Startup Therapy Podcast

Episode #122


Ryan Rutan: Welcome back to another episode of the startup therapy podcast. This is Ryan Rutan joined as ever by my partner, the Ceo and founder of Startups dot com, Wil Schroder. Well As founders, we run hard most of the time, all the time. 24 7 and we feel like we have to um you and I both know there's a diminishing return on this and that breaks are important. But like when was the last time you felt good about taking a break?

Wil Schroter: Never, that's

Ryan Rutan: the problem. I knew I wasn't gonna like the answer to this. I knew I was not gonna like the answer this. So that's why we're talking about this today. Everybody,

Wil Schroter: that's

Ryan Rutan: why because that's the wrong answer.

Wil Schroter: This, this whole topic is actually about me. Um yeah, no, I mean look, I I've been run until failure guy Since the beginning for almost 30 years running. Uh my only break has been when my body fails and we've done whole episodes on how wonderful that was when that moment, when that moment came. But I think, you know what we can talk about today is how to kind of break some of that cycle because I think as founders, we've got this, this Ironman philosophy that we just have to push through for the entire journey and that we have to keep running hard and we have to just hold up until we make it past the end and and that'll, that'll solve for everything and we totally overlook what we look like at the end of that journey. It's not positive. It's not the ticker tape parade. We think it is, it

Ryan Rutan: has costs laden laden with costs throughout, right? It's not just at the, you know, the final bill that comes due, we lose efficiency, we lose, we lose efficacy, we lose all these things along the way because we're burnt out. I mean like what the science tells us that After 24 hours without sleep were legally drunk. Alright. So we've definitely operated this business legally drunk more than once, not always because of loss of sleep

Wil Schroter: drunk in many ways, but we um, we've got this fetishization of uh, of this hard work, right? You know, this, this hustle porn if you will. And I was I was the biggest proponent of it, Right? So I I I'm not pointing fingers here,

Ryan Rutan: You were the Hugh Hefner of

Wil Schroter: Startup. So bad. It was so bad. And we've talked about this where I was like, I worked 100 hours a week for 20 years and it's kind of true. It was just yeah, I can show you a lot of things and more positive. All right. So, before we get into this next topic, I just want to let you know what we talk about here is like 1% of the conversation, you know, really, this conversation is going on all day long online at groups dot startups dot com. Where Ryan and I pretty much talk endlessly with founders about every one of these topics. So if by the end of this discussion, you like the topic and you want to dig into it a little bit more with Ryan and I just had two groups dot startups dot com and we'll pick it up from there. I think the problem that we run into is we've got this concept that startups are all about, you know, nonstop hustle drive, etcetera, and that sounds courageous and it sounds amazing except it doesn't actually work and someone's going to come back and say bullshit. You know, the only way to make it is Gary V, the only way to make it is to kind of push through and crush and crush

Ryan Rutan: everything is like punching the screen

Wil Schroter: right now somewhere. And I think what's wildly missing in all of that, you know, that kind of rara cheer is that you actually don't perform well when you when, when you take it to that level, when you say I'm just never going to sleep, but I'm always going to work on my startup, which is great if you want to kill yourself and actually be a shitty performer. I think that's that's the part I want to kind of turn inside out because we've tried it. We have,

Ryan Rutan: we have, I mean, just just think about it and we've we've used this analogy in a couple other ways. I try not to use sports analogies, but like we are the pro athletes of of the business world right Leaders Ceos founders were the pro athletes of the business world recovery is an extremely important part of high performance. If you want to be high performance, you have to recover. You have to, it's, it's not, it's not optional. Um, it's, it's enforced, right? And I actually tracked some of this data now with this little guy. Um, it's, it's been pretty fun. Um, and I pushed myself to exhaustion actually on sunday and I have the stats to prove it. Um, and then it made me say, okay, cool, I need to take it a little bit easier for the rest of that. I need to take it easy on, on monday and these things are important, right? Um, so, so yes, let's, let's, let's unpack, let's talk about. Um, I think you said you want to start with milestones around, like when can we decide that it's okay to take a break? And by the way, guys, it's okay to take a break anytime you feel tired, worn out about to be exhausted because trying to push through that has absolutely zero benefit, right? You're gonna do bad work or no work or you're gonna hurt yourself or all three. So, welcome to that fun. Let's talk about how to avoid that.

