I’m hosting a Midsummer Madness edition of Sweets and Tweets (only $5) on July 21st, the day before his seminar, from 8 – 9 PM. It’s at the very cool Baked and Wired in DC’s Georgetown. We’ll raise a cupcake to Seth. And some attendees are stepping up to the mike to talk about Linchpins and Lizard Brains. More on that below.
I’m a huge Seth fan and am unabashed about saying so. I’ve known Seth for years, before he became “really famous,” in fact. He’s a lovely guy. In addition to being brilliant and consistently provocative, he is generous and fair-minded. He kindly wrote a “blurb” for the jacket cover of my book, THE CORPORATE BLOGGING BOOK. And, through his blog and his books, has quietly, persistently challenged me – and millions of others (his blog is ranked #1 in the world by Technorati) – to think bigger and to think about making a difference.
Five years ago, I attended one of his New York City workshops. It was in a funky walk-up loft in Chinatown, a perfect setting for his informal, in-your-face presentations. (He served weird vegetarian snacks, which seemed very daring at the time.) He doesn’t pull punches. And if he thinks you’re being boring or uninteresting, he will say so. Politely.
At any rate, I introduced myself and said I wasn’t sure what my “brand” was. He took one look at me and said, “Oh, you should be the Mona Lisa of Blogging.” I tried that for a while. It didn’t really stick but a cute idea nonetheless.
So here comes Seth to Washington DC after publishing another half dozen New York Times bestselling books. I think his latest, LINCHPIN, is his best. He nails a number of provocative, unsettling ideas in LINCHPIN. One is something he calls the Lizard Brain.
After reading his book, I explain it this way: The lizard brain is the primitive, limbic system that overrides everything else in our brain: it is fear, sex, hunger, etc. Especially fear.
And for many of us, myself included, it’s what prevents us from blogging more, writing a new preface, updating a book, crafting a new presentation, etc.
In a word, you have to push through the resistance to defeat your lizard brain and get things done. Shipping, Seth calls it. Just do it. Ship it.
Linchpins – the flip side of the Lizard Brain, as it were – are people who make themselves indispensable in their organization, who don’t wait to be told what to do and who approach their work as if it were “art,” a passion and a creative endeavor as opposed to, well, work. And of course they get things done.