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The Heretic is a free dispatch delivering insights into what it takes to lead into & in the unknown. For entrepreneurs, corporate irritants and change makers. Raw, unfiltered and opinionated.

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Dec 4th, 2014 Share: Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn

Always Run. Never Walk.

As you might have seen by now, I sign this newsletter with a phrase I coined a little while ago: “Always Run. Never Walk.” Our Facebook Group’s motto is the latin version of this phrase: “Semper Curre, Nunquam Ambula.”

Over the years a bunch of you have asked what I mean by this signature — and commented on how it is not sustainable to “always run” without taking a break.

Here’s the story: As some of you know I used to be a pretty fanatical runner — racing anything from half-marathons to ultras; often running more than 100 miles per week in training. A while ago, the author Haruki Murakami wrote a book about his life as a runner (What I Talk About When I Talk About Running); in my eyes one of the best books ever written about running. The book is full of amazing quotes which are incredibly fitting for entrepreneurs (and life in general). The one which stood out to me and which I have quoted untold times in public speeches as well as in individual conversations is:

“Reaching the finish line, never walking, enjoying the race. These three, in this order, are my goals.”

And this, my fellow Heretics, is where my signature comes from.

It has nothing to do with the fact that you shouldn’t rest — rest is crucial and you have to sharpen the axe (as explained in “The Tale of The Two Lumberjacks”).

When you race — never walk. Or as Mr. Murakami said in this SPIEGEL interview:

SPIEGEL: You are 59 years old. How long do you intend to go on taking part in marathons?

Murakami: I will go on running for as long as I can walk. You know what I would like to be written on my tombstone?

SPIEGEL: Tell us.

Murakami: “At least he never walked.”

P.S. You might enjoy reading through a presentation I gave a while ago in Vienna, Austria on this very subject: Never Walk.

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