This is going to be a long one, so I’ll break it up into a few parts. It’s about predicting the future.
I met Ken – a friend of mine – last week in San Francisco, and gave him a copy of The Physics of Success. He made a comment that got me to thinking. He said, “When I talked to you a few weeks ago, you sounded really up. Man, I don’t know what I would’ve done in your shoes; I’d probably slit my wrists!”
Well, I was a bit puzzled at first because I certainly wasn’t anywhere close to slitting my wrists and he was right, I was feeling pretty good about things when I last talked to him. It took me a minute to figure out what was wrong with being in my shoes that would make somebody want to kill themselves. I mean, they aren’t anything special, but they’re okay shoes for loafers. What was “wrong” was that I was unemployed when I had last talked to Ken.
These days, the word unemployed provokes much hand-wringing and sympathy, and offers from friends to by your drinks (unemployed or not, I’m not likely to pass up a marghareta if there happens to be a pitcher on the table and an extra glass). I know several people who have been unemployed for many months, and more still that are underemployed, and even more that have jobs they would normally quit except they are scared to make any kind of change in their lives.
Before you get all worried, remember that I wasn’t particularly concerned when I talked to my buddy, and in fact had not even decided yet whether I even wanted to go back to work! And to answer your next question, I decided to get a job, and then got to select one of four opportunities. The position I selected took me to the RSA Information Security convention in San Francisco, where I met my friend. That’s not what got me thinking.
What struck my friend Ken as being so odd was that I wasn’t playing the part of an “unemployed” person. I was actually in a good frame of mind, even for somebody who had a job. In short, I was acting like somebody who was doing what they wanted to do, which is exactly what was happening. In fact, I was not only acting like I was doing what I wanted to do, I was acting like I expected to be doing what I wanted to do for the forseeable future.
Which, if you are following me, is exactly what was happening. I was in a good frame of mind because I was very confident that things would unfold exactly as planned, which they are doing. So long as I listen to myself, I expect they will continue to do so. That’s why I was (and am) actualy more confident than a lot of those folks who are gainfully employed.
In The Physics of Success I state that our present is the result of our actions. What we do today determines our future. The extension of that concept is that we can predict our future based on what we do today.