What Thoreau Can Teach Us About Sales & Marketing

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What Thoreau Can Teach Us About Sales & Marketing

I probably read it in junior high or high school, but I certainly don’t remember much about Walden, by Henry David Thoreau. Most people have at least heard of the book by the infamous transcendentalist, but if you’re like me, you only know the general theme:

Thoreau decides to live an extremely simple life and tells his story about the experience.

I decided to read Walden recently, and I’m glad I did.

There was one particular quote that stood out to me: “What a man thinks of himself, that it is which determines, or rather indicates, his fate.”

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It’s amazing what your mind can do, isn’t it? Think of something like fear: it’s a completely irrational thing; it’s anticipation of something that may or may not happen. What about worry or anxiety? Those are both emotions based completely on things we have zero control over, and, similar to fear, we typically worry about things that “might” happen. Crazy, right!?!

So, what does this have to do with sales and marketing?

What you think…how you perceive yourself, your product, your company, your competition, your market…”that it is which determines, or rather indicates” your fate.

Think the market for your product is poor right now? Then it is.

Think your customer service isn’t as good as it should be? Then it isn’t.

Think you’re interrupting when you make a cold call? Then you are.

On the flip side…


Think you bring value to the people you work with? Then you do.

Think you’re above the petty arguments and negativity all around you? Then you are.

Think your product is the “cure for your industry’s cancer?” Then it is.

The point is this: The way you think determines your reality.

This applies to your personal life, as well as your professional life. So, think good thoughts. Convince yourself that YOU ARE AWESOME and YOUR BUSINESS IS AWESOME and YOUR CUSTOMERS ARE AWESOME and YOUR FAMILY IS AWESOME and YOUR LIFE IS AWESOME!

And, when you think this way, these thoughts will “determine, or rather indicate” your fate.

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