Epiphanies are bullshit. People think it’s some momentous wake up call that leads to innovation, identity crises, insight or breakthroughs.

Like that’s why someone “suddenly” quits the NFL. Or goes public with allegations. Or proposes a bold new theory about the world after staying up all night.

But the people who think that are mostly people who haven’t done anything like that. And probably never will. They haven’t had to walk away from a big job or a lot of money. Or ever questioned some dominant point of view or institution. Their creative output is next to nil. They’re too busy chasing (or waiting for) an El Dorado that doesn’t exist.

I get it. You want to be like the people you admire–and they all seem inspired, bold, and have no problem burning the place to ground. I wanted to be like that too.

But then I actually made some of those decisions. I dropped out of college and it was terrifying. I decided to write an expose about the media in which I would have to admit bad things I had done. I broke ranks with a mentor and friend and it’s been eating me up inside.

So lately, I’ve been trying to think about how that actually goes down. What is it actually like to come to question everything and change your mind or life? What do you need to know going into it?

In The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Thomas Kuhn argued for the first time that it wasn’t flashes of brilliance that change scientific thinking, but instead it’s a slow process in which assumptions slowly unravel and then require a new explanation—a paradigm shift as he called it. In this frothy period of shift and flux, real breakthroughs begin to occur.

That isn’t how we like to imagine it though. We picture Edward Snowden hearing his bosses lay out some maniacal plan to spy on the world and deciding: “I am going to bring those motherfuckers down.” In actuality, he sat on the info for five years before going public. Doing what? Probably thinking, probably afraid, probably changing his mind a million times. It’s always more complicated—in fact, the whistleblower is usually complicit in the crimes in some way or at least blinded to their severity before coming forward.

The Fosbury Flop—which turned the Olympic High Jump on its head—wasn’t something that Dick Fosbury tried out for the first time at the 1968 Games. Nor was it something he was even certain about. Instead he’d been fooling with jumping and falling over the bar sideways as opposed to hurdling it since elementary school–to only middling results. He’d tried it high school and was told it was a “short cut to mediocrity.” He kept going back to way you were supposed to but that didn’t work either. As we know now though—after his Gold Medal and every medal since—that he was right and his technique stuck.

We think The Great Gatsby was a sniper shot of insight into the Jazz Age and its participants. In fact, the book was rejected and reworked by F. Scott Fitzgerald’s editor three times and only turned out to be right four years after publication, after the market crashed.

I think movies and television are partially responsible for this total misconception about the world. Because they can only show scenes, because they can’t get us inside the character’s head, we’ve started to think that’s how our lives should be. I think of that scene in Benjamin Button where Brad Pitt sneaks out one morning without a word and never comes back because he doesn’t want to burden his wife and family.

Yeah OK, like they would have been fighting for months and not known why. Like they wouldn’t have broached the topic or floated alternatives. Like the breakup would have stuck the first time. And he wouldn’t have been torn up inside and done a bunch of stupid things to cope with it. But as viewers all we’re left with is the action, the montage scene and the ultimate vindication, but not the process which precedes and proceeds it.

This is insidious because it intimidates first timers and the fearful. Because we believe that it must have been clear for other people, and yet it feels so opaque for us, we convince themselves not to take a risk. We doubt ourselves because we’re cut off from the humanness of the experience and the vulnerability that’s actually there.

When I wrote my first book, which was positioned as a confessional, every interviewer would ask me when I realized what I wanted to do. They’d say, “What was the thing you were asked to do that you regretted, that made you realize?”

The reality is never. I’m really struggling with it. It’s a fucking process. One that ironically didn’t even start to feel like it made sense until well into the writing and publishing process. Because that’s how people are, they act before they are fully ready and they figure things out as they go.

But I have to tell people something—so I give them an answer. Dropping out of college was the same thing. It was something I’d been considering, sure. Then I got an offer. Then I decided not to take it. Then I decided it was worth the risk. Almost immediately after, I felt it had been a mistake. But by then, I’d got into a rhythm. But a year later, I seriously considered going back. Yet my bio—my narrative—makes it seems like I knew at 19. (In fact, I turned 20 during the months this all transpired.) It’s not true, but that doesn’t help some other 19-year-old struggling with whether to leave college.

