Change is hard sometimes. Changing your routines and rituals that you are very comfortable with is extremely hard.
I guarantee that I will be very homesick about noon on Saturday afternoon as I have to miss a routine that I really love and rituals that I find very comforting.
Saturday will be the first home football game of the season for my alma mater Colorado State University. You see, I have been going to games and sitting in the same seats for as long as I can remember (well, besides the 2 years that I spent in Nebraska playing the great game of baseball for as long as I possibly could and the years that I spent watching the games from the student section while attending CSU).
Just to rub it in even more, this is the only game this year that will not be televised nationally.
Many would question why I would want to go to a football game to watch a horrible team play an unknown team in the University of Idaho (CSU finally scored their first touchdown in 3 games last Saturday and have lost 12 games in a row overall). Don't get me wrong, I love watching the game no matter what, but that isn't what I am going to miss on Saturday.
I am going to miss how we blatantly ignore all the parking lot attendants and drive right up against the foothills of the Rocky Mountains to our unofficial official parking spot. I am going to miss saying hi to the guy that tailgates next to our spot every game. I am going to miss my brother's tailgate cooking and I'll miss telling any newcomers the stories of how my buddies battled to see who could make the difficult climb to the Giant A the fastest (there is a large A painted on the hill that overlooks the stadium, it stands for Aggies and is there to honor the original nickname of the school and the school's agricultural heritage).
I am going to miss sitting across the aisle from Jay and discussing all of the reasons why CSU is terrible. I am going to miss listening to Freddy fire up the crowd after every first down, touchdown and big hit. (note: I do not know Jay and Freddy personally but I have enjoyed their company 5-6 times a year for many seasons).
I am really going to miss hanging out in the Former Athletes Lounge at halftime and feeling all sorts of Ram pride knowing that I am able to enjoy a beer and popcorn among the CSU greats because my Dad is one of those CSU greats.
Just as I was starting to get really homesick just thinking about what I am going to be missing I noticed this sign on the door of one of my offices last night (this office is a Starbucks on the upper east side).
I realized that everything I am doing these days is about changing routines, changing rituals. Not an easy concept to grasp for a conservative farm kid.
Being a successful entrepreneur is all about developing ideas that disrupt broken patterns and create change for the better. I have a lot of ideas and every single one of them is about changing a system or a culture.
I am also changing my personal routines, and changing many of them for the better.
The other day I went for a jog and thought that I would run until I got tired. 70 minutes later I decided I had enough. 40 pounds ago I got winded walking up a flight of stairs and then drove two blocks to get some taco bell for dinner.
I've read more books in the last 2 years then I did my first 30 years combined, hell, I've read more books in the last 6 months than I did my first 30 years.
I am enjoying art like I never thought I would. A few weeks back I spent over 4 hours at the Met (no not the Mets) and barely scratched the surface of all the amazing pieces of art that are in the famous museum (this is the same guy that got a D in Art History at Colorado State, not a bad grade considering I only went to class 3 times all semester). This past weekend I was lucky enough to be able to experience and appreciate another amazing art form which is live Broadway Theater.One of the best parts about New York is I can keep trying new foods, discovering new cultures, exploring new arts. There is just a lot of things that are really "new" which is very exciting.
I am changing a lot of things about me these days. Basically I am taking comfort in the fact that I have eliminated many bad rituals and finding some new great ones. But that doesn't mean that all of my old routines and rituals should all be forgotten as some of them are quite perfect.
So if you are going to spend Saturday afternoon in a very empty Hughes Stadium, I hope you still park in the same spot, drink the same beer and enjoy ripping on the terrible play of the CSU offensive line.
If you happen to be the person that is sitting across the aisle from Jay, please enjoy the seat and enjoy the great view. Just don't get too comfortable. I will be back in that seat sooner than you think.
But first I've got to continue to build the framework that will result in millions of people switching their routines just a little bit. I just can't do that without changing my own routines a little bit more, okay a lot more. It is not going to happen overnight but it will happen. The exciting thing is that once it does happen, I will be able to spend a Saturday afternoon doing whatever I want to do and you can bet that 5-6 times a year, that will be catching a football game underneath a giant A.