Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What scares you?

EntreLeadership (Twitter)
A person's success in life can usually be measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations they are willing to have. - Tim Ferriss
Where better to have some uncomfortable conversations than downtown at lunch time.  Everyone on the street is busy getting to or from lunch, avoiding the homeless asking for money, catching up with old friends or avoiding the Green Peace corner.

I know, I have been there…”No I don’t have time to talk with Green Peace…Sorry I don’t have any change…” so I also know that it will be a real challenge to get people to take a moment to talk with me about their dreams.  That may just be based on my own experience so I started trying to talk with people on Monday.

Why talk with random people at lunch time? To put myself in uncomfortable conversations, to test my own assumptions and hopefully at the end take a portrait of the person I have just gotten to know.
I felt like I couldn’t approach anyone for a while so I just sat out there watching…I must have looked like a creeper… I stopped at the 7-11 to grab a quick drink and a young man started up a conversation with me about a dog a wasn’t mine.  This young man was traveling the country and seeing where the road would take him.  He was careless and happy and seemed to follow the “Secret” way of life. 

That conversation with him sparked my confidence to speak with  two women chatting on the corner.  I told them a bit about what I was doing and they promptly said they were old friends who are catching up after a long time.  They both live here in town but life as they say gets in the way. 

I left them and was headed back to my car when 2 paralegals agreed to let me walk with them back to their office and chat.  From what they told me they had found a great place to work and were loving almost every minute of it.  It seems that is rare in this day.

Lastly, while taking the only picture of the afternoon (below) I ran into a lawyer.  He also agreed to let me walk along like a little puppy dog and talk.  He was bright and alert and seemed to be enjoying life.  “Sometimes the judge rules for you and sometimes he rules against.”

So after all that I talked with 6 people I never would have met and ended up with one picture.
Don’t stop at finding out what scares you, ask what can I do to confront that fear?

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