Doing, Not Dreaming

If you are still trying to do something you begin three months ago, that’s not good. If it were six months ago, that’s terrible. And if it were longer than that, you’re just kidding yourself about really attempting to do it.

I’ve observed why people don’t move forward and wind up with the same thing on the “to do” list, or goals, or promises without movement. The reasons are:

• It’s a dream, and the work involved is not desirable or realistic.

• Fear of trying and failing.

• Fear of rejection by those who must be approached.

• Refusal to dedicate time that is now used on sustaining the status quo.

• Refusal to seek or heed help.

• The belief that if you keep talking about it then it will somehow happen.

If you want to create a new offering, move into a new market, reduce your indebtedness, attract larger clients, whatever:

  1. Identify what constitutes success.
  2. Ask yourself and others who have done it what’s required in addition to or in place of what you’re doing now.
  3. Implement on a tight time frame unafraid of failure and learning from mistakes.
  4. Dedicate time daily or weekly to implement.
  5. If it works, exploit it. If it fails, learn from it and forget it.

Generally, if you can’t make serious inroads in 60 days and create the new, sustainable environment in 90 days, you’re probably not going to do it, period.

Stop dreaming and start doing.

© Alan Weiss 2017

5 thoughts on “Doing, Not Dreaming

  1. Reminds me of your “Reasonable Progress” memo from several years back which I have pasted in a couple of places in my home. You probably still have it, but I’ll email my copy to you just in case. I’ve often wondered recently, if you were to re-write it, what would it read like today after years of reflection and experience – if any difference?

  2. Reminds me of one of my favorite quotes on this topic:

    “You are the way you are because that’s the way you want to be. If you really wanted to be any different, you would be in the process of changing right now.” Fred Smith, CEO FedEx

  3. This is the piece Craig Ellis mentioned, my thanks to him:

    Reasonable Progress

    Folks, I cannot control and can barely influence your talent and your discipline. Oh, I can help with skills development, and give you goals and accountability targets. But when you boil it all away, there is a God-given talent and a determination to get things accomplished that is pretty much innate.

    Starting at square zero, you should consummate your first sale in about six months. (Sooner is quite possible, and somewhat later is quite acceptable.) In one year, you should be self-sustaining, with sufficient business in-house or in the pipeline to support your current lifestyle.

    Assuming that you’ve actually tried to learn and apply my ramblings, and that you’ve participated in workshops, the Forum, Mentor Summits, mastermind groups, read the monthly newsletters, and so on, and you’re still behind those targets, it can mean only a few causes are at work:

    • You are afraid, not just of failing, but possibly also of succeeding. Your self-esteem is far too low, and you are protecting yourself and not taking risks. (What if you’re successful and someone finds out you don’t deserve it?!)

    • Your value isn’t sufficiently articulated and/or presented so as to make a compelling case to a buyer, so that money and time are not being shifted to you from other things.

    • Your personal style, language, behavior, and/or business etiquette are wanting, and the buyer is uncomfortable or annoyed in your presence.

    • You have done the right things, but not consistently. You don’t realize that 10% is an average “hit rate” for predators and the best baseball hitters are successful only a third of the time. You need to do the right things repeatedly and consistently.

    • You look at your pursuit as an avocation, not an occupation. You are easily distracted; you don’t really need the money; you care more for affiliation needs than income; you want to play with esoteric methodology forever instead of dealing with pragmatic results.

    I have known people who have “made it big” after taking two years or more, but they are rare and usually had to overcome, dramatically, one of the bullet points above. More commonly, if you’re just not seeing results, you could be in a “doom loop.”

    Look in the mirror and be honest with yourself.

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