About Tom Allen
When I was in the second grade, my great aunt gave me a wristwatch for my birthday. Within days, the watch was completely apart . . . down to the last gear and smallest screw. I kept the parts in a box under my bed and within a week had put the watch back together. There were still parts in the box so, to my amazement, the watch worked . . . well, almost. I wound it up and watched in horror as the hands wildly spin around for a couple of seconds. I wore the broken watch fearing that my parents would punish me for breaking this thoughtful and expensive gift. Eventually, I showed the watch to my friends. All the kids in the second grade wanted to see the watch that could make time fly. My popularity grew.
I learned a valuable lesson. Curiosity had led me from a stable reality, the working watch – to a point of chaos, the box full of watch parts – back to a new stable reality – the infamous “time flies” watch. I learned that with patience and persistence it’s possible to work through difficult situations even though the outcome is unclear. The process changed me.
Since the second grade I’ve invented multiple products; written and received multiple patents; started, managed and successfully passed on profitable businesses; changed national laws in the U.S. and overseas; coached new employees, mentored soccer teams and trained youth ski racers.
The most important lesson I’ve learned is that impossible just takes longer.
Tom’s blog can be found at: www.tomallen.ws.
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