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Steve Jobs

Posted October 6, 2011

Steve Jobs

 

This isn’t a post about Apple, or their product. This is about a man who lived the type of life I want to live, but have not. And may not.

A man who cared about what he did, and pursued it with a fury. Only a fool would believe his goal was to become rich. Being a billionaire was a byproduct. A byproduct of passion, and a relentless refusal to succumb to fear or mediocrity.

A man who would rather lose everything and fail than forget that passion and creativity matter, both in your personal life, but also in business. He wasn’t a financial mogul, or a guy who got lucky in the 70’s and have ridden their billions for the last 25 years without ever pushing creative boundaries. He never stopped trying to improve what he felt was his passion.

I see no purpose in discussing the business he built, and lost, and built again. The only thing I take from yesterday’s news is that a man died who did the thing I wish I could do: care about something enough to make it your life, the thing that feeds your passion and soul. To once again value creativity and vision and passion. And to pursue it so relentlessly that you only stop on the edge of death, when you are physically incapable of doing more.

Anyone would be lucky, blessed, to have the type of drive and passion that he had. In any field or endeavor. It is rare that you can say “For him, it wasn’t about the money.” I believe that 100%.

It was about the drive, the will to succeed, the will to follow what your heart and mind want to follow, and doing it without regard for failing or losing it all. That is the man who died yesterday. Who cares about his company or his money, or even his impact on his industry, or even the world.

All I can see is a man who had a huge impact on his own life, something that most of us will never achieve. What we lost was a man who was an example for giving 100% of your heart to something you care about, regardless of the praise or criticism you will garner.

I’m not going to build the next great computer or operating system or music player or gadget. I’m not ever going to be famous, and very likely never be rich. I just hope that when I am near death, I can look back at something, anything, and be able to say with absolute certainty: “I did my best to pursue something I cared about.” Hopefully I can.

Thanks, Steve, for showing me that someone can remain relentless, creative, and passionate both in the depths of failure and in the heights of success.

Blacktop pavement cover me
Like a chemical reaction or a steam roller
Spreading randomly

There’s a distant buzz and low frequency
It tickles my ear, rumbles under my feet
And it shakes the leaves off of every tree, violently
What pretension, everlasting peace
Everything must cease

Institution on the Hill
Like a beacon in the mind of an ancestor
To ignite a people’s will

There’s a shadowed stain on the west facade
It has spread like decay to enshroud the fraud
And the descendants find it oh so odd
Oh so odd
What pretension everlasting peace
Everything must cease

Grave memorial, hewn white stone
Like the comforting caress of a mother
Or a friend you’ve always known

It evokes such pain and significance
What was once, is reduced to remembrance
And the generations pass without recompense

What pretension everlasting peace
Everything must cease

Rest in Peace.

 

I love all things experience design. I work as a Principal Service Experience Designer at Intuit in Mountain View, CA.

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