Tag - achievement

Achieving the impossible

Absolutely first rate post by Daniel Tenner on getting stuff done when no-one thinks you can.

Here are the rules:

  • Calm down, smile and remain polite to maintain any chance of success
  • Become a human being rather than a faceless number
  • Be persistent to grind away the brick wall
  • Be prepared to lose to expand your freedom of thought and action
  • Be clear about your objective so you can be flexible about how to achieve it
  • Find who can, since often the first person you speak to cannot help
  • Take an active part in making things happen more efficiently
  • Make the other person feel good about helping you so that they are more likely to help you
  • Don’t relax this stance until it’s over, it’s easy to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

The cult of done and perfect pots

Yesterday I was courted by a member of the cult of done. I’m still deciding whether or not to join. I hear it’s a good community but the health bennies suck.

Here’s their manifesto. If it looks a little incomplete, that’s because they only spent 20 minutes on it:

  1. There are three states of being. Not knowing, action and completion.
  2. Accept that everything is a draft. It helps to get it done.
  3. There is no editing stage.
  4. Pretending you know what you’re doing is almost the same as knowing what you are doing, so just accept that you know what you’re doing even if you don’t and do it.
  5. Banish procrastination. If you wait more than a week to get an idea done, abandon it.
  6. The point of being done is not to finish but to get other things done.
  7. Once you’re done you can throw it away.
  8. Laugh at perfection. It’s boring and keeps you from being done.
  9. People without dirty hands are wrong. Doing something makes you right.
  10. Failure counts as done. So do mistakes.
  11. Destruction is a variant of done.
  12. If you have an idea and publish it on the internet, that counts as a ghost of done.
  13. Done is the engine of more.

If I joined the cult, I’m sure I would get more done. But would I get good things done? Probably.

It’s like that old art school experiment. The prof asked his class to do one of two assignments – the only requirement for the class. Students could pick their favorite.

  • The first was to make one perfect pot.
  • The second was to make 50 pots of any quality.

Who made the best pots? The students who did 50, of course. Without worrying about quality they just went and started making pots. By 20 or 30, they were pretty good at it. By 50, some of them were experts.

Meanwhile, the perfect pot students (I kinda like that phrase) were so painstakingly slow their one pot took forever … and because they only had one pot to make, their skills did not increase at the same rate as the 50 pot students.

So will joining the cult be a good thing? Perhaps.

I just don’t want the builder of my next house to be a member … and on his first pot.

Comfort zone

From Roz Savage, who rowed across the Atlantic ocean and is now attempting the Pacific:

I believe that if you don’t keep pushing the boundaries, keep expanding your comfort zone, your comfort zone actually gets smaller and smaller, until you’re shrink-wrapped in such a tiny comfort zone that you can’t move, you can’t achieve anything, you can’t grow. And so I keep pushing, keep developing, keep evolving. I keep showing what an ordinary person can do when they put their hearts and minds and souls into it.