Tuesday, June 3, 2014

It's not that hard.

I have a habit, or perhaps a propensity, of making things simple. And the simplest way of making things simple is simply to start doing them.

In fact, I think fear of how much you have to do does more to stop you from actual doing than anything else. 

When I used to run marathons (many years and many pounds ago) I never thought about running 26.2 miles. I thought about running one mile, or running across the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. Once done, I thought about running another mile, or making it through the nethers of 4th Avenue in Brooklyn.

I tried my best not to be overwhelmed by the task.

Yesterday I heard a client in full panic because he has 15 things to create in short order.

Can we do this? Or better, how can we possibly do this?

I thought back to my first week at Ogilvy 15 years ago when I was faced with a similar problem of having a lot of ads to do in a short amount of time. 

The first thing you do is make the problem simpler. You find a format or a template or a style sheet that allows you to repurpose one piece for other, subsequent pieces. 

Then you close your proverbial door (15 years ago we had wooden, not proverbial doors) and start writing. You get one piece done. You put it away. And then you write another. Before long that giant, insurmountable mountain of barbed wire is cut down to size.

You move things from the 'to-do' pile to the 'done' pile.

The best way to make progress is to progress.

It's not that hard.

If you want to know how to do it, do it.

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