So if you’re staring some life changing decision in the face right now, you need to understand this. It is always going to be inscrutable. There will not be clarity. Not before, not during, not until well, well after.

You see, Thomas Kuhn said something else very wise and applicable here. Once a new paradigm takes hold, he said, it becomes almost impossible for people born into that paradigm to understand the logic of the system that came before them. As Kuhn put it, incommensurability separates one paradigm from the one that preceded it.

We can hardly recognize the world that we used to live in, and whatever it was that made us think the way we did. Because now things are radically different.

It would be nice if this was a clean break, but it isn’t. It’s like an internal Civil War—eventually there is a clear winner, but it didn’t feel that way at the time. It took a while for everything to get sorted out.

What I mean to say is this: embrace the limbo period. Take risk. Question things. Do not wait for certainty to act…because it isn’t coming. It never has.

This post appeared originally on Thought Catalog.



Warren Buffett is undoubtedly considered one of the greatest investors of all times. His empire, Berkshire Hathaway, is worth $355 billion, an increase of 1,826,163 percent since 1964 when Buffett took over. He owns (or owns big chunks) of some of the biggest brands in the world including GEICO, Dairy Queen, NetJets, half of Heinz, and significant holdings in companies such as American Express, IBM, and Wells Fargo. But Buffett’s very best investment—responsible for literally billions of dollars in profits over the years—was very cheap. Because it was a book.

That’s right, a book.

In his 2013 letter to shareholders [pdf link], Buffett explained that a single book, The Intelligent Investor, written by his mentor Benjamin Graham was, “of all the investments I ever made…[it] was the best.” Buffett even named one of his sons after him.

In my own life I can say I had similar books. The magnitude was not the same, but in relative terms the impact was still there. Each one of these was for me, what the economist Tyler Cowen calls a “quake book.” They shook my entire world and then, as it happened, were responsible for a great deal of success in my career, relationships, and my happiness.

The first came when I was in college in the mid-aughts and I was invited to a small, private summit of college journalists that Dr. Drew, then the host of Loveline, was hosting. After it ended, he was standing in the corner and I cautiously made my way over and decided to ask what books he would recommend a young man like myself. The books he turned me on to were those written by the stoic philosophers Marcus Aurelius and Epictetus. I’d been going through a rough times and it was exactly what I needed. My life has not been the same since. This was a special event in my life but whatever you’re working on right now, whatever problem you’re struggling with, is probably addressed in some book somewhere written by someone a lot smarter than you.

Whatever problem you’re struggling with is probably addressed in some book somewhere written by someone a lot smarter than you.

People have been moving West, leaving school, investing their savings, getting dumped or filing for divorce, starting businesses, quitting their jobs, fighting, and dying for thousands of years. This is all written down, often in the first person. Read it. Maybe you are an entrepreneur running your own business and looking for an innovative marketing approach. Maybe you want to understand power and strategy. Or you simply want to be a better person. Trust me, the answer is there in books.

So That’s Why We Read, but How?

No one says: How do you have time to eat? How do you have time to sleep or have sex? You make time. It’s the stuff of life.

Step one is adding books to that list. The key to reading lots of book begins with no longer thinking of it as some extra activity that you do. It’s not a pastime, it’s a priority. As Erasmus, the 16th century scholar once put it, “When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes.”

Not to say you have to take it as far as Erasmus, who lived a bit of a monkish existence. Personally, books are probably my single largest expense each year—behind housing and food. Since dropping out of college, I’ve averaged well over $1,000 a year in books (even more in 2013 when I bought basically my entire Amazon wishlist for tax purposes). In a given year I purchase at least 100, but closer to 250, books.

While some might bristle at such an expense, it’s become quite natural—I budget for it like any other necessity. It’s not something you do because you feel like it, but because it’s a reflex, a default. Like breathing. Like drinking.

Step two is to turn reading into a daily and regular routine. Carry a book with you at all times. Every time you get a second, crack it open. You also need to constantly be discovering new books. As a simple rule of thumb, always ask the smart people you meet for book recommendations, as I did with Dr. Drew (and if you need more recommendations, I am your man). Don’t borrow books—build your library instead and take pride in that. It will be an investment that pays off in the long run. If you see anything that remotely interests you, just buy it. If you don’t get to read it immediately and it piles up, that’s ok. It’s part of building your “anti-library,” or the stack of unread books that will humble you and remind you just how much there is still to learn.

