"The Power of Starting Something Stupid" by Richie Norton
So this is definitely a new book for my recent book series based on the amazing and empowering books I've read... and it's also a quasi announcement. I encourage you to read further if intrigued...
As I was saying, after featuring "Do Cool Sh*t" by Miki Agrawal and "The Total Money Makeover" by Dave Ramsey, here's another tome of amazing: "The Power of Starting Something Stupid" by Richie Norton.
Gus and I read this book during our first weeks on the job hunt here in North Carolina and man, did it smash our brains with complete awesomeness and firepower. I actually first heard about from Making Things Happen Founder, Lara Casey, whose story is also featured in the book.
The book's title is very self-explanatory - it's about how much power there is in making your dreams happen. Richie Norton has wonderful stories that serve to underscore what amazing things can happen when you start things and when you have the courage to pursue what matters most to you.
It's about starting something stupid. Something crazy. Something that you can't stop thinking about and that maybe, your parents don't completely understand. Richie says stupid is the new smart, and he's talking about the kind of stupid, crazy thinking and action that some of the world's greatest innovators and people just like you and me had to do to create something incredible.
Here are a few of the things that really moved my heart when reading:
- Most of the unbelievable and lasting things in this world didn't start out that way - they were crazy "stupid" and the people who began them were called nuts, failures, and more (think Steve Jobs, etc.)
- When we procrastinate, we aren't getting away from anything. In fact, we're filling our time procrastinating filling our minds and hearts with anxiety about the things we aren't doing.
- Why do I procrastinate? I realized that the things I procrastinate from doing are what's most important and I'm somewhat irrationally afraid to face them, so then I just worry about never facing them. Now, when I feel the urge to procrastinate, I challenge myself to tackle what's important to me.
- We all have excuses for why we haven't started something we want to do - Richie calls it The T.E.M. Gap: No Time, No Education, No Money
- That gap is no excuse for not getting out there and making things happen. We've all got a hundred reasons to not try and that insecurity isn't going to disappear one day unless you start putting your energies into reasons to try.
- Gavin's Law - I'll let you read the poignant first chapter of Richie's book where he talks about losing his young son Gavin, but will tell you that "Gavin's Law" and the premise of living to start because we never know how much time we're given is incredibly powerful.
Lastly, there was one thing that really stood out: The Bezos Test - inspired by Amazon.com Founder Jeff Bezos, Riche introduces the idea of the "Bezos Test" to identify what matters most to you and what stupid idea you need to pursue. The general idea is to think about when you look back on your life when you're 80, what do you want to have accomplished? You create a long list, then you think - what couple of things would be devastating to me if I never did? Those things- they are your lazer target, stupid ideas that you've got to go after now.
Gus and I each did this exercise. Here's my Bezos test:
- Run my own business
- Write a book
- Have children
So today, number 2 and 3 will have to wait a while, but I am excited to let you know that I am about to punch fear in the face and launch a new business!! There are more details to come with my official launch next week here on the blog. And yes... I'm crazy excited, terrified, empowered, and ready to tackle this new business with a full and grateful heart.
I can't wait to share more with you, but til then- get your courage to start something stupid and check out "The Power of Starting Something Stupid" by Richie Norton. Because I know there's something you've always wanted to do... time to get started!