The tiniest possible action

Something is not right!
Something is quite wrong!
Something is not right!
That’s why I sing this song.

Apologies to Madeline fans everywhere, who now have that song firmly implanted in their heads.

If something is wrong in your biz at this moment – and something undoubtedly is – then it’s easy to get wrapped up in the enormity of the problem and all its implications and oh fuck nothing is ever gonna fix this and I’m gonna go re-watch season one of Sons of Anarchy and eat a half tub of ice cream.

This is not useful!

What is, both in terms of possibly solving the problem and not demolishing the Neapolitan, is this:

Think of the tiniest possible action you could take that might improve this situation. And take it.

If you’re woe-ifying about Not Enough Cash, what’s the tiniest possible action you could take?

  • Mentioning one of your services on Twitter.
  • Emailing one of your regular clients to see how they’re doing.
  • Following up with an outstanding debtor.
  • Checking the sofa cushions for loose change.
  • Make one safe ask.

If you’re woe-ifying about Not Enough Joy, what’s the tiniest possible action you could take?

  • Watch a funny video.
  • Ask your Facebook followers to tell you the most valuable thing you have given them.
  • Re-read your testimonial emails.
  • Help someone.
  • Write a list of “I get to”s.

This way, you get your brain away from thinking about problems, and toward thinking about action. And if not one other thing happens, you at least made one tiny step toward improving the situation.

A challenge!

Next time the panicweasels get into your brain, try the Tiniest Possible Action. Report in the comments.

photo by: V&A Steamworks

6 thoughts on “The tiniest possible action

  1. Tiniest possible action: tell the shopkeeper about my workshop. Done. She would come but she is working. But haha, I remembered to get an email. Yay.

  2. “Mentioning one of your services on Twitter.”

    I signed up for a delogjammification after you mentioned it on Twitter. And according to quickbooks, I have given you $2377.03 this year.

  3. Ooh, SUCH good advice. I recently wrote about overcoming overwhelm (what would the panicweasels equivalent be? Ferrets of Overwhelm?) in which I talked about my strategy: figure out the very next thing you HAVE to do and do it. One thing, preferably small, that will make a difference and give you instant-ish gratification. Helps SO much.

    1. I agree: Ferrets of Overwhelm is the correct name. Getting one teeny thing done is super-powerful! It’s one of those bits of advice I’d get tattooed on myself if I wanted words as well as pictures.

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