A Hit Piece on Excuses for Distractability

You’ve got a plan – it’s in your calendar, it’s on your to-do list.

Things can get in the way of you completing that plan and realising the potential within it.

Some of these things are internal, others external.

For me, there are many internal distractions that come in the form of ideas. They are always related in some way to something high stakes – either the potential for massive gain or loss. These ideas are always novel and big-picture. The kind of ideas that can genuinely change your life if you act on them. For instance, I’ll get excited about investing, camping, a business idea, a new way of doing something…

And  I’m here to say, they don’t mean shit.

Well, sometimes they are useful and you don’t want to miss your best ideas because you dismissed them all. But you also don’t want to allow ideas to destroy your efforts at taking action by getting in the way of plans, commitments and the execution of older, staler, less vivid ideas which you’ve already started. Ultimately, it’s better to act with deliberation, patience and composure – neither overexcited nor made anxious by abstractions.

For a while on this blog I have been gradually removing unnecessary noise from my internal world.

It’s been blissful at times as I shed what’s useless.

Now it’s time to accept that no idea is ever so good that it should stop you from doing basic things like planning your week or doing your work.

Ultimately, what changes you and what changes your life is not what you think about for a while – no matter how inspired you feel in that moment. It’s what you take action to make concrete and real. When you can make something tangible with sweat and focus and discipline, that’s when the beauty of an idea is worth something.

Without that basic routine of getting stuff done no matter what – ideas are worthless for you.

Schedule time to develop the idea properly. Give it the space it needs, but do not let it demand everything because then it will take everything and you cannot trust an abstraction to give you everything back again.

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