I am not old. If you ask my sons, they probably say I am though. A couple of days ago my oldest son said that when he is a grown up, me and my wife will be an old man and an old woman. True in it is simplicity of course and not so much to argue about. You can’t fight aging, it will happen whether you like it or not. You can’t fight death either, sooner or later it will occur and you have to leave it to your kids and their kids to make sure the wheels are still spinning. Why not start right away.
When I started my walk towards where I am now I was young and thought that I was a pretty smart guy. I was 22, had just started studying at the University and thought that changing stuff was easy, it was all about heart, knowledge and wanting it. I set up some goals, goals that may sound stupid as hell for a 22 year old, those were:
I am going to get married and have a family with kids
I am going to build my own house
I am going to have my own business
I probably scared of a number of good-looking-20-somethings-potential-wifes communicating these goals after one or two beer too many. 2001 I fooled a woman who now is the mother of my two kids, married to me and live in the house I have built. Right now she is the one who pushes me when I want to quit on running my own business. It took me 15 years to accomplish these goals. Now I am setting three new goals, the big difference is youth. I am not as young anymore and I need that inspiring feeling that everything is possible. I think I am blessed with a lot of heart and focus, but to be honestly true, I am having tougher times now getting things done than I had 10 years ago. How to cure that? With the kids and age I have a different view of myself, I am not that smart as I thought I was 15 years ago, but I try to use my bits and pieces to do good, focus on the things I like and are somewhat talented in. I have realized a couple of things (sometimes the hard way):
I cant fix everything by myself
I try to be around people I like
I try to work with smarter people than myself
I try to do things I am good at differently from time-to-time
I focus on stuff I can do something about
I avoid things that burn me
I do not lick frozen lamp posts
I have hundreds of different business ideas. I know that ideas alone just sucks. You need to get them out there. You need to stop thinking and start building, otherwise it will all just be ideas. But what if there are 22-year-olds with the same ideas, better stamina, more risk taking tendency and new skills acquired by the life they have lived, which I have not. There are two options:
Try to do a better job than the young, skilled and risk taking youth
Join them or make them join you
Stop thinking that your brilliant idea together with your long experience is superior to the idea of the younger and less experienced. It is not. But it may be one hell of an idea to go for together with younger minds.
It is a rule so simple it is easy to forget. The young ones today will be the older ones tomorrow with a lot of experience. Why not join forces with these people giving them your excellent ideas and experience and get heart, inspiration and getting-things-done mentality in return. Lets face it, they are producing young people in numbers you simply can’t fight, it is impossible. Instead of fighting them, join them or make them join you and get fuel enough for you to finish the idea you have come to love.
The moral of this story is that it is often a good idea to ally oneself with other people and how experienced you may be you will have a lot to learn from people with less experience. Nothing beats the heart and getting things done mentality from a 20-something. We dont see a lot of 40-years old starting riots. Sometimes it is very helpful to have someone starting the riot and enjoy the ride.