I don't even remember how I ended up on his mailing list, but there's some good, solid advice in it.
Great point from John Somez - http://simpleprogrammer.com/
I had another subject line for this email picked out, but my wife insisted I call it "poop and swoop."
In fact, I wasn't even going to tell THIS particular story about seagulls, I was just going to jump right into my analogy, but once again she insisted... so, here it is:
I'm in Ireland right now and a few days ago we decided to go to a nearby town and get some good old Irish fish and chips.
So, we get our fish and chips, and my wife, my 4-year-old daughter and myself are sitting on this wall, trying to eat our food while this annoying bunch of seagulls is flocking around us.
Now, the seagulls are smart enough to look at my wife and I and know that we aren't giving them anything, but my 4-year-old daughter, on the other hand, looks like a pretty easy target.
All the sea gulls start gathering around her, waiting for an opportunity to steal her dinner. They are pretty adamant and persistent, but I warned her, so whenever they come near, she starts chasing them and of course they run away and then come right back.
That is until one of them got smart...
Here I am sitting down, minding my own business when I feel a large thud on my leg. At first I thought that someone must have spilled a bucket of paint from an airplane, but then I realized what it was...
A HUGE, I mean HUGE, drop of seagull poop.
Chaos ensues as I freak the hell out and my wife is trying to find me a napkin to clean it up.
That's when those crafty seagulls struck.
My daughter walked a few steps away from her food to see what was going on and BAMMO, a hungry, good-for-nothing seagull swoops down and gulps up her fish in a single gulp.
Yes sir. This technique is now officially known as the POOP and SWOOP.
We got poop and swooped.
Now, just before this all happened, I was deep in philosophical thought about... seagulls.
In particular, I was thinking about how all these lazy seagulls were standing around trying to grab our food when, just next to us, there was an entire ocean full of fish.
I mean think about it.
These seagulls had made themselves dependent on getting handouts. They had decided to live a life of begging for food, hoping that someone will turn their backs for a second or leave a few scraps, so they can fight with each other to try and get their next meal, instead of learning how to fish and catch their own food from the ocean.
At first this position might seem advantageous. A seagull that is grabbing food from humans eating in the area doesn't have to do much work. They just have to wait around for the right opportunity.
But, when you think about it, it's also very limiting.
Those seagulls are now dependent on someone or something else giving them food or giving them the opportunity to get food. They are no longer self-sufficient.
Sure, they can catch a pretty tasty meal with little effort, most of the time, but they are constantly looking for that next meal and often having to fight other seagulls to steal it from someone who will likely chase them off and punt them across the field if given the chance.
Contrast this with other seagulls or other birds who have learned to get their food by fishing in the ocean.
Sure, the meal doesn't some as easily, but once a bird becomes good at fishing, that bird can get a meal anytime it wants. The ocean is full of fish. A bird that can get its own fish and doesn't depend on a human to steal a meal from, might have to work a little harder, but also has a much greater abundance.
I think humans can be the same way as these seagulls.
I think it's easy for us to fall into the trap of waiting for handouts or waiting for whatever scraps we can get from whoever is willing to give it to us, rather than learning to fish and get our own food.
It's really easy to get into a mindset of scarcity, rather than one of abundance.
It's easy to see the world as a place where you have to compete with a bunch of other seagulls for whatever scraps of fish or chips you can get instead of realizing that there is a whole ocean out there that is absolutely full of fish, which can be easily had, once you learn how to catch them.
This thinking can permeate many areas of our life, from finances, to our career and job situation, and even to relationships.
How many of us have tried to enter into relationships with someone where we are hoping to get whatever scraps we can get instead of realizing there is a whole ocean full of fish?
How many of us have accepted a job or paycheck, again just taking what we can get, not realizing that we could actually go out and create our own value—find our own fish?
Far too often I see this mentality of thinking in terms of scarcity instead of abundance.
The truth is there is a huge ocean full of fish.
The truth is, any of us can learn to fish it and to have access to as many fish as we are willing to catch.
Yet, so many of us live from a viewpoint of scarcity.
We are like the seagull that has to resort to a poop-and-swoop technique to get our food.
Man, I hate seagulls!
Anyway, I wasn't actually planning on doing this, but since a coupon code of POOPANDSWOOP is just too good to pass up on, I'm going to give you a chance to get my How to Market Yourself as a Software Developer package for $100 off.
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If you are tired of being a seagull and letting other people and companies determine how many fish you can eat and when, I want to teach you how to catch your own fish.
There is a huge ocean out there full for fish available to you, if you learn how to build your own personal brand and market yourself.
This coupon and sales price will only be good until the end of the week.
So, if you are ready to make a solid investment in your career, I'd encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity.