We’ve all been there: wanting to do something, but never getting started because of reasons we keep finding (or making up).
It’s been a few years since I first started thinking about this blog and what I’d write on it, but I never got around to doing it at a constant pace. Until I read Dan Norris’s “Create or Hate” book, which pushed me to act on my longtime plan.
One thing that really struck me is that the tagline I had chosen for the blog 2-3 years ago – practice what you preach – has been guiding me for a long time, but without consciously realising it. For this reason, I chose to dedicate this post to the concept that has a strong bearing on my actions.
Walking the talk
The most inspiring people I’ve ever had a chance to meet, work with or get inspired by are doers. They word hard, they’re in constant learning mode, they’re generous in helping others and are motivated by an unselfish purpose. They’re the kind of people who restore your faith in humanity and its future.
I looked at what they do and how they do it, because that is the kind of work and life ethic that I respect. I wanted to see what these people do that others don’t. And when I say “others” I’m referring to those who are only talk, whose single focus is building themselves up, even though there’s no essence behind their facade.
What I found out is simple, as some of the most beautiful things in life are.
Doers follow through.
They carry through on their projects and promises.
They put in the work, day by day, and know that there are no shortcuts to building something that lasts.
They deliver results and are humble.
They’re constant apprentices, because they know that learning is a lifelong process.
They know that practice is the key to achievements, to becoming better and a bit wiser.
You’ll find more captivating articles in their Facebook feeds than pictures of themselves sipping cocktails.
You’ll often see them talk about “boring” things like the last course they took and a recent life-changing book they just finished. They don’t talk about these things to flaunt their brainpower, but because they’re genuinely excited about the subject and want to exchange ideas with others.
Many seasoned entrepreneurs and forward-thinkers I follow have said it: ideas are worthless without follow-through.
It’s the execution that creates value. The hard work, the ups and downs, the challenges, the big decisions and the grind – these are what life is really about. It’s not about startups fads, it’s about people who build something truly valuable and helpful. That’s why I love MailChimp’s story.
If you’ve ever grown a plant and nurtured it to fruition, you know what I’m talking about. Building something with your own hands and mind and seeing the results engenders tremendous satisfaction.
Doing the work has other benefits too: if can help you get ideas if you don’t have any and it will enable you to discover what you most like doing (call it passion, if you will) if you haven’t found out what is it yet.
Follow-through breeds respect. It builds lasting values. It will also teach you about continuity. It will keep you true to yourself and help build your self-confidence. From my own experience, I’ve seen that there’s nothing quite like doing the work every day to help you cope with the impostor syndrome.
Practicing what you preach keeps you grounded, connected to the reality of things. It helps you build invaluable experience.
I believe we need more people that follow through on their actions. They’re the ones actually working on making the world a better place.
PS: You’ll find some of them on my recommended blogs section to the right of this article. I hope you’ll feel inspired to take action like I was.
Featured photo courtesy of Shutterstock.