A Little Perspective

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Yesterday, Uncertainty was launched.

But, this post isn’t about the book, it’s about what happened during the 3 1/2 hour live-streaming book launch party that brought me back to what matters.

People were hanging out, bantering and connecting from all over the world. At points, close to 200 were at the party. That alone is amazing. That I could throw a launch party for a book, sitting in my friend, Lewis Howes’ apartment in New York City, yet be partying, goofing around and talking to people from all over the world.

But, that’s still not what this post is about…

At some point during the live-streaming launch party, we started to give away prizes. They started small, things like $25 or $50 gift cards for Starbucks or iTunes or Barnes & Noble. Then, at some point, someone in the chat room asked if they could buy books for us to give away to others at the party. Then someone else joined in. Then another.

By the end, Julia Roy, Rudy Nelson, Erik Proulx, Lisa Johnson and Baker had donated enough money to buy copies of Uncertainty for dozens of people.

Not because there was something in it for them, but because they thought it’d be a cool, nice thing to do. Both for me, and for the other folks at the party who would love a copy of the book, but maybe didn’t have the money right then.

That. Is. Amazing.

Then, we decided to do something really cool as the final giveaway. We had a Color Nook and an Amazon Kindle Fire (the one just announced on Weds) to give away to two people who created a video about a time they embraced uncertainty and posted them online.

Here’s the winning video from Wendy Thomas. It made this dad melt…

How powerful is that? The second place, btw, is this one from James Hagarty

Then, you add to this the fact that during the 3 1/2 hour live-streaming bonanza, my friends Lewis Howes, Clay Hebert (pronounced A-bear, in case you were wondering), Derek Halpern and Marie Forleo not only jumped in and out as guests, but were monitoring the lightning fast chat and twitter streams, interacting with guests, feeding me questions.

All the while, tons of other friends stopped by our virtual gathering, my wife even jumped in and out of the chat. And rumor has it, my daughter and mother-in-law tuned in at the local Apple store for a few minutes, even.

That, alone, is amazing. I love these people. But, then, in the final 30 minutes, Lewis, Derek, Marie and Clay all offered an hour of their consulting time in exchange for purchases of books. When these guys consult, and they rarely do, it’s usually for around $1,000 an hour and they were offering it up at a massive discount in exchange for people at the party helping their friend. There was no other benefit.

This day was amazing on so many levels.

Yes, my book came to life. But, in the moment, that seemed so dwarfed by the realization that I was surrounded by people I cannot get enough of. Who are kind, who treat me well and often ask nothing in return.

The people in your life. The ones you choose to surround yourself with.

They matter. Heck, they’re everything.

What an incredible day it was.

What an incredible tribe.

You. All. Amaze. Me.

And I thank you.


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15 responses

15 responses to “A Little Perspective”

  1. Very clever video. Except I wish (as the mother of a child with Down syndrome) that the message addressed the value of preserving life even in the case of a confirmed an unexpected diagnosis. I know it’s a loaded debate, but I just wanted to offer my perspective. When my daughter was born, and diagnosed, I was overwhelmed with uncertainty and fear. What would the future hold? Would she walk? Would she talk? Would I be able to cope. 14 years later….I can say with full confidence that she is a blessing in every respect. I definitely agree with the conclusion – ‘sometimes when you embrace uncertainty, you embrace hope’.

  2. Matt says:

    That was so much fun watching yesterday! It didn’t help with my productivity for the day but it was worth it 😀 Congrats on the book launch – I’m looking forward to reading it!

  3. debi stadlin says:


    I was unable to make the party…sounds like it was a blast. Did you announce the Ride the Butterflies winner??

    Can’t wait until my book comes. I am working with your Career REnegade book and the ideas that are popping in are so much fun!


    Debi Stadlin

  4. I am so sorry to have missed the party, but so psyched that my 3-pack of books arrived yesterday! And I’m even more excited for my friend Wendy – her video is amazing and pure her through and through. Amazing woman.

    Congrats all ’round!

  5. Kat Jaibur says:

    Wow. Way to launch, Jonathan. Look at the momentum and community you created. I wish I could have joined in. Celebrating with you now!

    What I really love most is this: “I realized that I was surrounded by people I cannot get enough of. Who are kind, who treat me well and often ask nothing in return.”

    Now that’s a life well-lived. Congratulations. I’m ordering your book now.

  6. Wendy Thomas says:

    Thanks Jonathan, what a great opportunity your book launch party was for you to share valuable information with us and for us to share our experiences with your tribe.

    Nothing is a given. There are no guarantees. It’s how we act when life is uncertain and the lessons we learn from those experiences that make all the difference.

    great wishes of success for you and your book,


  7. Conni says:

    You are a very lucky man! And you are awesome for writing an open letter to the people who made your day and feed your soul.
    It was a fabulous book party, Jonathan. (Maybe you remember, I was the dive instructor ;))
    Wishing you all the best.

  8. It sounds excellent. How about another party for all of us down under who couldn’t make the 3am time slot?! I’ll be there;) Congrats on the big launch. I just requested my library order a copy. They’re amazing like that and they stock Renegade so fingers crossed they’ll get it in so everyone in my locale can read it.

  9. Hi Jonathan,

    #1. Congratulations on your book. I am looking forward to picking up a copy when I get back to the states from Finland.

    #2. Thank-you for the reminder on perspective. Having been out of the states now for 2 years, I find myself missing a lot of friends and family, but also we’ve built amazing relationships around the world. Your post has reminded me that I need to be working harder to stay in touch with them and continue those relationships growing.

    Thank-you for the perspective!


    Jonathan Kraft

  10. Hi Jonathan,

    Congratulations on your book launch. I just purchased your book and am looking forward to reading it.

  11. Nancee says:

    Just sent you a message on the book page. Glad I came over to check out the blog. Love the stories of launch day. That does seem to be how things flow when we open our hearts doesn’t it?

    Enjoyed the small parts of the party I was able to watch and am loving the book. Thanks!

  12. Congratulations, Jonathan! Looks like it was a complete success. Loved the winning video, btw.

  13. Satu says:

    Congrats on your new book, Jonathan! I read the beginning on Amazon and realized you’ve again come up with a book I NEED to read. I knew you were writing a book on fear and wondered what on Earth it could possibly offer me… 🙂

  14. I didn’t watch the video yet but I am responding to the post. i am charmed by the story of people buying books to give to others. Reminds me of the little Hermetic-like gift that people do by putting a bit of change into an empty parking meter that has a car parked in it.
    Being surrounded by all those lovely people—you are fortunate. But, it probably happens because you are lovely to them.

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