A small sampling of my notecards, taken from books as I read them.

A small sampling of my notecards, taken from books as I read them.

But don’t just passively read. Make reading an active process. Make notes and comments to yourself as you read (this is called marginalia). If you see an anecdote or quote you like, transfer it to a commonplace book and use a system to organize and store all of it. For my last book, The Obstacle Is the Way, the actual writing of the book took only a few months, because the years of reading and research that went into were already there, systematized and ready to use, all thanks to my notecards and common place book.

Marginalia

Marginalia in action.

Even if you are not a writer, having stories and quotes ready at hand will always come in useful, whether it is in conversations, presentations, memos, pitches, etc. Always strive to return back to the purpose of it. As the Roman philosopher Seneca said, we need to read so that “words become works.” I love reading more than almost anything, but even I’ll admit that it would be a waste of time if I just let it all accumulate in my head. More than that, I wouldn’t truly know what I’d read because I’d never put myself out there, applied it, or made connections.

My commonplace book and a collection of notecards.

My commonplace book and a collection of notecards.

Step three, be ruthless about acquiring knowledge through books. If you see anything that remotely intrigues you–just get it. Quit books that don’t hold your interest or deliver the goods. Swarm onto topics that do, even if there is no immediate relevancy to what you’re doing. After all, creativity comes from combining old ideas into something new. Reading a variety of topics gives you more ammo than your competition.

If something enthralls you and you want to deeply understand it, go at it. You don’t have to slowly trudge along through a book. Think of someone like Frederick Douglass, who brought himself up out of slavery by sneaking out and teaching himself to read, or Richard Wright who forged notes from his white boss so he could check out books from the library. Books weren’t some idle pursuit or pastime for these great individuals, they were survival itself.

So Get Started!

Of course, many of the benefits of reading are intrinsic and personal. They allow us to relax, they teach us empathy, and provide quiet time in a noisy world. At the same time, a look at any random sampling of successful people finds a common trait: a love of books and an education that was primarily self-driven.

Many of these people lived thousands of years ago, when reading was considerably more difficult. They didn’t have mandatory schooling, they didn’t have Amazon or magical Kindles. Lincoln, for instance, often took notes on the books he read on pieces of wood he found. We live in a time where books from every age (many that were previously lost to history) are not only available, but cheap or even entirely free.

It’s up to us to take advantage of these circumstances. The only thing stopping us, is us.

This post appeared originally on 99U.



It took me way too long to get my act together on this, but I’ve finally put all my writing in one place. Now you can get all the writing I do for this site, Thought Catalog and New York Observer and other outlets, via email.

This site is still my favorite place to post stuff but, most of my long form stuff (usually two columns or so per week) is now published on other outlets, where it reaches a larger audience. Why do I write so much? Well, that’s a whole other question (one that I answered on one of those sites, in case you missed it)

 


For those of you using RSS readers (that’s what I use), the feed for this site will continue to work as it always has, and so will my email book recommendations. You can also follow me on Twitter and Facebook where I post most of my writing as well.

Few years ago, I came up with new rule that I’ll basically accept any offer if it will tie me up and keep me away from Austin during SXSW week. The results have been awesome: Last year, I went on my honeymoon. This year, I am speaking in Brazil.

It’s not because I live in Austin now and can rent out my place for a lot of money if I’m gone (although that is nice). It’s clearly not because I have a problem with conferences in general, or I wouldn’t have spent time at others. It’s not even SXSW, though since 2007 I’ve seen it undergo some changes and transformations that I can only shake my head at.

It’s because you don’t learn anything at a get-together with 286,000 people at it. You don’t find opportunities in the spot that everyone else has descended upon to look. And you definitely don’t get much out of an event that is clearly inclined to be an ego-assuaging party more than it is a conference.

“But they had Shake Shack at SXSW this week!” you say. If only it wasn’t also sold in six other states the other 355 days of the year.

It’s funny, for all the love of business books and buzzwords, SXSW is the definition of a red ocean—it’s loud, overcrowded, competitive and difficult to break through. There’s too much posturing, too much bluster, too much fighting the last war. Every startup taking their eye off the ball to recreate Twitter’s launch at SXSW in 2007 (which I remember scoffing at, at the time). It’s skating to where the puck was. It’s a choreographed performance that everyone feels obligated to do each year.

