As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
Metal ore starts out strong, but not as strong as it could be. Through the smelting process and quite literally “trial by fire.” In the crucible, heat, pressure, and repeated bearings by a skilled blacksmith, something strong becomes something much stronger. Iron begets steel.
Today one of the resources I look up to for highly intelligent stoic wisdom took notice of some of the little contributions I’ve made to the community. We all take what we perceive and reflect it with our own sense of wonder and understanding. If something they say inspires me to say something that inspires you, you owe it to the world to spread that knowledge because you never know how you are sharpening the next person out there.
Never wel yourself short or too cheaply. You have something outstanding to share with the world!
In theater, there is a concept called the 4th wall. It’s the artificial division between the the audience and the actors onstage. They are “in” the play, while the audience is “out” there in the real world. The aside is a deliberate, and sometimes surprising breaking of that artificial wall. The characters come out of character and talk directly to you in the audience, often pointing out something you might have missed. If you are a child of the 90’s Zach Morris’s “Time out” will come to mind.
In life, we build constructs that divide “us” and “them.” In small business, you sometimes make use of this artificial division and look official by having the website and the emails and perhaps a product or two, but maybe it’s just you and a partner hustling on the weekend and doing it all out of a garage or living room. The wall of “official” is like the 4th wall.
Tonight I contacted a small business that I LOVE! Field Notes Brand makes the best little portable notebooks, and their attention to materials, details, quality are all very impressive! I had an idea that I think would be great on their notebooks and I pitched it to them. Well, really, I have it to them freely because I don’t want anything in return besides consideration and if it’s a quality idea, that they do what they do best and make my idea come true with a very awesome notebook.
Will it happen? I don’t know, but it’s a lot more likely now that it’s out of my head and into the hands of the artists. Like a reverse aside I ignored their wall and offered them a free idea. This is small, but it’s a small step of courage. Asserting yourself in this manner, time and time again is a recipe for owning the space you are standing in. Claim the air you are breathing and make your voice heard. Change the world, start now, right now!