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TB#27: The Power of Just Doing Something

2023-04-22

You ever find yourself too busy to do anything?

When you’re short on time, it’s easy to postpone the things you know you should be doing. You know, “tomorrow I’ll have more time.” Except that it’s never true.

You’ll end up filling tomorrow with something too


Earlier this year I took a cohort on learning the ropes on how to play twitter the right way. And I loved it! Hands down the best course on Twitter, and learned a ton.

Way earlier than that, I did my PhD earlier on wisdom of crowds, so I know better than to trust one person on anything. And ever since the cohort I took, I’ve been super-consciously (not even sure if that’s a word but let’s just assume it is) paying attention to how the many people I consider are “doing Twitter right” are doing it.

And while there are patterns, there is no ONE pattern to rule them all.

So many correct ways of doing it, and all those ways are “the wrong ways” if you ask a single guru.

And this is whereI think many people fall into a trap.

Lemme make a quick context-hop into one of the slides in my “Five Factors of Focus” coaching.

Behold my mad design skillz:

If you fall into following the teachings of just one teacher, you’re most likely going to crash and burn in the long run.

Because there is no one-size-fits-all solution.

First you want to get something done. Be that building an audience online, building your first side business, making more noise as a professional in your given field, building a tree house, ANYTHING!

Let’s go with writing consistently online for the sake of example.

You just want to make progress: You want to post something online every day. We already know the benefits of doing this: Being more visible, developing your consistency muscles, building an audience (if you find a way to do it right).

But it’s not easy and you have no clue what to do with all the tools you’ve bought. Next up, you go look for help. Because that’s what smart people do. And you’re smart of course!

…then:

  • You see someone either posting good stuff consistently or just being an expert in selling yet another course
  • You buy into his methods – you get the course!
  • You ignore everything else
  • And after a few months the methods don’t work for you, OR they are too difficult/laborious/cumbersome/shameful/boring/whatever for you to implement consistently in your unique life situation –> no tweets appearing on your timeline every day!
  • You give up because clearly “it’s just not working”, you log out and you just stop even trying

But there’s another way.

You could look into the teachings of many people and just start combining bits and pieces into your “non-strategy” and have fun while building. In a sense, happily just screwing around and doing at least something.

Screw around unti you find your own way.

Method Vs. Madness

The reason I’m writing about this today is this guy https://twitter.com/elBenb0‚Äč

Ben Settle.

Dive into his art, and you’ll see A LOT of content that flies almost hilariously against what seems to be the current norm: Highly templatized content, giveaways, deleting poorly performing tweets because of “optics”, undoing retweets, making sure bio is optimized (again according to a science and/or certain format that everyone is doing), and the list goes on…

Oh, and he also emails his list 1-3 times per DAY and just keeps chatting about the most random things.

Wait, weren’t you supposed to email exactly once per week, on a pre-designated and pre-communicated time, with an exact format that your subscribers already know to expect?

Because that’s what someone with a big following just taught you?

Or… wait, what if there’s another way?

What if there’s a way to just do you?

And put all the focus on making it work from the beginning so that you are able to do it long term, consistently and as long as you want.

In my experience, following others’ methods work just fine when you have a lot of time at your hands.

And when you don’t, it all falls apart so easily.

If you have a demanding 9-5, a family, or any unpredictable elements in your life… there will come a time when you just can’t follow methods that don’t look and feel like you!

And in those days, it’s ok to just “do something.”

And because your deviating from the path laid out for you by someone else, chances are you’ll find something that works better for you anyway!

So here’s my suggestion for the coming week:

Regardless of what your current projects are about, do at least something every day but quit it with all the plans and frameworks. Do what flows naturally. Try different ways of doing things, without strict plans.

But focus on doing at least something, every day.

This might feel scary, but there’s a non-zero possibility that you find the missing joy and delight in your craft.

Because you’re not obsessing over someone else’s way of doing things.

And there’s beauty in screwing around (with a little bit of guidance from those you look up to) until you discover your own way of doing it.

About the author 

Simo Hosio  -  Simo is an award-winning scientist, Academy Research Fellow, research group leader, professor, and digital builder. This site exists to empower people to build passion projects that support professional growth and make money.

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