In one of the final sections of my book Publishize, I list ” 10 Keys to Success.” I only briefly touch on these 10 keys in the book, so I thought I’d expand on the ideas a bit more here. I wrote the Keys to Success because, over the years we’ve been in business, many people have asked us how we have managed to remain happy and successful particularly given all the drawbacks there are to working from our remote location. So without further ado, here’s number 1.
I know this key might sound overly simplistic, but doing something is better than doing nothing. Many writers and self-publishers never seem to get their book out into the world. It’s not a great surprise really. A lot of people do nothing and then wonder why nothing happens. What did they expect? After all, nothing begets nothing.
This level of emotional hand wringing seems to have reached a new level since the economy went into the dumpster. People now have a new excuse for their level of inactivity. (“It’s not my fault; the economy stinks!”)
A related complaint is those people who blame everything on “overwhelm.” First I’d like to point out that overwhelm is a verb. You can overwhelm something or you can be overwhelmed yourself, but this word seems to have morphed into a wide range of uses, many of which don’t make any sense. You cannot “avoid overwhelm.” You can avoid becoming overwhelmed by something, however.
In any case, in addition to the increase in the misuse of the word, I take issue with the complaint in general. You may be busy, but using the term “overwhelm” implies that you can’t do anything about your situation. An earthquake or a hurricane is overwhelming. Having too much to do is not.
If you have too much to do, obviously you either aren’t delegating well (or enough) or you are avoiding doing work for some reason. As I’ve written in the past, many writers have tremendous procrastination skills. If you put off doing work, you might end up feeling overwhelmed because now deadlines loom and you have a lot of stuff to do. Again, doing nothing is at the root of the problem.
Publishing is a difficult business and staggering numbers of companies fold every year. If you are wondering why certain businesses are successful even in the current economic situation, I’d wager it’s because they are doing something.