Why You Should Not Be Afraid Of Events Like 9/11
Do you remember where you were six years ago today, on 9/11/01? I do. It has a special significance for me, because the company I worked for was gunning to be sold to a larger company. We were in the home stretch of negotiations, suddenly afraid 9/11 would screw the deal.
It didn't. But I still had this other concern. The new company was offering me a job but the deal wasn't all that appealing. The alternative was to go out on my own as a consultant.
Now THAT was scary. Because... at work, the phones had suddenly stopped ringing. It was as if the world was in a state of suspended animation. Nobody was starting new projects; existing projects were put on pause and nobody seemed to be buying anything.
My co-workers thought I was insane to even consider leaving. Even if I was cashing out my stock options, it still seemed crazy.
But this gal named Suzy said to me, whenever there's great uncertainty and fear, there is great opportunity. She said, this is the BEST time to go out on your own because the world is in flux.
I took her advice and...
She turned out to be right. The post-9/11 world was a world where an independent consultant was a lot more appealing than an employee, who's a lot harder to get rid of. Within a month or so I was an outsourced marketing department for a couple of different companies, my office was 20 steps from my bedroom and I was making my mortgage payment.
Man was that ever a good feeling. The caterpillar pushes himself out of the cocoon and the butterfly emerges. After all those years of baloney sandwiches and ramen soup, my wife is vindicated. "Yeah, babe, he really is a winner after all. You picked a good one."
It doesn't really matter where you are in the world, around you things are going forward or backward or sideways, but they're not staying the same. There's always peril somewhere. There's always uncertainty.
Which is exactly where the opportunity is. Lean into the wind. Embrace it. Stare down the demons of fear. Drink in the challenge and the thrill. Even a day like 9/11 can be an anniversary of victory for you.
[Via Perry Marshall]