Wil Schroter: Well, I think the first thing that's important for people to understand is that we have to find milestones in our work, right? And a lot of people say, well, you know, I'll take a break at 12 o'clock kind of thing. Not really what we're talking about here. Yes, that's important. What we're talking about are the longer term breaks, the longer term break being, I've been working for 18 months without a break Your body and mind, don't function 18 months without a break and maybe you're some superhero Avenger that you do fine. Don't listen to this episode for 99.9% of everyone else. This is how it actually goes, right. The way it actually goes is we have to find some milestone in our journey. Let's say for example, we say, look two months from now and I'm gonna use that as a cut off. I'm scheduling a vacation or I'm just, you know, taking some kind of deliberate cut off from the business and, and I have to set that milestone. Maybe what I start doing is planning all of the company milestones around that date. Right. In other words, saying, okay, software is going to release, our marketing is going to launch, etcetera. What we don't do, we never set the milestone. So what ends up happening is we we don't have a specific milestone and we let the company's milestones kind of just drive whenever we have free time, which just doesn't, it never works because here's, here's the missing part of that. The missing part is that left to its own devices. The company offers no breaks. Your startup has no natural breaks, other than shutting down and that is not a natural break. You want to plan

Ryan Rutan: around? No, not a natural break. It's a goldfish, it will grow to the size of its bowl, It will consume whatever time you allow it to. There's always something else that can be done. The question becomes, should it be done? And should it be done now? And I think this is where we really get it twisted. So I like the concept of milestones. Um, so in the end, I'm trying to go back in time now. So the last time you did recently take a quick break, you took a week, you, you headed off and spend some time on the beach.

Wil Schroter: Yeah,

Ryan Rutan: that's a good, that's a good milestone. Yeah, that's when you're not allowed to forget, you're definitely not allowed to forget one in the company can't get in the way of it. So like, but did you need that permission? Was, and that was that the only reason that you did it?

Wil Schroter: I gotta say that's a great question. We've been doing this long enough, Ryan, you know, we're at almost 10 years with startups.com. We've been doing this long enough that I'm now used to having permission to take those breaks. The differences early in my career actually, most of my career, from, from being honest, I never gave myself permission to take those breaks and more importantly, I never saw milestone. I always thought that milestones kind of came naturally in the progression of the business. In other words, we just launched a product and therefore that's a good time to take a break. That'll be obvious. No, it's not. Because by the time we launched the product, we now have customer support issues. We've got marketing and customer acquisition issues. It's always something right. There are no natural breaks in a startup. We have to force the milestone, we have to, we have to be able to say, look, whatever the timing is, two months from now etcetera. That's the milestone. We plan it. Just like we planned software or launches or anything else like that and we have to make it part of our of our DNA, of the company, otherwise we're screwed. This thing will drag on

Ryan Rutan: friends. Just doesn't happen, right? Yeah, because each, each milestone then leads to another one anyways. I mean like you said, you know, now we've launched the product. Yeah, now we can all go home, nope. Now, you gotta market it now, you got to support it now, you gotta sell it now, you got to modify it, right? It's like I remember somebody talking to me about like wanting to push really hard there there last couple of semesters university and finish early and they were like I'm just gonna, I'm gonna I'm gonna push really hard. Um and and then you know, I'll have a breather. I'm like, you know, after this it's work,

Wil Schroter: right?

Ryan Rutan: It's not universities over massive celebration. Like you're not european, you don't get a gap year, you get to go start, you got to line up and and find a job, right? That's what you're going to be doing. Um, and it's the same thing in the startup, right? Like every little victory leads to a new battle and, and nothing wrong with that. But we've got to have a chance to regroup. Um, so yeah, I mean, I'm technically right now I'm traveling, I'm certainly not on vacation yet. Um, and I'm having trouble with that. We're going to be in the US for the next, I think three weeks. Um, and I have yet to even think about scheduling any full time

Wil Schroter: off. Right.

