I read them when I decided to take a break from the weekly review process that is my habit each Saturday morning, and the combination of his words with my own actions caused me to sit back and get pretty introspective. My mundane but important project this morning was to clean up my calendar processing and use of Outlook, and what had motivated me to do so was completing my first speed-reading of David Allen’s Getting Things Done.
Sidebar: Those of you who have read Allen’s book and become one of his devotees know that the mere thought of speed reading his book is borderline ludicrous. So before you start shaking your head I’ll add this: I only made it through part 1 of his book before I decided that I needed to order a hard-cover copy to mark up and study ” it’s on the way ”
Like Chris, I consider myself a voracious reader and insatiable learner, finding pure joy in those pursuits. It really becomes difficult at times (okay, most of the time) figuring out when you need to take a break from all that input, be momentarily satisfied with the data collection you’ve gone through, and start to more actively implement the things you feel you have learned about. It is very easy to get stuck between looking for more and more info in the effort to fully flush out the picture you want to paint of your future possibilities, and actually beginning to try things out satisfied with the options you have.
Once we do engage in action and do things, practice turns into personalization, and if it is successful for us, that personalization will turn into our new habits – hopefully habits that are much more productive.
Sometimes we are too smart for our own good. The more we read, and study, and learn, the more we are tricking ourselves into believing that our logical, in-our-mind processing of stuff is all we need. We skip the doing of it, not because we are lazy or procrastinate, but because we subconsciously believe we don’t have to – it makes perfect sense, we have no argument, so where is the need to prove it?
However action provides us with different lessons, and it solidifies our mana‘o – our deeply held convictions and beliefs. And as Chris points out, there is something else that action delivers, something we all need to feel good about ourselves: action helps us grab hold of more credibility, a kind of credibility that helps us feel we are being authentic and the real deal. Deep down, we do understand that it is somehow more useful to do it wrong than not do it at all. After all, we’re learners, and we’ll get it right the next time.
And when we’re coaches, we’ve collected a great story to tell about the whole messy journey to bliss as well. We’re all in this together Chris!