A reality marred with blindness

Posted on May 10, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized |

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For the first time in months I find myself on a quiet train ride, no work, no girlfriend, no family…just my headphones and a print edition of the New York Times…it’s a different experience reading a newspaper cover to cover. In an age of scanning headlines and tweets…subconsciously pulling out and engaging only with the content that somehow seems relevant to me…there is a joy and bliss in reading a completely unfiltered…seemingly irrelevant collection of articles word by word with no regard for time or efficiency or practical application.

As I reflect on what I have read today I am reminded of something that I already knew but easily forget in the day to day hustle…which is that there are 7 billion realities in this world…and each person’s has the same depth and volume as the one that feels so fucking important and significant to me. I don’t know why we weren’t given the ability to hold empathy for all 7 billion realities in our consciousness…simultaneously…but we weren’t. Perhaps it would be immobilizing…somehow we were designed to maintain self importance because without it purpose and forward movement would be challenging to muster? Is it possible to raise venture capital while considering the family in California who sells homemade ice pops on the side of the freeway in order to avoid homelessness? The two seem irreconcilable when held in conciousness at the same moment. The success of Wildcard doesn’t mean shit to that family. They have no room for empathy around my challenges…and vice versa the fate of that family…in the moment of day to day doesn’t mean anything to me. I will forget about them tomorrow as I have the countless other realities that I drop into for a moment and then can’t maintain space for over time. Of course I do care…now…when I sit on this train with this free space in my head and my heart to consider their realty…but I’ve chosen…as most have…to allow myself to remain self absorbed in the name of my own realty and own interests. Sure I will pop out…move between contexts…volunteer or donate…but at the end of the day it seems there is no place for Sudan in a day filled with scaleable card creation…reconciliation of disparate card schemas and the implications of deep linking on reengagement vs. discovery…there is something to be said for focus…it’s what gets us where we want to go…but I can’t help but think with all this focus that we are somehow loosing focus…I subscribe to an idea that we were all designed to do something here…that each individual has a role to realize in a pretty complex and loosely choreographed 7 billion person dance…and it feels like I am making decisions in line with what I was put here to do…but even in full resolve that I am doing the right thing with my life…I can’t help but feel as though I am living in a reality marred with blindness.

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2 Responses to “A reality marred with blindness”

RSS Feed for Jordan Cooper's Blog: startups, venture capital, etc… Comments RSS Feed

There are just a few things that humans are hardwired to do, the two biggies are 1) fucking and 2) being charitable. Interesting that they of are on opposite sides of the self and the universe spectrum.

As entrepreneurs, there’s a strong desire to solve problems and make an impact on millions of people’s lives. This is a good thing, but it can also make you feel sick when you see problems that you simply don’t have the time, ability or resources to solve. This leads you to the question – am I trying to solve the “right” problems? Wildcard doesn’t mean anything to the family selling ice pops on the street to avoid homelessness, but that doesn’t mean it can’t have a positive impact on millions of peoples lives (or help further other companies that will have a direct impact on that family’s life).

If the goal is to have a positive impact on as many people’s lives as possible, then entrepreneurs should spend their time working on ideas for which they have the greatest ability to accomplish this difficult goal. Empathy is obviously a great thing, but if you try to solve all problems, you will end up solving none.


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    About

    I’m a NYC based investor and entrepreneur. I think there is one metric that can be used to measure the value of a human life and that’s impact. How did you change things? How many people did you touch? How different is the world because you lived in it and how positive was the change that you affected? (p.s. i don’t use spell check…deal with it) You can email me at Jordan.Cooper@gmail.com

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