Are you a victim of the next shiny object syndrome?
There are so many great opportunities out there these days, it’s easy to be swayed by something new on a frequent basis.
Everyone knows that success requires focused attention. Trouble is, it’s hard to maintain focus and easy to get caught up with the next shiny object or the next opportunity.
There’s one thing that happens when you lose your focus and start paying attention to every new fad and shiny object – overwhelm. And overwhelm in turn leads to paralysis and inaction.
You get worked up and confused on what to do next and find that nothing gets done. You question the path you were already on, in the fear that it’s wrong. You procrastinate.
We’ve all had our ups and downs, and it’s so easy to be overwhelmed and confused about what to do next.
So what’s the answer?
Well the simple answer is you need to unplug and get back to basics.
Continue Digging In Your Backyard
It’s easy to look at someone else’s success and conclude that your town, your industry or your type of business is to blame for you not having yet achieved the kind of success you desire.
The grass on the other side seems greener and it’s seductive.
Yet ask yourself, is there anyone else in your town, your industry or your type of business that is doing well? If so, it’s very unlikely that the solution involves moving to greener pastures. The problem is likely to move with you.
Russell Conwell’s classic speech Acres of Diamonds includes the anecdote of a man who wanted to find diamonds so badly that he sold his property and went off in a futile search for them. Meanwhile, the new owner of his home discovered that a rich diamond mine was located right there on the property that he had sold.
The message being “dig in your own backyard”. In your own town, your industry or your type of business, you have a home advantage. You know the terrain, you know what works and what doesn’t. You have contacts and know how.
You don’t need to travel to a “distant land” to be successful. Chances are if you haven’t had success in your own “backyard”, you will only replicate the same results elsewhere.
Knowing What To Do
There’s a book that was written years ago called The Book of Survival, by Anthony Greenbank, and there’s a quote in it that says,
“To live through an impossible situation, you don’t need the reflexes of a Grand Prix driver, the muscles of a Hercules, or the mind of an Einstein. You simply need to know what to do.”
Knowing what to do will eliminate 99% of your procrastination.
Procrastination is not laziness. I know for a fact that some of the most hardworking people suffer from procrastination.
Many times procrastination is a problem associated with not having a clear idea of what to do next. When you’re not clear on exactly what to do next and how to do it, your brain turns to mush and procrastination ensues.
Procrastination is your brain’s way of giving you something you know how to do as substitute e.g. check your email, comment on Facebook, have a coffee etc.
I know of only one way to achieve anything:
Complex stuff eh?
Here’s the thing. You’ll never achieve what you want to do perfectly on the first go. If by some miracle you do, it’s just pure luck. Just as learning to ride a bike involves falling and losing balance a few times, so does achieving anything worthwhile.
Waiting until it’s all perfect or until you have all the information is a losing strategy. Remember 80% out the door is better than 100% in the drawer.
Principles vs Techniques
Principles are simple and timeless. Techniques are subject to constant change.
Learn principles first then add techniques.
Techniques are the place that most shiny new objects and distractions come from. While it’s true you do need techniques to accomplish your goals, if you first haven’t learned the principles, the techniques will only distract you.
Take selling as an example. You can use the Internet, social media, mobile marketing etc. to sell your products – these are all modern techniques.
However, the reasons people buy are the same as they were two thousand years ago and will be the same in two thousand years from now. These are principles that are timeless.
If you start with techniques, you’ll waste a lot of time and money and get distracted as the next new thing comes along.
Getting back to basics, truly understanding where you’re going and why you’re going there is the key to clarity and getting unstuck.