Below The Fold

By Richie Crowley

the color is optimism





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Richie Crowley
Richie Crowley
I’ve spent the last week submerged in optimism.
A walk was soundtracked by a podcast appearance from Tommy Rivs. Last year Tommy was diagnosed with an extremely rare and advanced form of lung cancer that very nearly killed him. He was in a coma for 5+ months. In the episode, he talks about how attractive death became, and as he reflected on this experience, he offered a guide to happiness, “Our capacity to be happy is to recognize life as it is happening.”
Though I’ve only had a week to practice, the truth of this is significant.
Twitter has become my media of choice. Two weeks ago I wrote down a quote from a stranger named Ryan Adams. He tweeted, “In the long arc of history, pessimism always loses to optimism. Optimists take the risks. Optimists are the innovators, the dreamers, the builders, the settlers. Optimists create the future.”
This inspired me. It’s motivating me to believe in the possibility of, more.
An end-of-year newsletter from Sahil Bloom reads, “Pessimists look at the future and see the doors that are closed. Optimists look at the future and see the doors that are open.”
I’m in the honeymoon phase with optimism. If we had dinner plans I’d exhaust you with it. I used to be jealous of optimism, of the eternal positive outlooks on life. I’d create distance from people like Tommy, arguing that it’s easy to have a renewed appreciation for life after experiencing trauma, tragedy, or a life-altering event. I’d ask if it was possible to cultivate it in the absence of these adversities.
I was a brat.
I didn’t want to see open doors.
Pain is maximized to its owner, and we are allowed to let the shitty parts of life get to us.
What I’m learning though is that happiness and optimism are choices. Albeit difficult ones, they take a complete surrendering.
We can decide if things happen to us or for us. If we are victims or survivors. We can decide how doors appear to us.

Celebrating 4 years of sobriety
This week marked 4 years of sobriety. As I enter year 5, I asked myself a pretty honest question: Does sobriety deprive me of pleasure?
My response, published this morning, feels less like a personal essay, and more like I am thinking out loud.
After 4 Years, I Want A Damn Drink
2 Original Pieces
I’m fully living in the web3 Rabbithole. It’s almost becoming my personality. I’m resisting that though. I learn by writing, and week after week gain a bit more understanding.
A former coach of mine told me that the best players understand it first, and then innovate on top of it - that’s what I try to do.
The original pieces below include an opportunity I see in merch and how I would lead a brand into the NFT space, the right way.
A Merch Opportunity For Every Brand, Artist, and NFT Project
The Right Way For Non-Alcoholic Brands To Enter The NFT Space
2 podcasts
The color is optimism. The theme is happiness. Below are two podcasts. One exploring if money makes us happy and if it does, how much? The second is Tommy Rivs’s appearance on the Rich Roll Podcast.
These podcasts each have earned a spot on my actively curated list of podcast episodes that have blown my mind. The Spotify playlist is below for the curious, the Medium link is here:
Podcasts 🤯
Adding breadth
Throughout my career, I’ve feared the social ice-breaker, “What do you do?” As someone who does a lot of things well, but nothing the best, it’s brought me insecurity. Especially when I’m around established people I admire.
This book has helped me to articulate what I do, and instilled confidence in my work as a generalist. It advocates for breadth and is a bastion of comfort as I continue to pursue my intellectual curiosities.
As the year wraps up, I have a favor to ask. In the coming days, keep this question close to you, and in a future letter, I’ll explain why:
For this action, or this decision, are there negative consequences and who bears the primary burden of these consequences?
With gratitude,
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Richie Crowley
Richie Crowley @RickieTicklez

Publishing original thoughts + ideas only when I have something of quality to say.

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