Ryan Rutan: I just, I haven't, I'm here right? I should. And yet I'm like, hmm, when could I do that? We've got this thing happening. We've got that thing happening. And like, and some of them are really arbitrary, right? Like it could happen at any point and yet because they're already there and I can see them, I want them to happen and I don't want to do anything else until they happen and this becomes the problem. So I need to sit down at the end of this episode and take our own advice and say like, okay, I'm gonna draw a line, this is the milestone that, that will, will get this piece done and then I'm gonna take a week off and I'm going to spend it with my parents? I haven't seen in almost a year um I'm gonna take my kids to the beach, I'm gonna do some fishing. Um I'm just gonna do some stuff, right, that's not startups dot com and that'll be good for me and I need that because it's been a long time. Um And yet I'm still struggling with it. I'm like

Wil Schroter: if you don't set the milestone, no one sets it for you right now. No

Ryan Rutan: nobody's gonna be like Ryan, here's your week off. Here's

Wil Schroter: the difference if you have a boss that you're reporting to write and you say, hey I want to schedule this PTO and they can say yes or no regardless of whether or not you like that, encumbrance it at least gives you permission quite literally to take the time off. Right? They said yes it is okay to take it. Our problem is there's nobody to go to, right we're our own bosses

Ryan Rutan: have to go into our payroll system and approve my own P. T. Oh

Wil Schroter: right right. I mean yeah I mean as bosses go we're complete assholes right because in our mind we can always work harder right in our mind that vacations or that you know, time off is never warranted. That's the problem. And so I think for folks going through this for folks killing themselves if you look back and you say when is the last time? The business clearly gave me an indication that now is a good time to take it and I should feel good about it. My guess is you're gonna come back with, uh, never,

Ryan Rutan: never,

Wil Schroter: Dude, I'm in this 30 years and never exactly the answer I've gotten every single time

Ryan Rutan: they're

Wil Schroter: in. So what I've also learned is as founders were really good at planning stuff, right? Why don't we suck so badly at this? Right? Why is this the one thing that could probably help us the most that we are just terrible at doing.

Ryan Rutan: It lacks the objectivity and the obvious outcomes of so many of the other things that we plan, right? We plan for things that are, that are more tangible. We plan for things that are more visible. We plan for things that impact the company and other people and not for things that impact ourselves. Like we've talked about this that, you know, startups are built at the expense of the founders, right? That's sort of a deal we make with ourselves, right at the beginning that we should not, but we do and therefore, you know, we, a couple episodes ago we talked about North star, right, having a North Star for the business. But I think the North star of the founder is I will do this at all costs. And I think that's a really, really dangerous North star, but I think it's the one that we sort of develop early on and we don't realize that there is a point at which we can change that right? Sometimes in the beginning. Yeah. You've just got to be hustle, hustle hustle, right? Just grind your way through it and, and burn burn burn. But then there has to be a period of recompense for that, right? You've got to make up for that loss because you are building a debt and the deficit there that has to be replaced or it hurts the business, it hurts the team. It's certainly hurting you as the founder. Um, and like you said, you've just got to pick a point in time, a milestone, an arbitrary date. Whatever it is and just say like, look, I'm going to use this period to recover. And so why don't we, why don't we talk about the benefits of some recovery

Wil Schroter: that became the hack for me? Actually see up until then I always thought vacation was this namby pamby thing. Two words. I've never set out a lot allowed until now, by the way that other people did that weaker, weaker founders did not me. Right. I'm thor, I will power through and to be fair, I did for a really long time. Um, and frankly, probably because I could, here's what would happen though. I had milestones baked in every quarter. They're called getting sick. And so here's how it would go. I would, I mean, I'm talking for 20 years running, right, this is how dumb I am. Um, I would I would just Rundle failure and so basically by the end of every quarter you can probably remember this, my body would just shut down and I'd be in bed sick for usually two weeks. I get sick for a really long time. And but but I would look at that as my built in, not vacation, but like my recovery period, not thinking, not like putting the math together, that the whole reason I'm here

Ryan Rutan: is

Wil Schroter: because I didn't probably and by the way, getting sick is not a recharge moment, right? Getting sick is like losing more hit points. It's not getting back

