Why television shows were invented

It’s a common misconception that television shows came first and advertising came second. It’s actually the other way around: television shows were developed so that we would consume more advertising. Marketers needed to spread their ideas so the more advertising you bought the more profit you made. You’d win.

This type of disruptive marketing is fading away. It is no longer who can be the loudest or say something the most often to get our attention. You can’t buy trust. There is a reason someone will spend an extra dollar for a gallon of milk at Whole Foods versus the same gallon of milk at Wal-Mart. (They trust what they are buying is a superior product).

With everything one click away (and now one dash button) the race to the bottom of faster and cheaper (average products for average people) is drawing to an end.

It is a new age of making something that matters not something that just sells.

Where does Alex Honnold put his fear?

There is a brand of t-shirts called No Fear.

This is really silly. Of course, you are going to encounter fear. The amygdala doesn’t just check out. It’s there to tell you that danger is immanent.

Alex Honnold, the leading free-soloist climber in the world (climbing vertical rock without a rope), is not fearless.

Like a marathon runner that encounters tired, he finds a place to put the fear.

Resistance didn’t go away. However, the internal narrative (the story of his believe that he won’t fall) is stronger than the voice in his head that says that he could fail.

So when unwanted thoughts come, Pema Chodron suggests to gently say the word, “Thinking.” As in, I am not running away from the thought but simply letting it pass through. Thinking is a signal to focus back on your breathing. It’s important to acknowledge that the amygdala is trying to keep you safe. So be thankful for it. But put it aside. By “thinking” we are saying thank you. Thank you for letting me know. And now, I have to get back to work.


Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.

Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work:

But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God:in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:

For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowedit.

– Exodus 20:8-9

We always talk about the seventh day, the Sabbath, and how we need to rest, observe it, sanctify it, attend church activities, and so on.

But we don’t follow the commandment by just going to church on the seventh day, we only fulfill it by working the first six days (six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work). And then resting on the seventh (in it thou shalt not do any work).

Profit is not a dirty word

We want to make the world a better place.

But we confuse this idea that in order to make the world a better place, you can’t make a profit.

This is really dangerous.

There is no sustainability without profitability.

The health of a company can be measured by its profits. But if you are playing a finite game (a game to win and end) then all you are measuring is profits. Getting the highest score (measuring digital numbers and bits) is a race to the bottom. It’s not a game you want to play or win. However, it you are playing the infinite game then the goal is to keep playing. To keep seeking the change you are seeking. That means enough profit, enough sustainability to keep playing.

Companies that matter know which game they are playing.

Preparing for the path

Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson completed the Dawn Wall Project in January, 2015. It was immediately crowned “the hardest climb in the world.” The climb received national attention from all over the world. Spending 19 days on the wall to complete a 7 year long project, Caldwell put together a lifetime of climbing to set the new standard of what can be accomplished.

This was without adversity. What began as curiosity, a spark captured the attention and imagination of the world. Why? Rock climbing, the sport, does not bring a ton of inherit value as shall we say being a doctor or a teacher. But yet watching someone overcome, to do the impossible, because it has never been done before inspires each of us to find our own Dawn Wall and climb it.

Caldwell says his father was a huge inspiration and taught him “Don’t prepare the path for your children. Prepare your children for the path.”

While it may be easy to say, “This guy is lucky to be blessed with such talent. I could never do something like this.” His “overnight success” is the sum of 7 hard years of determination and vision and a lifetime of discipline. All this while losing a finger, being captured by terrorists, going through a divorce, etc.

This guy is the real deal when it comes to having the guts to say to the naysayers that anything is possible when you put your heart and mind on the line.

How long can you wait to eat the marshmallow?

Back in the 60’s, Walter Mischel ran a study on delayed gratification. He sat a bunch of different 3 years olds alone in a room with a marshmallow on a plate. He told them that they can have one marshmallow or if they could sit there with the marshmallow and not eat it, he would be back in 15 minutes to give them a second marshmallow. But if the marshmallow is gone, no extra marshmallow.

Some of the kids eat the marshmallow and some of them wait to get a second one. Years later, they tracked down these kids from the study to see how they were doing.

It turns out the ones that waited ended up getting into a more prestigious school, had better SAT scores, better BMI scores, and were better or happier in every category you can imagine.

This idea of holding these two juxtaposed thoughts: do I want one marshmallow or do I want two marshmallows; is enough to find success. It’s about dealing with tension for a better result and not filling it every time it comes. This is not something we are born with but it can be learned.

The double play

The double play in Baseball is really fun to watch. You can’t help but be in awe with how fluid a really good double play can look. It’s magic. But there is no magic unless everyone quits worrying about who get’s the credit.

You can’t help but see the magic of a double play geting lost around the office. Everyone knows their job, their assignment but somehow it’s difficult to get the ball moving.

If you hesitate or blink, it’s too late. The magic is lost. You can’t worry about credit every time you make a play.