When I think of ‘Life-Altering Choices’ I can’t help but think of an on-line friend of mine named Derek Sivers. After watching more of his videos on AppSumo, I realized how much I’d like to spend a few hours with Derek and his wife in person. I also wondered if I needed another ‘night time whisper’ to make that become a reality. Let me explain…
If you aren’t familiar with Derek, you might have heard of the company he founded called CDBaby.Com. He sold it a few years ago for $22 Million dollars, which incidentally he put into a trust fund to help aspiring musicians live out their dreams, but that won’t be touched until after he dies. I perish the thought of Derek not being around to share his wisdom, but what a wonderful way to leave a legacy when that day comes.
I first found Derek on Twitter, when I began my on-line career in 2008/2009. I was recovering from a brain/spine injury while transitioning my coaching company to help a larger audience create better emotional connections in their personal and professional life. I was excited to be meeting new faces on line and so Derek was just one in a sea of faces at the time.
I remembered Derek’s Twitter page because of his adorable profile pic, but I had never heard of CDBaby or Derek. From a few of his tweets it appeared to me that he was into music and trying to figure some things out, or at least that was my pre-judgement at the time. I quickly left his page and went about working on my business.
Months went by and I hadn’t thought about him again until someone sent me a link to an interview and suggested I listen to it. It was something about ‘what not to do in business’, which I was interested in, so I clicked the link and who did I see? That’s right, Derek, but this particular interview was filled with so much profanity that I had a difficult time listening to him. I clicked away from it after a few minutes but I remembered his familiar name as the guy with the potty mouth who’s Twitter page had tons of followers. That was all I knew about him but I had decided it was enough.
Months later I’m visiting North Carolina, while celebrating the 50th wedding anniversary of an Aunt and Uncle, when they told us we were staying at Elton John’s house (yes, the infamous musician). It was a very large, very pink house which my husband got a kick out of. Elton no longer owned the home but my family and I thought it was pretty cool to be staying where he use to live. We decided to sleep in what appeared to be a sun room, and soon settled in.
On our second night there however, something very odd happened. It was the middle of the night and I was awakened by a whisper in my ear. The ‘whisper’ said, “Get up and write Derek Sivers.” Now I am aware of how weird this sounds so go ahead and think it – I know I certainly did.
At first I thought it was my husband talking in his sleep, but clearly it was not as I heard him snoring while facing the other direction.
I thought, “I must be hearing things.” So I turned over and settled down to go back to sleep.
Again I heard the whisper. “Get up and write to Derek Sivers.”
My eyes popped open and now my mind was racing. I slowly turned over, not wanting to wake my husband who might think me mad, and I whispered, “The guy with the potty mouth?! Now why would I do that? He doesn’t even know me, and besides, what could I possibly say to him that would make any difference to him?”
All kinds of other thoughts ran through my head too, like, “I can see it now, tomorrows headlines would read, “Woman gets arrested for hearing voices and stalking Derek Sivers.” Although I laughed to myself thinking about it, the fear behind that same thought also prevented me from getting up.
I tried to push the idea away again, turned on my stomach and tried to relax. It was no use. I was urged to communicate with this man a third time. (Deep sigh)
I finally relented and said, “Oh fine!”. I threw off the covers, now waking my husband who wondered what I was doing up in the middle of the night. I went to open my mouth to try and explain but it didn’t even make logical sense to me, so I simply told him I was sorry for waking him and we’d talk in the morning. I left our bedroom to search for an office area in Elton’s house.
Now feeling like a prowler with flashlight in hand, I found a computer in the den. I sat down in the large office chair and wondered who else would be awake at this awful hour. I let out another big sigh and reached below to turn on the computer. When the monitor illuminated my task ahead I began researching Derek’s email address, and allowed my fingers to wake up as they glided along the key board.
I opened up my email and without going into too much detail to Mr. Sivers, I explained that I was currently staying in Elton John’s old house, where I felt inspired (more like pressured) to write to him. I told him I didn’t really want to write him, but also that I couldn’t get back to sleep until I did. I tried to convince myself, and him, that I really wasn’t a nut case, hoping he would not ask my children’s opinion of course, but that I wasn’t sure of the reason I was to write to him. I said I didn’t have anything profound, or wise, to share except that I would have liked to heard his interview without all the cussing. I think I also mentioned that if he wanted to call the internet police and have me arrested I would understand, because this was by far the craziest email I had ever written.
Well, Derek being Derek, sent back the most gracious reply; “Hi Kellie, Thanks for writing and saying hi. Elton John’s house? That’s impressive. I enjoy hearing from people so no problem at all. Feel free to write me anytime. Derek”
Really? This guy with the potty mouth, that I tried to avoid or ignore, was actually nice? How can that be?!
Derek immediately gained my respect that day, potty mouth and all. You see he didn’t judge my crazy message, he accepted it. He didn’t stop me from writing him, he encouraged it. He didn’t have a secretary write me and say, ‘don’t call us we’ll call you’. Instead, he acknowledged my decision to get up and write him.
I realize that I have a purpose to fulfill on this planet, just like you do, and I needed to meet Derek Sivers in order to complete it. There is someone out there who needs to connect with you too in order for them to complete their mission. That’s just how life works and how we help one another evolve as co-creators.
I have had many guru’s coaching and training me over the course of my on-line business career, but not one of them has gained my fondest respect to the degree that Derek Sivers has. Not that I play favorites, but for the rest of my life I will be grateful for the night whispers, which I now get often, and I will follow each one that I hear as they lead me to some of the greatest treasures on earth; Derek Sivers being one of them of course, and the gift of loving others right where they are without judging them – just to name a few.
When people send me crazy messages at three in the morning I am just as gracious as he was when I respond to them, and I have met the most amazing people because of it. What a fantastic lesson.
If I could do anything to help you in your entrepreneurial business it would be to recommend one thing (outside of being coached by me of course), and that is get to know Derek. Buy his book(s), listen to his videos, watch his amazing TED talks, and simply learn from him. You will begin to have your eyes opened in ways you never thought possible; starting with learning to love who you are and to see how you can help serve the world best by being you. It’s important to your future, you just might not know it yet.
|Connecting to community, and seeing transformations happen, can be profound particularly when its your own community. Kellie\'s simple truths brings people back to the basics of emotional connections with faith, hope and love. Invite her to speak at your next event today.|