Pondering Abraham Lincoln’s quote, “If I have 6 six hours to chop down a tree, I will spend the first 4 hours sharpening my axe.”
What powerful advice! Be prepared for what you have ahead of you. Don’t just rush in and start hacking. Don’t make a hard job harder by not being prepared.
On the other hand, you need to be in the forest. It is easy to think we are accomplishing something by sharpening the axe. But, we are confused about the goal if all we have after 6 hours is a very sharp axe.
It would be so easy to get up everyday and simply plan for the changes that need to take place. Yet, if the plans are never initiated because the implementation is difficult, then you are just practicing avoidance and procrastination techniques.
Going to meetings, brainstorming, creating surveys, are great aspects of planning. These planning activities are also ways to be busy which allow you to deceive yourself that by being busy you are actually accomplishing something. In reality you are just avoiding what you know needs to get done, i.e., the hard work.
Another quote of unknown origin that I bet Lincoln would appreciate is “eat a live frog every morning, and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day”.