Selling Feathers Door to Door

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When I was a kid, I had my own museum. In this museum were rocks and leaves and feathers. In fact, anything I had scavanged when out and about .

One day, I decided it was time to make some money, so I took the feathers out of the museum: pheasant, peacock and seagull.

When you’re seven, everything is possible. There’s excitement, adventure – and there’s freedom.

I decided I would sell these feathers to my neighbors.

So one sunny Saturday during the 1977 English heatwave, I took off down the street and started knocking on doors. One feather for five pennies.

I remember the first person answering the door. I noticed how her house smelled. I think she bought one.

It wasn’t long, of course, until my mother heard about this. She didn’t like the idea of her son turning into a door-to-door feather salesman. Especially at age seven. That was the demise of my first enterprise.

There was, however, something joyful about that experience. I had a product. I would sell it. I would make money. I would buy Freddo the Frog chocolate.

I would have freedom.

Indeed, it’s that freedom we’re after when we start a business. We want freedom from the 9-5. Freedom from a boss telling us what to do. Freedom to build our own life on our own terms.

But as anyone who has been in business for a while knows, it’s hard to find the freedom we desire. We don’t have a boss (or a mother) telling us what to do, but we have new responsibilities: cash-flow, staff, customers, product.

Indeed, for many of us, we feel we have less freedom that we did when we were working for a salary.

And that’s a shame.

The plan here at Air for Eagles is to discover how we can once again recall what it felt like to be a seven-year-old feather salesman. To have to the freedom to do what we love to do.

Yes, there will always be responsbilities. But we can learn to manage them – to stop them overwhelming us.

When we discover that, we discover the true freedom of a calm mind.

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