It’s why some people remain poor
Have you ever mentioned to friends and family that you’re thinking of starting a business or trying to earn money online? If you’re like most people, you’ve been told that it’s a stupid idea, it won’t work, or something similar.
You likely then gave up and never mentioned it again.
So, what’s this got to do with monkeys?
Well, some researchers got a group of 6 monkeys and put them in an enclosure. In the center, there was a ladder that had a bunch of bananas at the top.
As soon as the monkeys saw the bananas they tried to climb the ladder to reach them. The researchers then sprayed them with cold water from a hosepipe until they gave up.
After the water stopped, the monkeys tried again. The same thing happened — they were sprayed with cold water.
Next time, only one monkey tried to get the bananas. But as it started to climb the ladder, the other monkeys pulled it back. They knew what was coming next.
After that, the monkeys ignored the bananas. It was just too dangerous to try to reach them.
The researchers then put the hosepipe away. It was never used again.
Next, the researchers took one monkey out of the enclosure and replaced it with a new monkey that had never seen any water being sprayed. This monkey saw the bananas and started to climb the ladder. The other monkeys pulled it back and wouldn’t allow it to climb the ladder. The monkey tried a few times but eventually gave up.
The researchers then replaced another monkey. The same thing happened.
And another, and another, until all 6 monkeys had been replaced.
The last new monkey tried to climb the ladder, but it was pulled back, just like the others had been. It gave up.
The monkeys never again tried to reach the bananas.
But what were they afraid of? None of these monkeys had either seen the hosepipe or been sprayed with the water. They didn’t climb the ladder because the other monkeys wouldn’t allow it. It was just a learned behavior to be frightened to climb the ladder. Ladders are scary.
So, how does that relate to us humans trying to start a business?
Well, some people have tried to start a business and failed. So when they hear someone else say they’re going to start one, they persuade them not to. It’s just not worth the risk. So that person doesn’t start one.
That person then hears someone else say they’re going to start a business. He persuades them not to? Why? He hasn’t tried and failed himself, but was just using secondhand information, just like the monkeys. Business is scary. Don’t do it.
So, we try to start a business, but our friends try to persuade us not to. But none of them have even tried to start one themselves. They are just passing along some information that starting a business didn’t work for someone sometime in the past. Even if it was true for some people then, it doesn’t make it true for you. But their voices have enough power to stop you from even trying.
Don’t be like the monkeys. Make your own judgment on the situation. If the bananas are at the top of the ladder, the chances are that you can easily reach them. Don’t let others stop you reaching them. No matter how well-meaning they are trying to be.
Of course, you may sometimes fail to reach the bananas. But if you never try, you’ll likely starve.
Has anyone tried to stop you starting a business by saying it’s too risky?
This article is for informational purposes only. It should not be considered Financial or Legal Advice. Not all information will be accurate. Consult a financial professional before making any major financial decisions.