Do you want to experience the world’s famous beer festival? The Oktoberfest is one of the largest festivals in the world for about 7 million attendees. It is a 16-day to 18-day celebration running from mid September to the first weekend in October held in Munich, Germany annually.
I was lucky enough to witness this superb celebration about food, music, and lots of beer. I was able to enjoy the festival fully and I will share with you today all the stuff I learned that will help you maximize the fun!
This is a 5-minute Friday episode where I give you the 7 lessons I learned from my experience in Oktoberfest last week.
- Celebration is sooo important. Basically Oktoberfest is like a giant Thanksgiving – it’s about the food and music as much as it is about the beer. Celebrations are all the more important because it is so common to focus on the negative, in fact our neurology is wired that way. I see with my entrepreneur peers all the time – even if they accomplish ten amazing things on their to do list, they focus on the one little thing they didn’t get done. Celebrating helps us be grateful, it brings people together, it gives us something to look forward to, helps us be more interesting to others, and it helps us demarcate one step of our lives to the next.
- Minimalism is scary and liberating. As an eagle scout I learned to ” be prepared”. I hardly ever leave the house without a backpack, water bottle, snacks, sunscreen, and a jacket, but all I took to Oktoberfest was my wallet and phone (my mates even carried the house keys and train pass). I felt naked but so light and free at the same time! It also highlighted that minimalism is a privilege of people with money. You see homeless people pushing grocery carts or post depression era hoarders because, “you never know when you might need something”.
- Conformity is a strong force. Probably 75 % of people at Oktoberfest are wearing the traditional outfits: Lederhosen and Dirndl and it looks really good. I wasn’t planning on buying anything because I don’t need any more stuff, but I spent so much time wishing I had that outfit, that I broke down and bought a traditional Bavarian hat.
- Drinking is a lifehack to get into flow states. Why do so many people like drinking? Because it forces you to live in the now, and brings you quickly into a flow state, like surfing or doing art. Call it escapism, but if you can model your focus on the present moment in your sober life, you won’t need to escape from anything.
- It pays to be early. For pretty much everything in life, being early. Early adopter, early investor, early supporter, etc. At Oktoberfest, we woke up at the ungodly hour of 6 AM on a Sunday to be the first in the gate to be the first to get a table, so we could have a permanent spot in the middle of the best tent.
- Experiences are more valuable than things. Why has Oktoberfest continued for over 200 years? Why is it on everyone’s bucket list (including mine)? Because it is one of the most amazing experiences in the world! Oktoberfest started as a wedding celebration and people loved it so much that it kept going all these years. Creating an amazing experience for people is also not replicable by robots, artificial intelligence, or outsourcing (so it is a great way to get rich!)
- Maximize your adventure by planning less and asking the locals. On our second day, we met some people in line at the gate who gave us the scoop on “Gay Sunday” at a certain tent. This tradition has been running for 45 years and was definitely the most interesting and fun tent we could have attended at the whole event.