You could tell it was a sticky note that had been moved around his monitor a number of times, now a bit smudged and residing in the bottom right edge of his screen.
It read, “Action Cures Fear“…
What does that mean exactly?
When you are not sure WHAT to do, here are 3 COMMON TRAPS you might have fallen into + how to avoid them and move into action:
- SYMPTOM 1: You are waiting for the perfect ____________ (idea, choice, decision – often requiring the path of least resistance before you engage).
- PROBLEM with this Symptom > Waiting for “perfect” is like pulling out a map to memorize your destination without first turning on your vehicle.
- SOLUTION: Think of ONE thing that might be a possible answer and run with it. Don’t worry if it’s not the best choice. You can adjust much easier while in the “moment” of inspiration.
- SYMPTOM 2: What if I make the wrong choice?
- PROBLEM with this Symptom > This is a typical fear response, which will keep you stuck, sometimes indefinitely depending on the significance of the choice.
- SOLUTION: If you are in an organizational structure, often asking “advice” instead of someone’s “opinion” can lead to a candid and helpful conversation – WHO this conversation is with, can vary. Asking a senior leader can give you buy-in and simultaneously tell you if your idea has merit. Asking a co-worker could provide more broad peer level feedback. The point is get outside your own head and invite other ideas.
- SYMPTOM 3: “I’ll get to this when I have more time…”
- PROBLEM with this Symptom > When do we really have MORE time? This is really not an issue of time. It’s HOW your time is used.
- SOLUTION: There are 3 simple steps to tackle complex issues: (1) Give yourself 5 minutes and list ALL the tasks you can think of to accomplish what you need to do – keep yourself to 5 minutes so this does not get overwhelming. (2) Keep your list and number 1, 2, and 3 the top 3 tasks you can do NOW or NEXT. (3) Take action on ONE of them by a set date – the sooner the better.
- HINT: If fear is a big issue…take action by the END OF YOUR DAY, so you can refocus on the rest of your list later.
Since FEAR is like an anchor, taking ANY action is like cutting the rope that ties you down.
It’s the incremental progress that makes the difference.
Take ACTION today and cut that rope!