Regardless of their age, their level of business expertise or even their role in their company, many business professional experience a debilitating state of mind that can be called “analysis paralysis.” Too many options, too many risks, too much pressure. The result is that they sit with their questions, watching good things happen to other people and wondering why they just can’t get unstuck.
Analysis paralysis is the opposite of “‘bright, shiny object” syndrome. With bright, shiny object syndrome, people jump from one good idea to another without really thinking through the implications. It tempts us to try the next big thing.
Analysis paralysis occurs when you can’t STOP thinking about the implications. “If I do this, then this might happen, or that might happen, or what if this other thing happened. Maybe it would be better if I did this other thing over here.” Analysis paralysis results in a lack of execution. Nothing gets done. No movement forward occurs… only because you can’t decide what move makes sense to make.
How do you break free from analysis paralysis? Try this…
1) Instead of being afraid of potential failure, embrace the experience.
If we followed the ‘perfect path’ every time, we’d never really be able to speak to what doesn’t work… and sometimes, that information is just as valuable as what does.
From every life experience, every business venture, every project dared, we learn something about ourselves. We learn what works, what doesn’t. We begin collecting life wisdom that is unique to us.
2) Overcome inertia by picking something.
Do you remember high school physics class? An object at rest tends to stay at rest. An object in motion tends to stay in motion. If you’ve been stuck in analysis-paralysis mode, chances are it’s going to feel like it’ll take a pretty good ‘oomph’ to get you moving. At the risk of making it sound way too simple, there comes a point when you just have to do something. Choose what feels best to you at the moment, flip a coin, roll a dice… but start somewhere. You can even make it something very small, but the key is to start somewhere, doing something.
Once you’re in motion, it gets easier. Keep moving forward. Keep asking yourself what you’re learning about yourself, about life, about business. I guarantee that no matter what path you choose, there are always lessons to be learned. You just have to be in the right frame of mind to see them.