Why You Absolutely, Positively Must Come to the ExitEvent Startup Social - 1

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Why You Absolutely, Positively Must Come to the ExitEvent Startup Social - 1
See, the thing of it is, there's no reason you have to be at the next ExitEvent Social. And by "next," I mean this Monday, August 19th, at 6:00 p.m. in downtown Durham. It's our 20th, which is kind of a milestone, and ancient in startup years.

But I'll tell you why you should show up and, in that, I'm hoping I can nudge every entrepreneur within driving distance to turn out. Every one of you, at every stage, from the big shot hot names to the ones who just made their first sale last week. There are already RSVPs from over 80 early-stage and late-stage entrepreneurs, plus a couple of investors.

My past 30-days has been, or would be in any other shoes, an absolute nightmare. It's been 12-16 hour days, every day, including weekends, including scheduled all-hands 16-hour days once a week with my team (who I am sure don't hate me... yet). We've got huge projects underway, with immovable, unmissable deadlines -- and I've got other stuff in the hopper as well.

It's fun!

I'm being somewhat facetious. Because despite all you hear about the fascination with entrepreneurs working long hours and playing just as hard, the human body and brain were not meant to do this.

I should have lost my mind a week ago. And in fact, I'm getting close -- dropping emails, forgetting names, showing up late -- things that aren't normally me.

Sound familiar? Good. Let's move on.

This kind of thing happens, especially at startups. But there are three items that, no matter what, I'm making sure that I check off during this hot period.

1) Hear about my kids' days - every day.
2) Run - every day.
3) Schedule a Startup Social, even though I had to shift three other things around to be able to hold it this month.

This list isn't set up to tug heartstrings, shamelessly drop hints about my active lifestyle, or get you to the Social (wait - yes, I want to get you to the Social).

It's strategic. The first item is who I'm ultimately doing all this for, the second one is how I'm getting it done, and the final one is who I'm doing this with - and that last one is crucial.

Simply put, entrepreneurship is a lonely battle, and all the advice you can read and follow and Quora about how to get from point A to point B -- it's nice and all -- but it's your peers that are going to get you there. They're the ones with the answers, they're the ones who will remind you that this isn't about valuation or technical issues or risk or networking. It's about building your company.

I thought about all of this yesterday right before I went running. I didn't want to run. I really REALLY didn't want to run. And in fact, I had no business running. I had 19 things I needed to get done immediately if not sooner.

But I realized, again, that those days when I absolutely, positively can not run are the days I need to run the most, the days I had better run, and the days I get the most out of the run.

I like to think of the Startup Social as your entrepreneurial run. Come get it, because even if you can't afford to take the time, even if you've got more important things to do, even if you know you'll blow off this one but you'll definitely make the next one -- go to this one.

You'll be glad you did.