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Ego and the bankruptcy clause

Most countries have laws that will allow separation of financial concerns of an individual and the company that they own. For instance, if I start a company with a certain financial outlay, and then borrow money from banks and other lenders for the purpose of running that company, and am eventually unable to pay off that debt, only the assets of the company can be seized and not my personal assets.

This is a useful clause to encourage people to start businesses and borrow money to scale them. Without this, people would be highly reluctant to borrow money for scaling their businesses as they would then be putting all of their personal finances on the line for their business venture.

Yet, when it comes to business (and other creative) ventures, we forget about the bankruptcy clause for aspects that are outside of the financial realm.

If our book or movie fails, if a company we start fails, if the project we are working on fails, we take that as a personal affront and associate that with our own identities. We worry that any kind of failure in the things we attempt will say something bad about us as people.

And hence, we don't do things which carry the risk of failure. We sit back down and consume shows on Netflix rather than go out and publish our own stories. We sit down and scroll through Instagram and Youtube rather than create our own experiences. We sit back and read articles on Medium rather than go out and write our own. We become conservative and refrain from engaging in activities that we will have to ship. We become scared of putting our work out in the open for fear of how it will be perceived, for fear of failure.

All because our ego doesn't understand that there is a bankruptcy clause at play here too.

When we fail at any of these things, that doesn't say something bad about us as people. It merely says that the attempt we made wasn't good enough. We can either learn where to improve and make another attempt or we can learn that this is an area that we don't want to invest in right now and move on to something else.

But we ship nonetheless.

Our ego doesn't understand the bankruptcy clause. It is up to us to distill in that understanding and to ship more of our work.

This is what we need to do to be artists.

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