Seven years ago, I stepped into an idea that I only had the inclination of. When I spoke of this idea, I was met with more criticism than encouragement. It’s funny when you’re young, everyone has their piece of advice to give you, passing their warnings off as guidance. In many cases, I only saw fear flicker across their expression.
If I had listened to the critics around me, I would have been submerged into an existence that could have led to a depression so encompassing that I’m not sure I would have ever found a way out. Instead, I shifted the concept of what I should do to what I can do.
This idea is continually reflected in the eyes of every founder I have worked with. They could have chosen to take the same route as everyone else along a road that was clear of obstacles. But they didn’t. The founders I have worked with have looked fear in the eyes and still said “I am meant to do this. This is my path.”
Their audacious approach to life is what helps their ideas thrive. It is what inspires industry change and develops new technologies and approaches to assist the movement of life. If you consult the history books, you’ll find many of those who spent their entire lives developing something never saw the recognition they deserved. In a modern world where everyone is competing to be the most heard, it is the unseen change makers in the background that often influence movements the most.
In my travels, the most remarkable people I met were mothers. They had already stared fear in the eyes, and knew acutely what it meant to place food on the table of their community. They didn’t try to make an idea work for recognition, they made it work because they had to.
Julia Boorstin points this out in her book When Women Lead. Women operate with a level of efficiency and caution that makes them incredibly smart at business, but also practical when it comes to growth. In every example she lists in her book of women leaders, they created a business out of necessity.
Necessity isn’t just a story arc we create to showcase the grit of a business owner. Necessity is the breath that fuels the beginning and drives every decision until the last chapter closes.
When I awoke from surgery seven years ago, writing became my necessity. It was the driver of every decision, and the only way forward to survive. I know what it feels like to see life teeter on the edge and fall into an abyss of existence, and it is why I acutely understand what it takes to build something from nothing. To believe in what you are doing despite every critic around you saying there is no space for you here.
I love the art of writing not only because it lifted me out of the depths, but because I truly enjoy seeing others light up when they feel understood in their vision. Great content writers are active listeners who know how to deliver vessels of thought to the braided rivers of industry.
Those thoughts build into stories.
Those stories create movements.
Those movements transform culture.
If we’re ever going to invite change, we first need to imagine what that future will hold. Just as every entrepreneur, founder, leader, and writer knows, we have to write change into the narrative.
What are you writing into the story?