How much time do you spend thinking about starting a project, adding a new habit or dropping an old one? How much time do you spend talking about what you are going to do and why you are going to do it? Think back to the last time you engaged in either of these activities. How did they make you feel? Typically these activities of telling people what we are going to do, talking about the changes we are going to make, and planning out on paper a future state that will fill some perceived gaps in your life provide us with a sense of excitement, a sense of hope, and maybe even a bit of pride.
While there are some needs to getting those around you on the same page and organizing teamwork and camaraderie, most people spend too much time on this behavior. Ultimately, any activity that unnecessarily delays action, delays learning. The founder of IBM said it this way, “if you want to double the rate of success, double the rate of failure.” My old man was a firefighter for nearly 30 years and he had a Lieutenant who would often say, “if you aren’t screwing something up, you aren’t doing anything.” So very true. I like to say, “the only way to learn is to learn.” And the only way to learn is by taking action. Sooner or later, we have to get in the game. And the sooner, the better!
I beg you to test me on this truth I am about to share with you—the more scared you are to do something—the more you should do it! I have taken many hard knocks to learn this truth—comfort is the enemy of progress. So, be scared and do it anyway. In the final analysis, those that get in the game, take action, analyze their results, and iterate their actions over time based on what they learn have far more freedom than those who wait for the perfect time, the best plan, the best idea, the best place, etc. Don’t trust me, test me!
Start from where you are today and do something that scares you! Then, let us know about it. We are here to encourage one another to get after those ideas that reside deep within the consciousness of each one of us.