“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African Proverb
Both ways come with their advantages and disadvantages. Sometimes we need to be quick and nimble like a motorboat, in those cases having too many people trying to pull together can be like trying to turn an ocean liner.
Sometimes we can’t make the journey alone and we need other peoples help, feedback and expertise. Then that ocean liner’s starting to look pretty sweet!
We rarely make it entirely by ourselves. Even those who claim to be “self-made” have had a great deal of help, serendipity and advantages. Sometimes things that seemed to be disadvantages helped them along the way, look at how many entrepreneurs suffer from dyslexia for example.
You still have to give these people credit. Had they not been prepared and seized the opportunities presented to them they wouldn’t have gotten as far as they have. But they didn’t do it all themselves.
Think like a pineapple.
A pineapple is not only one fruit but a cluster of fruits merged together. If we look and listen to successful artists, companies or people we often hear them thank and credit people we’ve never even heard of.
So how do you think like a pineapple?
- Surround yourself with people who share your values and can complement your strenghts and weaknesses.
- It takes time. A pinepple grows every 18 months to 2 years. But the rewards are sweet!
- We are all connected, use your 6 degrees of separation (see links at the bottom). Note: The best connections are 3 degrees away since then you can get introduced by people who know both you and the person that you want to meet.
It can be a bit off-putting to think about networking and using your connections. That slight feeling of taking advantage of people. You can think of it as people pulling together for a common cause whether it be a political, social or creative cause.
We need tribes.
For those interested in the more spiritual side of connectivity there’s a clip from Tom Shadyac’s (director of Ace Ventura, Bruce Almighty & Patch Adams) 2011 documentary “I Am”. If you get a chance to see the full version, do it!
Kevin Bacon – TedX Talk about the 6 Degrees of Separation-phenomena:
Connected: The Power of Six Degrees:
James Potter – 3 Degrees of Separation:
Tom Shadyac – I Am – The Yogurt Experiment: