Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Thinking vs Doing (...65)

I am going to read the book Poke the Box by Seth Godin.  I will. Tomorrow...or soon after.  Guess what this book is about?  It's about getting unstuck from the mode of thinking about and planning to do stuff and just doing it.  Basically, it's about taking action instead of contemplating it.  And I am going to read this book, just as soon as I get an email from my local library telling me it's available through interlibrary loan.

The reason the book's subject caught my eye is because in this layoff period I'm thinking about doing A LOT OF DIFFERENT STUFF.  I want to do every single thing I think of doing.  That can be a problem.  Simetimes this thinking of doing gets in the way of doing.  My sister and I talk often of working together on a business project, something we could enjoy doing together and possibly make money from.  But it's tough to get momentum on our plans.  Recently, after we'd discussed yet another business idea, my sister said to me along these lines:  "Let's just start doing this and not plan it because otherwise we'll never start."  That's the kind of mindset Seth Godin is talking about!  I'd like to apply this idea to all of the stuff I think of doing.  It speaks to my recent feeling that I'd rather fail at trying something I want to do than being successful spending time on things I don't enjoy. 

Here's a short excerpt from the book, via the "Look Inside" feature on Amazon:
"This is a manifesto about starting.
Starting a project, making a ruckus, taking what feels like a risk.
Not just "I'm starting to think about it," or "We're going to meet on this," or even "I filed a patent application..."
No, starting.
Going beond the point of no return.
Making something happen."

I imagine "Leaping" is a matter of getting some practice at thinking less and doing more.  I think most people are good at leaping into some things but not everything.  For example, I know when it comes to sports, I dive right in.  Literally, I dive in with about 2000 people to start the Ironman triathlon and don't think twice about what's in store for me: elevated heart rate, packed and chaotic swim, being blind sided by other athletes...many people are apprehensive about the 2.4 mile swim.  I ignore my fears and just go.  This approach serves me well in sports and that's the approach I'd like to bring to every one of my projects, work and personal.

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