Let’s play startup.

Stop trying so hard to play startup. Build a business. Get funding or bootstrap. But the real goal is to solve a problem people value enough to pay for. Creating a company should come after the product or service; not before.

Stop trying so hard to play agency. Build a team of people that drive results. Organize yourselves in a way that produces those results. Just because we all watched Mad Men and romanticized agency life doesn’t mean we need to call ourselves an agency or act as the agency of the past. Embrace the transformation.

Surface-level-going-through-the-motions is like feeling important versus being important. It’s like telling people you’re going to do something versus showing people.


Tearing down fences.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the fences we put up in our minds.

What would we love to do, but think impossible? What are we saying “no” to before others–people or markets–even have a chance to?

I recently found a card given to me when I was young. It had a quote from Shakespeare on it:

Our doubts are traitors,
and make us lose the good we oft might win,
by fearing to attempt.

–William Shakespeare

What are your mental fences? What fences have you put up on your team? Or at your business? What are important things you believe that you’ve given up on?

I invite you to examine the fences you’ve allowed others to put up, and the ones we’ve put up ourselves. And then tear them down.


What you are becoming

Your past helped form and shape you, but it does not define you.

The most important aspect of you is what you are becoming, not what you’ve done or what you’re going to do.

Focus on what you are becoming. The process of becoming happens in the present.

The byproduct of being incredible, remarkable, and impactful is that you produce work, products, businesses that are incredible, remarkable, and impactful.


Clarity Sans Extremes

Changing your mind from thinking to execution doesn’t come naturally for most. We like to mull over and discuss and present. We like to meet about and talk about and complain about. We like to intellectualize and theorize.

To overcome this some just go. They move fast no matter what (or who) is in the way.

We prefer things to be THIS or THAT. Not a little bit of THIS and a little bit of THAT. I think there’s room for clarity in the combination of things. Not just in the isolation of them. It’s tough to articulate how we arrive at clarity without going to extremes, but it’s a skill that can be developed. It’s a skill that should be developed.


A mantra for discomfort.

When I’m lifting weights, learning something new, or stretching my capabilities with work I’ve shifted my thinking from saying “Ouch” or at times “I can’t” to telling myself “Growth”. It’s my mantra. Growth in muscles happens in the last few reps (ask Dorian Yates and Mike Mentzer) and it happens in the moments you feel like you’re unable to accomplish something. Seek it, but expect the discomfort. Embrace the discomfort. And like a mantra, the discomfort should be repeated.



I’m a firm believer in “Direction first, then velocity.”

But you can’t turn a car if it’s not moving.