Poke life

To the interviewer’s question

If this was going to be viewed forever by young high school kids and college kids — young entrepreneurs who want to go out and do something while they’re still young. You know, the advantages of doing that. It opened up a whole new gate for other young entrepreneurs. What advice would you give them?

Steve Jobs, who was still working at NeXT at the time, replied the following:

When you grow up you, you tend to get told that the world is the way it is, and your life is just to live your life inside the world.
Try not to bash into the walls too much, try to have a nice family, have fun, save a little money. That’s a very limited life.
Life can be much broader, once you discover one simple fact that everything around you that you call life, was made up by people that were no smarter than you.
And you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use. Once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.

The minute that you understand that you can poke life and actually something will, you know if you push in, something will pop out the other side, that you can change it, you can mold it. That’s maybe the most important thing. It’s to shake off this erroneous notion that life is there, and you’re just gonna live in it, versus embrace it, change it, improve it, make your mark upon it.

I think that’s very important and however you learn that, once you learn it, you’ll want to change life and make it better, cause it’s kind of messed up, in a lot of ways. Once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.
Most people never pick up the phone, most people never ask. And that’s what separates, sometimes, the people that do things from the people that just dream about them.
You gotta act. And you gotta be willing to fail… if you’re afraid of failing, you won’t get very far.”

From Steve Jobs: Secrets of Life , a documentary made in 2009 by the Silicon Valley Historical Association and built around a 20-minute interview Steve Jobs gave in 1994. The background, the phone call that 12-year-old Steve Jobs made to Bill Hewlett (of Hewlett-Packard), can be found at Open Culture, The Marginalian (formerly Brainpickings) or below, in another excerpt from the interview itself.

via @tijs

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