Let’s be honest: if you know your field, conferences are not usually the best place to learn or work. The bigger they are, the more general they become—as SXSW clearly has—and the further they lag behind. The need to appeal to the broadest possible cohort of attendees puts them six months to two years behind current, let alone more innovative practices. So why are we supposed to go this, again?

And the news that gets reported back from Austin? It is usually not news, it’s reporters justifying their expenses by sending in something, or it’s carefully staged pseudo-events designed for coverage.

The panel format exacerbates this. It’s not one speaker, articulating a message or telling a story to an audience. It’s five nobodies, averaging each other out—each looking for a soundbyte so you’ll remember their name. At this point, panels are like poorly curated podcasts with no editor. They mostly benefit the people speaking…and make them feel important.

Shall we review some of the preposterous panels from SXSW this year?

Orgasm: The Broadband of Human Connection

The Gamers’ Guide to Parenting

I’ll Show You Mine If You Show Me Yours!

I Ran an Extremely Successful Crowdfunding Scam

Do I Really Need to Take All These *&#^%$! Pills?

And when they’re not writing panel titles that appear designed to give people douchechills, most panelists (and speakers) are lying. By that I mean, either exaggerating their credentials and expertise or, if they truly have some, lying by omission (nobody wants to give away their secrets). In fact, when you are honest—which I try to be, especially at events when I am getting paid—most people areshocked. They tell you this after the fact with genuine surprise. As if they expected (and were OK with!) everyone phoning it in and fluffing it.

This is what you get when you attend SXSW. And what do you pay for it? $1,495 for a pass and $1000 for travel and accommodations, with some hotels going for $1000 a night. It’s like no one understands that there are mastermind groups where you get ayear of direct access to real speakers, thinkers and entrepreneurs for less than what some people paid to fight their way through the crowds at the Austin Convention Center.

sxsw hugh macleod tweet

Oh but you meet so many great people / everyone is in town for one magical week. 

Strategically, I can think of no worse time for an entrepreneur to pitch a journalist, or a startup to pitch potential investors or employees. Do you not realize these people are as overwhelmed (or inebriated) as you are, and phoning it in just enough so their bosses don’t notice? Upon the Betabeat staff’s return from SXSW 2014, they reported their slogan for the week was, “Oh there you are!” which is what the aggressive networkers they were trying to shake would say upon finding them again.

Bluntly, SXSW has turned into an ironic spring break for people with corporate jobs to escape their lives. You can pretend to work while waiting in line for free beer and hoping to hook up with someone like you. But I’m not sure corporate attendees realize this is nothing more than a dress-suit bribe, offered by their employer to give them trappings of power, instead of the real thing. Your boss writes it off as a business expense.

At the very least spring break was supposed to be fun. The parties at SXSW? This is tech at its worst. Why do you have to get on a guest list or RSVP to seemingly every party? This exclusivity is manufactured, to give every startup spending other people’s money a chance to feel important and special. It’s definitely not to limit the amount of free booze they shill (corporate sponsors pay for that). It’s to manufacture status so attendees will feel like they got into the “cool” party with the “in” crowd. And the only way corporations know how to be cool is by proximity—to musicians, to film stars, to writers—and creating exclusive lists for parties that are expensive and lame.

I want to be clear. I don’t think the conference organizers at SXSW are to blame. Nor was this terrible car accident anyone but the drunk driver’s fault. From everything I’ve seen, they put on a good show, care about safety and seem to have stayed true to their origins. And they’re doing a good job: SXSW 2014’s economic impact on Austin this year was $190 million. The problem is you. The problem is us. That we willingly subject ourselves to everything I just described. And don’t even think about why we’re doing it.

I stopped going when I heard someone—and unfortunately I forget who—describe South by Southwest as a metaphor for everything that is wrong with the internet. Too big, too corporate, too hyped, too bullshit. I think they’re right.

But there may be another, more specific metaphor. Every year during SXSW, every post, column and wall in town is covered with Saran wrap—so that posters can be quickly torn down at the end of the night. And yet…thousands of bands and startups and directors spent how many thousands of dollars to print up flyers and posters simply to be overwhelmed and torn down a few hours later. That is SXSW—an ephemeral moment of self-promotion lost amidst a sea of other self-promoters doing the exact same thing, while thinking they’re doing something totally different. Pardon me, disruptive.

