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"Y'all Gon' Have to Watch Us Eat": Fables for the Thriving Entrepreneur

Updated: Apr 2, 2020

Here's a quick post for the entrepreneur who has been pushing, striving, working hard, experiencing success, embracing failures, re-evaluating plans and doing everything they have to do to make their vision a reality while often times feeling alone. This message is also for the entrepreneur who struggled to find genuine support during the "lifting" phase but now as the investment of sweat and tears is beginning to pay off they are starting to see all of those who "couldn't" start to drift back around.

Who remembers the fables that we used to learn as children? Like, the Aesop's fable about the grasshopper and the ant? Or the one about the hen and her bread? Well the hen and her bread is the fable that was almost SPECIFICALLY written for the rising entrepreneur... we just never knew it.

In this story a hen finds some seeds. She asks her friends who will help her to plant these seeds and not ONE was willing to get down and dirty. So the hen did it herself. After wheat sprouts up from the seeds, the hen asks her friends again who will help her cut the wheat down and take it to the mill. Nobody budged. So she cut the wheat, took it to the mill, ground it into flour and lugged the bag back by herself. By this point, she's exhausted but she knows this flour could be something greater so she asks "Who will help me bake the flour into bread?" And of course, none were willing to lift a paw (it's a farm). After she finishes baking the bread she asks "Who will help me eat the bread?" Suddenly, everyone has time that day and they are more than willing to help her eat that bread. Her response: "No. I will." And she ate the bread alone. (And I believe they watched her eat).

While that analogy is likely pretty obvious, I'm going to break it down a bit more just in case. As entrepreneurs, we have a unique understanding of what it means to be "making something out of nothing." We take "vision" which is essentially just an idea and breathe life into, manifesting its' greatness in the process. This requires investment of self, money, energy, time, commitment, etc. Further, it often requires that we push past points of exhaustion when we aren't sure we have anything left to give. And we often find ourselves breaking the mold on who we are and elevating into something greater just to achieve the vision. And while there are some who put their full support behind our efforts and desire only to see our success, there are also others who just could not be bothered when the seeds were being sown and the vision was being lugged down its path to accomplishment.