1% Membership Requires Conviction

No matter how loud this blog becomes, 99% of people will still choose to go the usual route.

99% percent will still choose to go with the herd.

99% will still play it safe and choose the comfort of a twice-a-month salary.

What differentiates the 1% from the 99%?

What differentiates the 1% from the 99% is conviction.

I have seen this first hand with all the entrepreneurs and founders I’ve interacted with. They believe in their vision. More than that, they believe in themselves. It is an unshakeable, oftentimes illogical belief.

It is this conviction which allows them to take on the big hairy leap to go out on their own. But this isn’t what results in the 1% yet. Perhaps 10% of people will take this courageous leap.

But 9 out of these 10 people who will leap will give up the moment it becomes dicey, when they get punched in the mouth.  Most successful entrepreneurs and startups have had colossal failures marking their timelines. Our hero Steve Jobs very publicly got fired from the company he founded. He could’ve retired with his millions, but instead he used the failure as fuel to mount the greatest comeback in business history.

Unlike with most people, failure doesn’t make any significant dents in the conviction of the 1% – it actually strengthens it. (Failure can create the proverbial “chip on the shoulder” – which some investors love)

I like how the other meaning of conviction ties into this discussion. The other meaning of conviction is “judgement rendered.”

In a sense, this is exactly what the entrepreneur exposes himself to – judgement.

I wrote before at how the leap in people is prevented not by the incapacity of the person to take on risk, but a lot of the time, its “what will other people think?”

“I will leave my 15-year banking career to put up a startup which creates mobile apps for the elderly? OMG! What will my family say? What will my peers say?”

An entrepreneur just leaps in and effectively says:

Hey world, this is me!

You want to be like the 1%?


That decision is the underrated element of the leap. Most people are wishy-washy with their decision, doing a “wait-and-see” versus an actual decision. (you who are guilty of this know what I mean) Or choosing to be in perpetual “data-gathering” mode. Stop talking about it and start doing it.

Can’t resign yet? Perfectly okay. Allot 2 hours a day working on your startup – plan and do. Too hard?

Then you’re in the 99%.

Let me end this post with lyrics from one of my favorite 90’s songs, Conviction of the Heart by Kenny Loggins. If you want to sing along or something, you can click here. (up to you if you want to sing on until the environmental part of the song 🙂


Where are the dreams that we once had?
This is the time to bring them back.
What were the promises caught
On the tips of our tongues?
Do we forget or forgive?
There’s a whole other life waiting to be lived when…
One day we’re brave enough
To talk with conviction of the heart.

And down your streets I’ve walked alone,
As if my feet were not my own
Such is the path I chose,
Doors I have opened and closed
I’m so tired of living this life,
Fooling myself, believing we’re right when…
I’ve never given love
With any conviction of the heart.

8 thoughts on “1% Membership Requires Conviction

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