How To Make It as a
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How to Make it as a First-Time Entrepreneur

Odysseus resisting the Sirens

Vinicius Vacanti is co-founder and CEO of Yipit. Next posts on how to acquire users for free and how to raise a Series A. Don’t miss them by subscribing via email or via twitter.

On my three year startup journey that lead to Yipit, I had over 30 other completely unrelated ideas. Each time I got the idea, I would immediately start sweating profusely for three straight hours in a ridiculous state of unbridled excitement and optimism. Sounds great, right? Not really. Those new ideas and the emotional frenzy were a serious distraction.

To be clear, the “ideas” I’m referring to are the ones that have nothing to do with your current startup. Switching your startup’s focus to a related area based on what you’ve learned (i.e. pivoting) is a winning strategy and one that Yipit employed twice.  This post also assumes that you are and have been actively working on an idea.  If you haven’t started yet, experimenting with new ideas is a great way to start.

In our case, Yipit had always been about organizing local information and we had been working on it for a while. But, along the way, we spent significant time on other unrelated ideas including:

  • Social version of delicious (summer of 2007)
  • Tool to recommend the best version of the online video you were currently watching (spring 2008)
  • 140it.com: Bookmarklett that smartly shortens your tweet to less than 140 characters. Over 350K tweets shrunk (spring 2009)
  • UnHub.com:  2-minute personal website creation using your existing third party profiles. 10K accounts, 40K monthly unique visitors (spring 2009)

I now think of these new ideas as the Sirens of the startup journey. If you listen to their call, your startup journey will cease to make progress. Each of these projects were serious distractions from our initial vision of organizing local information.

The Temptation

To understand why these new ideas can be so tempting, I refer you to the incredibly insightful startup transition cycle.

The gist is that when you have a new exciting idea, you are in a state of “uninformed optimism”.  As you spend more time on the idea and start learning about all of the issues, you get into a state of “informed pessimism”.  This is a bad state that eventually leads you to a “crisis of meaning” where you either turn the corner into “informed optimism” or crash and burn.

Most startups are in “informed pessimism” and heading to a “crisis of meaning”. And, that’s when the Sirens start calling with new exciting and unrelated ideas.  Those new ideas are tempting because they are still in the “uninformed optimism” stage and seem so much better than your current idea.  I fell for it several times.

The Danger

Your ability to become a successful entrepreneur is about taking your current “informed pessimism” idea and turning the corner into “informed optimism”.  If every time you get to the disappointing “informed pessimism” stage, you impatiently hop back to a new idea at “uninformed optimism”, you’ll get caught in a never ending cycle. You have to be patient long enough with your idea to see if you are able to turn the corner.

The Solution

I finally learned to resist these new ideas after reading Tim Ferriss’s post. I now see those ideas for what they really are, “uninformed optimism” ideas. They may seem amazing but you just don’t know about all the issues associated with them.

So, if you are in the “informed pessimism” stage, either plug your ears or tie yourself to the masthead like Odysseus and keep working on your current idea.  Don’t be seduced by the Siren call of that exciting but shallow unrelated idea.

Vinicius Vacanti is co-founder and CEO of Yipit. Next posts on how to acquire users for free and how to raise a Series A. Don’t miss them by subscribing via email or via twitter.

  • http://blog.jwegener.com Jonathan Wegener

    Beautiful. As someone with entrepreneurial A.D.D. this post really hit home. Your 'grass is always greener' argument is an interesting one. But there's another point to make — the more you work at something, the more effective you become at it. I remember reading a fantastic post (which I can't find anymore..) about how a startup is like a giant gyroscope. When you begin, you're pushing it from a standstill it's incredibly hard and exhausting. The more you keep pushing the same gyroscope, the faster and faster it starts spinning and the more stable it gets.I've always loved that Tim Ferriss graph.Btw, there's a nice presentation from Max Ventilla (aardvark co-founder) about how they spent time building and prototyping completely unrelated ideas before aardvark came about (slide 15 of http://www.slideshare.net/startuplessonslearned… )Would you say your earlier ideas (140it, unhub) were a distraction? Or were they valuable learning experiences? It seems to me that you gained execution experience and learned how to work with your co-founder better so that when the REAL opportunity came along, you were ready for it.

  • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

    Great comment and love that aardvark presentation. 140it and UnHub were definite distractions but also great learning experiences. The farther along you are on working on a project, the less you can afford to be distracted by a side project.

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  • http://blog.jwegener.com Jonathan Wegener

    Beautiful. As someone with entrepreneurial A.D.D. this post really hit home. Your ‘grass is always greener’ argument is an interesting one. But there’s another point to make — the more you work at something, the more effective you become at it. I remember reading a fantastic post (which I can’t find anymore..) about how a startup is like a giant gyroscope. When you begin, you’re pushing it from a standstill it’s incredibly hard and exhausting. The more you keep pushing the same gyroscope, the faster and faster it starts spinning and the more stable it gets.I’ve always loved that Tim Ferriss graph.Btw, there’s a nice presentation from Max Ventilla (aardvark co-founder) about how they spent time building and prototyping completely unrelated ideas before aardvark came about (slide 13 of http://www.slideshare.net/startuplessonslearned… )Would you say your earlier ideas (140it, unhub) were a distraction? Or were they valuable learning experiences? It seems to me that you gained execution experience and learned how to work with your co-founder better so that when the REAL opportunity came along, you were ready for it.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Great comment and love that aardvark presentation. 140it and UnHub were definite distractions but also great learning experiences.

      The farther along you are on working on a project, the less you can afford to be distracted by a side project.

  • http://blog.jwegener.com Jonathan Wegener

    Beautiful. As someone with entrepreneurial A.D.D. this post really hit home. Your ‘grass is always greener’ argument is an interesting one. But there’s another point to make — the more you work at something, the more effective you become at it. I remember reading a fantastic post (which I can’t find anymore..) about how a startup is like a giant gyroscope. When you begin, you’re pushing it from a standstill it’s incredibly hard and exhausting. The more you keep pushing the same gyroscope, the faster and faster it starts spinning and the more stable it gets.I’ve always loved that Tim Ferriss graph.Btw, there’s a nice presentation from Max Ventilla (aardvark co-founder) about how they spent time building and prototyping completely unrelated ideas before aardvark came about (slide 13 of http://www.slideshare.net/startuplessonslearned… )Would you say your earlier ideas (140it, unhub) were a distraction? Or were they valuable learning experiences? It seems to me that you gained execution experience and learned how to work with your co-founder better so that when the REAL opportunity came along, you were ready for it.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Great comment and love that aardvark presentation. 140it and UnHub were definite distractions but also great learning experiences.

      The farther along you are on working on a project, the less you can afford to be distracted by a side project.

  • http://gumption.typepad.com Joe McCarthy

    I've been through all points of the curve (including #4, Crash & Burn).I think it is important to stay focused, but I also think it's important – and sometimes difficult – to be able to distinguish between unrelated distractions and potential pivot points (a la Eric Ries). Outside of the technology realm, in “Pour Your Heart Into It”, Howard Schultz also talks about the importance of identifying – and staying true to – the core of your business, while being willing and able to adjust to changing conditions that do not require compromising the core.Finally, your curve reminds me of the idea and imagery of Dark Nights of the Soul, which apply to writing a novel, building a company and many other creative endeavors.

  • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

    Totally agree on the comment about pivoting. Yipit has done that several times.Liked Dark Nights of the Soul but wish the ending had a little more optimism in it.

  • http://gumption.typepad.com Joe McCarthy

    I’ve been through all points of the curve (including #4, Crash & Burn).

    I think it is important to stay focused, but I also think it’s important – and sometimes difficult – to be able to distinguish between unrelated distractions and potential pivot points (a la Eric Ries).

    Outside of the technology realm, in “Pour Your Heart Into It”, Howard Schultz also talks about the importance of identifying – and staying true to – the core of your business, while being willing and able to adjust to changing conditions that do not require compromising the core.

