Et si…

https://unsplash.com/jordanfmcqueen

https://unsplash.com/jordanfmcqueen

Jour 658. Une question que l’on me pose souvent est « où trouves-tu toutes tes idées ? » La réponse n’est pas simple car les idées ne naissent généralement pas ex nihilo. Elles en donnent parfois l’impression, mais elles sont le résultat soit d’une réflexion voulue, soit d’une mise en relation involontaire et inconsciente. Cependant, il y a un jeu intellectuel auquel j’aime jouer de temps en temps, le « Et si… » Et si la terre tournait dans l’autre sens ? Et si le ciel était rouge ? Et si les hommes étaient en paix ?

Généralement, quand je commence, les idées s’enchainent. Certaines farfelues, d’autres moins, mais toujours intéressant de laisser l’esprit vagabonder. J’en viens à être certain que c’est ce qui est à la base de toute création, de toute idée, puis de sa réalisation. Si Elon Musk ne s’était pas dit, « Et si nous pouvions produire des voitures électriques confortables, attirantes et profitables ? », Tesla n’existerai pas. Si Jean-Baptiste Poquelin ne s’était pas dit, « Et si je pouvais vivre du théatre ? », les fourberies de Scapin ne nous auraient jamais fait rigoler. Et je pourrais prendre des tonnes d’exemples comme ceux-ci.

Toute création est partie de cette question, consciente ou non. Toutes n’ont pas abouti, certaines sont restées ignorées puis ont ressurgi, d’autres ont échoué. Mais dans tous les cas, elles ont inspiré leur créateur et ont permis à une idée de prendre forme et de devenir réalité. Et si on créait la vie dont on a toujours rêvé ?

The world does not stop at your door… Go out!

https://unsplash.com/viktor_m

https://unsplash.com/viktor_m

Day 635. The world is big and diverse. Imagine we now know there’s water on Mars! And we would ignore our neighbors, our customers and even our friends have different interests in life than ours. When you are making money selling a certain type of products or services, you may not imagine others are making money selling other products and services. You may not realize there are millions of opportunities waiting to be seized. But we tend to be blind and deaf to those opportunities, busy we are.

There’s no scarcity on the planet. Despite huge debt value, despite wars, despite pessimists, opportunities are everywhere, fortune are made every day and people are constantly growing. Every day, you can open your door, physically, walk around your home or your office and watch. Then come back to your desk and note down every idea you had. Do this for the next 30 days. You will come with hundred ideas of new businesses or opportunities to deliver valuable service. There should one or two that will excite you. Wealth of experience is everywhere, just for you to grab. What are you waiting for?

Migrants, réfugiés, jouer avec les mots rend aveugle…

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https://unsplash.com/clemono2

Jour 619. La polémique autour des mots utilisés pour décrire ces Kurdes, Syriens, Iraqiens, etc. qui fuient la guerre est une polémique puérile. Autant j’aime les mots, autant cette bataille d’intellectuels est dégradante. Je ne parlerais même pas des points de vue de certains de nos leaders politiques que j’espère l’histoire retiendra comme les révélateurs de la haine, de l’étroitesse d’esprit et du manque criant de générosité. 15 ans que je suis un « immigrants » ayant de mon plein gré quitté mon pays de naissance, non pour fuir un conflit, mais pour connaître autre chose. Je ne comprends pas 1% du drame des personnes qui fuient la guerre, mais appréhende un peu mieux le désarroi ressenti quand on quitte ce que l’on connaît et par à la découverte d’un inconnu.

Et que trouve-t-il en face? Des pays aveugles qui se demandent si ce sont des réfugiés ou des migrants. Qui se disent que ces pauvres gens vont piquer le travail des honnêtes gens. Qui se disent que non, ils ne peuvent pas accueillir toute la misère du monde. Alors que ce soit la France, la Grande-Bretagne ou la Belgique, chacun de ces pays à rater, un, une occasion de se taire, deux, une occasion de créer les conditions d’une intégration rapide et positive de ces gens.

Accueillir ces gens est une chance immense pour l’Europe, à court et à moyen terme. Une fois les conflits finis, la plupart rentreront dans leurs pays respectifs. J’en ai ras-le-bol qu’on entretienne la haine sur notre sol et n’ayons pas le courage d’aller la combattre en Syrie, en Iraq ou au Sahara. Il est encore temps de se réveiller, mais malheureusement, nos politiques indigentes ne réveilleront personnes. L’histoire retiendra peut-être que l’Europe a tourné le dos à ces personnes tout en entretenant les conflits qui les ont fait fuir. Le monde ne fait que ce qu’il peut à l’instant où il le fait. Aura-t-on la chance de voir un dirigeant courageux et visionnaire ? Car il semble que cette race aie disparu au profit des couards et hypocrites.

