Consistency

There is a natural tendency to overthink strategy.

The term “strategy” means a plan to achieve one or more goals. In many cases, coming up with goals is the easy part. We do it naturally on a daily basis with our never-ending stream of whims, desires, dreams and aspirations. The hard part for any non-trivial goal is coming up with a strategy that motivates us to immediate action and keeps pushing us along until the goal is achieved. All too often we make plans and may even start to take some actions, but then our progress stalls. Perhaps you may even try out a few alternate strategies, but they likewise stall and you don’t get any closer to your goals. Then you give up and/or stop trying.

The problem in most cases isn’t one of strategic skill but rather our inability to perceive certain types of progress. Painfully slow progress is still progress. Failure is still progress. Literally anything that keeps us moving and active engaged in good faith (i.e. we aren’t trying to make ourselves fail) IS PROGRESS regardless of the results.

The key is consistent action.

As long as your goal isn’t physically impossible and you don’t run out of time, consistent action in good faith will eventually lead to success.

I know it can be really discouraging when, for example, you go to the gym every day to lose weight but don’t see any results after a month of hard work. Or, you work yourself to the bone at a startup for a year only for it to fail. It can be really tempting in those situations to give up.

Don’t give up.

As long as your original goal remains a priority in your life, you need to just keep plugging away and working hard. That doesn’t mean to keep doing the same thing. Consistent action doesn’t mean the same exact action. It just means taking some sort of action. Learning from previous failures and making adjustments is part of the process.

To summarize:

  1. Stop overthinking strategy and just start doing something
  2. If your current strategy isn’t working, change it quickly and then keep going
  3. Don’t stop working toward your goal until either:
    • Your goal is achieved
    • The goal is no long relevant/important
    • You are dead

Consistency is power.


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