Why planning is the very seed of an entrepreneurs anxiety and how to get rid of it
I thought about action.
I know it’s weird. Action from that?
I thought about my beliefs. And what they mean to someone’s sanity and especially a person with anxiety that also really wants to create a business.
The thing is your beliefs, values and psychological rules are all built upon this principle. The decisions you make, the actions you take, and the habits you indulge in, are all based upon this principle. In fact, every part of your psyche is influenced in some way by the pain-pleasure principle. You are therefore who you are today because of how you have interpreted and acted upon the experience of pain and pleasure in your life. And as we all know action always begins with a decision.
I’ve been seriously struggling with action lately and I’m just unsure on how to actually follow through. And it sucks!
Because I really believe whole heartedly that depression and feeling down stems from not being able to act upon something that you can see in your minds eye but it’s not becoming a reality.
SOOO a current pain in my life is ACTION.
The economist and author of Average is Over, Tyler Cowen says
“The more information that’s out there, the greater the returns to just being willing to sit down and apply yourself. Information isn’t what’s scarce; it’s the willingness to do something with it.”
Action is not easy for everyone. Our society promotes learning. People are rewarded more for going to college, entering a trade school or giving up their dreams of becoming a business owner by going back to school.
So I thought to myself “Logan, you’re not like everyone else. And your anxiety doesn’t have to be permanent.”
People who are really making dents in the world are taking chances. Taking in the pain and feeling the pleasure later.
Robert Greene explains in Mastery that the Wright Bros. had a tight budget and were forced to make small, cheap tweaks to each model. They would fly a plane, crash it, tweak it, and fly it again quickly.
They didn’t stop after their plan crash. They used that momentum to try again.
The Wright Bros. had a hundred test flights in the time it took these big corporations to complete a handful. Every test flight taught lessons – but real practical lessons. Not a lesson of A, B,C, D, or F. The return in failure was hard to swallow but the one who failed fastest gathered the most information. Which is not really a philosophy for education.
Eric Ries’ book The Lean Startup. Has says
“I’ve come to believe that learning is the essential unit of progress for startups. The effort that is not absolutely necessary for learning what customers want can be eliminated. I call this validated learning because it is always demonstrated by positive improvements in the startup’s core metrics.”
Technology has reached a point where actually, building is often cheaper than planning. We can build the thing and know the answer before we can plan for all the possibilities anddetermine how it might work.
“The question is not ‘Can this product be built?’ In the modern economy, almost any product that can be imagined can be built. The more pertinent questions are ‘Should this product be built?’ and ‘Can we build a sustainable business around this set of products and services?’”
These are questions that cannot be answered in the abstract – they must be tested in the physical world.
The key is to make the tests cheap and quickly make small improvements.
This applies to everything. Especially your life.
Planning has paralyzed me so so many times. I was taught to always have a plan before taking action.
That led to a deep anxiety that lead to depression. I didn’t know what career I wanted to dedicate my life to and so I did nothing. I didn’t know what girl I wanted to marry and so I didn’t give any a real chance. I didn’t know what fitness plan was the best and so I stayed out of the gym. Why waste my time right? Wrong!
I’ve realized something recently. “Dr Steve maraboli
Said by Steve Maraboli.
This is so so true. Failing and falling on your face is never a waste of time. And this applies to entrepreneurs.
So I believe the very reason entrepreneurs are anxious and fall into depression is because thinking of building a business or improving themselves without actually doing anything. Is the very reason WHY they get anxious
So this is a call to action for you and ME.
My 5 commandments
- I will not plan or research until I’ve taken action.
- I will not make an opinion with new careers and find which ones I hate and which Ones I love before a I experiment. Experimenting leads to experience. Experience in a career leads to dollars.
- I will not let myself love the most perfect girl until I’ve talked to her. And then potentially create the best relationship I’ve ever had.
- I will not read anything about fitness until I’ve worked out that day.
- I will not let myself learn about a new diet until I’ve fully gave it my all on this current diet. With my current health care doctors approval.
These are many more we could add to the list of action commandments. But for now. Like not chew more then we can swallow.
The thing is most of the time, planning is procrastination.
