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Sitting on a gold mine, doing nothing  

On the one hand, Basho:

Sitting silently,
Doing nothing
And the grass grows by itself.

On the other hand, this inspirational article (via @bryanhales):

Think about the biggest websites you visit or use on a regular basis: Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Foursquare, or even Google for that matter — all of them were created by developers who created something from little more than an idea in their head. Was it easy for them? Heck no. But it could only have been done in today's day and age. So why in the world are you sitting there day after day working for someone else?

The anonymous author of this post lists several myths and their counterpoints:

  • "I don't have any time" - then stop wasting so much time watching TV and playing games.
  • "I can't come up with any ideas" - stop aiming for the moon, and smaller, more accessible ideas are everywhere around you.
  • "I don't have any money" - so pick an idea which doesn't need much capital.
  • "I don't know how to market/design/etc" - learning to do so is not that hard.
  • "I need a steady income!" - if you really, truly need the income, then launching may take longer and more work, but it's still doable.

This is a good subset of Paul Graham's excellent Why to not not start a startup, but it's missing the essential reason why 90+% of people do not start startups:

Because they don't feel like it.

Not everyone wants to change the world, get rich, achieve the impossible, live an extraordinary life, etc. It may sound shocking (it was, the first time someone close to me, an intelligent person whom I respected very much, said, "I want a normal life."), but not everyone wants to be extraordinary.

Thinking that everyone must either want to launch a business or be held back from it (by false notions or stupidity) is a classic born again entrepreneur pattern - and indeed, the anonymous author of this blog is still in the early stages of his first business.

Some people just want to live a good, enjoyable life, with friends, family, and the natural highs and lows of human existence. And that's absolutely fine.

More from the library:
Online advertising for bootstrapped startups
Criticism and two-way streets
Three kinds of games