The story of your life depends on who you choose to be.
We have a constant stream of information that we can access 24 x 7. We are actively tuned into what’s happening in the world. We jump from content piece to another; consuming whatever we can to understand our place in the world.
We are consuming things at an unbelievable rate. But where’s it all going?
It’s important now more than ever to draw a line between creation and consumption. To be of value, an action is a necessary condition.
The first move to move a mountain is moving yourself.
Nobody created a dent in the universe by actively consuming content.
One of the most important things we should do before taking a job is to define clear expectations.
Often, the end picture is blurry for individuals on both ends of the spectrum — and this becomes a perfect recipe for misunderstanding and chaos.
Humans are wired to over-promise. You take up a project wanting to shoot for the moon — no matter if you haven’t still figured out where you will get the fuel from.
Why? Because it feels good. The feeling of achieving an ideal target is a state of bliss. But unfortunately, moment driven passion & emotion always get the better of us and don’t necessarily project reality.
What can we do to combat this?
Set the right expectations. Under-promise; over-deliver.
There’s a difference between having an idea and executing it. Both lie on opposite end of a spectrum and require different values of forces to matter.
We all know that one person who has truly amazing, world changing ideas. Some of them had the idea of Facebook, some of Uber, some of Netflix & so many more. But I bet you don’t remember them.
The thing with ideas and the people who share them is that the ones we truly remember are those who created something out of it.
Nobody remembers the person who had an idea to change the world. We remember those who did.
You might have an idea of ending poverty, of fighting global warming, of creating the next-big unicorn and a thousand more. But the problem is that all these ideas are just, well, ideas.
You have to be willing to test your ideas in rough waters of the world and figure out its worth. If you let your idea sit on a presentation deck or in the head of your boss, there’s a high chance that someone else may pick it up and do something about it.
We need to understand an important thing: what separates the winners from the lazies is that winners are lazy enough to get the ideas and productive enough to create something out of it.
Where does this start?
This conversation of action needs to further go down in the culture of our workplaces. We should be appreciative of an idea & encouraging for action on it.
What do we do?
On a personal level, I have been prey to the idea disease — wherein in the middle of the night I get an idea that I feel is disruptive, world-changing & amazing — all in one. I can’t wait to share it with people as soon as possible.
Once I do, I am provided instant gratification of the idea being appreciated. But there’s a problem here: not me or the ones who I have shared the idea have the slightest idea of how we’ll go about it.
And therein lies the key to failure. We fool appreciation with motivation to do the work. In reality, that appreciation becomes a trap and hinders us in evaluating the real worth of the idea.
Appreciation is nice & necessary but it should never be the end goal if you want to do something that matters.
When you have an idea, you need to show people the path. You are the leader now. No matter what seniority sits in front of you, this is your moment of glory. No matter what fear of failure blinds you, you need to be prepared like a beast. And that preparation will only be 1% if what you have is just an “idea”.
People don’t win a game with an idea of winning it — they sure have ingenious ideas of how they will defeat the other side but that’s not it. They have a strategy in place, they prepare to win and they win because they went at it with all their might. You don’t win a game by an idea, you win a game by playing the game.
So let’s have an execution manifesto.
All good ideas to those who wait..but greatness to the ones who hustle.