I stood over him as he lay on the ground, gasping for air.
I thought I’d killed him.
“What the hell was that?”, my mate Martin said.
“I dunno… I think I saw someone do it on TV.”
Gotta admit… that was a white lie.
I knew exactly where I learned it from… I just didn’t want to admit it.
“Everyone remembers their first fight”.
I do… because it was also my ONLY fight.
Like most fights, I imagine, it happened in high school.
I’d love to furnish you with all the details, so you can decide for yourself whether I deserved a good “chinning” (depending on what part of the world you’re in, that might need some explaining), but the truth is…
I have no idea what the fight was about.
I was as surprised as anyone when Christian came over and started swinging.
My first reaction when stuff like this happens is to presume there’s a mistake… or it’s a joke, but his fist connecting to the side of my head told me it was neither of those.
“Holy shit”, I thought. Probably.
I was going to have to do something.
At the time, and I’m a little embarrassed to admit this but… I was a big wrestling fan.
And when it came to thinking of an escape plan… a wrestling move was the first thing that popped into my head.
“That wouldn’t work… would it?”, I thought.
Given my only options for escape were limited to distraction from an alien attack, I decided to give it a whirl…
I opened my right hand, as if I was going to shake someone’s hand (probably not an option at this point), tensed it as hard as I could… and thrust my fingers straight into his throat.
I’ve never seen eyes that wide in my entire life.
He grabbed his throat, let out this loud, high-pitched whine and collapsed to the floor.
I genuinely thought I’d killed him.
I went over to help, but was so terrified, as soon as I got to him, I froze.
I must’ve looked like a serial killer standing over his victim, wanting to take in every moment of his final breath.
After a few minutes, he got his breath back and was fine.
In fact, he’s now my business partner and married to my sister. We play badminton every Thursday
(OK, so that’s a lie – I never saw him again. Turns out very few relationships can survive a throat jabbing)
There’s probably a bunch of business lessons you can take from this:
- Some things have more impact than others…
- You don’t have to know what you’re doing to be effective…
- If a tactic works for someone else, it’ll probably work for you too…
- One thing done right is better than a bunch of things done badly…
- Effective sometimes looks ugly…
- “Because I saw a man wearing Spandex do it on TV” is probably not a great basis for decision making…
- Throat punching a child is not a good idea…
Feel free to pick whichever one serves you best today!
Tag, you’re it.
P.S. You’ll find it hard to believe, but I wrote this email in less than 20 seconds.
OK, so I’m not including the time it takes me to type it out (my typing speed is woeful), or time spent on neatening it up, but from the moment I overheard someone on a podcast say the words:
“You always remember your first fight…”
It only took me a few seconds to get the entire structure of the email in my head.
I knew how I was going to open it, the lessons I wanted to share, and how I was going to link them together.
From there, sitting down at my laptop was easy. I just had to get what was in my head onto the page.
My new “email for business owners who are terrified of email” course (now called “Sent.”) will show you EXACTLY how I do this.
It’s not rocket science – the moment I explain it, you’ll be able to do it too.