It’s a brand new month. We’ve made it to the halfway point of the year 2018. For some reason, I’ve been overly critical of myself this last week. Surely I’ve done a lot, but I don’t feel like I’ve accomplished all that I wanted to. I don’t’ feel like I’m anywhere near where my expectations have projected me. It’s made me feel somewhat like I’ve been falling and failing.
I’ve been planning and strategizing. Using my critical thinking skills to come up with a list of assumptions, and test them over and over again. It has kept my mind extremely busy, and not in a good way. The thing about assumptions is that we are almost always wrong, but we won’t know it until we test them. Even if we are right, you feel wrong to assume. The paradox of this is that if we don’t assume, we’ll never challenge what’s in the know. Or that we will wait too long to have all information we need to decide.
You can call it assumptions, educated guesses or hypothesis’; either way, there’s a high chance that you will be wrong. I love being in this area of thinking but hate being wrong. You see, you’re only able to form an assumption if there are no present facts or an inadequate amount of information. You are taking the risk of diving into unknown territories. If you’re right, you’ll be rewarded greatly. If wrong, you’ll be ridiculed and embarrassed. It’s a zero-sum game.
I took a risk over a year ago on a hunch. An assumption that if I do X, I’ll get Y. All the signs pointed me to go in a different direction, but my innate curiosity and recklessness told me to go down the more destructive path. After testing this assumption, in hindsight, I have no idea if I was right or wrong.
On one hand, testing this assumption taught me a lot about the hypothesis I was forming. On another hand, I’m not sure the tests were adequate enough to draw a definitive conclusion. Which is why this will be thrown into the stockpile of all we know to be “theories”.
What’s this theory you ask? It’s the theory of partnerships and relationships. This can be business partnerships, customer relationships, or even life partnerships. A part of this theory comes from one of my favorite people on Twitter, Naval.
Pick an industry where you can play long term games with long term people.
— Naval (@naval) May 31, 2018
He tweeted in a really insightful tweetstorm that you should play “long term games with long term people”. What this means is that whatever direction you decide to go, and whoever you decide to go with, that decision should optimize towards longevity. It will save you a lot of pain, heartache, time, and money.
Imagine going into something knowing that you only intend to do it for a day. Or that you’re putting an artificial barrier or ceiling on your growth or the lifespan of said venture. It’s like going into a job and saying this is only a stepping stool until I get another job. The theory on partnerships will tell you to opt out of that job, and keep searching until you find “the one”.
What this theory is, is an insurance policy against opportunity cost. While you’re still at that job, or with that partner, or in that relationship, you have no idea all of the other opportunities that would’ve been, had you been patient and available.
Starting any relationship, be it personal or professional, for short-term and immediate gain is a recipe for disaster. If you’re not happy in your current situation, my gut wants to tell you to leave. I’m not saying leave unprepared. You should definitely have an exit strategy in place, but don’t delay your blessing by being comfortable where you’re at.
It’s never too late for you to become who you were supposed to be, remember that. So with 6 months left in the year, put yourself on that path that will surround you with peace, love, and happiness by the year ending. Optimize now to set yourself up for a successful 2019. Trust me, you’ll be better for it. Life is too short, to not play the long ball.