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Join the fam and make sure you never miss a post. Send a text with the word CRIP to 484848. I'll send you the link each week to the newest blog as soon as it's released.

Month: August 2021

Crippled CEO Blog #098: Stop Saving Money

Crippled CEO Blog #098:

Rich person: *acts frugally*

Regular people: “Well, that’s how he has all that money.” 

There’s a problem with this trope. 

It’s not true. 

You can’t get rich by saving money. 

The math just doesn’t work.

If you make $50,000 per year, the most you can possibly save is everything you make — $50,000 per year. And if you do that, it will take you 20 years to have $1 million.

But you can’t save everything you make. Under $70,000 a year or so, you can’t even save half of what you make. You need money to survive and enjoy your life. 

Spending time, energy, and willpower skipping affordable things you enjoy in order to save a few dollars a day isn’t going to get you the financial results you’re looking for. 

The path towards financial independence is paved entirely by making more money. Getting raises at your job, side businesses, and so on. 

Now, if you are saving money and investing it in something that makes you more money, that’s different. That’s another revenue stream. Definitely do that. Compound interest is powerful, especially if you’re young. 

But skipping Starbucks every day to save $1,500 a year? Stop that. It’s not helping. It’s just making you cranky, which is probably causing you to miss opportunities. Buy the coffee, and use the caffeine to make extra cash. 

(You know who is all about additional revenue streams? Your mom. She also never misses a blog post because she sent a text to 484848 with the word CRIP as the message to get a link each week. You should do the same.)

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Crippled CEO Blog #097: I don’t feel like it

Crippled CEO Blog #097:

There have been a few times over the last 97 weeks when I didn’t feel like writing a blog.

This shouldn’t be too surprising. 97 consecutive weeks is a long time. It is almost 2 years. It makes sense that there would be a few occasions when my mood, health, etc. was standing between me and getting this done. 

Today is one of those days. Maybe it’s because I haven’t eaten. Maybe I didn’t get enough sleep. But whatever it is, I don’t really feel like it. 

But I am doing it anyways, like always — on two occasions I’ve posted on Monday instead of Sunday, but I’ve never missed a week. Because, as Seth Godin often says, professionals ship the work. Your plumber isn’t going to cancel because he’s not feeling inspired. Your surgeon in the emergency room isn’t going to stop your operation because his girlfriend dumped him. Professionals show up. And they do the job.

For some reason, we understand this for service jobs and manual labor, but we somehow think that more creative/cerebral work — writing, graphic design, and so on — should be treated differently. We think we need to wait for inspiration, for the right mood, to be in the right head space. 

But this idea is just as silly for creative work as it is for laying tile.

And there is a secret, too. Just like exercising makes you want to exercise, and starting to have sex puts you in the mood for sex, and ordering food makes you hungrier, and so on, starting to do the work makes you “inspired”. Once your brain figures out that it’s not getting out of this task, it helps you do it. And doing this often trains this response. You just have to get the figurative ball rolling, and the hardest part of that is the initial push. 

And just like that, a blog has been written, despite whatever forces were fighting against me. That wasn’t so hard, was it?

(Do you know who’s always in the mood? Your grandmother. That’s right, I have branched out from your mom. They both also guaranteed they’ll never miss a blog post by sending a text to 484848 with the word CRIP as the message. You can do that, too.)

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Crippled CEO Blog #096: My dad thought I was a disappointment

Crippled CEO Blog #096:

My dead dad thought I was a disappointment.

I started my first business at 12 years old. I bought my first house a week before my 19th birthday. I was in USA Today at age 16 and featured as an expert in two New York Times bestsellers by 21. Mother effing Forbes did a whole piece on me. Before he died, I had grown the business he started to 6 times the size it was when he retired and I took it over. And I did this with cerebral palsy, in a wheelchair, with all of the issues you can — and can’t — imagine that go with that. 

And for my entire life, he thought I was kind of a screw up. 

There’s a good chance that you know that your parents feel the same way about you. Like my dad, they saw all of the dumb stuff you did growing up. They saw the irresponsible things you did in high school. In fact, that’s when they knew you best — before you moved out and grew up. 

If my dad can look at my life and be disappointed, it is pretty clear that this is a game that can’t be won. I don’t think it would’ve mattered what I did, and I bet the same goes for you, as well. I’m sure there are leaders of nations and self-made billionaires who have also experienced this. 