Ryan Rutan: exactly. And then then you're just recovering from being sick, which puts you right back to where you started at the point where you got sick come away from that refreshed. Yeah, it was funny my my wife was actually the one that that pointed it out, caught it for me. Um at the point at which this goes back probably four years now when we started to be better about this. Um as a team about watching out for each other and we'll talk about that later but about being able to feel okay about at least slowing down or being honest with ourselves what we're doing. She said, she's like, you know this year you didn't have any of your like sleep sick thingies that you do and I was like what she said, yeah, you know like every year a couple of times a year you do that thing where like you're in bed for three days, but you say you're not really sick and like, hmm, you're right. I haven't done that. And then I thought, and damn, you're right. I have pretty much done that every year for all of my adult life, school included, right? And there were times where I wondered what it was at some points. I thought, like, I remember specifically in college, I thought maybe I go through periods of depression because I just didn't want to get out of bed. Um, turns out it's called exhaustion, right? There is really specific diagnosis and it's just running yourself to the point where your body chemically literally has no energy to continue fighting, Right? And so that was my thing, right? I didn't, I didn't have other symptoms, right? I remember with yours you would run yourself probably right to the point of exhaustion so that your immune system was so run down that pretty much anything could jump on board and take over for a while and you just run yourself into the ground and be out, right? And mine was the same thing, except I would just literally lay in bed for three days, like asleep Like nearly 24 hours a day for a couple of days. And that was just what my body needed because I put it in that position in the first place, which is pretty dumb, right? So long story short, neither of us are good at understanding our limits. We are now. And sometimes that has a benefit and sometimes it has a real cost. Um and we've faced both of those consequences.

Wil Schroter: You know, by the way, I just want to mention if what we're talking about today sounds like the kind of discussion you wish you were having more often, you actually can, you know, we're online all day everyday, working through exactly these types of topics with founders. Just like you. So any question you would have, or maybe some problem you just want to work through. We're here and we love this stuff and we're easy to find, you know, head over to groups dot startups dot com and let's just start talking. The funny thing actually is a while back. I think it was like seven years ago. I can't like dated. Exactly. I actually took a vacation, like a bona fide vacation kind of by accident. I think it was once again, it was our first or second anniversary and my wife was like, look, we gotta take like a proper, a real vacation. And so we did. And uh, but it was two weeks. That's the part, I'll never forget. I can't remember where we booked this story would have a little more color if I did. Um and, and week one, nothing changed. You know how I do? Like, I'm on my laptop the whole time, whatever, right? But we to kicked in and all of a sudden I was like, huh? I'm, I'm not at work. And then like I just kind of got into vacation mode for a second. Well this crazy thing happened lo and behold a week later I come back and I'm rested. Something I had never been before. Yeah, I didn't know what that was about and guess what? I come back to work and I've got a full head of steam, right? The kind of head of steam that I hadn't had in years. And I remember thinking to myself, what is this superpower, rest, rest, harness it? And that's where the hacks started. For me, the hacks started because at that moment I realized that if I recharged, I could do more work and as insane as this is all of a sudden I could justify rest by saying I can do a lot more work and more importantly, I could be better at my work if I rest. Is that the right justification? Absolutely not. Did it work 100%. And now ever since then, now I look at my rest periods as this supercharged like power up moment that when I come back, I'll be able to work so much more effectively. And it's true by the way, the rest of the world already knows this, but for founders because we tend to just not give ourselves breaks, we lose sight of this, we forget how inefficient we are when we run ourselves into the ground,

Ryan Rutan: we just keep running on fumes endlessly, right? And and without reason, right? Because again, like you stopped for a few minutes, you stop for a few days, you stop for a week. The efficiency, the energy that you gain back and the acceleration that comes after that far outstrips whatever it was you were dragging across the goal line prior to that, right? It's just, but it's so hard to see in the moment, right? It's like I just can't stop until this one more thing is done alright. I just can't quit until I finish X marketing campaign or this product is shipped or this client is fully satisfied service and done and invoiced or whatever it is. It's got you holding on well beyond the point of of you know, your, your efficiency and effectiveness and it's so hard to see in the moment, right? Because again, we're just focused on that one thing and we know that we can do it. I think that's part of the problem. We know we can muscle through, we'll find a way to get it done. The part that we're missing is that if we keep dragging along at this pace, it might take us three more weeks to finish or we could take a week off, come back, finish it in a week and be a week ahead and yet we never ever ever do the calculus on that and look at it in that way, it just doesn't happen.

