If you know anything about me, you know I’m pretty much a “go big or go home” kind of person.
Why host just one podcast when you can host a channel?
Why work on just one book at a time when you can work on two books and two edited collections in the same year?
The course that I released in June is another great example. To do it the way I wanted, I ended up creating over 100 videos and a 100+ page printed workbook. I thought it would take me a year, but I was able to get it done in about two months.
In other words, I don’t really know how to do things small.
I also don’t really know what it means to only partially enact a vision. When I invest in a project, it gets all of my ideas and a lot of my energy.
And, so far, that hasn’t really served me wrong.
But, just last week, I heard the saying “don’t dance faster than the music” and it really stuck with me.
Because it’s easy for me to get so energized with a project, sometimes I start to lose my overall rhythm.
I might fall out of the habit of working out regularly. Or stop reading as many fun books. Or just be more distracted as my brain works on the latest problem I’m trying to solve. It can be harder to build in a sense of balance to my day-to-day activities.
Also, I’ve found that too many projects on my plate means that I can get “off beat” with my work because I’m pulled in so many directions. Each project has its own tune that I’m dancing to and, depending on the deadlines, some are more frenzied than others.
As you can see, I’m still learning how to “right size” my work. In addition to wanting to do all the things right now, I also tend to think about all the possibilities rather than just envision a minimum viable product (MVP).
(If you look at all the small business advice out there, MVPs are what everyone says to do to “test the market” before you invest a lot of time or energy in a particular product or service.)
The truth is, I’d rather have the best product possible from the beginning than just a minimum viable product. I also usually just end up throwing my all at every project because I love the work. And, for me, my focus is often more on the process of creating, and then I just trust that it will result in something amazing.
I saw someone refer to this kind of attitude the other day as being a “sled dog” because you just happily keep doing hard things.
That’s definitely something I can identify with.
Now, giving your all to your work is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, it feels like an incredible privilege that I get to do that over and over again with projects that I really believe in.
However, if I think of my work as a musical genre, I’ve probably been dancing to the equivalent of club music for the past couple of years. As I took the opportunity to slow down this summer, I shifted the song I’m dancing to so that the beat was just a little bit slower.
The next bigger project I’m working is the group coaching program for my radical self-trust framework. It feels so important, but rather than speeding up the music and rushing to get it done and out into the world (which is definitely my first instinct), I’m instead trying to approach the project a little more slowly.
I’m taking my time with it and, for now, that feels like dancing at the right speed.
To think on:
- How do you stay “on beat” with your projects?
- Do you ever find yourself dancing faster than the music?