    Finally, your curve reminds me of the idea and imagery of Dark Nights of the Soul, which apply to writing a novel, building a company and many other creative endeavors.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Totally agree on the comment about pivoting. Yipit has done that several times.

      Liked Dark Nights of the Soul but wish the ending had a little more optimism in it.

  • http://gumption.typepad.com Joe McCarthy

    I’ve been through all points of the curve (including #4, Crash & Burn).

    I think it is important to stay focused, but I also think it’s important – and sometimes difficult – to be able to distinguish between unrelated distractions and potential pivot points (a la Eric Ries).

    Outside of the technology realm, in “Pour Your Heart Into It”, Howard Schultz also talks about the importance of identifying – and staying true to – the core of your business, while being willing and able to adjust to changing conditions that do not require compromising the core.

    Finally, your curve reminds me of the idea and imagery of Dark Nights of the Soul, which apply to writing a novel, building a company and many other creative endeavors.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Totally agree on the comment about pivoting. Yipit has done that several times.

      Liked Dark Nights of the Soul but wish the ending had a little more optimism in it.

  • Perry Grob

    Oh it's all too much BS for me…

  • Perry Grob

    Oh it’s all too much BS for me…

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Just trying to put a framework around the emotions.

  • Perry Grob

    Oh it’s all too much BS for me…

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Just trying to put a framework around the emotions.

  • http://innonate.com/ innonate

    Epic post, brother.

  • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

    Thanks, Nate!

  • http://innonate.com/ innonate

    Epic post, brother.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Thanks, Nate!

  • http://innonate.com/ Nate Westheimer

    Epic post, brother.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Thanks, Nate!

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  • http://wtfjeans.com Sanja Rastovac

    A friend of mine has posted this text today at twitter. I've just told him that I'll print it, frame it, and put it on mine and my partner's desk.We're at the point No.3 “Crisis of meaning”: whether it'll be 4 or 5 depends on investors, whether we'll find them or not.We've had periods when my partner had a “great, new” business idea almost every day! Every single day! :)) Somehow, he was eventually “returning” to our project, but I completely understand why he was doing that. It was just because it was easier to find “new, shiny toy” then to face the problems. ;)Great text. Thank you!

  • http://wtfjeans.com Sanja Rastovac

    A friend of mine has posted this text today at twitter. I’ve just told him that I’ll print it, frame it, and put it on mine and my partner’s desk.
    We’re at the point No.3 “Crisis of meaning”: whether it’ll be 4 or 5 depends on investors, whether we’ll find them or not.

    We’ve had periods when my partner had a “great, new” business idea almost every day! Every single day! :)) Somehow, he was eventually “returning” to our project, but I completely understand why he was doing that. It was just because it was easier to find “new, shiny toy” then to face the problems. ;)

    Great text. Thank you!

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Sanja, glad you found it helpful. I hope you guys are able to turn the corner. If not, sounds like you have plenty of other good ideas to try.

  • http://wtfjeans.com Sanja Rastovac

    A friend of mine has posted this text today at twitter. I’ve just told him that I’ll print it, frame it, and put it on mine and my partner’s desk.
    We’re at the point No.3 “Crisis of meaning”: whether it’ll be 4 or 5 depends on investors, whether we’ll find them or not.

    We’ve had periods when my partner had a “great, new” business idea almost every day! Every single day! :)) Somehow, he was eventually “returning” to our project, but I completely understand why he was doing that. It was just because it was easier to find “new, shiny toy” then to face the problems. ;)

    Great text. Thank you!

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Sanja, glad you found it helpful. I hope you guys are able to turn the corner. If not, sounds like you have plenty of other good ideas to try.

  • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

    Sanja, glad you found it helpful. I hope you guys are able to turn the corner. If not, sounds like you have plenty of other good ideas to try.

  • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

    Just trying to put a framework around the emotions.

