A close familiarity

Sometimes people fail to succeed because they can’t accept to suck.

If you want to master something, you have to get accustomed to the idea that you are going to suck. You are going to suck at the thing you want to master – for a long time, before you actually master it -, and you are going to suck at most of the other things that you are not interested in mastering. That’s why it’s easier to move from one activity to the next, averaging them all.

Success requires a close familiarity with the idea that you suck.

Between decision and execution

Most problems arise between decision and execution. It’s when you start to reconsider based only on fear, redundant or irrelevant information, and shiny new opportunities.

To mitigate this, try three things.

  1. Make the decision public. Talk about it and commit to it.
  2. Assign a responsible person. Someone who is in charge and has the power, right now, to execute on the decision.
  3. Keep the implementation time to the bare minimum. Act fast, don’t delay.

Courage

Scale down.

Lower your targets.

Take a break.

Build a profitable business.

Hire one person less than what you had planned.

Stop working two hours earlier.

Do not reply to a thread unless you can really add some value.

Set sustainable and humane growth goals.

Tell your colleague to take the rest of the day off.

Focus on a niche, for real.

Reject the invite to an all-hands meeting.

Set some time a part in your calendar to develop relationships.

Keep your opinion for yourself and bring facts to the table.

Think about what is going on.

Look inside and write down how you are feeling.

Withdraw from a recruiting process that does not feel right.

All those things require a lot of courage, simply because almost nobody is doing them. That’s where you can start making your story different.

Connecting the dots

See the opportunities to connect the dots.

A colleague might be working on a project that is related to the work a person in a different department is doing.

Your campaign’s results might be an important learning for those who come after you.

The feature that is ready to be released might be a fantastic opportunity to create new content about your key differentiator.

The outcome of a workshop organised by the management team might be relevant to share with your external partners, so they can also see what your company is about.

The point is that most of the things that are achieved in a business do not end there. They open up new opportunities, they are linked to other initiatives, they can be repurposed in various circumstances. That’s why auditing what is happening at any given time is much more important than pursuing something new.

The best you can hope for

There is nothing more pointless than to act to please others.

To do things just because you hope that others will be happy with them. To show off your work just because you hope that others will appreciate it, like it, follow it. To share words of advice just because you hope that others will follow them and be happy and recognise your contribution.

Find the motivation within, be kind and fair, and accept that others will run with their lives to the best of their own circumstances.

That’s the best you can hope for.