THE RACER'S EDGE (Read time 0:41) “What if someone steals my idea, or launches a similar competitive site, or they write, record or create superior art?” I hear those worries from my clients all the time—from film composers to CEO’s. It’s a troubling trap to compare your place in the race with others. That’s why they put blinders on racehorses—so they’re not distracted by the competition, and they can focus on the finish line. Some artists & entrepreneurs I work with spend sleepless nights worrying about the competition and fretting about the future, when they should be envisioning, imagining and inventing ways to better serve their customers and fans, with outrageous products and jaw dropping art. Your enemy is not the competition. The real enemies are indecision & uncertainty, which is the result of losing the battle to doubt & fear. And doubt & fear are what keeps every crazy, genius A&E tossing and turning all night. Right? The best hedge against the competition is to wear permanent “blinders,” and the best way to gain the racer’s edge is to use focused intelligence.
J Michael Dolan

THE RACER'S EDGE (Read time 0:41)

“What if someone steals my idea, or launches a similar competitive site, or they write, record or create superior art?” I hear those worries from my clients all the time—from film composers to CEO’s. It’s a troubling trap to compare your place in the race with others. That’s why they put blinders on racehorses—so they’re not distracted by the competition, and they can focus on the finish line. Some artists & entrepreneurs I work with spend sleepless nights worrying about the competition and fretting about the future, when they should be envisioning, imagining and inventing ways to better serve their customers and fans, with outrageous products and jaw dropping art. Your enemy is not the competition. The real enemies are indecision & uncertainty, which is the result of losing the battle to doubt & fear. And doubt & fear are what keeps every crazy, genius A&E tossing and turning all night. Right? The best hedge against the competition is to wear permanent “blinders,” and the best way to gain the racer’s edge is to use focused intelligence.

COMMENTS


Posted By Woody Woodham
The Question is
The question is where's the line that separates the blinders from denial and beating a dead horse?


Posted By Bjorn Sorlie
blinders
Thanx Michael. You`re totally brilliant.


Posted By Ron
Focus
Michael---Words of Wisdom from Experience!


Posted By Tucker
competition
Sometimes keeping distance from the enemy motivates people, making them focus more for fear of failing. Competition drives people. Competitors feel a "rush" from not allowing "others" to beat them. Putting blinders on is a sign of weakness. Real success is looking ememies and friends alike in the eyes and knowing you put in your best effort -win or lose.


Posted By Rachel
Competition
Hi Michael! Great blog and very valid!! I have many times come up with ideas and get them off the ground only to watch others copy them and create competition...sometimes in a nasty manner...at times my insecurities get squeezed, but I realize it is for the better whole...creating causes action that stimulates more than just my small world...letting ego or fear die, I just keep creating and coming up with something new...It also keeps me working to do my best job, and those that come...come because they like what I'm offering them.. Have a GREAT day Michael!! Rachel


Posted By Mario Vickram Sen
Semi-agreement
It is very true that we need not be constantly comparing ourselves to others. But as Ken Budka says, " There is no other YOU in the universe." And a true understanding of that should be enough to allow you to NOT be distracted by the competition. But I don't like the idea of blinders. That smacks a little bit too much of DENIAL. We need to always be clear about what is around us, and what the truth of the situation is, in order to know exactly how we fit into it. There will always come a time when you need that information. In fact, if you cannot see what is around you without being distracted from your own path, maybe you should consider whether that path is really your own. I believe that being in touch with who you really are, negates the need for blinders. And blinders can often hide the fact that you are not being true to yourself.


Posted By wichampi sky
Blinkers !
I compose music and write the occasional comedy show...still sing a bit...Creating in the silence and peace of solitude is always a mysterious adventure. I love it ! The pressure of the "biz" is an ego jungle. If we believe in ourselves and love what we do threats and insecurities stay out of our lives. Thanks for your reminder and have a good day.


Posted By Steve Bernstein
Jazz
I have listened to (and have been transformed by)jazz for over 45 years. But the only time I heard about the guy who was the first one to play jazz was when I watched the Ken Burn's special on jazz. He never recorded because he didn't want anybody stealing his stuff. I don't remember his name.


Posted By Ken Budka
There's no one like you
Any comparison to your competition is unfair and definitely not an apples to apples match-up. There is no other YOU in the universe and the competition will never totally measure up to your goodness.


Posted By Dave
The Edge
No worries!... when you stay focused, determined and transfixed on creation there is no competition.


Posted By Theuns Kruger
There's always someone…
I believe that there is always someone bigger, stronger, taller, slimmer, more intelligent, more talented, more gifted than I. All I can do is to be the best that I can be, to strive to be better, to never stop learning, to be reliable and trustworthy, to under-promise and to over-deliver. I believe it is better to be able to offer a wide range of skills rather than just a single one. For those who specialise in one thing and become the best at what they do: it's all good too.


Posted By Gunnar
blinders
So true once again...however it is valid to act with extreme caution and skepticism as every time I ask the "experts" about patents, copyrights, publishing they give me that dreaded reality of the grueling process and odds against us to "enact" our visions into reality; correctly for any type of financial reward. It also takes MONEY that many of us starving freaks simply don't have, so "to each their own" is a HUGE statement to live by in these times and TOUGH!


Posted By Phyllis Sinclair
The Race
I will focus on writing my best and nothing else. I will focus on giving my best performance and nothing else. I will focus on giving my best, and nothing else.


Posted By Kelland Drumgoole
Great Post
just used " It’s a troubling trap to compare your place in the race with others. That’s why they put blinders on racehorses—so they’re not distracted by the competition, and they can focus on the finish line." as a my Facebook status


Posted By Spunky Munkey
Turn Out the Lights
Years ago at the end of every training session the instructor would turn out the lights and we would practice fighting in the dark, his favourite saying was the competition is with yourself.


Posted By Rick
Competition
All i can say is "Amen, Brother!!!" What the competition is doing is old news. You have to stay focused on your own work. If you think it is good, if you think it will move the audience, stay on task at all cost. Great post! Thanks.


Posted By Kris
Competition
Michael- you are the man. I can't tell you how, as an event promoter, this has worried me but alas; there is no competition when you simply give it your best. So far, so good. Thanks for all of your wonderful posts. Truly inspiring and reaffirming.


Posted By henry
wearing blinders to focus
I love the blinders idea so much I am going to put on my symbolic blinders every day. It's so true that the distraction of worry fragments my creativity and movement in the direction I want to go. After all, even the competitors have to focus. I may print the photo above to hang on my door, "Do Not Disturb, I am focused!"

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• THE WAITING WARRIOR (Read time 0:41)
• PLAY AT YOUR OWN RISK (read time :57 sec)
• AUTONOMY HIGHWAY (read time :35 sec)
• LIMPIDITY (read time :45 sec)
• WHY I MEDITATE (read time 1:00 min)
• YOUR SHADOW AGENDA (Read time 0:59)
• WHY I SOLD MY BUSINESS (read time 6:33)
• BARENAKED PROBITY (read time 1:47 min)
• THE FANTASIES OF POSSIBILITY (read time 4:17 min)
• THE TUG OF WAR (read time 5:09 min)