“Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” – John Wooden
Understatement of 2022: Sometimes our world is pretty complicated. It can feel like every decision or every action is impacted by literally dozens of factors, each of which is impacted by dozens more. We try to get our heads around all of that stuff and in the process become paralyzed. In the end, too often, we do nothing.
Sometimes that paralysis is fueled by an overwhelming feeling of incompetence. There are so many things coming at us that we just physically are not able to handle them all. Not only that, but that are just as many things that we’ve convinced ourselves we can’t deal with or impact, even if that may not actually be true. The point is, there’s a lot to handle and we don’t think we can handle it all. Again, in the end, we do nothing.
It’s easy to write in a blog that you need to get past that and start doing things. But where do you start? There’s no magic bullet or easy button. That said, when you’re struggling to get started, think small.
Think about an action you need to take. Maybe you’ve been thinking about whatever it is for a while but just feel stuck. Instead of looking for some big, grand solution, think about the opposite: What’s the smallest, easiest thing you could do that would help you on the path towards success?
Maybe it’s some kind of brainstorming, or maybe it’s one phone call, or maybe it’s getting some kind of necessary input from somewhere. Maybe it’s the act of writing down everything you’ll have to do to accomplish your goal. Whatever it is, just do that one thing.
When it’s done, congratulate yourself. Maybe that wasn’t what you thought the next step would be, but we spend so much time focusing on our failures that when something goes well we have to take time to celebrate. You’re one step closer to completing the task – celebrate!
There will always be things that are difficult and feel overwhelming. Leaders don’t get to skip doing their jobs just because things are difficult and overwhelming. It just means we’re going to have to deal with difficult & overwhelming things. So break things into pieces and start with the smallest ones. You’ll be on the path to success.