The Trailblazer Code
If you’re going to join the uprising, you should probably know about the Trailblazer Code. It’s the body of principles and values that are the core of what makes you a Trailblazer.
The Trailblazer Code isn’t exactly set in stone. If it was, that wouldn’t be Trailblazer style. It’s very personal and can vary from person. Nonetheless, the Code is a tribal knowledge – known but rarely spoken – amongst members of the Uprising. But these are values you can guarantee all Trailblazers use to navigate the rough and tumble of the wildnerness.
(Intentionally) in no particular order…
- Initiative: Trailblazers don’t ask permission. They are deeply in-tune with their values and when they sense that dissatisfaction, they don’t hesitate to do what needs to be done. Their motto is “It’s better to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission”.
- Vision: Trailblazers enter the forest without a clear map or any idea exactly where they are going. They just know they need to get to the other side. In fact, they can see it as clear as day, even in the darkest night. It’s that crystal clear vision of the future that gives them the guts to imagine a path that doesn’t yet exist.
- Weirdness: According to everyone else, Trailblazers are just plain weird. I mean, seriously, what is wrong with them? Why can’t they just be normal and do what everyone else is doing? Trailblazers know that they are not working hard enough if people are only and always praising them. Not to say they won’t be praised (usually that’s after the “overnight success”), but they expect to be criticized a whole lot more. And they are cool with that.
- Service: Although Trailblazing is an overwhelmingly individualistic endeavor, there is always an unselfish dimension. In clearing the brush and finding a path, you make the trip easier for others. Trailblazer Leadership is a type of servant leadership. It emerges organically as the by-product of the Trailblazer Journey.
- Enjoy Fear: The rush of emotion is a thrill to a Trailblazer. They aren’t thrill seekers by nature, but when they feel that overwhelming flood that paralyzes others, they know they are on the right track. If it was something in their comfort zone, it wouldn’t be off the beaten path. Some would call that courage, and yeah I guess they have that too
- Authenticity: Trailblazers are true to their deepest selves and highest values. They expose their weaknesses and have the courage to be vulnerable – to put themselves out there for the world to see, without succumbing to the fear of consequences.
- Fellowship: Having suffered through any portion of a Trailblazer Journey, our hero is quick to notice others who are following a similarly painful path and does not hesitate to reach out with a helping hand. It’s the whole idea of the Uprising – Trailblazers helping each other be awesome.
- Dissatisfaction: If you weren’t a little bit displeased with the way things are, why would you bother going through the agony of the Trailblazer Journey? Trailblazers can be dissatisfied for a number of reasons – from sheer rebelliousness to a deep authenticity calling them to do what they love. But one thing is for sure, they want things to be better and they know they can make them so.
- Hope: Trailblazers know the future will be better than the present … as long as they have something to say about it. They are sources of positive energy in the negative forest. It’s that magnetic conviction that forces others to follow in the footsteps of the Trailblazer.
- Expect Failure: The hard part about Trailblazing is no one has ever done it before. There is no map. As Steve Jobs famously said, “You can only connect the dots backwards.” That means you need to find the path that works. That means you will also find all of the ones that don’t But Trailblazers expect this. When they experience setbacks, they rejoice because know that they are well on their way to finding the right path.
- Passion: “Driven” is an understatement when it comes to Trailblazers. A better word might be “obsessed” They are completely consumed with their journey and the impact they will make on the world and we are all the better for it. It’s not just to improve the world. It’s a manifestation of their creativity – a type of art. And when they put brush to canvas they are obsess over the details until they create a masterpiece.
- Dedicated to Life-long Growth: Trailblazers know that getting ready for their journey requires them to graduate to a new level. They need to one-up their game to be able to make the impact they are seeking. And to keep moving down that path, they know they need to continuously expand their capacity.
The net effect of living these values is a dramatic transformation in your life. I challenge you to live by these values every single day. If you do, I promise you will make a positive difference in the world and feel fully alive.
But hey, that’s my take on it. What do you think? What did I miss? What should be changed? Let me know in the comments below. Looking forward to hearing/reading your genius.