C’est vendredi… et alors?

https://unsplash.com/asthetik

https://unsplash.com/asthetik

Jour 605. La plupart d’entre nous voit le vendredi avec un autre œil. C’est en effet pour beaucoup le dernier jour de la semaine de travail. Ce fameux travail, qui nous vient du latin « tripalium », lui-même hérité de « tripaliare », soit contraindre… Cela laisse peu de place à l’imaginaire. Le travail est une contrainte, il faut faire avec. Alors que Confucius nous propose de choisir un travail que nous aimons pour ne pas avoir un travailler une seconde de notre vie, la « sagesse » anglo-saxonne nous propose d’apprendre à aimer notre travail car il va occuper une part importante de notre vie sur cette terre. Si tous les travails (je sais ça fait bizarre à l’oreille, mais c’est une possibilité grammaticalement correct) ne semblent pas aimables de prime-abord, ils convient pourtant de ne pas jeter le bébé avec l’eau du bain. Tout travail a une justification et doit apporter une certaine satisfaction.

Si à l’opposé, un travail est fait sous une contrainte proche de l’esclavagisme, alors effectivement, le vendredi est une journée qu’il convient de célébrer. C’est malheureusement le cas dans de nombreux pays en voie de développement, dont les travailleurs et les paysans sont exploitées. Cependant, comme le disait Pascal, vérité en-deçà des Pyrénées, erreur au-delà, gardons-nous donc de conclusion par trop hâtive. Dans nos contrées dites développées, le vendredi est pourtant toujours vu comme le jour de la libération du joug du travail.

Je vous propose une autre lecture. Vendredi est un jour comme tous les autres : à vivre intensément ! Chaque seconde qui passe ne reviendra jamais, elle a disparu à tout jamais. Inutile de la pleurer, inutile de s’appesantir sur le temps qui passe, inutile de sourire le vendredi et de faire la grimace le lundi. Vivre le vendredi avec la même intensité que les autres jours, c’est placer la vie au centre et d’en tirer la « substantifique moelle ». Plus facile à écrire qu’à faire ? Non, c’est un choix, comme tous les autres que la vie nous propose de faire tous les jours. Encore faut-il le faire ce choix, car si nous ne le faisons pas, ce sont d’autres personnes qui le feront pour nous. À vous de choisir !

Day 465 – What will be your 5 wins today ?

Day 465This morning, my tweet feed contained this little message from Robin Sharma: What will be your 5 wins today?     And the picture on the tweet was the one I put on the right of this post. This is just so simple and so powerful. Every day, all of us do little things, win little victories, and contribute to a better world, most of the time without noticing. This post reminds us to notice. When we become intentional, we increase our footprint. When we become intentional, we notice and other notice too, even if they do not say it (but this is another story). So what are your 5 intentions of the day that will be your 5 wins today? Let me share mine to help you:

  • My daily running routine is generally around 5 to 6 kilometers. I felt for a while that I needed a little more, so today, I left 15 minutes sooner and did 8 kilometers. I feel great! – 8:00 AM – WIN 1, won!
  • I generally postpone the writing of this daily blog post to later in the day, when I have a gap, but it generates some stress, so today, my win was to write it before 8:30 AM, and here it is (I scheduled it for later though) – 8:26AM WIN 2, won
  • I booked time to prepare for two important meetings I have today so I can get more impactful and contribute more during those. Win in preparation. UPDATE – 11:35 AM, WIN 3, won!
  • I set the goal of cleaning my due tasks. There are not much, 4, but it will require some work without being disturbed. Time blocked in my calendar. Win ahead. UPDATE – 12:04 PM, WIN 4, won!
  • I will review my personal task list for the week-end before I leave on holiday in 10 days, so I am sure nothing will have been forgotten so I can benefit fully from my holiday with my wife and elder son. Beautiful win in sight. UPDATE – 10:18PM, WIN 5, won!

Voilà, this is not that hard. It took me 5 minutes. And I have a powerful blog post and a fantastic day ahead. Thank you Monsieur Sharma, once again you rock!

Day 462 – When to pull the plug?

