Make Mistakes of Ambition…

All courses of action are risky, so prudence is not in avoiding danger (it’s impossible), but calculating risk and acting decisively.

Make mistakes of ambition and not mistakes of sloth.

Develop the strength to do bold things, not the strength to suffer.

Niccolo Machiavelli
The Prince

The power of this passage from The Prince is that it resonates...with anyone & everyone.

Whatever you are struggling with that is uniquely yours - this fits.

You might be heading to work today, facing another long commute and scarcely productive day at your job.

Or, maybe you haven't been able to pull the trigger on actually working on your new project​... The one you have been thinking about for months. "What if it doesn't get off the ground...?"

It is easy to stay on your current route. I definitely know the feeling.

Consider the outcome...​

Making a mistake of ambition will lead to growth, eventually success.

Making a mistake of sloth - being careless & apathetic in your obligations - is a mistake that leads to regret.​

Make mistakes of ambition and not mistakes of sloth. -Niccolo Machiavelli

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What decisive action are you going to take?

Have you already let your ambition guide your actions? What are you working on?

8 comments… add one
  • Steve Lanning

    Excellent post, Doug. As you probably already know, all the business gurus, Peter Drucker right down to ‘General Electric’ Jack mentioned things about making mistakes…maybe smaller mistakes, but make them quickly and get them out of the way so the ‘big event’ you’re working on can come out. Thanks again for your writing this!

  • ok..

  • Doug,
    Being frozen by overthinking has been a theme for me in the past, but so many articles I’ve read lately (including this one) has made me realize that the people who do the best work have piles and piles of crap they are standing on. Thanks for reinforcing my new approach creation over contemplation.

    Clarity comes from movement.

    • Hi Joey – Thanks for the comment. I can definitely relate to over thinking.

      There is so much information to draw from that it can be overwhelming…and we just have to stop consuming information then act on something.

  • Stefan

    From the two dozen emails in my inbox today this was the definitely the most inspiring and helpful. It’s funny how a “74 seconds read” and “just be ambitious and make mistakes” is all you really need. And not all the crap people want to sell you these days. Thanks Doug :-).

    • Hey Stefan! Thanks for the comment – it means a lot.
      How long did it take you to read? I’m a slow reader… 😉


  • John

    Very crucial tips I got here.Thanks for this excellent tips Doug.

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