Fourteeners

Jeff Reed is a problem solver who uses the art of connection to design the future. Awarded 2023 innovation ENTREPRENEUR of the Year, Jeff is a caring leader who is fueled by the unmatched energy of accelerating others. This elevated episode will make you feel like you’re on top of a mountain as we discuss idea navigation, design thinking, mentor madness, long-term content creation, and hiking the finite journey of life.

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Growing the Garden

Hit the trail and plant some seeds with Diana Wright! As the Startup Community Builder for Greater Des Moines Partnership, Diana is a leader who uses the art of connection to evolve the Des Moines startup community, while also weaving webs throughout Iowa and beyond.

Together, we explore building within complex entrepreneurial ecosystems, how to plug into a startup community, the importance of learning from failure, communities of practice, Startup Iowa’s Hot List, and ways ecosystem allies can push through a J Curve by adding diverse energy into the mix.

BONUS: Listen closely to snag a free NFT airdrop or the YDNTB audiobook as well!

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Blocked

“How do you write every week for three years?”

Endless community-driven experiences, the privilege of time, building into connecting things I care about, metrics beyond money, publishing YDNTB, staying curious, finding comfort in uncertainty, and an efficiency that comes with consistency helps me continue to articulate written relics I’ll always be proud of.

Writing has become a part of my practice, but it’s not easy and never will be. Life is beautifully busy and what happens when there’s seemingly nothing to write about?

Can I call it writer’s block and hope nobody cares when Roasted Reflections doesn’t land in their inbox on Wednesday? No. Writer’s block is an illusion. An excuse not to ship. This paralysis is a symptom of prioritization within our practice.

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Don’t wait for inspiration.
Let the work inspire you.

Whether you listen to yourself in private (journalling) or share your heart in public, when you know you’re going to get it done, you become more consciously introspective. You stay more in-tune with what needs to be synthesized, while recursion and the indexing effect helps sustain a healthy obsession. Even when the moment’s thesis is not obvious, you’re strong enough to explore what needs to be said. This becomes a habit that invites anyone to reach higher without fearing the generous act of making a ruckus by shipping the art.

Tinker

This is your invitation to tinker.

The Headline Trap is real, life can feel busy, and we all have existing responsibilities, but take a moment to hold your arm as high as you can. Go ahead, I’ll wait…

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Need fresh ideas?
Try this daily exercise.

…ok, now…hold your arm higher! I bet you found room to push further, eh? This is a fun reminder that we all have more to give. Tinkering requires initiative, but we all have extra gears to help us avoid feeling like we left something on the table. Yes, comfortable feels safe and easy is easy, but why not turn a few knobs to see your idea twinkle?

When we accept an invitation to tinker, financial capital can speed things up, but time is usually the primary capital required. It’s amazing how much happens by showing up and activating a few early moves. While more of everything will be needed to commercialize an idea, thinking about this exploration through an adaptive lens of seasonality also reduces the weight of side hustles.

If you’re having a hard time finding inspiration, force yourself into environments were others are tinkering too. Community events within an entrepreneurial ecosystem can provide energizing human, intellectual, and network capital, but classrooms, makerspaces, hackathons, and coworking spaces are where people are tinkering together.

Whether it’s at home or in the community, tinkering celebrates pure wonder and will nourish your innovative spirit. Even if the answer is “no”, at least you’ll know.

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Things you dedicate time to will grow.