You heard the old lore that “every overnight success is a five to ten year story in the making” countless times. The reason people keep repeating it over and over again — ad nausea — is that it’s real and easily forgot. It simply is a much better story when thing happen instantly — unicorns made in a year within founding, founders turning into millionaires only a few months of them coming up with their world-changing idea. The reality is, of course, that stuff takes time. And not only time, but true commitment. And committing to something, also means that we need to let go of something else.
David Bray, Principal at LeadDoAdapt Ventures, reminds us that committing also always comes with letting go off something else:
“I think the best thing a leader can do is help organizations, help communities, let go of the old with grace. It is about letting go the old, either the old way of doing it or the old set of beliefs.”
Here is a hands-on way you can become better at committing and letting go of stuff: Take a piece of paper and write down your commitment(s). For each commitment, determine what it requires of you: time, energy, resources, behaviors. Now write down all the things you need to let go of, to make sure you can make your commitment.
As the old household wisdom goes: Before you can bring in something new, you have to let go of something old. Marie Kondo would approve.