Independents tend to go to extremes: We get passionate about an idea, stay up all night to make it real and are more susceptible to burning out before it becomes real. As leaders, we can make a major push for a cultural change before our followers are ready and may end up getting everyone (including ourselves) frustrated in the process.
Best-selling Start With Why author and leadership coach Simon Sinek says we're going about it the wrong way. In fact, in a recent talk on The Tony Robbins Podcast, he shared we focus too much on intense, sweeping actions.
Intensity versus consistency
Here's Sinek on the podcast:
"We have to understand the interplay between intensity and consistency. You can't go to the gym for 9 hours and get into shape. It doesn't work. But if you work out every day for 20 minutes, you will absolutely get into shape. The problem is, I don't know when."
The real problem, then, isn't that we don't know if our business strategy will succeed, but we don't know when it will succeed. Worst case scenario, you are excitedly running towards a strategy and, if you don't see immediate results, abandoning it before you can even gauge the effectiveness or see the impact.
How to build your patience
Early wins cultivate patience, which is why it is essential to have reachable goals that allow you to make progress. Modest goals are an opportunity to test your ideas when there is less at stake.
It is also worth envisioning where you want your business to be in the distant future. Patagonia's founder Yvon Chouinard has a 100-year plan that, as I've written about previously, gives him an amazing big-picture view of every decision:
Daily issues become a lot less petty. Will delaying a product affect the cuture of your business 100, 10 or even five years from now? If not, then it is much easier to bypass any hysteria that comes from a minor snafu or setback.
Lastly, build a small, intimate network of people you trust. A wise brain trust group will keep you honest - and remind you of how little time has passed since you actually implemented your new strategy.
Ready to take your ideas to the next level? Join Damon's priority-empowering discussions at JoinDamon.me and download your exclusive solopreneur guide.