Thinking Outside the Box

“At the time, my life just seemed too complete, and maybe we have to break everything to make something better out of ourselves.”

Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club

“Named must be your fear before banish it you can.”


The first rule of Fight Club is you don’t talk about Fight Club. The first rule of thinking outside the box is recognizing that you are in a box.

But what is a box? (Is it slang for boxers underwear? ‘Yo, are you a box guy or a briefs guy’.)

When we give in to fear, doubt and uncertainty — that’s a box.
When we listen to others ideas for how we should live our lives, instead of listening to our own hearts — that’s also a box.
When we let our friends, peers, community and even family influence us to live and act a certain way. — that’s a big box. (Is this starting to sound like a Jeff Foxworthy redneck joke? ‘You might be a redneck if your bicycle has a gun rack’.)

The box is normal. It’s the standard deviation of how ‘they’ say we should live our lives.
Sometimes other people try to put us in a box, and sometimes we put ourselves in a box. There are different boxes, for different folks. They come in various shapes and sizes, and are made of different materials, but they generally serve the same purpose: to keep us right were we are in life.

Boxes aren’t always bad. Some boxes are safe and comfortable. Some boxes influence us in positive ways. But in order to create, grow, change, add value to our lives and pursue our dreams, we’ve gotta step out of the box we are in. All the fresh air and good ideas are outside of our cardboard walls.

When you find yourself with a need to change, there’s two great ways you can start:

1. Act.

Action breeds momentum, and momentum drives change. Even the smallest of acts done consistently quickly gains traction and drives growth over time. Compound interest isn’t just for money — it can also be applied to any goal we want to pursue or skill we want to master.

2. Surround yourself with people and ideas that are outside of your box.

If you want to be an artist, surround yourself with other artist who are also ambitiously seeking to improve and create. If you want to be an entrepreneur, surround yourself with people who think differently and see opportunities everywhere. Surround yourself with friends who want you to succeed and want to get better themselves. And surround yourself with books, ideas, and creative work that inspires you to see the world differently and do what most only dream about doing.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner

Daily Blog #685

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