Wil Schroter: But we do it daily Ryan, like what ends up happening is we say, hey, we're gonna do a 16 hour day, who at the end of the tail end of 16 hours has anywhere near their peak performance, right? I would argue that for most folks best, best case on a fully recharged day, your first day back from recharging, you've got at most four solid hours of maximum productivity and I'm being generous and after that it bottoms out fast. So anybody that tells me I've got 16 productive hours, I've got two responses to that. Number one bullshit. Number two, what you're telling me is that you've got this beeline of perfect productivity the entire day, impossible, physically, mentally that cannot happen. Secondly, I would argue. What the hell were you doing that took you 16 hours if you're so efficient, why did it take you 16 hours? Right. Why couldn't you have done it in half the time? What I started to, to pace myself with wasn't the number of hours I could work, it was the opposite and this is when everything changed, It's how can I get the same amount of work done in half the time and instead of again being so heroic about the number of hours, I started to get heroic about efficiency. I dug really, really, really deep and I started monitoring all of my time in 15 minute increments and I started to say where did my day go? Exactly. And I guarantee if I did it for someone else, it would be hilarious how incredibly inefficient, how much bullshit you thought was. So you know, important was not and so were broken on all these metrics is the problem.

Ryan Rutan: You and I both did this, we went through the exercise of spread sheeting out and like charting our time and we both found that we had these like golden periods of of creativity of analytical productivity. And it was interesting because they were different times a day, right? Like you you and I had different periods in which we were creative and or analytical and we just had like grind out and like write copy mode or whatever it was. Um and understanding when those periods were and aligning the work with it was the huge hack around the productivity, right? And it also, I felt less tired after figuring that out because it turns out when your brains in creative mode and you force it to do nothing but analytical work, it doesn't like that very much, right? And you're not you're not going to have good output at those periods, right? And so knowing when like those golden hours of productivity where you're at your peak performance and using them, it's really, really critical, right? And that was a great exercise to go through and it's probably worth doing again. I would imagine some things have changed. Um the last time I did that I had one child and a full head of hair. Um so I would imagine some things about the dynamics of my day have probably also changed, but it's been, When do we do that? 7?

Wil Schroter: It was a long time ago. But but but it's but I mean, it it rings just as true over the years we've gotten better, partially because we had to about taking breaks, right. A late night meant we went with our kids not an option. Right? And and so I think we got some hard breaks built in, but if we were still in our twenties and we had no encumbrances in that way, I don't, there would have been nothing obvious to me. But here's, here's the hack again. The hack is that if I've got 16 hours to work today, I have to look at anything beyond my core for or you know, whatever, wherever I think my, my core hours are, has has a liability attached to it. And what does that mean? That means if I, if I work eight hours, I'm probably okay. But if I work 9, 10, 12, 14 hours, every additional hour I work is a liability because it's taking away one for one for the hours that I'll have tomorrow, you're literally taking directly out of the peak hour energy bank. Something I learned when I was playing hockey right? A lot of people don't realize that they think if you're on skates, you're just gliding around playing hockey is actually like one of the most intense, like a good hockey player on the ice will get one minute to a minute and a half of peak time and they have to come off the that's how intense it is, right? What I used to think was, I'm not a good hockey player unless I try to play for like six minutes, right? Not realizing that after the first minute and a half, I was now a shitty hockey player, right? And everybody was skating circles around me. And so what I've started to adopt was this mentality that I need to get off the ice. I need to be able to go in crush it with, you know, that that that minute and a half, so to speak, or four hours in business time and then get off reset and keep getting back on with maximum energy and stop mortgaging my good energy for what's really a half assed attempt. And I'll be honest, I still do it all the time. I'm not great. But at least now I understand it

