Hello again my friend
If you’re a regular reader of this letter you’ve likely noticed I’ve been gone for the last few days.
I normally write to you every day (excluding weekends). But I skipped Thursday and Friday last week.
I wish I could say I was sick or traveling but the truth is I was struggling with what to write.
In my last two letters to you, “The Power of Infinite Thinking” and “Freedom in Our Lifetime – What it means to be a 21st Century Nomad” I discussed two things.
1. We need to recognize that life isn’t something you win. You will have good times and bad but our goal should be to keep playing.
2. Freedom is about autonomy. About getting to choose your own path without interference from others. If you want to be free you must have income mobility and power. Power to control your own life, and if necessary the lives of others.
These are big conversations. Ones that take volumes to convey. Trying to condense them into a letter that takes 3-5 minute to read is a herculean feat.
Today I’m going to attempt it again.
We are living through the hardest times
anyone alive today will ever see
There is an amazing book, written in 1997 by William Strauss and Neil Howe called “The 4th Turning”.
In the book they discuss what they believed would occur between 2008-2029.
According to the book there are 4 turnings in the lifecycle of every human.
1. The High
2. The Awakening
3. The Unraveling
4. The Crisis
Each of us are born during one of these “Turnings” and, assuming we live a full life, will experience each of them. When you are born has a lot to do with how you see the world.
Most of my readers belong to either Generation X (born 1961 – 1981) or the Millennial generation (1981 – 2004). We are children of the 3rd turning. The time of unraveling.
In the 3rd turning, institutions are weak and distrusted. Individualism is strong and flourishing. It was the Gordon Gekko era of “Greed is good.”
A time when Maverick took to the skies as the rebellious young fighter pilot, broke all the rules, defied authority, and somehow came out on top.
Strauss-Howe refer to those of us in the X generation as “Nomads” and those born to the Millennial Generation as “Heros”
Heros and Nomads. That’s who we are.
But we’re not in the 3rd Turning anymore. Today we’re living through the 4th Turning.
The 4th Turning
The 4th Turning is a time of crisis. A time when our nation has historically come together.
The last time we faced a 4th Turning was in World War II. The men and women who fought in that war are referred to today as the greatest generation. Like the millennials of today they are part of the hero archetype.
Whether you like it or not we are living through a crisis era. Since 2008 we’ve faced the Great Recession, A war on terror that still exists and a global pandemic.
Political turmoil and the racial divide have also gotten worse. At times it’s felt like a powder keg waiting to explode.
Yet here we are. Playing an infinite game from which death is the only escape.
We are living through the hardest times anyone alive today will ever see. But we will survive it, as we have countless times before throughout human history.
And when it’s over we’ll return back to the 1st Turning, a new high led by a hardened group of middle-aged millennials. Men and women forged in the fires of crisis and ready to lead the world into a time of peace and prosperity.
In the next Turning individualism will give way to community. Our sense of collective purpose will strengthen. With any luck, wage gaps will narrow and we’ll adopt the mindset that “We’re all in this together”.
Some people will see this as bad. They will lament the lost era of individualism. But I see it differently. I see it as a time to build communities that aren’t restricted by borders or even language.
Technology is going to open doors we never thought possible, giving us the ability to collaborate with like minded people around the world.
As I’ve said before, freedom is autonomy. But that doesn’t mean you have to do it alone. It means you get to CHOOSE who you do it with.
When like minded people come together for a noble cause they can change the world.
We are working to facilitate that cooperation with our Nomad Network.
Here are the details if you’d like to join us:https://www.stapletonagency.com/nomad-network1617822560645
We are in the early stages. Remember we’re still living through a time of crisis. But we’re building for tomorrow, not today.
I would love to have you be part of the world we’re creating. If you want to change your world, it starts here, with us.