I like to think of my life as a long series of cool things. Living decision by decision, leading to an ending I never would have expected.
When I was interviewing SweetWater Letterpress, the founder asked me how my blog was doing. I answered, “You know I’m just posting from the heart and maybe I’ll hone it in later.” To which he responded, “In my experience, personally and in business, it’s best to leave your passions out there unedited. It creates a more fantastic and just fun future.”
I really took that to heart and started thinking about rules.
“Think long-term, not short term.”
“Do as your told.”
Now I’m not saying, “let’s be super irresponsible!” but could it be possible that living life by the rules given to you is living irresponsibly by stifling your God-given talents and abilities?
When I think of change, I think “will it kill me?” Will my next step or pursuit actually lead to my untimely death or will it move my life towards a series of cool things?
This gets me thinking of collaborations – will it kill me to ask someone who is creative that I respect out to lunch to talk about life and what we’re each working on?
Or am I thinking of life in the “things I have to do” way. Is this self-pressure? Is this peer pressure? Where do your expectations come from? Your parents? Friends? Boss?
Do they make you less creative or more creative?
I like to think about these answers on a weight balance scale. You know, the one with two hangey cups suspended and if you put something in one cup, it moves down and the other cup moves up?
I place one pebble (or marble or hot pink star-shaped eraser) into one side of the scale when I go with my gut on what makes me happy. If my answer makes me unhappy, I put whatever orb I chose into the other side of the scale. Does your happy outweigh your unhappy? If not, why?
These little adjustments you make today will lead to a more kick ass future. I assure you. I’ve done this because quite frankly I was super sick of my cautious life. Super sick of how much I cared about how I was viewed by everyone and anyone. Super tired of living out someone else’s life map because I actually wanted to turn left when it said to turn right.
The next time you think about doing what you’re told, think of me. Think of your gut writhing in the opposite direction and yearning towards another avenue when you’re cramming it down the straight and narrow path you’re on.
Don’t take the easy way. Live your life as a series of cool. Will it kill you?