Can You Believe It?

I’m going to share a few historical events with you, and then you’ll get to decide which of them is untrue… if you want, feel free to type your answer in the chat.

After getting his very first axe at only six years old, George Washington chopped down a cherry tree and then confessed honestly to his father.

With over one thousand patents to his name, Thomas Edison then invented the lightbulb.

When hearing that the common folk did not have any bread to eat, Marie Antoinette declared, “Let them eat cake!”

Because he refused to acknowledge Austrian authority at the time, William Tell — a local farmer and renowned marksman — was forced to shoot an apple off his son’s head.

Leading up to the American Revolution’s battles of Lexington and Concord, Paul Revere warned people by riding through the streets shouting, “The British are coming! The British are coming!”

Did you figure it out?

Well, apologies for being sneaky but it turns out that none of these are actually true. Feel free to reach out if you want more details, but so as not to leave you completely hanging… it was actually a biographer and pastor named Mason Locke Weems who fabricated the cherry tree story after Washington’s death. Edison — along with a team of people — did work on the bulb, but he only helped to develop someone else’s earlier design. And many historians believe that William Tell never even existed in the first place.

Amazing… entertaining maybe… but there’s something else here for all of us networking entrepreneurs and business owners at Elevate.

It is so tempting to take at face value that which most people hold to be true. But we are leaders. And we need to be critical thinkers.

If you believe in your mind, heart, and being that something is worth design, creation, implementation or simple pursuit, don’t let anyone stop you.

William James said, “Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they’ve got a second. Give your dreams all you’ve got and you’ll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you.”

But we also have to be mindful to not have the “Tyranny of the Majority,” fuel us. You can look no further than a crypto currency — like FTX — and the highly significant losses, even by celebrities with the inside scoop!

What we think, what we believe, and even simply what we have come to trust that we know, is subject to many factors. We need to consider not only the message but the context. The source, the intention, the bias.

I’m not saying that you should fact check every byte of data that comes across your screen of consciousness. But we do need to pay attention. And to distinguish between what we genuinely know to be so and what we’ve just heard… maybe even overheard.

So pay attention, do your due diligence, know your sources, and go fiercely after your dreams.

You got this far. And there’s so much more to come.

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