“Have you ever had a great idea but didn’t follow through on it? If you identify as a “perfect” human being, you have. I’m not talking about anything extravagant. There’s nothing earth-shattering here. Simply said, it was an excellent concept that would have generated you more money. But you didn’t do anything about it. Speaking from experience here!
Full confession I’ve let many ideas remain as just that ideas. I’m the kind of person who thinks deeply and creatively. I’ve always had an ability to understand clients and come up with unique solutions for them. However, I must admit that I personally don’t feel I’m particularly successful. That’s due in large part because I’m certainly not where I want it to be.
The irony is that I have more fantastic ideas for growing my business. The issue is that I’ve not put many of them into action.
So, how about you?
Have you have more ideas than you do actions? Why don’t you simply get started?
I became curious as to why I was operating the way I do, and began doing a lot of intraspection.
I started considering what it was that was preventing me from acting on ideas or plans that may result in substantial rewards?
These are some of the basic reasons I found.
1. A lack of an inspirational and compelling goal
The lack of a why is referred to as Purpose. Without a solid purpose, the urgent takes precedence. The build up of emails in the mailbox takes over. The call from a friend for help takes over. Inertia takes control.
We learn in physics that it takes more energy to break away from inertia. That energy is added by a strong aim. The energy that organizes your efforts and brings the most essential things to the forefront. You need an inspirational purpose to break free from the shackles of your existing routine.
2. Lack of a clear view
Consider yourself at a six-way stop in a fog so dense that you can’t see a single landmark. Even the traffic signs are incomprehensible to you. Which path will you take? Will you be confident in your choice of direction, or will you continue cautiously, expecting for the fog to clear before picking up the pace?
Everyone—at least everyone in business—wishes to go someplace. However, without a clear vision, it is impossible to see where you wish to go. And if you don’t see it, how will you act boldly and confidently toward it—whatever it is?
So, even if you have a strategy to get you…somewhere, you’re unlikely to carry it through.
3. Unwilling to make sacrifices or put in the effort
You already have a lot on your plate, and anything additional you take on means something will have to be sacrificed. Sacrifice entails giving up something valuable in exchange for something even more valuable. That suggests there is something more precious to give up for. And you haven’t said what that “something” is. Or maybe you’re not convinced it’s worth it.
I began to place giving up leisure time, relaxing time, play time, or whatever in the same category. But it always comes down to sacrifice, and the key question is whether or not it’s worthwhile. (guilty as charged) There are moments when I feel I have something essential to do, but it isn’t important enough to get me to drop other “priorities”.
4. Lack of faith
If you are positive that something will work, there is no danger, and you will most likely act. On the other hand, if you are uncertain—and most things are to some extent uncertain—you may ask if the risk is worthwhile.
Perhaps ‘it’ will work in someone else’s hands, but you don’t think it will work in yours. In other words, you lack faith in your ability to do the task, and the danger is too large.
Each of these concerns may be solved by having a strong purpose and inspirational goals to work toward. When these are powerful enough, they increase the potential benefit and shift the risk-return ratio in favor of action.
It all boils down to fear at times, and this was the elephant in the room for me. You have a vision and a goal, and you believe the risks are manageable. But what happens if it doesn’t work out? What happens next? That’s what fear is. It’s not going to turn out the way you want it to. So, what will you be left with? Worse, not only will it not work out, but something negative will occur as a result of it.
6. All the other stuff
You simply have other commitments. What do you mean? Family or maybe a job. Thing is could some of it be eliminated or placed on hold?
It comes down to balancing what you have goin on with your purpose and aspirations.
You may need to refocus your priorities and rethink your alternatives in order to devote your available time and energy to pushing you on the right path.
So, how about you?
What’s holding you back? Any one of these six things, or a combination of them, can hold you back. It’s much simpler to confront and move forward after you have identified what is holding you back.