A Mindshift

Posted on July 14, 2020. Filed under: Uncategorized |

After 4 months of pretty remote isolation in the Adirondack Mountains, our family has returned to New York City. We expected the move back to be an adjustment, and it has been. We’re back to making 10x the number of decisions in a day as we figure out our new flow and protocol for living in this denser and quite distinct environment. Something I realized today, that seems to be making things easier, is that “success” in this moment is not just a function of how you act, but also how you think.

The first week of being back, I’d walk around looking at every stranger as an attack vector. I’d keep my distance, cross streets, and generally have a very defensive posture with anyone around me. From a physical safety standpoint, these actions made sense, but this morning I realized that I was turning one of the most beautiful and rich parts of New York City into something very negative. Part of what makes New York special is the interaction with strangers. It’s the texture to a day, which has been unfortunately sanded down in the name of self-preservation and fear.

I didn’t trade open space and mountains for a sterile and isolated city experience. It’s that very interaction and energy that makes the trade worth it, so I’m committed to finding a way to participate. My first shift, which has been very positive has been saying good morning to people I pass on the street. My sense is that when people collide in NY right now, there’s a micro-standoff, as each looks at the other as risk. Rather than lean back, I make eye contact, say good morning, and all fo the sudden that standoff becomes something else much closer to why we are all here.

I think you can lean in at a distance, and so that’s what I’ll be doing from now on.


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    I’m a NYC based investor and entrepreneur. I've started a few companies and a venture capital firm. You can email me at Jordan.Cooper@gmail.com (p.s. i don’t use spell check…deal with it)

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