Got DD Attitude?
Every 10 weeks in The Extraordinary Business Book Club it’s a Best Bits episode, looking back over the previous 9 episodes and picking out, well, the best bits.
Why is this a Good Thing?
Firstly because I love the opportunity to listen back to the episodes. Every day we’re busy creating content and putting it out into the world to feed the insatiable web: it’s easy to forget yesterday’s content in the rush to put out tomorrow’s. But often when you reread something (or listen again, in this case) you notice stuff you didn’t pick up the first time. Or you’re in a different place and ready to learn a new lesson. Good content is even better second time round.
And secondly, when I listen to a group of interviews rather than focusing on them one at a time, I get a horizontal rather than a vertical cut: I can pick out common themes or different perspectives on the same issue.
For me one of the most interesting themes to emerge over the last few episodes was attitude, in business and in writing. I’m going to call it DD Attitude.
There was Patrick Vlaskovits, author of Hustle, back in episode 31 talking about his decision to write his first book. He was in a cafe with some friends talking about a brilliant but dense book about start-ups and lean entrepreneurship.
One of them said, “Someone should write the Cliff Notes to that book.”
Brant and I just looked at each other like, “Why don’t we do this?” To be honest, there’s actually quite a few reasons why we wouldn’t have been the good people to write the book. I don’t think we had necessarily the credibility or the experience, but what I’ve learned is, it doesn’t matter. It’s not necessarily the winners who write history. It’s the people who write history are the people who write history.
The people who write history are the people who write history. Just like the people who lead are the people who made a decision to lead, and authors are just people who decided to write a book. Don’t wait for permission or for the perfect time. Just do it, says Patrick.
But it’s so HARD, you say. I’ve tried, and it’s really hard. It’s so easy for all those successful folk – I must be doing something wrong. After all, we’ve all heard the ‘overnight success’ stories. And when we read business books, they seem to have flowed naturally onto the page from the author’s brain. If we’re struggling to build our business, finding it hard to write, we must be not cut out for this, surely?
In episode 32 Amy Wilkinson talked about the years of research with successful entrepreneurs she undertook to write The Creator’s Code. One of the lessons she shared is that the myth of overnight success really is a myth, in business and in writing. Those who succeed aren’t those who find it effortless, they’re those who are prepared to be uncomfortable.
The thing about the modern economy is that we are all beginners all the time… You have to stay curious, you have to be willing to learn, and that will take energy and it will take time. The people that are the most successful in the world right now, in the world of business, they’re constantly uncomfortable, and they’re willing to be uncomfortable so that they stay on the innovation edge and they stay creating as they move forward.
We’re programmed to avoid discomfort. The idea of leaning into the sensation, being willing to be uncomfortable so that you can move forward, doesn’t come naturally. But learning to dig in, make friends with discomfort as the route to growth and success, that’s powerful.
No matter what size you are (and I am certainly never going to be a double D in all areas), try on the DD attitude. Look, it suits you.
For more from the Birds on choosing your attitude, see…