It’s based on theory. It’s going to be wrong.
Plans are useless without action.
That’s why Step 1 is to take action based on what you already know. Then improve bit by bit. Then begin forming a plan.
No one told me when I started my business that
Action Allows for exposure. In a good way.
Taking action creates possibilities that didn’t exist before.
We always look out at our future from the place we’re standing. But we forget that this is only one spot.
Imagine this: you’re walking in New York City. All you can see are skyscrapers, neurotic humans, and taxis. You turn down the next street and you’re looking out into the trees of Central Park.
A completely new possibility has been exposed.
Okay so let’s say, you’re a little overweight then you probably don’t see a possible future where you’re fit. But, after three months of working out and eating well there will be a possible future of physical fitness.
These possibilities seem to “come out of nowhere” but they actually come out of taking action.
If you’ve only failed then it’s impossible to see the possibility of success. The trick is to keep trying. That next step might be the key to a better future — you just can’t see around the corner yet.
Which I know. Is kind of scarey. It sucks. Because there’s no certainty and humans love certainty.
But Inaction is Scarier
The pain of action is hard. It’s right in our face.
Inaction is attractive to us because it’s slow. We can see all the gears moving.
We don’t really take into account that refusing to choose is a a choice.
Hey you’re not alone. I do it to.
But We think we’re safe if we don’t expose ourselves to failure. We don’t appreciate the consequences of inaction because they are slow, frequent, and less obvious.
And That’s what makes them worse.
You don’t get to escape pain.
The pain that comes with action is hard, but it gives you scars, and makes you grow.
The pain that comes from inaction is low-grade, makes you soft, and makes you decay, and makes you honestly feel like your not doing anything with your life. Because well, you aren’t.
But now you can!!
Motivation feeds off Action.
Just trust me for this moment.
Here’s a little story
I had zero motivation when I began talking about this. I had nothing to say. So I wrote a blog about action but for some reason I couldn’t think of the words to tell you.
It’s filled with words
But not that I’m talking to you about why Entrepenuers get anxiety. I can’t stop thinking of new things to say.
It’s always like this.
I don’t feel like working out until I’ve been at the gym for 15 minutes.
I’m too tired to podcast about something until I’ve started.
I don’t want to go to the party until I’m there.
Motivation (and passion) will follow you if you have the balls to go without them.
Action is an Existential
I’ve spent a lot my life thinking “what is the meaning of my life?”
I’ve come up with a lot of clever answers. Some of them even felt really good and sounded super genius.
But the Truth is-
The only one that ever really works is disappointingly simple: (do something.)
The meaning of my life can only be summed up on paper.
Philosophy is like communism. It looks so good on paper but when it’s put into practice and action. It’s for nothing.
So what I’m trying to say
Is abstract ideals there nice to think about and wonder about but it’s not life.
I listened to an interview with Nueroscientist David Eagleman on Impact Theory and the guy blew my mind. He said that “Move your finger when the impulse grabs you.” He reports on his findings in Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain:
“Long before a voluntary movement is enacted, a buildup of neural activity can be measured. The ‘readiness potential’ is larger when subjects judge the time of their urge to move, rather than the movement itself.”
So! I know that’s kind of mind blowing. Basically what I’m interpreting it as. Is that
make the choice before they were conscious of it.
Here’s the thing let’s take
Teenagers think they know everything because they haven’t tested their mettle. They don’t know anything and so they feel like they know everything. They are just beginning to learn about theories and possibilities. They haven’t done anything so they feel like they can do anything.
And not saying I know everything because well. I’m wise enough to know I know nothing BUT
Action is so so important. It carries the possibility to bring imagination and reality together.
But I think the key is to consistently trying.
Most entrepenuers give up their business and end up so dull. They don’t do anything because they believe that it’s probably going to fail.
They mistook early failures for a sign that they should stop trying.
That’s why they’re bored, depressed, and lethargic.
Instead, our failures strengthen us. We should recognize that failures are how we learn and grow.
Just ask, “What would Leonidas think? From 300 do? He would keep trucking no matter what.
So you might be asking, Logan how do I actuallly take action when I don’t feel like it? I mean I’m human. I get tired.