Ryan Rutan: and I think we've gotten better about picking and choosing what happens during those hours, right? Like I don't do mission critical stuff when I know I'm not at my peak, right? I don't I don't think through strategic stuff. I'm a grind out some tactical work. It's like, okay, I gotta go through and make sure all these workflows are running great, right? That's, I can do that almost in my sleep, right, But right, not when I'm actually asleep. So you go through to do those kind of things, right? But it's about picking and choosing your battles and the timing of them, right? Which goes back to prioritization. Another thing that founders, uh, seem to be struggle with, right? It seems that we have some trouble with prioritization at times. Um, we get our blinders on whatever it was that we were myopically focused on becomes the most important thing in the world. Um, and I think that's the other reason that leaning back and getting that break right, taking that time, the other untold benefit here is a little bit of perspective, Right? Because when you're not in grind mode, when you're not heads down, 16 hours, just beating away at the keyboard or whatever it is you're doing you can actually get this nice, broad holistic view of the business. Um, so even during rest, right? There's, there's, I mean, let's be honest, do we ever stop thinking about our startup companies very rarely? Right, Very

Wil Schroter: right.

Ryan Rutan: So it's still there and nothing wrong with that, right? But like the beauty of coming out of those periods where you weren't so myopically focused on like one aspect of the business is that you get this broader perspective and you make sure that thing that you're really, really obsessing about right now actually fits into the bigger picture in an important way, right? Because it's, it's really easy to get caught in the tactics. I talked about this a couple episodes ago, but I've always found that one of the hardest things to do as a founder is to know when to zoom in and when to zoom out. Um, and being able to do that at pace right? Being able to say like, okay, I gotta go laser focused on this for a couple of days for a couple of weeks. But now I got to zoom back out and make sure that while I was down there in my rabbit hole, that the rest of the world didn't change in a way that made that irrelevant or that something else has come up that really needs my attention and that in itself can be exhausting. So these periods where we stop are a really good time to let the lens zoom out a little bit and to, to gain some perspective on, on the overall business. But given that we know that we're not particularly good at this. Um, as individuals, let's, let's talk about like how we, as founders can help each other to be better at this.

Wil Schroter: That's a hack that we just kind of naturally came to, uh, you know, between all of us really across the management team is we started to realize that the only way to get permission to, to take a break was to give permission. And so this interesting thing happened where we were all running ourselves into the ground and we kind of came together collectively and said, you know what? Like none of us want to take a break because we assume nobody else can take a break. Like we feel guilty we don't have permission. And every time we say, Hey, I'm going on vacation in our minds, there's this collective groan to be like, you know, must be nice kind of thing. Yeah.

Ryan Rutan: Must be nice to take a vacation every four and a

Wil Schroter: half years. You jerk must be nice to see your kids. And we, we did this thing where we basically said, look, when one of us takes a break, let's all agree that that's a good idea, right? At the very least implicitly and explicitly gives give permission. That good go take it, you know, unplug et cetera. And kind of allow us to feel good about it. Now. This really interesting dynamic happen every single time one of us would say I'm taking a break and five other people said, hey, sounds good. You know, enjoy that vacation, blah, blah, blah. What? We really did was give five other people permission to also take a break because no one felt like an asshole and all of a sudden people were taking more breaks. People were getting recharged. Guess what? People were getting healthy, less visits to the hospital. Like we essentially created a buddy system, right? We created a buddy system and I think, right? And you tell me, but I think that was the game changer for us. I think that's like we all knew we needed to take breaks, but the game changer was allowing each other to take breaks. It was

