#22 – The All England Club

They say there are only two certainties in life, death and taxes. I’d like to add a third one, challenges.

So we now have 3 certainties in life, death, taxes and challenges.

If you have never experienced a challenge or challenges, you’re probably dead and reading this from the afterlife via Tyler Henry star of E’s hit show Hollywood Medium.

The challenges starting a specialty business or any business for that matter seem to be never ending. I wonder how the hell anyone makes a living doing it. I’m pretty sure starting a specialty food business is  a hobby for rich people, that all those products you see on the shelves at Whole Foods are secretly funded by Elon Musk or Beyonce.

Regular people don’t make it in this business. The challenges are just too insurmountable.

I’m in a battle against enemies armed with machetes and automatic rifles while I’m armed only with my dashing good looks, cunning intelligence and nerf sword. The thing is I’m not all that good looking, my intelligence is suspect and I think I’m over estimating the effectiveness of my sword from Toys R Us.

Where am I going with all this?

By 2017/2018 Whole Foods is going to require that all vendors be Non-GMO certified. Without getting into the whole story behind what are GMO’s and why you may not want them in your food, this requirement has the very real possibility to raise my cost, raise them so much I may not be able to sell my product for a profit, which in business is not a good thing. Even non-profits need to make a profit.

Selling something for less then it cost you to make is it a good thing.

Just when I think I’m making progress, that I could possibly be in that ever so small minority of people who succeed in this business, I get jolted back to reality. I start to doubt my chances, immediately begin sprucing up my resume and looking for jobs.

It’s over, time to move, pack your bags we are moving.

It is a foregone conclusion this is obstacle will be my downfall.

My expectation is I will fail. I still work hard, but I’m not expecting to actually successful overcome the challenge in front of me.

I listened to a podcast today with Seth Godin and he was talking about expectations. He lays the claim it is your expectations that often determines the outcome. He says the Harvard student gets the good job not because they are smarter or even because they went to Harvard, but because they go to Harvard they have the expectation that if they work hard, they can reasonably expect to get the good job.

They have hope. Internally it feels realistic.

It is implied then that someone who goes to a community college does not have that same expectation and there for does not do the work, because it feels pointless. They have zero expectation they will get the high paying job that comes with the corner office, so they don’t even bother to show up. They don’t do the work. In their mind it is an exercise in futility.

Sometimes I feel like the guy at community college. Whatever it is successful people have, I do not. I go to community college and successful people go to Harvard.

The funny thing is I still do the work, I put in the effort but with the expectation I will fail.

That is sort of fucked up.

What if I decided to stop acting like I’m going to community college? And by the way I’m putting down community college. In fact my point is, people who go to Harvard or no better than people who go to community college. What separates them is the expectation of success.

If those of us who are in community college in this example, we need to have the same set of belief and expectations of those at Harvard.

What if?

What if, I have the expectation I will be successful? It certainly would make doing the tough work a whole lot eaiser. If I’m going to do the work either way why not believe I can do it? Have my expectations = the outcome I want.

If I’m going to keep grinding I might as well grind away believing I can achieve what it is I want.

Death, taxes and challenges are certain. No way around it.

Challenges will always be waiting for me, whether as an entrepreneur, writer or assistant to the regional manager of a mid-size paper company. Challenges exist. It is my attitude, who I’m being while facing those challenges that determines the outcome.

Often times it is not talent that separates successful people from those who are not, it is the audacity.

Many of the challenges I’ve faced I’ve overcome. I believe I am a fighter, a hard worker, I don’t back down from challenges, despite having the expectation I will fail.

In college or grad school, I would work my ass off, study harder than most, do extra assignments, and plant myself in my professor’s office until I understood whatever concept it was I’d be struggling with. I would do all this but never believing for a minute I’d do well on the exams. I probably would not get an F, but I’d probably not get an A either.

This is a familiar theme for me.

Position myself so that if I succeed, it was the result of a Christmas miracle, but if I fail, well I told you that was gonna happen, so it’s no surprise.

But those expectations kept me safe. It was the blanket I could wrap myself u


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