Action Inaction

You need action to get from here to there. A simple concept but challenging in execution. Some actions we can't avoid when a life crisis strikes. But most actions require a conscious decision, especially those that lead us to positive change. 

It's easy to rationalize not taking action. I don't have the resources. I need to plan more. I might fail. When I worked in a large organization, I dreaded strategic planning sessions - the place where our actions for the coming years were to be forged. It often seemed the place where dreams went to die and nothing more than group procrastination. Get the flip charts out, brainstorm a bunch of ideas, distill them into a few motherhood and apple pie statements, then go back to what we were doing yesterday. When the plan goes off track, which it inevitably did, do it all again. Positive action would sometimes come out of these sessions but more often than not it was like the difference between a hockey practice and a game. Once we got back out into the action, everything was reaction with little thought and a lot of people didn't really know where the net was. 

Most organizations and individuals have a basic understanding of who they are and what lies at the core of what they do. If I'm a musician, I need to create music. If I'm a writer, I need to write. Why do we often struggle to take action? 

Fear is a huge part of it. Large organizations are especially adept at creating a culture of risk aversion and not empowering people to take risks in the pursuit of finding new ways to do things. It is much easier to just do what we've always done rather than step outside of our comfort zone and try something different. 

I think and write a lot about self improvement and personal development but I think it all really boils down to this. Don't overthink and over analyze. Just take action. Trust your instincts. Take Risks. Make mistakes. Accept the outcome and if needed, regroup and do it all again. Embrace the discomfort of venturing into unknown territory. Nothing is gained without first taking action. 

I hesitate to quote the gospel according to Nike, but just do it.

Leave a comment

Add comment