Your own rules


Many, many publishers said no to Harry Potter. Sylvester Stallone had to fight tooth and nail to get Rocky made. Some jerk told Elvis Presley early in his career that he’d be better off driving trucks.

We look at these examples to gloat. Can you believe anyone looked at these massive successes and missed them?

But everyone who rejected them is just human. They applied their experience and knowledge, weighed the risks and decided against it. They all certainly missed some big successes, but is that the same as saying they did a bad job?

Warren Buffett never invested in Apple or Microsoft or Amazon. He didn’t understand how they worked. Instead he bought insurance companies and fancy candy shops and furniture stores in Nebraska.

He missed some specific, amazing opportunities. But he didn’t fail. He has a process that works. It just identified different amazing opportunities. Ones that nobody else saw.

You don’t have to take the same risks as everyone else. You don’t have to find the obvious successes every time. In fact, that’s where most of the competition is. It’s enough to have something that works for you.

Most of the time, most people won’t be on the same page. If you’re asking someone to take a risk, they’re going to be most comfortable with your ideas if they like to take similar risks to you. You might have to try dozens of times before you find someone who’s on the same page as you.

Remember that that doesn’t mean that either of you is wrong. It just means they have different experiences.