Most of us have been taught to wait and be picked. We feel valued when we get picked to be part of the committee, the sports team and the popular group. If you work in a large organization, you feel a sense of accomplishment when you get picked to be part of an important project for the company. You are validated as being important and good enough to be there.
We build too many walls that stop us from getting to the edges. We put up unnecessary boundaries that get in our way because we are stuck. We don't blow up things that are not working. We are stuck for a reason. We want the new job but we don't promote ourselves to the people who could help us. We get in our own way over and over. Most people like to follow. They want to be picked and read what the gurus read. They wait for the list to come out to know where to eat, travel and what is cool to buy. Does it always have to be trendy and pre-approved to be any good for us?
When you are constantly busy, it is hard to be creative and "find the time" to do what matters most. And we tend to keep ourselves busy and overwhelmed because it makes us feel that we have achieved something. It keeps us stuck in our routine of self-importance about our to do list and the joy we experience when we mark items off as "done." We are so busy doing that I wonder if we can sometimes simply stop and ask ourselves what's worth doing?
Regularly killing projects and deciding what we are not going to do is a way to get us unstuck. I thrive around people who take risks and know how to launch and quit stuff. Walking away can often help us get closer to what is truly important.
Taking a look at what you are doing from a different perspective is key. We all need to learn to stop and breathe more to be able to ask the questions that get us closer to creating our future. A year from now, how important would checking all those items off your to do list be for what you want to do?
You Can Create What You Want But You Need to Know Your Purpose
The response of "everyone else does it" or "this is how we've always done it" is not a strategy. I am not saying you need to create a large bureaucratic process. But to move quickly, make sure you are enabling your strategy by finding the smartest people out there who can help you since it has never been easier to connect with people. And there are plenty out there who are not looking for the next "job" but would be happy with collaborating on a project with you.
I am weary of the status quo of how we need to be. I am imagining new and better ways to move forward. We have the opportunity today to pursue new ways of working and living by experimenting. The status quo will call it innovation and put it in the middle of a process that people need to follow. Innovation comes when people can think freely and create - it requires a culture of the unexpected and unapproved.
Knowing your purpose will take you only on part of the journey. It takes guts to commit to solving a problem. And you may fail the first few times. But what happens if you don't try? What's a big problem you want to tackle in your organization, business or life that you are passionate about solving?
I choose to see failure as simply not trying. It always gets me closer to my purpose. What, if anything, is getting in your way? Do you know what your purpose is? I'd love to hear about what you are creating.