Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Dealing with the Siren Song of Distraction

It was amazing.

The deeper I got into the book writing process, the more I wanted to distract myself.

I had to keep reminding myself that we were past the point of “just one more source” and keep writing.

I had a couple of epic ideas that just wouldn’t die, despite my attempts to keep them in the backlog or just say “no.” They kept demanding “research” and “ideation” and “action.”

These distractions come at a cost.

The cost is the energy and time it takes to get the thing I started done.

The cost is the risk that I will NEVER manifest the thing I want to manifest.

There are two parts to opportunity cost.

The first part is the cost to take advantage of the opportunity presented.

The second, and most overlooked, part is the cost of the opportunities we cannot take because we are working on THIS opportunity.

Remember: we live in a time and in a culture where opportunities are abundant (despite pressure to believe otherwise) and personal time, energy, and resilience are scarce.

So what do you DO with this siren song?

First, recognize that the siren song isn’t going to stop.

I’ve personally found that the more important the project I am working on is, the louder that song becomes.

Second, ask whether the siren song is just another, sneakier, form of resistance or whether you need to ask deeper questions about your current project.

The appeal of the siren song is a test of why you are doing your current project.

Is the siren song attractive because you have hit a rough patch? Or is the new idea truly a better option?

Third, how urgent is the siren song? Are you truly staring at a “once-in-a-lifetime” “first-mover” “never-gonna-happen-again-unless-you-act-right-now” opportunity?


I’m in the process of putting together a course on this topic and would love your feedback.

  • What questions do you have about setting priorities and maintaining focus?
  • What outcomes do you expect from this course?
  • What topics would you love for the course to cover?

Add your comments. The comments are personally moderated, so I will see them before they post. Thank you for your help.

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