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  • http://twitter.com/TpstryWeb Tpstry

    We’re currently in the middle of figuring out if a new idea is a good pivot, or just a distraction. I guess time will tell which is the right direction.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      If the idea isn’t related to your current idea and it doesn’t involve learnings from potential users, then it isn’t a pivot; it’s just a new venture.

  • http://twitter.com/TpstryWeb Tpstry

    We’re currently in the middle of figuring out if a new idea is a good pivot, or just a distraction. I guess time will tell which is the right direction.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      If the idea isn’t related to your current idea and it doesn’t involve learnings from potential users, then it isn’t a pivot; it’s just a new venture.

  • http://twitter.com/L1AD LIAD

    great post. we’ve all been there and it sucks.
    when you’re in the thick of things – the grass is always greener

    the skill is knowing whether informed pessimism is the real deal and not just plowing on regardless hoping to hit informed optimism

    • http://www.victusspiritus.com/ Mark Essel

      Otherwise known as: informed pessimism doesn’t always turn up for a team, and you have to pull the plug and move on at some point.

      • http://www.pdxbrain.com Tyler

        good article, thnx mark. lul i love the top image

      • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

        pulling the plug is a really hard decision to make. I think it comes down to when you stop learning from your users.

  • http://twitter.com/L1AD LIAD

    great post. we’ve all been there and it sucks.
    when you’re in the thick of things – the grass is always greener

    the skill is knowing whether informed pessimism is the real deal and not just plowing on regardless hoping to hit informed optimism

    • http://www.victusspiritus.com/ Mark Essel

      Otherwise known as: informed pessimism doesn’t always turn up for a team, and you have to pull the plug and move on at some point.

      • http://www.pdxbrain.com Tyler

        good article, thnx mark. lul i love the top image

      • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

        pulling the plug is a really hard decision to make. I think it comes down to when you stop learning from your users.

  • http://profitably.com Graham Siener

    Good thing you didn’t work on that social version of delicious — now you’ve got the chance to buy the original!

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Haha

  • http://profitably.com Graham Siener

    Good thing you didn’t work on that social version of delicious — now you’ve got the chance to buy the original!

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Haha

  • http://twitter.com/Michielvv Michiel vVlaardingen

    I do very much recognize this. Only when you are just far enough into such a quick sidetrack idea that you can’t drop it anymore, you discover how much effort it is really going to take to get anyway near the level you need.

    I’ve also found out, that it does not just hold for unrelated sidetrack projects, it is often also very true for a lot of features on the main track. Just, because it’s a great idea, doesn’t mean it will contribute to convincing new customers.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      So many unfinished projects out there because people get distracted by the new shiny project.

  • http://twitter.com/Michielvv Michiel vVlaardingen

    I do very much recognize this. Only when you are just far enough into such a quick sidetrack idea that you can’t drop it anymore, you discover how much effort it is really going to take to get anyway near the level you need.

    I’ve also found out, that it does not just hold for unrelated sidetrack projects, it is often also very true for a lot of features on the main track. Just, because it’s a great idea, doesn’t mean it will contribute to convincing new customers.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      So many unfinished projects out there because people get distracted by the new shiny project.

  • Anonymous

    Couldn’t have explained it better myself. Thanks for sharing, great post.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Thanks!

  • Anonymous

    Couldn’t have explained it better myself. Thanks for sharing, great post.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Thanks!

  • http://twitter.com/AeroSuch Nick Such

    My cofounders and I defer the Sirens to a “Startup Weekend ideas” google doc. This helps us to avoid getting stuck in the loop, while sufficiently assuaging our anxiety over missing out on an opportunity.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Love that idea. I have also been writing down the ideas. I know Chris Dixon does the same. Seems like it does help with the anxiety.

      • Dad

        I have three lists/buckets for every project:  Current, Next, Someday/Maybe.   Having a place to put things you aren’t going to do immediately really helps let go of them and focus back on the Current bucket.

  • http://twitter.com/AeroSuch Nick Such

    My cofounders and I defer the Sirens to a “Startup Weekend ideas” google doc. This helps us to avoid getting stuck in the loop, while sufficiently assuaging our anxiety over missing out on an opportunity.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Love that idea. I have also been writing down the ideas. I know Chris Dixon does the same. Seems like it does help with the anxiety.

