Raccoons are smart critters—one of the sharpest species in the world, in fact.
And their dexterous little paws allow them to yank the lids off sealed garbage cans, turn door knobs, and even use tools.
They're born problem solvers.
Way back in 1908, a scientist ran an experiment with a group of raccoons.
The raccoons were presented with a series of locks—deadbolts, latches, and barrel locks.
The little bandits figured out how to operate the locks in less than 10 tries. They actually seemed to understand how the locks really worked, because they could still open them perfectly even if he rearranged them or turned them upside down.
Sometimes their intelligence is also their downfall.
Because raccoons are INSATIABLY curious…
And old-time trappers and farmers realized they could use the animal's curiosity to their advantage.
To catch a raccoon, they'd snip a reflective piece of metal out of a tin can and tie it to the pedal that triggered their trap.
The raccoon couldn't resist investigating, and when he tugged on the bright, shiny object…
Yesterday I was talking to a fellow entrepreneur, and we both confessed our struggles with “Bright Shiny Object Syndrome.”
Sometimes it seems like, when you're an entrepreneur, your brain just works differently.
You've cracked open the door of possibilities and done something that most people never accomplish—because they never try.
And now, everywhere you look, you see opportunity.
You're always diving into new things… then getting overwhelmed and struggling to finish what you've started.
Marketers know this about us, of course. That's why, everywhere you turn on the Internet, there's some new tool that you just HAVE to use, or you're DOOMED TO FAILURE!!!
I wish I had an easy answer for this.
For me, the most helpful thing is to focus my efforts on mastering time-tested principles.
When I feel my raccoon brain taking over, I grab a book—the older the better.
Then when a new BSO appears—a hot new tool or tactic—I have a framework to evaluate it critically and determine whether it'll actually help my business…
Or whether it's just a massive time suck and distraction.
Here's a hint: most of them are.