It’s like that line from Arthur Miller about writing your name in a cake of ice on a hot summer day. Except SXSW is an oven…and you chose to do it there instead of any number of places where the etching would last longer.

This post was originally published on the New York Observer in March 2014.



This piece is an adaption from The Obstacle Is The Way.

When coach Shaka Smart was interviewed after his team beat North Carolina in a surprise upset last week, what did he say? He didn’t focus on the buzzer beater. Or the strategy. He said his team won because “they followed the process.

Tony Wroten, a guard for the 76ers, got the same advice from his coaches. “They tell us every game, every day, ‘trust the process.’” John Fox, the coach trying to turn around the Chicago Bears, asked his team the same thing.

But what the hell is it? What is the process?

It can be traced to Nick Saban, the famous coach of LSU and Alabama—perhaps the most dominant dynasty in the history of college football. But he got it from a psychiatry professor named Lionel Rosen during his time at Michigan State.

Rosen’s big insight was this: sports—especially football—are complex. Nobody has enough brainpower or motivation to consistently manage all the variables going on in the course of a season, let alone a game. They think they do—but realistically, they don’t.

There are too many plays, too many players, too many statistics, countermoves, unpredictables, distractions. Over the course of a long playoff season, this adds up into a cognitively impossible load. Meanwhile, as Monte Burke writes in his book Saban, Rosen discovered that the average play in football lasts just seven seconds. Seven seconds—that’s very manageable.

Nick Saban, head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Nick Saban, head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

So he posed a question: What if a team concentrated only on what they could manage? What if they took things step by step—not focusing on anything but what was right in front of them and on doing it well?

As a result, Nick Saban doesn’t focus on what every other coach focuses on, or at least not the way they do. He tells them:

“Don’t think about winning the SEC Championship. Don’t think about the national championship. Think about what you needed to do in this drill, on this play, in this moment. That’s the process: Let’s think about what we can do today, the task at hand.”

It’s this message that’s been internalized by his players and his teams—which together have four national championships in an eight-year span, one Mid-American Conference championship, have been crowned SEC champions 15 times and Saban has received multiple coaching awards.

In the chaos of sport, as in life, process provides a way. A way to turn something very complex into something simple. Not that simple is easy.

But it is easier. Let’s say you’ve got to do something difficult. Don’t focus on that. Instead break it down into pieces. Simply do what you need to do right now. And do it well. And then move on to the next thing. Follow the process and not the prize. As Bill Belichick famously put it, just do your job.

The road to back-to-back championships, or being a writer or a successful entrepreneur is just that, a road. And you travel along a road in steps. Excellence is a matter of steps. Excelling at this one, then that one and then the one after that. Saban’s process is exclusively this—existing in the present, taking it one step at a time, not getting distracted by anything else. Not the other team, not the scoreboard, or the crowd.

The process is about finishing. Finishing games. Finishing workouts. Finishing film sessions. Finishing drives. Finishing reps. Finishing plays. Finishing blocks. Finishing the smallest task you have right in front of you and finishing it well.

Whether it’s pursuing the pinnacle of success in your field, or simply surviving some awful or trying ordeal, the same approach works. Don’t think about the end—think about surviving. Getting it right from meal to meal, meeting to meeting, project to project, paycheck to paycheck, one day at a time.

And when you really get it right, even the hardest things become manageable. As Heraclitus observed, “under the comb, the tangle and the straight path are the same.” That’s what the process is. Under its influence, we needn’t panic. Even mammoth tasks become just a series of component parts.

This was what the great 19th-century pioneer of meteorology, James Pollard Espy, had shown to him in a chance encounter as a young man. Unable to read and write until he was 18, Espy attended a rousing speech by the famous orator Henry Clay. After the talk, a spellbound Espy tried to make his way toward Clay, but he couldn’t form the words to speak to his idol. One of his friends shouted out for him: “He wants to be like you, even though he can’t read.”

Clay grabbed one of his posters, which had the word CLAY written in big letters. He looked at Espy and said, “You see that, boy?” pointing to a letter. “That’s an A. Now, you’ve only got 25 more letters to go.”

