One year ago today, the Cherrico Pottery Team and a group of close friends documented me setting the World Record for ‘most pots thrown in one hour by an individual.’ You can view the official record here or actually watch a video of me setting the record here:
A lot changed in one year. Tens of thousands of new fans started following my artwork and our Facebook live videos have been “going viral,” which is just a fancy term for getting popular. Don’t get me wrong, I’m incredibly gratified that so many people are inspired by my art and career. The Cherrico Pottery Team and I are doing everything we can to serve these new followers and customers (make sure you are signed up for our email newsletter to snag any new pottery when it emerges from the kiln). It’s just that popularity doesn’t seem like a good goal.
Better goals entail crafting gorgeous art, serving customers in a thriving business, supporting an artist lifestyle and making the world a better place. Building something long-lasting and beautiful seems more helpful and honorable than building something popular.
With that that mind, this is my goal for the next year:
“One year from today, my goal is to break ground on a new pottery studio that supports future pottery production with 100% solar fired pottery.”
This goal is ambitious and has never been done before. It has that in common with setting the pottery Guinness World Record on a Kickwheel (the previous record of 150 pots was set on an electric, motorized wheel).
I might not accomplish my goal, and that’s okay. This is the mindset I had when attempting the pottery World Record and it served me well. If you have an ambitious goal and fall short, you’re still headed towards success. Anytime I embraced this mindset, my efforts filtered into other surprising successes, like when celebrity Tim Ferriss made new YouTube videos and a Cosmic Mug popped up in the background, or when I got a personalized letter from Neil deGrasse Tyson. He’s the Director of the Hayden Planetarium in NYC and host of StarTalk Radio and StarTalk on National Geographic Channel. He was one of the initial people who inspired creation of Cosmic Mugs back in 2014.
You might fall short with an ambitious goal, but you often fall into a higher level of accomplishment than you might have ever thought possible. Plus, the “worst case scenario” probably isn’t that bad. Tim Ferriss has a great TED Talk that illustrates the incredible power of questions like, “What’s the worst that can happen?“
Journaling helps. These bullet points are a summary of my journal entry from a year ago. They describe my “worst case scenario” plan for a failed GWR attempt:
- Try again in one week. The record requires 350 pounds of clay and I have over 1,000. I can try again at least once more without consequences.
- Determine exactly what went wrong. Remove the hindrance through practice for a minimum of 1 hour, twice daily.
- Fire the practice planters and sell them for $5-10 each to cover costs. People bought nearly all 1,000+ practice planters in 2015, so they are a guaranteed sale.
- If you injure your back (side note: I threw out my back practicing for the record) then add one more week for a recovery period and attempt the record in two weeks.
- If you run out of money, sell more Cosmic Mugs to the waiting list of people who didn’t get one during Kickstarter.
That’s it! There was literally nothing else to worry about, even if I failed. That was comforting. Stress and fear melted away, my focus returned to the record and I conquered it.
What are your goals? Where do you want to be one year from now? Leave a comment at the end of this post telling us something you want to accomplish, a place you want to live, a career or personal goal, any goal.
(GIVEAWAY RULES: Leave a comment on this post telling us about your “one year goal” before Friday, March 10th, 2017 at 5pm Central and we’ll enter you to win GWR pot #101 totally free. One winner will be chosen randomly and announced in these blog comments the same Friday around 6pm Central. To enter, you must leave one, genuine comment about your “one year goal” or the moderator will not approve your comment. Please use your PERSONAL name or initials and not your business name, as the latter comes off like spam. Please allow 24-48 hours for your comment to appear. Thanks! *ENDED. Giveaway Winner: Comment #105, Christa”).
This post was published March 7th, 2017, but it might live here on the internet for decades. Whenever you happen to read this post, share one goal you hope to accomplish one year from now. Put it in the comments below, visible to anyone. Mark your calendar to check back one year from now. What’s the worst that can happen?