The Scoop @ MSCO

A Mind Is A Terrible Thing

To WasteI learned to sail from an MIT student who wore a T-shirt that read “A Mind Is A Terrible Thing.”

Clearly, this was a parody of the United Negro College Fund slogan, “A Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Waste.” Both statements are true and, if you think about them closely, they are inexorably linked.

What the MIT kid’s shirt meant is that an exceptional mind is an extraordinary thing. A restless organism. A seeker of higher truths. A challenger of orthodoxies and ideologies. It is never content. It is never satisfied. It understands that it works against the reality of time and the illusion of conventional wisdom. It has to make a difference and once it does so, it has to do so again. And again.

The MIT T-shirt really meant, “A Mind Is A Wonderful Thing…. But It Is A Terrible Thing To Waste It.”

Put this in a business perspective. Ask yourself a few questions. Be honest. Dig deep. Allow the truth to come through.

Q. Are you willing to think so far through accepted reality that you can cross into another dimension? Anything less is mental chopsticks.

Q. Do you accept anything just because it is labeled “The Truth.

9 Comments

  1. Lewis Green ∣ July 11th / 2007 at 3:29 pm

    Mark,

    Thank you for this thoughtful and inspiring post. (And for the shout out.) I am a first-time visitor and am going to add you to my blogroll. My readers need to discover your insights.

  2. gm ∣ July 11th / 2007 at 8:23 pm

    This is some of the best stuff i’ve read period.

    “It understands that it works against the reality of time and the illusion of conventional wisdom.”

    that one really hit a chord! Thanks for the perspective.

  3. Mark ∣ July 11th / 2007 at 9:00 pm

    Interesting when you contemplate it but people rarely think about thinking.

    Mark Stevens
    CEO

  4. Ed J Laflamme ∣ July 12th / 2007 at 5:06 am

    Mark – Where do my best ideas come from? By searching and sharing with people such as yourself. By talking to and being with “thinkers” who challenge me and “the way things are”. Love your insights and “unconvential thinking”. As a result I am “waging constant war” with myself, to grow my mind and improve, because, I am my product. All in all, I am truely enjoying the “ride in the park”. Ed Laflamme

  5. Mark ∣ July 12th / 2007 at 9:51 am

    Thanks Ed. So nice to know my ideas are catalysts for change.

    Mark Stevens
    CEO

  6. Steve Olson ∣ July 12th / 2007 at 10:08 am

    This is a fantastic post. Your questions are dead on!

    This is the best one…

    Q. Are you willing to think so far through accepted reality that you can cross into another dimension? Anything less is mental chopsticks.

    Break on through to the other side – Jim Morrison

  7. Mark ∣ July 12th / 2007 at 10:20 am

    Thanks. I always wanted to be a rock star. And funny, Jim wanted to be a CEO.

    Mark Stevens
    CEO

  8. Kurt Gielen ∣ July 24th / 2007 at 4:02 am

    “Everything is average nowadays” is what the Kaiser Chiefs are singing and I have to say they come close. Let’s say +90% is average nowadays.

    Sometimes you come across brilliant or unique people. And Mark, it took me 5 of your newsletters before I realized you’re definitely not average.

    Not sure yet if you’re brilliant, unique or just utterly mad though. :-)

    Love your work, keep it coming.

    Kurt

  9. Mark ∣ July 24th / 2007 at 12:19 pm

    I am definitely not anything but mad! If mad is dreaming about the impossible and seeking to convert it to the possible. Thank you for your kind words.

    Mark Stevens
    CEO

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