If that’s you—if you have too many passions and don’t know which one to focus on—here’s what you do:
If you’ve got a pile of possibilities in front of you right now and the idea of editing is overwhelming, step up into the observatory tower and gaze into the land of Harvesting. Which destination feels like success? Which one feels good, but not great? Which one feels okay, but not awesome? When I did this exercise, it forced me to realize that to progress as a copywriter in the company I worked for, I would probably need to become a creative director. I would manage projects and people, which would mean I’d spend less time actually writing. That pretty quickly became a destination I wasn’t eager to arrive at. If you’ve got ten paths, this simple exercise will help you eliminate a few pretty quickly. Especially the ones you’re just good at. Just because you’re good at something doesn’t mean it’s the road to awesome for you.
If that’s you—if you have too many passions and don’t know which one to focus on—here’s what you do: Pick one and start. Don’t try to prioritize your list. I used to tell people to do this, and it was a mistake on my part. I would say, “Make a list of all your passions, from most interesting to least interesting. Then start working on the one you are most interested in.” This seemed like good advice, but it’s not.
The list is miserable. It’s a crippling waste of time. Instead, just pick one and start. If they’re all passions, then what is the worst thing that can happen? You spend time doing something you enjoy and realize along the way it’s not what you enjoy the most? How is that a fail? That’s called an edit. If you wait to create a perfect prioritized list or just simply wait because you don’t know where to start, you are guaranteed zero percent joy because you’ve worked on zero percent of your passions. I’m horrible at math, but even I know some is better than none. Start on something. Edit it if it’s not your awesome. Move on to the next thing.
Start: Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average and Do Work that Matters
“We all are learning, modifying, or destroying ideas all the time. Rapid destruction of your ideas when the time is right is one of the most valuable qualities you can acquire. You must force yourself to consider arguments on the other side.
— Charles T. Munger”
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