Ryan Rutan: it was and it and it changed it for for each of us and it changed it for the team at large, right? You said it right? When when everybody else started to see that happen, then it kind of gave them permission. You know, you talked about it really early in the episode where like if you've got a boss and you have a, you know, a formal system for requesting time off, you've you've got that, right? But if you also never see your boss out of the office, like they're there when you show up, they're there when you leave, they don't talk about vacations time off. Anything else. You're not gonna have this real high sense of comfort around using your your vacation time, right? And we played around with different mechanisms there and they didn't really work and we were like, we won't track vacation time, it's unlimited or we'll give you a bunch of it okay? Because people felt like unlimited was like, well, I don't know how much that really means. Like does that mean a week before you get mad at me. Is that a month? Like I'm going to take a sabbatical. So nobody took any, right? So then we just gave a very generous amount of paid time off and people still weren't taking it. Like when we look back at some of those early year utilization reports around P. T. O. It was appalling, right? Nobody was taking breaks and it had an impact on the entire organization. And so, you know, a well rested founder and one who demonstrates the the importance of that leads to a well rested, energized, ready to go team. And I think that was that was the huge unlocked. But I think you're right, it was that the buddy system was the hack, right? It was us being honest with each other and supporting each other and celebrating those things that then led that and allowed it to spread to the rest of the team, right? I just approved that request this morning. That's not it's not even made up for this episode that really happened. Somebody's actually taking a week off.

Wil Schroter: I think what you talked about there though, we touched on is this this concept of multiplicity? It's one thing to be able to manage our own energy, right? But what we really have to think about if we're being clever is how are we managing everybody else's energy, right? If I have 100 people working for me and my plan is to run them all into the ground. What am I really accomplishing? Right? Oh, you know, we're working so hard. This organization kills itself. Yeah, it does. And you've got shitty workers now, right? We, we mask that under this, this, this umbrella of dedication and hard work. What we lose when, when we look at that is it doesn't work that way. If I say look back to my hockey analogy, All my players play on the ice for 10 minutes because you know, they're the hardest working players. Like no.

Ryan Rutan: Yeah, the shittiest players.

Wil Schroter: Yeah. You as the coach, should be getting everybody off the ice as often as possible. So you can always have fresh legs back on the ice. And the same applies to your organization. If you're like, hey, I never take vacations, I grind it out. And you basically in stan she ate that same behavior across all the people in your organization. You are taking a multiplying effect to your shitty behavior and applying it to everybody else. There's nowhere that ends positively. Again, the run through the wall mentality doesn't work. It doesn't hold up all it leads to our shitty outcomes. And it took a long time for me to realize that

Ryan Rutan: alright, so let's put a bow on this thing

Wil Schroter: as founders.

Ryan Rutan: We are not amazing at this, right?

Wil Schroter: We, we,

Ryan Rutan: we will just continue to run ourselves in the ground and unless we're given permission otherwise. So here's your permission, Right? Here's your permission to start thinking about this. Um, and let's go back to what we talked about today, right? It's having some milestones. Pick some points at which you've, you've got some saved game, right? And you can, you can, you can restore some hit points there. You can feel better. You can come back from that, right? And you're going to come back from that recharged, right? We need to keep this in mind that this is not just a weakness. This is not a an excuse. This is not just, oh, I take time because I need it. You really do need it, but it's, it's about more than that, right? You're going to come back a better version of you for having done this, right. So good about doing these things, Set that milestone, take that break and feel good knowing that you're going to come back fully charged and ready to go and then remember that this starts with you as the founder and that it will be pervasive throughout the organization, whichever way you play it. If you play that we're just going to run through the wall until we collapse. That's what's going to happen to organization. However, if you take the other tact and you say we're going to set milestones, we're going to recharge. We're going to celebrate people being in good shape, feeling good mentally, you know, arrested and ready, then that's what we'll spread throughout the organization, right? Historically, we've been bad at this now is the time to change that. Here's your permission. Please set a milestone. Take a little bit of a break, Come back and go forth and kick ask whatever it is that your startup does. Mm hmm. Alright,

Wil Schroter: so that was fun. But let's actually keep this conversation going. You've heard what we think about this, but you know, Ryan and I would really like to hear what you think and we're online like all day long, pretty much talking about every startup topic you could think of from fundraising, the customer acquisition to just really how to get all of this crazy startup stuff out of your head. And there's tons of other founders just like you, they're weighing in on these topics so you'll get a chance to just hang out and meet some really smart founders were also super, super easy to find. You head over to groups dot startups dot com and let Ryan and I hear what's on your mind. Let's get to know each other a little bit and let's just start having more of these conversations

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