Don’t Fall for the “Whistle Trap”

In one of Benjamin Franklin’s many writings, he told a friend, Madame Brillon:

“When I was a child of seven years old, my friends on a holiday, filled my pocket with coppers. I went directly to a shop where they sold toys for children; and being charmed with the sound of a whistle, that I met by the way in the hands of another boy, I voluntarily offered and gave all my money for one. I then came home, and went whistling all over the house, much pleased with my whistle, but disturbing all the family.

My brothers, and sisters, and cousins, understanding the bargain I had made, told me I had given four times as much for it as it was worth; put me in mind what good things I might have bought with the rest of the money; and laughed at me so much for my folly, that I cried with vexation; and the reflection gave me more chagrin than the whistle gave me pleasure.

This, however, was afterwards of use to me, the impression continuing on my mind; so that often, when I was tempted to buy some unnecessary thing, I said to myself, Don’t give too much for the whistle; and I saved my money.

Don’t pay too much for the whistle. Be careful what you want, as you may get it, and at the cost of something else. There is a opportunity cost for every choice you make. Spend your time, attention, and money on one thing, and you forego another.

Be sure about what you want, and ignore everything else.

The Secret to Success

Everybody is looking for the secret to success. But, it’s right in front of you. It’s called . . .

WORK!

That’s it. Done. Period. There is no other secret.

Say “No” To Your Good Ideas

Everybody has ideas. In fact, many people have new good ideas everyday. And that’s a problem when it comes to making something a success.

The difference between great entrepreneurs and the ones that never really get much off the ground, is being able to say “no” to good ideas. Focus on ten tasks, and you’ll get ten partially done projects. Choose one thing to focus on, and you’ll be able to apply all of your energy to make that one thing successful.

To combat “idea fatigue” I have developed a system called – Good Idea? Great Idea? When I have an idea I am interested in pursuing I ask a couple people that I respect whether it is a good idea or a great idea. If they agree that it is a good idea, I throw it out. I only spend time pursuing things that pass the great idea test. Everything else gets left on the table.

Say no to good ideas. So the great ones can succeed. #takerisksbeyou

The Largest Barrier to Success

in·er·tia

iˈnərSHə

noun

1. a tendency to do nothing or to remain unchanged. “the bureaucratic inertia of government”

synonyms: inactivity, inaction, inertness

2. a property of matter by which it continues in its existing state of rest or uniform motion in a straight line, unless that state is changed by an external force.

The largest impediment to getting things done is not a lack of ideas, opportunities, intelligence, or money. It’s inertia. And it doesn’t get any better as you get older. If your waiting for the day when you’ll have enough money, time, support . . . the list goes on and on, stop. If your waiting for something, you’ve already lost. That day will never come if you wait for it. Go. Do. Now. #takerisksbeyou

Two Forces Changing Everything

There are two forces changing our economy, entrepreneurship, and everything else:

1. Technology – it seems that the internet is eating everything. There isn’t an industry that isn’t affected by it. It’s not the internet of things that is coming. It’s the internet of everything. And just when we get used to the internet running our lives, along comes the Blockchain, which could disrupt everything again.

2. Personalization. Through the 90s and 2000s standardization was the trend. Today, technology has enabled personalization. From what we eat, to what we do, to how we live, everything is becoming personalized; tailored to us as individuals. Your customers’ time and attention is becoming fragmented. How do you meet that challenge to succeed?

Money as a Technology

What is technology? Knowledge, techniques, methods, and processes that help us complete an objective. A pencil is an example of technology. So are smartphones, light bulbs, and clothes. Yes, clothes.

Money is also technology.

What is money? Something that has three functions. Money operates as a medium of exchange so that we all accept it to buy goods and services, a verifiable unit of account so we know what it is worth, and a store of value in that it holds its value reasonably well.

But money also meets the definition of a technology. Technologies change. So will our ideas of money.