Play It Calculated But Don't Play It Safe

Play It Calculated But Don't Play It Safe

Happy Cyber Monday everyone. Today an estimated $2 billion USD will be spent online alone in the USA in preparation for all of the Christmas giving (random stat of the day).

The old adage, “Eat the elephant one bite at a time" is often said by someone that tries to comfort you when you find yourself in a place that seems overwhelming. But I think the other side of statement, or rather the question that it pokes at is, "How and why did I choose to eat the elephant in the first place?" That's an audacious goal. Then there's a domino effect.

  • Why would you do that?
  • When you get to the long trunk surely it'll taste like sewer (even though cooked elephant trunk in a stew actually rivals beef).
  • The ears would be way too chewy.
  • The skin will definitely be way too tough.
  • It's probably unsanitary, unsafe and not worth it.

Michel Lotito (also known as Monsieur Mangetout, which means "Mister Eats All"), ate an entire Cessna 150 airplane over the course of two years (1978-1980), and I don't think he used hot sauce to tame down the metal aftertaste.

The insane goal (which I have to say is strange) was to devour the flying machine. Why he chose this elephant to eat is beyond me, but he calculated the bite-sized steps over a 24 month period…and did it. He didn't try and shove it down in 4 months.

No one has to understand why you've chosen the beast, the plane, or the elephant. It can be beyond everyone’s fathomability, but it cannot be beyond your ability to calculate and execute the steps.

Michel: "I'm going to eat a plane.”
World: "Impossible!”
Michel: (after a calculated two years) "Done.”
World: "Wow! Blog, tweet, love!”

You: "I'm going to __________.”
World: “Too Big, not practical.”
You: "I've got it calculated over XX years.”
World: "You can’t. You won’t! It might be possible, maybe…we'll watch and see and give you a hard time while we watch."

A big, unsafe, and daring vision without calculating at least a few steps will frustrate your progress. When there's a calculation and necessary steps are taken daily, weekly, and monthly, then you'll get traction, buy-in and support.

(photo via tambako)