We Are The F#cking Crazy Ones…

I’ve been an entrepreneur my entire adult life (starting at 16). I literally don’t know any other way to live. Not because it’s better, but because it’s all I know. For the most part, I’ve surrounded myself with childhood friends who went different routes than me. Some are teachers, some are sales reps, some are real estate agents. I sometimes get asked some version of, “it must be kinda nice being your own boss huh?” Wanna know the truth?

“It’s awesome…but only because I’m a little crazy”.

Have you ever gone to Vegas with that friend of yours that puts down $20 on a blackjack table in hopes that it will last the entire night? That’s not who i’m talking about in this article. But some of us have that other friend.

They bet $20 on the first hand and lose…

So then they bet $40 and lose again…$80…$160….$320….you see where this is going.

If they followed this trend of losing and doubling their bet, on the 10th hand they’d be betting $10,240. They get dealt an 11, and the dealer is showing 6 (for those of you that are not BJ players, that is a great hand). So they double down, and win it ALL back + $10k. If you sat there and watched your friend do this, you’d probably tell them, “you’re fucking crazy!” And maybe you wouldn’t be wrong.

Maybe Vinny Chase is one of the crazy ones?

The statistic that often gets quoted says that “only 1 in 10 startup companies will be successful”. 1 in 10 blackjack hands of life. That may or may not be factual, but what I can tell you is this: The odds of a startup being successful without being willing to dive in headfirst, is virtually zero. You see, while you may have been blinded by the sum of money on the blackjack table, or the tension in the room, what your friend knew was that the odds had become overwhelmingly stacked in his or her favor. They knew that as the casino grew weaker, they grew stronger. And when the opportunity presented itself to pounce, they didn’t doubt themselves for a second, and they certainly didn’t let such an opportunity slip by.

The highs and lows of building a business often feel not so different than the swings at the blackjack table. You can go from nothing, to being hailed as the smartest person alive, to going bust, to being back on top…all in what feels like the blink of an eye. But the crazy ones don’t obsess over the size of their chip stacks. They don’t let fear and anxiety control their decision making. And they certainly don’t spend any extra energy worrying about their critics.

They have blinders on and only one important question to answer:

“Do I believe we will succeed?”

Yes? Full steam ahead!

While others run for the exits, they double-down. Not because they have the balls to do so, but because it’s the right move.

So for those of you with an idea, a passion, or maybe something tangible that you’ve already started; allow me to ask you an important question…

…just how crazy are you?