Opportunities are like poker chips.
You never know you’re going to get another one. And when you can cash one out for something really big.
When we started writing, we had no idea that writing would lead to this blog, and this blog would lead to a Hollywood actress reading it, which in turn would lead to Penguin publishing deal.
We also had no idea that through Chautauqua, we’d meet Alan and Katie, who we are now talking to about making a FIRE boardgame together. And I know we’re going to do it too, because when you hang out with Chautauquans, you feel like can do anything! Their energy is so contagious; you can’t help but want to build cool shit with them.
When Katie and Alan, attended a few years ago, they had no idea they’d end up running the future Chautauquas AND hosting yearly Popup Business school talks at Mr. Money Mustache’s headquarters in Colorado where they teach people how to start businesses with little to no cash put down. According to Alan, the Chautauquas “completely changed his life”!
Carl “Mr. 1500” had no idea that when he attended a few years ago he would end up hatching a business with another attendee—a business that’s launching next month.
And Jim “The Godfather” Collins had no idea when he spoke last year in Ecuador that one of the attendees, who works for Google, would invite him to do a talk. That talk would lead to his daughter, Jessica, finally becoming curious about what he does and want to know what this whole FI thing is about, which by the way is the entire reason Jim started his blog in the first place.
People say most of success has to do with luck. As if you’re supposed to just sit there, do nothing, and wait for luck to happen. I don’t buy that crap. I believe in creating your own luck. And no, I don’t believe it’s only about hard work.
Hard work can only get you so far. Hard work without opportunity and without strategy is wasted effort. To me, luck looks a lot like opportunity. But working hard in a bubble alone will not help you get those opportunities. You need to get out there, and start picking up those poker chips. Then keep trading those chips for bigger and better things. The more chips you have, the more chances you have to trade them up for something even cooler.
To an outsider this looks a lot like luck. But in reality, it’s strategy + grit + surrounding yourself with the right people. The one thing you can’t control is what opportunities will come and how many. The only thing you can be sure of is that the more you put yourself out there, the more opportunities you get. Busting your butt inside of a bubble won’t get you any chips.
So for those of you struggling to get somewhere with your side hustle, passion projects, or on your path to FI, remember you don’t have to do this alone.
Starting up a side hustle is hard. Working on your passion projects is hard. Running the FI marathon is also hard.
But you don’t have to do it alone.
Find a business partner, a peer, an FI running partner to motivate you. You’ll be amazed how much easier it is to do something hard, for years and years on end, when someone is holding you accountable, and when someone is giving you that much needed pep-talk. Especially when the tough parts inevitably come and all you want to do is throw up your hands and quit.
You don’t have to come to Chautauqua, but you do need to find your community. Don’t do it alone. The poker chips aren’t going to drop into your lap if you stay home. Get out there and find those opportunities—just like Katie & Alan, Carl, and JLCollins did. And then cash out those chips for bigger and better things.
As Alan said, it might just “change your life”
Incidentally, here’s the latest episode of ChooseFI, featuring JLCollins, Carl from 1500, Alan and Katie, and us. It’s hard to get us all in the same podcast, but I’m glad we did, cause I think it turned out great!
And if you want to hear the JLCollins Google Talk, you can watch it here:
And finally, we are now 70% sold out! So if you want to come to Chautauqua, do it before the slots are all gone!
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