Keep on Eating

When Tim Ferriss asked ESPN’s founder, Bill Rasmussen, if he’d ever had any memorable failures, it only took him a few seconds to blurt out, “Absolutely!” He went on to say that although he’s had many failures, he “kept on eating.” If the meal you ordered was horrible or the recipe you followed instructions to perfection ended up tasting like salted cardboard wouldn’t mean that you’d swear off food forever. The meal may have been a flop, but in a few hours, you’d be on the hunt for your next meal.

No one likes the taste of failure, but you’ll never taste the sweet nectar of success without lumping in heaps of losses, misses, exasperated moments, aggravations, setbacks, and feelings of wanting to quit.

Like Rasmussen, when you fail, you’ve got to “keep on eating.”

You “keep on eating” through perseverance not by being perseverate.

Though the words look similar, the outcomes are different in the way they handle adversity. Perseverant people rise to the occasion and know what they’re fighting for whereas perseverate people lack clarity of purpose and mindlessly keep banging their head against the wall, mumbling familiar cliches such as, “I’m hanging in there…” or “ I’m doing the best I can…” in hopes of someday catching a break.

But..

Hope is not a strategy and Someday is not a day of the week.

In his quest for a 24 hour sports network, the dots didn’t always connect for Rasmussen- deals fell through, meetings ended in ridicule, and seemingly “great ideas” were a total flop, but he refused to quit and persevered because he kept on eating. To see his vision through, Rasmussen kept plodding forward-tinkering, tweaking, and poking along the way. Every win was a notch of confidence-every failure was accumulated wisdom. Wins and Learns, nothing was ever perceived as a loss.

Life’s not a meal-it’s a cornucopia, full of endless opportunities, happenstances, chance encounters, and Do you believe it! moments. The question should never be How much is there to eat? The real question is, How big is your appetite?

I’ll see you on the Blacktop!

(Hat Tip Tim Ferris podcast)

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