The Blind Man Who Taught Me I Can Do Anything

Late last week, I turned on to Main St. in Winooski. I hit the gas pedal to accelerate up to 30mph. I had my windows down and my sunroof back. I was jamming to some fine tunes. And Then I  slammed on my brakes. Something was crossing the street. It wasn't a salamander. And it wasn't a tortoise.

It was a blind man.

He crossed my lane step-by-step, slowly putting one foot in front of the other. He used his walking stick to guide his next move. He sensed the middle of the road and paused, standing in the middle of the road for what felt like eternity.

He listened for cars, waited, and crossed when he didn't hear any. His walking stick hit the sidewalk. He stepped up to safety. I was so happy he made it. Relieved, in fact. I almost got out of the car to make sure this man made it across the road.

As I drove home, I couldn't help but think how brave and courageous this man was. He put his life on the line.

Lesson learned?

If a blind man can cross the street, what's your excuse?

Seriously. The man risked death. His walking stick rolled on the road. I watched him cross in-front of me. That alone tells me I can do anything. If you can cross the street blind, there's no excuse for not doing something.

I recently read a post by Adii Pienaar, the founder of WooThemes, who talked about being scared to start-up again.  Being afraid of failure. He's spot on. It's scary as hell. I relate to many of his posts as an entrepreneur, even though he's half-way around the world. His writing is truthful, from the heart, and poignant. Take a day and read his blog. Do it.

Why are you afraid of failure?

Look at the steps this blind man took to cross the street. It's similar to launching your own business.

1. He chose a starting point.

2. He slowly crossed the street, and made it half-way there

3. He observed the "market" and moved forward accordingly.

4. He made it to the other side of the road. Success!

It's just four steps. And the hardest of all of them? Number one. The start.

The blind man just crossed the street and hoped for the best. When he made it to a place he could pause (maybe your first paying customer), he adjusted to the needs of the market (the cars) and navigated when he was ready. And you know what? He got to the other side. With courage, determination, and a hefty amount of risk.

But he did it.

And again, I ask you "If a blind man can cross the street, what's your excuse?" Start building.