused on managing his wheat, flour, fishing, and horse-breeding businesses, joining the cause only after Adams nominated him as commander in chief of the army. 'I have used every endeavor in my power to avoid it,' Washington wrote."

"Martin Luther King, Jr., was apprehensive about leading the civil rights movement; his dream was to be a pastor and college president...He was unanimously elected to lead the boycott. Faced with giving a speech to the community that evening, 'I became possessed by fear.'"

"When the pope commissioned him to paint a fresco on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo wasn't interested. He viewed himself as a sculptor. Two years would pass before he began work on the project, at the pope's insistence."

"And astronomy stagnated for decades because Nicolaus Copernicus refused to publish his original discovery that the earth revolves around the sun. Fearing rejection and ridicule, he stayed silent for twenty-two years...Eventually, a major cardinal learned of his work and wrote a letter encouraging Copernicus to publish it. Even then, Copernicus stalled for four more years."

"...when an angel investor offered $250,000 to Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak to bankroll Apple in 1977, it came to an ultimatum: Wozniak would have to leave Hewlett-Packard. He refused. 'I still intended to be at that company forever.' Wozniak reflects. 'My psychological block was really that I didn't want to start a company. Because I was just afraid,' he admits. Wozniak changed his mind only after being encouraged by Jobs, multiple friends, and his own parents."

Adam Grant from Originals

What original idea are you holding back because of fear? Step up to the plate and take one for the team! Keep your eye on the ball and get yourself onto first base. Trust the team to bring you home. That's what we're here for. 

I watched the movie, Moneyball, on the flight home yesterday. In the movie, the owner of the Oakland A's asks the general manager what his fears are about proceeding with his unorthodox plan to win games. The GM says he has none and goes on to have a record-breaking 20-game winning streak (after a long losing streak). 

Superstar David Justice asks a benched player called up to play what his fears are - because it's obvious that the ONLY thing stopping us is our own fear. 

A good ol' boy talent scout says that a player without confidence is like a man with an ugly girlfriend. I was glad to see that old man go down. Unfortunately, it's a metaphor the mainstream clearly understands. 

Fear or confidence - it's your choice. You're sexy when you're confident (and nicer too).

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