Every entrepreneur or someone living the unconventional life goes through multiple projects. Our minds race with ideas and we keep writing them down, knowing that we are just panning for gold. With so many ideas, so many active projects, how do we know which projects to focus on, when to quit and when to push forward? I recently found a great method to weed through all of your current projects and decide on which ones to keep going with.
Nothing is worth doing that you cannot become the best in the world at. From programming to poker you should strive to be the best. No one wants the second best or top ten. They want THE best in the world and are willing to pay whatever price you see fit. Once you are the best, you dictate the the variables.
In order to get a hold on all of your projects, begin by writing them all down, even your hobbies. Once you have them written down there are two things you need to answer as either YES or No; a) CAN you become the best in the world at it and b) do you even WANT to become the best in the world at it? These are two very important questions that need to be answered! If you want to be an author, can become the best at it but simply do not want too, is it that important to you? Perhaps it would be best to focus on other things on your list.
Here is what I came up with as my list of projects:
1. Ruby on Rails Programmer: Yes/Yes
I know I have the ability to become the best in the world and I understand it may take one to two years and a lot of practice to get there. Being the best Ruby on Rails programmer in the world would be a very valuable asset for myself.
2. Personal Trainer: Yes/Maybe
I am currently getting certified as a personal trainer and have the ability and patients to become the best trainer in the world but I do not think it is necessary. I would obviously strive to be the best I can but would not focus on being the best in the eyes of the world.
3. Author/Writer: Yes/Yes
I eventually would like to write multiple books in my life and would like them to be well received in the world. In order for me to do that at the highest level possible, I need to be (In my mind) the best writer possible. When I say the best writer possible, I do not mean Shakespear but within the general scope of writing.
Once you have everything written down, and trust me, I have a lot more written down and the list is constantly growing, you are then ready for the next step.
This step is often painful for anyone because it forces you to choose one and drop the rest (for now…). When you spread yourself too thin you are not able to dedicate 100% of yourself. How do you expect to be the best in the world while only working at 20-50%, while others are working at 110%? The odds are not in your favor at all!
I hope choosing was not as hard for you as it is for me….
At some point in every project you work on you will experience what is called “The Dip”. The Dip is when things get hard. Your initial motivation and excitement has gone and you are left with the potential risk of failure and embarrasement. At this point, most people quit. It is during this point your true dedication to a project is tested. If you truly believe in your work, you will push through The Dip and eventually succeed.
When you know you CAN and WANT to be the best in the world at something and dedicate 100% of yourself to doing so, you will see success and will push through The Dip with no problem.