Social Psychology: Shut Up and Do It!
I stumbled across something today very much by accident. It was a concept or principle that I have been advocating, practicing and sharing with others for years without ever being aware that studies had been conducted and books written on the subject.
I have always been a self motivated person who draws his power to excel from within. It seems that any time I've set out to accomplish something "big" in my life I've always chosen to keep it to myself rather than share it with others. For the longest time I believed this strategy was born of my insecurities, and perhaps on some level it was. I didn't want to run around shooting my mouth off about what I intended to do only to fall short and be subjected to ridicule for having fallen short. Beyond that however was an intuitive knowing that when I revealed my goals to others they seemed to lose power; they appeared to run out of steam and fade quickly into the darkness.
I can cite many examples of this throughout my life. I trace it all the way back to accomplishments in grade school, junior high, high school, the military, college and more recently to my health and fitness endeavors. In the world of poker we refer to this as "Slow Playing." Slow playing is a practice of deception whereby one purposely avoids revealing the strength of their hand until the opportune moment when they can maximize their advantage and make a substantial profit. In life, "Slow Playing" for me has been simply keeping my big mouth shut and doing the work quietly without drawing undue attention or making any bold proclamations. I have always found more power, desire to excel and passion in the pursuit of excellence when I use this approach. It's really just a "Shut up and DO" mentality.
I find myself bursting at the seams sometimes as the objective draws nearer. I want to share what I'm doing with others, but I know that if I do the power to achieve will wane. Not everyone is wired this way. Some among us find greater power in sharing because it brings a high level of accountability and propels us to the accomplishment of goals. I'm not one of those. There's no right or wrong in any of this. It's really about getting to know ourselves, our patterns of behavior and gaining an understanding of which approaches work to our best advantage.
This is timely information heading into the New Year. With new Challenges to undertake, goals to accomplish and resolutions to work diligently to follow through on, I encourage you to spend some time exploring what makes you tick. I encourage you to find your best possible approach so that when it's time to do the hard work you will dig deep to draw out the power required to succeed.
Sometimes it's best not to share.