Just do it…
One of the conversations that I keep having with people and organisations about personal productivity and organisational efficiency is that no matter what you may think, no matter how many ideas you may generate, no matter how much training you impart, nothing changes. The people are the same, the organisations are the same.
To this my answer is the simple three word formula that Nike used: "Just do it…"
Most of the big ideas would remain ideas unless they are executed. And there will be no perfect timing to initiate them. Remember, ideas are just the ancestors of action, they have to pass the baton to their progenyaction, otherwise they would just fizzle out and die.
Are you a person of ideas? Or are you a person of action. Actually, to gain traction in personal and professional life, you need to be both an initiator of ideas and executor of actions. Here is how to become both.
If you are waiting for one big opportunity to implement your idea, believe me it may never come. You have to start small and make it big. You want to lose weight but are not an early bird instead of truncating your wake up time from 8am to 5am just start 15 minutes early . Slowly make it 30 minutes, that way it won’t hurt. You are new in an industry and want to learn it, do not wait for that window of hours. Take every 15 minutes you get to wiki the information about the industry. And before you know, you would be an ace at it. Robin Sharma says in his monumental masterpiece, Who Will Cry When You Die?, "The smallest of actions is always better than the noblest of intentions". You have to start small, but start anyways…
Persistence is key
Daily and persistent efforts in the direction of your passion will help you move ahead. The problem is we come up with great ideas, but since we do not persistently work upon their execution we tend to give up in the initial stages only. In this era of instant messages, instant tea, instant coffee, we seemed to have become impatient in waiting for results. When results are not instantaneous we give up. Little do we realise that we did not stay with our own idea for long enough. For instance, you wish to improve your communication skills, you cannot just get the gift of the gab in a day. You need to start with the sub skills of listening and then graduate to speaking reading and writing. The results will be gradual. Do not give up early
Make adversaries your friends
Another reason we give up is that as soon as we start working on our ideas we realise that it is not as easy as it seems. It is full of adversity. That is the acid test. If you are not able to overcome when things are not comfortable and you give up at the word go, you did not love your idea that well. For instance, you wished to take up a new responsibility in your job . You are ecstatic because you feel it will open many new doors for you. At this moment, if you are also expecting that everyone around you would just give you way and serve what you want in a platter, you are mistaken. The new responsibility is your priority not theirs. Instead of treating it as an adversary, start befriending the persons and things that are clogging the system. Firmly but gently make your way into the virgin responsibility. People will take some time to adjust to this new role of yours. Give them that. Maintain grace under pressure…
Do not crib
It is easy to complain and condemn. It is hard to stand on your feet. Will you always come up with a great idea? Would you always be welcomed when you wish to propose a change in a scheme of things?
People will resist you, avoid you like plague. Do not crib. They are human after all. Does it mean you bow down because you want to be liked by all? That’s not the case too. So what do you do?
Instead of cribbing about people and systems, wade your way out of the muddy waters. Practice what is called detached attachment. View at your idea objectively. Maybe what everyone is saying makes sense. Sit at the judgment seat, to borrow from Edward De Bono with a blue hat. If at any point of time that others are right, just do the course correction in implementing your idea immediately.
Well begun is always half done…
The last push
Some of you may really start very well, put your ideas to execution and all seems good. Suddenly another interesting idea comes your way, making you ecstatic. You drop all that is in your hands to hanker after this new fad of an idea. For instance, you had thought of improving your communication skills, you were doing fine, were halfway when suddenly learning a new technology became the latest fad. You dropped your communication skills classes and enrolled yourself in your new tech class. That seems perfectly okay, but you have dropped the ball at the wrong time. What you can ideally do is to take your communication skills to a level of independence and confidence before moving into another genre altogether. What differentiates ordinary from the extraordinary is just the last push. Push the envelope…
If only I had the time
In this hardwired world, constant interruptions by technology have made us frame windows of time stacked back to back, the only crunch we have is time. When you say that you could not execute your ideas because you did not have the time, two things come to mind. One, you did not love your idea enough or you would have made time for it. There is empirical evidence to support the statement; we take out time not for things that are on the priority list, but for things that we enjoy doing. Second, you are just performing one chore after another playing catch up with time.
Take out the time by cutting through the clutter of emails, instant messages, telephone calls, blogs, podcasts and the like. Disconnect a little with the wired world, connect with molten minds instead. Strike a balance between the uncanny need to connect with the wired world and the craving passion to break bread with family and friends. Positive energy and emotions will flow in your direction and you will JUST DO IT. (The writer is a Punjab- based education counsellor with 12 years of experience. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org )