Parents who are going to be disappointed are going to be disappointed. I think the best bet is to employ the reverse of the famous break up line: it’s not you, it’s them. 

(You know what parent is never disappointed in me? Your mom. She’s also never disappointed when she gets a text from me every Sunday. You can, too, by texting the number 484848 with the word CRIP as the message.)

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Crippled CEO Blog #095: I smashed my face

Crippled CEO Blog #095:

Today is the 13 year anniversary of me breaking my face. On August 8, 2008 — 8/8/08 — I was leaving work on a Friday in a rental chair (more on that in a minute). Near the base of the metal fork lift ramp that I use to get in and out of my shop, I must have stopped for a moment. The front tires of the chair were elevated to make it easier to climb curbs — a “feature” I was unfamiliar with. It also made the chair lurch forward if you stopped suddenly. When I stopped on the ramp, the chair flung me forward like a catapult. I flew from the chair, and while in flight, I had the presence of mind to turn my head to the side; I definitely didn’t want to land directly face first. I would later tell people that I protected my hands and body with my face.

One of my employees found me a couple minutes later, spitting out blood and teeth while I laid there.

In the emergency room, they put ten stitches in my lip, four more in my eyebrow, and told me I fractured my nose, my cheekbone, and my eyesocket.

Ironically, I was leaving work to go give back this rental wheelchair and get my own chair back. I had ridden up and down that ramp without incident in that rental countless times over the course of the week. If I had made it to the bottom one last time, I would’ve been back in my chair, safe and sound — no problems. 

But why was I in a rental wheelchair? Because I had flown earlier in the week. And airplanes notoriously destroy wheelchairs. My chair died about an hour after I landed in Chicago. I had to spend the entirety of my time there being pushed around, unable to move on my own. The trip was so terrible for me that, afterward, I wrote an essay advocating for the euthanizing of anyone who is born/becomes disabled, as a favor to society. 

And then I smashed my face. 

It was a really good time. 

Why am I telling you this? Because now, it is a funny and entertaining story. Now, it is in the past. When I couldn’t eat, smile, or talk without experiencing terrible pain, I kind of wanted to die. But now it’s fine. 

I remembered this when I smashed my head and broke my ankle in 2019. I remembered that it sucked for a while, it got better, and then it was just a story.

That week was really, really bad for me. Broken wheelchair, broken face, ruined trip. Everything about it was so all-consuming. It seemed inescapable and forever. And when things are really bad, that’s always how it feels.

But this, too, shall pass. If you don’t die, then eventually it’s just a thing that happened to you. And maybe, with enough time in the right perspective, it might even be kind of funny. Or at least educational. 

(Do you know who has given me some crazy memories? Your mom. She doesn’t have to remember to check for a new blog post, though. She gets an update every Sunday because she sent a text to the number 484848 with the word CRIP in the body. You should, too.)

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Crippled CEO Blog #094: Stop Hating Your Customers

Crippled CEO Blog #094:

If you’ve been in business for a little while, it is easy to start to dislike your customers.

It is easy to start resenting them.

And for good reason: people can suck. They can be whiny and annoying. They can be unreasonable. They can be impatient. They can be cheap.

And since 100% of customers are people, even if you sell to businesses, then that means our customers can be all of the above, as well. Throw in a dose of obligation, because we feel like we have to deal with them, and it doesn’t take long before even the good ones start out at a disadvantage in your mind. 

This is normal, but you have to be aware of it. You can’t let it firmly root and become permanent.

For one, because it’s a great way to be miserable. Hating the people that you work for is a guaranteed path to despising your life.

But also, because it’s amazing that they trust you. It is an absolute miracle that they trust you more than anyone else they could have chosen, and because they trusted you, they chose to give you their money. It is easy to overlook how remarkable that is. You know how great you are, so it’s easy to take for granted how incredible it is that, day after day, you’re the one that gets chosen. 

If you can keep that in mind, it is easier to like your customers. Because if they’re smart enough to trust and choose you, then really, how bad could they be?

(You would not believe the kind of thing your mom trusts me with. One thing that she trusts me with is sending her a message every Sunday about the latest blog post. You can do this, too. Send a text to the number 484848 with the word CRIP as the message and I’ll send you a link to the latest blog each week.)

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Join the fam and make sure you never miss a post. Send a text with the word CRIP to 484848. I'll send you the link each week to the newest blog as soon as it's released.

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