I turned 50 in September and it surprised me how it got into my head in the two weeks leading up to it. Everyone joked about being on the backside of life, service dogs and other cliches. On thing they all had in common were that they had negative connatations and played to the notion that the best has passed and now it was just decline.
This is no different, in many ways, to how people may (unintentionally) make entrepreneurs feel about their venture. It won't work, look at the challenges, burning money, why isn't anyone buying, you're a CEO?, etc. It all comes down to how you frame your life and your journey. Below is one of many positive takes on turning 50. Hell, I would argue that you can create a similar list for any age and frame it as an opportunity to reinvent, to realize your freedom of choices, be inspired, have courage, etc. Life is a series of Hero's Journeys...50 is not the only one! So, seize the day (or Birthday) as the case may be and don't let those influences around let you think small or feel small.
Michelle Obama has turned 50, and now the nation is talking about this magical age. Is it over the hill or the peak of life? The benefits of turning 50 can outweigh the negatives if you look for them. And I looked! Here are 10 perks of reaching the half-century mark.
- Wisdom. At this point of life, you've had 5 decades of experiences. Hopefully you have gained perspective, insight and wisdom. Many 50 year olds begin to share this wisdom verbally with children or write a book to reach a larger audience. The question is…do the youth of today pay attention or will they have to suffer the hard lessons personally? Regardless of the answer, share your wisdom anyhow!
- Freedom. Many parents who turn 50 are finding themselves with an empty nest. They now have the opportunity to plan their days to do what they wish instead of being a taxi service, maid, chef, laundress, and general manager of the family schedule. Now, you have the option to have a simple dinner, a tidy house, and more free time to plan your own activities! It's all about you now.
- Inspiration. Due to your increased wisdom and freedom, you may feel inspired to resume a career, switch jobs, knock off items on your bucket list, take a class to learn something new, write a book, champion Continue reading "The Benefits of Turning 50 (or any Age!)"
"If you can see it, it isn't the revolution." -- Steve Jurvetson
I wrote the following post in Nov, 2008. It demonstrated two things. 1) Tech and the stock market have a little dance they do...tech has roughly a 15 year cycle and the stock market has roughly a 7-8 year one and 2) tech is non-linear...just as FB/social was about to take off, many thought cleantech was going to be the next bellweather sector. If you can see it, it isn't the revolution.
I wrote in June 2008 that I thought the venture/market cycle was coming to an end and this one in Nov 2008. Today, lot of people are going to cash and getting nervous about the market this year. Fortune 500's are cutting ad spending for Q1 (some significantly) and I recently spoke to two elder ladies in a hotel lobby who were "short the market". Also, more VC money was invested in 2014 than any year since 2000. So, while I believe in the 15 year tech cycle (e.g. things go boom in the night in the coming year), with this many people looking for it, it seldom hits. That said, probably not a good time to aggressively put money out and a good time to get your house in order. I'll revisit as the year progresses...the IPO market vs. last private round valuations is a key metric to monitor.
From Nov, 2008:
"As the bad news keeps pouring in, a lot of people are wondering what we can expect in the coming years. Additionally, everyone is trying to figure out what hope exists. Well, I'll give two thoughts on this (briefly).
First, the world of technology is driven by two factors: the laws of exponentials and the Black Swan. Progress does not occur linearly but exponentially. We can expect to see changes the magnitude of the past 100 years in just the next 20 years. This means a lot of people are going to a) be really busy and b) be dramatically better off. These changes will come from places you can't predict (Black Swans). Market crashes and negative developments are not the only unexpected six sigma events.
Second, markets run in roughly 7 years cycles and technology in 15 year waves. Vacuum tubes to main frames to mini-computers (DEC) to PC's (Apple/Microsoft) to the Internet. The next wave, then, should start in 2010-11 and hit full force in 2015-16. Many in the business (us, Kleiner, etc) feel this will be in Cleantech. The energy market is 10-20x the IT market. We are not talking about billion dollar markets but trillion dollar ones. There will be a lot of casualties
Larger Post coming...without appreciating the context (yesterday's post), it is hard to fully grasp the origin nor significance of the tech renaissance that is taking place in Israel. One has to see it to fully appreciate it. Much like Boston and Silicon Valley had its origins in military R&D and culture, Israel's tech ecosystem also comes out of this. It has had innovation after innovation emerge from its advanced defense work. For example, ICQ (not AOL messenger) launched instant messaging onto the world and originally came from te Israeli Defense Force's internal uses. Same with voicemail and many other innovations. Israel has some of the world's best minds in Big Data, IT security software, messenging, telecom infrastructure, etc. A lot of this is described in the book, Start-Up Nation by Dan Senor and Saul Singer. Some of the numbers are eye-popping...one start-up per 2,000 people in the country for example. Necessity is the mother of invention.
Equally important is the Israeli resilience & tolerance for risk. This is at the heart of the entrepreneurship. When living in the charged environment discussed yesterday, you can't help but to grow up with a DNA that accepts risk/change's role in life and embraces the necessity of innovation.
I have to run to Tel Aviv's accelerator, SOSA (their equivalent to Chicago's 1871). More to come.
As many of you may know, I am a commencement speach junkie. One of the stars of this year's batch is Admiral McRaven's talk at UoT. He is a navy seal, Commander of the United States Special Operations Command & oversaw the final raid on Osama bin Laden. This has been going viral (approaching 2M views in 1 week). Enjoy!