Nearly twenty years ago, my husband and I sat with a mentor who taught us many of the things that were integrated into The Jackrabbit Factor. In fact, it was one simple analogy that eventually turned into the whole book and ultimately its sequel, Portal to Genius.
At the time he shared it with us, my husband and I were struggling to be entrepreneurs, and had difficulty explaining why we were doing what we were doing. We kept odd hours, we raced here and there to get things done, which, at the time, weren’t really producing anything. (Actually, that’s not entirely true… we could pretty well predict about $30/month in revenue, but it was costing us hundreds a month to produce it.)
But we did what we did because we could see a bigger picture. We could see its long-term potential, and that vision of possibility is what kept us going.
His brief but profound analogy went something like this:
“Have you ever seen a dog chasing a rabbit?”
I didn’t think I ever had, but I was able to imagine it.
He continued, “What if you couldn’t see the rabbit? What would you think of the dog?”
“I’d think he was crazy.”
“That’s right. So when people think you’re crazy doing what you do, don’t let it get to you. They just don’t see your rabbit.”
So to illustrate, I’d like to show you someone else chasing a rabbit. See if YOU think he’s crazy:
The following pictures were taken by Hans van de Vorst from the Netherlands at the Grand Canyon, Arizona. The descriptions are his own. The identity of the photographer in the photos is unknown.
I was simply stunned seeing this guy standing on this solitary rock in the Grand Canyon. The canyon’s depth is 900 meters here. The rock on the right is next to the canyon and safe. Watching this guy on his thong sandals, with a camera and a tripod I asked myself 3 questions:
1. How did he climb that rock?
2. Why not take that sunset picture from that rock to the right, which is perfectly safe?
3. How will he get back?
After the sun set behind the canyon’s horizon he packed his things (having only one hand available) and prepared himself for the jump. This took about 2 minutes. At that point he had the full attention of the crowd.
This is the point of no return. After that, he jumped on his thong sandals… The canyon’s depth is 900 meters (3,000 feet) here.
Now you can see that the adjacent rock is higher so he tried to land lower, which is quite steep and tried to use his one hand to grab the rock.
We’ve come to the end of this story. Look carefully at the photographer. He has a camera, a tripod and also a plastic bag, all on his shoulder or in his left hand. Only his right hand is available to grab the rock and the weight of his stuff is a problem. He lands low on his flip flops, both his right hand and right foot slip away…. At that moment I take this shot. He pushes his body against the rock. He waits for a few seconds, throws his stuff on the rock, climbs and walks away…
We may never know why this photographer did what he did. I’d like to see the picture of the view he valued that much.
Likewise, people around you may never understand why you do what you do. But it doesn’t matter – don’t let it bother you. They just don’t see your rabbit.
Follow-up to this post:
One of my subscribers knew more about this scenario than I did (thanks, Monique!) and pointed out that this crazy rabbit-hunter had more knowledge than we do as onlookers. There is always another way to look at something – and our perspective or paradigms will influence the way we feel about it.
If you are the rabbit-chaser, you have more knowledge about what you’re doing than those who watch you, and you’ll naturally feel differently than they do about it.
Avid rabbit-chasers regularly do things that have a greater perceived danger than is actually present.
Here’s the final picture in this story:
To find out how we used “crazy rabbit-hunter” principles to triple our income in three months, click here to read The Jackrabbit Factor FREE.