Day 462Success is the result of many failures. Many stories have been told around successes and failures. One salient point is generally about persistence. But persistence is a two-edge sword. Persisting while you know you’ll get through the hurdles is good and necessary. However persisting beyond the point of complete failure is mad. How many businesses have persisted and bankrupted their owners and investors? Probably too many.

It’s interesting to discuss with professional traders and derive some learning. Successful traders are cold-blood human beings. They can weather storms, and we know there are violent storms in the stock exchange, but more than anybody else, they know when to get rid of a losing position> they will cut their losses before it’s too deep, for a simple reason: it’s better to lose one arm than both! But how do they do it? They follow a simple rule: they set a target and fire the action when the target is reached. There’s no emotion, just action!

The same should happen with any project you pursue! Set a limit, persist until you reach it and if you reach it, pull the plug! It may happen you never reach your limit so you may persist until you reach success. But the lesson here is to avoid being stupid in face of adversity. In each and every project, there is risk. Risk ties to our fears and fear is an emotion you need to go beyond. With a limit, you do not kill the risk nor the fear, you inoculate the emotion. It’s like a vaccine: you may catch the disease, but it will not be deadly! So to answer the question I asked in the title is fairly simple: set a limit and pull the plug when you reach it!

Day 461 – Debt

Day 461Debt is the price we pay to live in a modern world. Stop allowing a state to go into debt and most of our infrastructure will stop being maintained, large scale projects will not exist due to lack of funding. Debt can be good and debt can be bad, like most things in life by the way. However, with the various issues around debt in lots of countries and economies across the world, we may need to rethink progress. The world has grown so fast in the last century, so our debt. We will leave an almost dead planet to our kids and a debt they will make years to repay.

Although I am not a macro economist, not an economist, I keep thinking of debt has good and bad, depending on whether it’s generating wealth or not. I could had to this its neutrality to the environment. In other word, a wealth generating debt that is taxing our environment is bad and so is a non-wealth generating debt that is neutral or positive to our environment. Although we can question the latter in terms of wealth, since if it’s positive to the environment, then it’s generating a certain form of wealth.

Look at your debts. Get rid of those that are making other wealthy and keep those that are making yourself wealthy!

Day 460 – Scripting your life

Farmers shed in the fields along side a gravel roadMy former partner in business had a motto: « what is not written does not exist ». He was, and still is, right (or shall I play a pun, he’s write). If you do not write it, you cannot share it, you cannot keep it, you tend to forget it. This stands true for everything in life, including your life. What is planning your day? Writing the script of the day. What is writing your goals for the year or your resolutions? Writing the script for the day. What is being part of the 5AM Robin Sharma’s club? Scripting the first hour of your day. In other words, all those activities are about scripting your day.

When we talk script, we tend to think movies. Each movie has a script. A script contains, of course, the words the actors will need to say, as well as indication on how to play the scene. You will hear some directors stick to the script has it was Holy Scriptures, while others are loosely referring to it, letting actors play more « freely ». In all cases, a script is open to interpretation and therefore change. It’s not because it’s written that it should be played like it’s written, however, it if were not written, it probably could not be interpreted and changed. It’s because it exists it can be played differently.

This goes with our own life. It’s really, really important to have a very precise idea of what you want in your life, emotionally, psychologically, financially, socially, etc. Thinking precedes scripting, scripting allows clarity, clarity provides direction, direction drives action. You may and will deviate from your script, because you will have to weather a storm or answer an unexpected opportunity. The script will be your own North Pole. There’s no good wind for a ship that does not have a harbor. Do not delay the writing of your script, do it!

Day 459 – Flow

Water in motionThere are days that feels lighter than others. There’s levity in the air. Yesterday was one of those. When I started my morning jogging, my legs felt light and my pace was above average although I did not have the impression to make a conscious effort to run faster. My rule of thumb in those days is not to find the whys and the hows, but to leverage this levity into all the actions I am doing during the day.

It’s a great day to revisit your monthly, quarterly and yearly goals. Where are you on those? What are the ones that need to be put back on track? It’s a great day to tick all that is on your To-Do. Generally, everything flows easily during those light day. Actually, this state is described in psychology as the flow. I like this sentence that describes the flow: « the hallmark of flow is a feeling of spontaneous joy, even rapture, while performing a task. »

Above the joy, there’s the efficiency. You go fast, you go deep, but above all you go easy. So when you feel this flow, work with it, go along and do all that you have to do. Not only you will have done much more that an normal day, but you will have it done better and faster, and a surge of dopamine will flood your body! It feels good!