And I think it comes down to systems
If you train yourself to be emotionally rewarded for actions taken rather than outcomes you may be able to lengthen the time you can spend in actively “sucking at things” and increase your chances of success. It’s a numbers game.
So maybe youth to reward yourself for following your system rather than achieving a goal.
Try a system you know will lead to success and follow it.
For example. I wrote this outline about actions before I ever turned on the mic. But I love talking so talking is my reward.
Eating right vs. losing 20 pounds. Building a business vs. achieving financial independence. Going on dates vs. having a successful relationship.
When I set a goal of “create 7 podcasts interviews a week” I stopped wanting to podcast and feeling bad about myself.
But When I decided on the system of “Podcast about just something small. Like these one person show. I could do this every day” I began a real path to podcast success.
That’s the easy step. The next is the real challenge.
Go an entire week with zero information consumption.
I know I know. It sound rediculous. Especially if you’re a creative a entrepreneur but try it for just 30 minutes. Most people who go through information deprivation swear by it.
But Start small if you need to.
Stay with me on this.
People that are hard core do this for one week:
- No reading books.
- No reading blogs.
- No reading newspapers.
- No going on Facebook (even just to post).
- No watching TV (shows, sports, news, anything).
- No watching movies.
- No listening to talk radio.
- No going on Reddit.
- No going on Twitter.
- No information input – only output!
You have to literally force yourself to spend time with yourself and the people surrounding you.
This will, first and foremost, pressure you into action by taking away every activity you run to in order to avoid actually doing the work you know you should be doing.
According to Creative Habit by Twayla Tharp
this information deprevation will increase mindfulness, increase the respect you have for your own ideas, you’ll have more ideas, unsolvable life problems may begin to make sense, you’ll have an increased appreciation for the news that actually matters, you’ll become more social, you’ll gain perspective, and you’ll become more original.
I mean it sounds too good to be true but the only way for you to appreciate this is to do it.
I thought of a system for this
With your mighty phone you can become anxious free
- Install StayFocusd or its equivalent and put all your time-sucking websites on there. ALL of them! Facebook, Twitter, MySpace (??), reddit, Digg (??), Chive, EVERYTHING!
- Delete your consumption apps. I deleted Facebook, Pulse, and Twitter off my phone. Delete the apps that you reflexively go to when you have a minute of free time.
- Move your books and magazines. They will just taunt you if they’re sitting on your bedstand or at your desk. Make a stack and put it out of sight.
- Carry a notebook with you. You’re going to begin having ideas pop up in your head; make notes of them. I like notepads more than phones because we associate them with creating instead of consuming. It’s risky to take notes on a smartphone if you’re trying to avoid inputs.
- Take the batteries out of your remote. When you have the urge to flick on the TV you’ll have to go get batteries for the remote. This is a barrier to TV that will save your willpower pool from draining as you stare down the remote thinking about all the Game of Thrones and Mad Men you’re missing.
This may be the hardest thing you do all year. The benefits may not be obvious on Day 2. By Day 6 they’ll be undeniable.
Your focus will turn to production instead of consumption. You will become a giver instead of a taker. You will see your addiction to novelty and useless information plainly.
Remember that this is only 30 minutes but we’re shooting for a week and not a lifestyle. I love books. I love learning new things. I consume information like crazy. And it’s valuable! Information Deprivation Week is about creating a better relationship with information, not denying its importance.
Like a girlfriend that you didn’t fully appreciate until she was gone, your relationship to information will be forever changed. You will appreciate quality information and be more able to ignore the rest. You won’t be an addict to useless information.
- Failing can be progress if you use it.
- The wisdom you receive from action often remains invisible.
- Judge yourself based on the actions you take – not their outcomes.
If this show is was worth an hour of your time out of your day, first of all thank you so so so much for taking the time to listen and if you found it inspirational or valuable please head over to LoganTylerNelson.com and leave a few dollars or whatever you find affordable to help this show reach a bigger platform. All I’m trying to do is make people feel less alone and more comfortable with sharing the thoughts we all have and need to talk about more. Back to my interview.
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