Espy had just been gifted The Process. Within a year, he started college.

What Rosen, what Espy, what these coaches are practicing is a central tenet of stoic philosophy—one which I’ve tried to pass along in The Obstacle is The Way. It’s just a modern take on Marcus Aurelius when he advised:

“Don’t let your imagination be crushed by life as a whole. Don’t try to picture everything bad that could possibly happen. Stick with the situation at hand, and ask, “Why is this so unbearable? Why can’t I endure it?”

Equestrian Statue of emperor of the Roman empire Marcus Aurelius (Photo: FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP/Getty Images)

Equestrian Statue of emperor of the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius. (Photo: FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP/Getty Images)

Seven seconds. Sticking to the situation at hand. Focusing on what’s immediately in front of you. No strain, no struggling. So relaxed. No exertion or worry. Just one simple movement after another. That’s the power of process.

We can channel this, too. We needn’t scramble like we’re so often inclined to do when some difficult task sits in front of us. Instead, we can take a breath, do the immediate, composite part in front of us—and follow its thread into the next action. Everything in order, everything connected.

When it comes to our actions, disorder and distraction are death. The unordered mind loses track of what’s in front of it—what matters—and gets distracted by thoughts of the future. The process is order, it keeps our perceptions in check and our actions in sync.

It seems obvious, but we forget this when it matters most.

Right now, if I knocked you down and pinned you to ground, how would you respond? You’d probably panic. And then you’d push with all your strength to get me off you. It wouldn’t work; just using my body weight, I would be able to keep your shoulders against the ground with little effort—and you’d grow exhausted fighting it.

That’s the opposite of the process.

The process is much easier. First, you don’t panic, you conserve your energy. You don’t do anything stupid like get yourself choked out by acting without thinking. You focus on not letting it get worse. Then you get your arms up, to brace and create some breathing room, some space. Now work to get on your side.  From there you can start to break down my hold on you: grab an arm, trap a leg, buck with your hips, slide in a knee.

It’ll take some time, but you’ll get yourself out. At each step, the person on top is forced to give a little up, until there’s nothing left. Then you’re free.

Being trapped is just a position, not a fate. You get out of it by addressing and eliminating each part of that position through small, deliberate action—not by trying (and failing) to push it away with superhuman strength.

With our business rivals, we rack our brains to think of some mind-blowing new product that will make them irrelevant, and, in the process, we take our eye off the ball. We shy away from writing a book or making a film even though it’s our dream because it’s so much work—we can’t imagine how we get from here to there.

How often do we compromise or settle because we feel that the real solution is too ambitious or outside our grasp? How often do we assume that change is impossible because it’s too big? Involves too many different groups? Or worse, how many people are paralyzed by all their ideas and inspirations? They chase them all and go nowhere, distracting themselves and never making headway. They’re brilliant, sure, but they rarely execute. They rarely get where they want and need to go.

All these issues are solvable. Each would collapse beneath the process. We’ve just wrongly assumed that it has to happen all at once, and we give up at the thought of it. We are A-to-Z thinkers, fretting about A, obsessing over Z, yet forgetting all about B through Y.

We want to have goals, yes, so everything we do can be in service of something purposeful. When we know what we’re really setting out to do, the obstacles that arise tend to seem smaller, more manageable. When we don’t, each one looms larger and seems impossible. Goals help put the blips and bumps in proper proportion.

When we get distracted, when we start caring about something other than our own progress and efforts, the process is the helpful, if occasionally bossy, voice in our head. It is the bark of the wise, older leader who knows exactly who he is and what he’s got to do. Shut up. Go back to your stations and try to think about what we are going to do ourselves, instead of worrying about what’s going on out there. You know what your job is, stop jawing and get to work.

The process is the voice that demands we take responsibility and ownership. That prompts us to act even if only in a small way.

Like a relentless machine, subjugating resistance each and every way it exists, little by little. Moving forward, one step at a time. Subordinate strength to the process. Replace fear with the process. Depend on it. Lean on it. Trust in it.

Take your time, don’t rush. Some problems are harder than others. Deal with the ones right in front of you first. Come back to the others later. You’ll get there.

The process is about doing the right things, right now. Not worrying about what might happen later, or the results, or the whole picture.

This post appeared originally on the New York Observer