  • http://twitter.com/rondimon Ron Dimon

    Great insight – I find the transition curve can also be true for projects, consulting engagements, training sessions, etc.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Haven’t thought about it applied to other areas. Perhaps you could write about it?

  • http://twitter.com/rondimon Ron Dimon

    Great insight – I find the transition curve can also be true for projects, consulting engagements, training sessions, etc.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Haven’t thought about it applied to other areas. Perhaps you could write about it?

  • http://www.thecuriousentrepreneur.com Andrew Skotzko

    Fantastic post. Thank you.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Thanks!

  • http://skotzko.com AndrewSkotzko

    Fantastic post. Thank you.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Thanks!

  • http://twitter.com/nathankojak Nathan Kojak

    Top shelf. Sometimes its really hard to stay focused 100% so that your idea gets the shot it really deserves.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Other newer ideas seem so tempting because they don’t yet have all the problems your current idea has.

  • http://twitter.com/nathankojak Nathan Kojak

    Top shelf. Sometimes its really hard to stay focused 100% so that your idea gets the shot it really deserves.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Other newer ideas seem so tempting because they don’t yet have all the problems your current idea has.

  • kolinko

    Amazing post. You beautifully said what I was thinking many times.

    It’s great to know that many others have fallen for the same trap.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Many, *many* others have fallen for the same trap.

  • kolinko

    Amazing post. You beautifully said what I was thinking many times.

    It’s great to know that many others have fallen for the same trap.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      Many, *many* others have fallen for the same trap.

  • http://www.howardlindzon.com howardlindzon

    data and big accounts take all the pressure off :)

    it’s just not easy otherwise.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      definitely not easy.

  • http://www.howardlindzon.com howardlindzon

    data and big accounts take all the pressure off :)

    it’s just not easy otherwise.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      definitely not easy.

  • http://www.knyshov.com Leonid S. Knyshov

    That makes sense. I would clarify that building a prototype and getting first customers is really likely to be the beginning of informed optimism stage. Once on that path, unrelated ideas are extremely distracting. I divert these distractions into a mindmap, very quickly do a rough feasibility analysis (I converted lean startup framework into a mindmap a long time ago :)), and usually let them sit in that mindmap perpetually. Occasionally, I share a few of these files with friends who want ideas. Some ideas can become add-on products for my core product.

    Uninformed optimism – initial idea, customer conversations
    Informed pessimism – competitor research, not in-depth
    Informed optimism – after competitor research and customer discussions, figure out initial feature set and start building

    I have a couple of other things cooking, but they are based on my core technology and it’s the core technology that is my absolute priority.

    Edit: Try http://mind42.com for a way to edit mindmaps in browser and collaboratively. It also imports/exports Freemind and other file formats. It’s free. :) Small warning – no https, so don’t use it on an unsecured network like Starbucks.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      I like the idea of using a mindmap.

  • http://www.knyshov.com Leonid S. Knyshov

    That makes sense. I would clarify that building a prototype and getting first customers is really likely to be the beginning of informed optimism stage. Once on that path, unrelated ideas are extremely distracting.

    I have a couple of other things cooking, but they are based on my core technology and it’s the core technology that is my absolute priority.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      I like the idea of using a mindmap.

  • http://twitter.com/lushfun lushfun

    like the graph

  • http://twitter.com/lushfun crimson

    like the graph

  • http://www.venufinder.com Kathy

    Love the chart – exactly how my mind works when an idea pops up every week

  • http://www.venufinder.com Kathy

    Love the chart – exactly how my mind works when an idea pops up every week

  • http://www.mercenaire.net/blog/ Thierry BEZIER

    well look at Loïc le Meur; he started Seesmic as a video based company and then made seesmic a client for twitter and social network…. looks like “new ideas” worked out for him

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      At a certain point, you have to give up on your idea. Knowing when is very hard to do but I think it’s when you stop learning from your customers. You hit dead-ends. I do think most people give up too early on their idea because they distracted by new ideas.

