When your golden goose stops laying eggs

Just because you’re made in it doesn’t mean you’re made for it.

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Shackleton’s famous advertisement ran in the newspaper to try to recruit men for his polar expedition.

Here’s what the message said, nearly one hundred years ago.

Men wanted for hazardous journey. Low wages, bitter cold, long hours of complete darkness. Safe return doubtful. Honor and recognition in event of success.

Does that sound antiquated, bizarre and over dramatic?

It’s actually not.

Shackleton practically described the entire career path of most entrepreneurs. Ask anyone who started their own business at some point in the past twenty years. Here’s what they won’t tell you.

You’re constantly doing the hustle dance to game the system. You’re living and dying by every gig you get. You’re making a living off on one act of hokum to the next. Every day you don’t kill yourself is a day you’ve lost work. Meanwhile, anxiety gnaws at the core of your being and the chronic hunger creates a sense of desperation. Because every day is a frantic scramble for position, prestige, profit and power.

That’s one hell of a job description. Good luck with your booth at career fair.

Of course, some people have the constitution to handle it. They can absorb the pressure of being the single point of success or failure. Their ambition and intensity are sustainable over the long haul. And they aren’t likely snap over to the place of I just don’t give a fuck anymore.

Good for them. They deserve every success they get.

But for the rest of us, there’s nothing noble about salvaging a career teetering on the brink of ruin.

Just because you’re made in it doesn’t mean you’re made for it.

What’s your plan for when your golden goose stops laying eggs?

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Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.

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