Derek Sivers

from the book “”:

This is only a test. See what happens.

2000-04-14

In America in the 1970s, they would test the Emergency Broadcast System on TV, with a long “BEEEEEEEEEEP”. At the end, an announcer would say, “This is a test. This is only a test.”

That phrase is burned into my brain. “This is a test. This is only a test.” It’s very useful to remember when pursuing your career.

Everything usually feels so serious — like if you make one mistake, it’ll all end in disaster. But really everything you do is just a test: an experiment to see what happens.

My favorite times in life started with a “see what happens” approach.

Let’s see what happens if I run my vocals through my guitar pedals.

Let’s see what happens if I invite that famous producer out to lunch.

Let’s see what happens if I call that radio station to ask their advice.

It’s actually impossible to fail if your only mission was to see what happens!

“This is a test. This is only a test.” There is no downside. Try everything!