It is the middle of the night. Everyone is asleep. And I just spent ten minutes laying on the concrete floor in the backyard of our house in Palo Alto. Just looking at the stars.

University Avenue at the Circle with train ste...

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It felt surprisingly fitting.

tl;dr –> Always seeing ways to improve things and knowing you’ll never get to improve them … sucks.

I read on some blog once that the marked difference between humans and entrepreneurs is that when a normal person sees something that’s a bit off, that doesn’t work, or just isn’t quite There. They shrug and work around it. They might even complain a little. Let out a curse word or two. But otherwise pretty much get on with their life.

An entrepreneur, on the other hand, will go “Hmm, I think I can fix that”.

What happens when almost every thing you touch is suboptimal? When whatever you happen to be doing, feels like it could be done better? What then?

In a couple of months I will be 24 years old. I will not have solved any significant problem. I’ve seen many, but I simply won’t have solved any. The thing with time and aging is that you can only do so much. You have to pick. Even if you see many things that need to be improved; and you can fix a small subset of them. You still have to pick.

Time is a bitch like that.

I can swallow the fact that because I have Better Things ™ to do I will likely never go to all the best parties, see all the best clubs and go to all the best concerts. I will never get to wake up with my head in Janis Joplin’s lap. I will [likely] never have quite solved that information overload problem I was working on that one time …

There is a popular saying on 4chan “Regret nothing. At one point it was exactly what you wanted.”

A brilliant quote to keep us reminded that life is pretty much at our mercy. Not the other way around.

Then again, what if “it” isn’t exactly what you wanted? Maybe it’s just the most achievable option. Or it might be a bitter step on your path to what you want etc. Maybe you had ten options and simply had to pick one. Or maybe you’re just a farmer somewhere in Africa and no matter what you want, circumstance has made the choices for you.

I’m raising a lot of questions here … the point I’m getting at is that having a sort of entrepreneurial mindset can be/is a total drag. Always seeing ways to improve things and knowing you’ll never get to improve them … sucks.

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  • http://stritar.net Stritar

    I can see you have a bit of a crisis. Perhaps this quote is better suited for your thoughts: “Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see.”

    - Arthur Schopenhauer.

  • http://mike-hostetler.com Mike Hostetler

    Your post resonates deeply with me, that tension of wanting to improve things while not having the resources to do so has personally frustrated me quite a bit.

    I’ve been learning to overcome this by focusing on “shipping”.  Sounds simple, but by zeroing in on a single task, pushing it out, I’ve found that some of these feelings subside.