The dreaded blank page. The tough next step. Juggling with the choices when the pros and cons are spiralling. The consequences, the what-ifs – we’ve all been there.
Let’s face it, we all struggle to get stuff done and often battle our inner-procrastinators. The solution is simpler than we think and can be achieved quickly with a little self-belief. Whether it is grappling a professional or personal challenge, getting stuff done quickly can sometimes feel like an insurmountable challenge. When we choose to have some courage and step outside our comfort zones – that’s where the real magic happens.
When Richard Coope (Brightful’s Founder) was asked to host a recent Winchester Creatives event, he was keen to make his talk as practical and as useful as possible. Combining his personal passion for ‘giving back’ and ‘inspiring others to fulfil their potential’, his workshop focussed on explaining ‘how to move forward faster and get stuff done’. This wasn’t a workshop to explain what moving forward faster looks like, with boring anecdotes and case studies. Instead, he chose to share a practical and useable formula to show everyone how to move forward faster.
Winchester Creatives – currently on a hiatus until later this year – is a local Winchester-based networking event run by our Brightful friends, Dan Benham and Studio Republic. Their Loft venue was sold out for this Brightful event as it quickly filled with agency professionals, strategists, creative directors, designers, UXers, copywriters, developers, musicians, local business owners and students.
All attendees received Brightful’s Fast Forward Playbook which you can download at the end of this article.
Richard started the event by sharing his own personal story.
When we start planning exciting adventures in our lives, we rarely factor-in the unprompted kindness of strangers to help us out. We invariably focus on what might go wrong, which can lead us to becoming stuck in fear. But when we open ourselves up to new things outside our comfort zones, kind people often help out. Even when we’re really stuck, we’re never too far from support.
So, for the sake of balance, we should plan for things that can go unexpedly right on our adventure, rather than go wrong all the time. Let’s face it, we only have one life. So we better get on and live it.
Richard’s then shared his first major ‘Screw It, Let’s Do It’ moment – the time when he and his wife threw caution to the wind and drove a Land Rover Defender from Kennington to Capetown to raise money for a children’s home and orphanage in Tanzania, called Amani. Richard and Milly had no mechanical skills and very little expedition experience (exactly the skills they needed for this type of journey) but decided to do it anyway. It was the greatest learning experience of their lives and inspired them to keep ‘giving back’ whenever the opportunity arose.
Richard asked us all – what would our ‘Screw It, Let’s Do It’ moment be? What if we could do something completely outside of your comfort zone, what if you simply got on and did the thing we’ve always dreamed about doing? What would happen if we just forgot about the obstacles?
From Richard’s own experience, he found the three main constraints were time, inclination and money. He explained in life we’re rarely free from these constraints. For instance, when we are young we have lots of time and inclination but not enough money. When we are older we’re likely to have more money and time, but not the inclination. But we rarely have all these things at the same time. So we might as well just get on with it.
So he asked what would happen if these three constraints were lifted from our lives? If you had all the time in the world and your schedule is blank. If money wasn’t a constraint and you had lots of inclination to start something new. He asked the question, what’s really stopping us from reaching our full potential?
He explained he used this same set of questions when he decided to set up Brightful in June 2019. He and three Brightful colleagues gave themselves the challenge to ‘move forward faster’ and launch the business in less than a month. He described it as a ‘kick, bollock and scramble’ but the team managed to launch Brightful less than four weeks later. This is what happened at Brightful’s launch party.
In a note of caution, Richard explained that when we move forward faster sometimes innocent mistakes can happen. So he asked us to consider: ‘what’s the worst thing that could happen’? Whilst money is likely to be the most limiting factor, the biggest constraint he suggested was self-doubt that holds us back. We can often be more worried about looking like we’ve failed at something rather than giving it a go in the first place. In fact, the worst outcome very rarely occurs and mistakes aren’t often as bad as we think they might be.
Richard reassured us with a quote from Seneca, the Younger, who said:
‘We suffer more in our imagination than in reality’.
So the biggest barrier is not actually time, money nor inclination. It is the fear of the unknown. And the antidote to this? Having courage and taking a leap of faith.
Richard then helped us to deconstruct each of our fears, using a series of so what questions’ to fully explore the downsides to each action. He encouraged us to look at what we could do to prevent the worst-case scenario from happening and analysed what proactive measures we could put in place to avoid this. And if the worst did happen, he asked us how would we go about restoring or repairing the situation in a constructive and proactive manner?
We were then asked: ‘what would happen if we don’t do this?’ What would be the cost of our inaction in 6 or 12 month’s time, or even three year’s time? Would the pain of the initial downside or minor mistakes made be completely outweighed by the life-changing upside of choosing to embrace your ‘Screw It, Let’s Do It’ moment? And if we were prepared to take a leap of faith, what three practical things would we do differently to make our goals into a reality.
At Brightful, our values are 1. Keep it Simple, 1. Make it Awesome and 3. Give Back. We also believe in delivering extraordinary value in everything we do. We were humbled with the kind feedback we received from everyone who attended this Winchester Creatives event. It seems Richard’s workshop lived up to all these values.
The key take-outs from this ‘Winchester Creatives’ workshop were:
Life isn’t about being consumed by doubts. We all make mistakes, for sure, but it’s what we learn that counts.
Finally, Richard reminded us to remember to:
If you’re interested in attending our next ‘Screw It, Let’s do it’ workshop or would like us to host a workshop for your business, network or team, feel free to get in contact.
Let’s together move forward faster and get things done.