“Ooh, that sounds like a great idea.”
How many times have you been distracted buy a new shiny idea? Too many to count, right?
I found myself constantly distracted when I started my entrepreneur journal. I loved new ideas. They became my cocaine.
Online gurus enticed me onto their lists, and further distracted me with offers for their course. And the funny thing is I felt like I was accomplishing a lot by buying a course or pursuing new ideas. I felt like I was going to learn so much and intern this would make me a lot of money.
The truth is that all of it was distractions.
As a side hustle entrepreneur, you’re working for yourself. No one has expectations from you other than your clients. It is easy to allow yourself the free time to work on things that are new and shiny and fun.
Ways people use shiny objects
Shiny object syndrome is a symptom of the real problem. We use distractions as an escape from the stress of doing work. Here’s why people avoid doing work and chase shiny objects:
Avoid fear of completing a project
Avoid the fear of failure
Avoid the fear of success
Avoid the fear of rejection
These fears create stress and anxiety and lives in our lives. When we have this stress we look for a way to distract ourselves to relieve the stress. One of the best ways of distractions is the shiny object syndrome.
Risks involved with a shiny object syndrome
Chasing new ideas feels good. There’s a thrill of learning a new way to grow a business. It’s like opening a new toy on Christmas day. If you played with many Christmas presents, then you’ll know that the magic fades.
When you’re working on a new project, or watching a new course, or reading yet another blog post, you trade momentum for short-term pleasure. The beginning of any project has the most resistance to the flow state (a place where work is finished easily and without distractions). A significant amount of time is required to learn new things. And it isn’t until about halfway through a project that you realize how to accomplish things faster. That’s when momemtum kicks in.
If you’re always starting new projects, new courses, new blog posts, then you lose out on any momentum gained.
It’s like if you were to invest a thousand dollars every month into the stock market for one year. Then after five years you decided to stop and invest in the real estate market and stop investing in the stock market. Overtime you may make money in real estate, but you lost all your momentum in the stock market, Because the real return doesn’t come until decades later when the compound effect takes over.
Shiny object syndrome kills the compound effect
Here’s how to overcome your shiny object syndrome.
Make the commitment right now to deny the pleasure of looking for another new idea. Deny yourself the immediate gratification of buying a new website domain. Deny yourself the pleasure in order to put in the time to work.
Every week I create new ideas that sound so fun to me, but if I immediately work on them, they will distract me from my important work. New ideas distract me from accomplishing my goals. So, I created a simple system that keeps me from pursuing shiny objections.
I write any new idea immediately on a sticky note and place it on my “new idea white board.” Then on Fridays, I’ll review all my new ideas and think them through. I may even seek away to validate if it’s a good idea. But Friday is the only day that I’ll review my new ideas
I wait till Friday because Friday is when my resistance to my difficult work is at it’s highest. But I don’t have any resistance to work on my new projects because they’re fun to think about. It’s fun to spend time thinking about how to try new Business idea.
Saying no to yourself is possibly the most difficult thing in the battle for willpower. But unless and you are able to crush your resistance, you will be beaten every time you have a new idea. Make the commitment today to delay gratification in order that you can finish the work that’s most important right now.