Wordcamp Opening Keynote: Seven Stories, One Point with Chris Lema

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At 9:15am on 4/22/2017, I attended Where’s The Wordcamp Opening Keynote, presented by Chris Lema, at the 2017 Wordcamp Conference in Raleigh, NC

Wordcamp Opening Remarks: Seven Stories, One Point

Opening remarks were given by Ben Merideth, and Chris Lema immediately began with a story. A texi driver saw smoke and called the fire department, who had already received 6 calls. There were no sprinklers, no clearly marked exits. 10 people died. People from the 6th, 5th, 4th, 3rd, 1st floor were easily evacuated. the 10 were trapped in the bathroom on the 2nd floor. It was not an issue of evacuation, windows or bars, but what was it that caused the problem.

Here he stopped the story, and gave a small motivational talk about how easy it can be to get intimidated. And there is really no reason for that. lunch was the hardest– because he didn’t know anyone. Its easy to be intimidated because you don’t know or are unsure. All of that is normal. Its easy to get intimidated. Here’s seven stories with one point.

In the community, you will find people who are smarter than you, disappointed in you, ignoring you. Chris grew up with a brother who was smarter than him. In the workplace, we see people smarter than us all the time. the important point is to avoid the negative self-talk. There are people within any community who will have expectations that you cannot hit. Certain expectations are good. Others are not. Especially when the expectations are based only on someone else’s expectations when they don’t know you. Others may ignore you. In the community, it is easy to be intimidated when the situation is awkward.

There will be people who highlight your mistakes. Turning on debugging is like bringing in your worst nagging. After dropping a plug-in, he was given numerous mistakes in return. This is especially true in the opensource community. People will take any chance to make adjustments. You can’t take that specifically to your heart. Don’t forget that you can delete comments. At Chrislema.com I used to think that was wrong. But if you want to pontificate, go somewhere else. Others will hustle more than you. A friend runs wpbeginner.com , and he’s 20yrs younger than him. People push harder, work harder, than you. You should be able to hustle smarter, or just less, but that’s ok. Others will disagree with you. 6 months ago, Chris quit his job at Crowd Favorite. Others disagreed, telling him that he can’t quit a job while you have no plan. He took about 9 months with cigars in hot tubs. There are tons of problems that open source isn’t solving. Its hard to find free workers on large projects when there’s no payout at the end. Everyone says “There’s no way”. So he joined a hosting company called Liquid Web. He gave them a roadmap and they agreed.

THe point here is that there’s always going to be someone who disagrees. The suggestion or trick here? GET INVOLVED. Get involved and keep showing up. All the stress and narratives go away. “When its your turn to be picked, you have to be within pointing distance”. You have to go to where the action is, because at some point the older people die off. And you have to be in pointing distance, keep showing up. Don’t get distracted, don’t copy/paste. without context, its all a sham.

Comparison Kills

Why did they die in the restaurant n 1979? why would they have a problem exiting the restaurant? it was 1:30pm. THey had eaten their lunch, but hadn’t gotten their bills. THey didn’t want to be first to leave. The peer pressure caused the smoke inhalation to kill them. Comparison kills. If it doesn’t kill you physically, it can kill you emotionally. Don’t let comparison or someone else’s ideas govern what you can or can’t do.

Its easy to get intimidated, let someone’s beliefs or actions get you down. THis can be intimidating, but comparison kills and this is your show. Engage, get involved, and you’ll defeat that intimidation.

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