About the statistic
We all have the ability to get hugely excited about new ideas; new opportunities, new jobs, new relationships, hell, new shoes! We imagine and fantasize about the next job, partner, a new life. We make plans on how we’re going to make it happen, and there is no-one, nowhere, as determined to do whatever it takes to get it. We are ON IT.
Then we sleep on it. And we wake up and get really scared and ever so slightly embarrassed of our own ambitions and determination. Heh, how childlike and uninhibited we were just yesterday about that amazing idea. Then we promptly talk ourselves out of it! Whatever it was. “Surely I don’t have to do this RIGHT NOW…” “Maybe I’ll think about it a bit more…” “It’s a brilliant idea but…”
This self talk and ‘butting’ turns into days, weeks, months and years when we reminisce and tell other people what amazing plans we once had. “Oh my god, that sounds so amazing! What happened?” they’ll ask. “Nothing”, we’ll say, knowing it sounds as lame as it is. We did nothing. We didn’t ever get as far as TRYING to do whatever it was.
That is where the statistic comes from:
“On average, we try things less than once.”
This statistic is mind-blowing, and very sad. LESS THAN ONCE. In other words: We don’t even bother to try stuff, even when we are truly, genuinely excited about it. Basically this implies that we are a global community of wimps who talk the talk but never walk the walk.
And this, according to Bob Geldof, is why our world is not changing as we’d like or imagine it is or it should.
I’ve been privileged to witness Bob Geldof rant in front of a live audience with uninhibited passion, more than once in my time. I love people ranting about things they feel passionate about. I wholeheartedly believe it’s the right thing to do. I’m most definitely against holding in any passion, desire, dream or crazy idea that you have.
One of those times he spoke specifically about making change. How we humans have an amazing tendency to endlessly talk about making change, so much so that even though we are not actually doing anything about it, we fool ourselves into thinking that it must already be happening. And then later we are amazed that nothing actually changed. Even though we actually did, erm, NOTHING.
Bob’s point was, simply, that to make any change, you have to go beyond talking and take the first step. You HAVE TO. It can be any step. But if you don’t take it, the change will most definitely never happen.
For me it was a very significant personal revelation about the way I was living my life at the time, and totally ties in with this statistic of ‘nearly trying things’ that I learned of much later on.
To make a change, you have to take a step. One step. Any step. Because if you don’t, nothing will change. And because if you do, anything is possible.
If you can’t do it alone, ask for help. Talk to your boss, family, friends, perhaps a coach. But don’t just dream, talk and speculate. Imagine what would happen if you actually did something about it.
Now just do it.