  • http://www.mercenaire.net/blog/ Thierry BEZIER

    well look at Loïc le Meur; he started Seesmic as a video based company and then made seesmic a client for twitter and social network…. looks like “new ideas” worked out for him

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      At a certain point, you have to give up on your idea. Knowing when is very hard to do but I think it’s when you stop learning from your customers. You hit dead-ends. I do think most people give up too early on their idea because they distracted by new ideas.

  • http://home.dei.polimi.it/mbrambil Marco Brambilla

    I was wondering whether the shape of the Transition Curve graph could have anything to do with the hype cycle (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hype_cycle). Although the latter is meant to represent adoption, I think yours is somehow describing attitudes and it’s very correlated.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      I think there are 1000′s of new idea curves that get triggered with the new technology. When you put all those curves together and average them, you probably get the hype cycle curve.

  • Anonymous

    I was wondering whether the shape of the graph could have anything to do with the hype cycle (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hype_cycle). Although the latter is meant to represent adoption, I think yours is somehow describing attitudes and it’s very correlated.

    • http://viniciusvacanti.com Vinicius Vacanti

      I think there are 1000′s of new idea curves that get triggered with the new technology. When you put all those curves together and average them, you probably get the hype cycle curve.

  • JJEDE

    Interesting. A way to state you Transition Curve would be….”If I new what I know now I would have never done it”…..and you crash and burn or you or luckily it worked out.

    Meaning most people have no idea what they are getting into when they start an idea/business

  • JJEDE

    Interesting. A way to state you Transition Curve would be….”If I new what I know now I would have never done it”…..and you crash and burn or you or luckily it worked out.

    Meaning most people have no idea what they are getting into when they start an idea/business

  • Pennellshane

    Thanks for this post, we too are at the Crisis of Meaning stage and working on turning the corner.

    You are so right that new ideas are easy to sway your thinking as they are so much more exciting. All that has kept us on the same path is I read a long time ago that truly successful entrepreneur’s make quick decisions and change them slowly

  • Pennellshane

    Thanks for this post, we too are at the Crisis of Meaning stage and working on turning the corner.

    You are so right that new ideas are easy to sway your thinking as they are so much more exciting. All that has kept us on the same path is I read a long time ago that truly successful entrepreneur’s make quick decisions and change them slowly

  • http://crowdbooster.com/ Ricky Yean

    Great post. The transition curve really caught my attention. The crisis of meaning could take a while. I would love to see more founders share stories about this stage of their startup.

    Thanks for writing this.

  • http://crowdbooster.com/ Ricky Yean

    Great post. The transition curve really caught my attention. The crisis of meaning could take a while. I would love to see more founders share stories about this stage of their startup.

    Thanks for writing this.

  • http://twitter.com/avclark Adam Clark

    Hey man, great post. I’ve gone through this cycle so many times in my life. You should do a follow up on how to move through the crisis of meaning to informed optimism.

  • http://twitter.com/avclark Adam Clark

    Hey man, great post. I’ve gone through this cycle so many times in my life. You should do a follow up on how to move through the crisis of meaning to informed optimism.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Alex-Krol/1610666320 Alex Krol

    It’s really truth. I lost at least 25 years while I understate your post: Those new ideas and the emotional frenzy were a serious distraction. I think it’s so seriously problem for creative people involved into startup, it possible start-up command needs special role, called tracker who responsible for strong focus.  

  • Dad

    I can’t help mentally changing the labels on this graph to make it appropriate to dating, marriage and going from romantic new love to sustainable long-term partnership (marriage).  So hilarious and yet so painfully apropos.   :-D

  • http://prettygraph.com/ Hrishi Mittal

    I think I’m finally crossing over to phase 5. It’s amazing how accurately that graph describes my journey.

  • http://twitter.com/mufumbo Rafael Sanches

    Print a big banner and put in your front: FOCUS