When Friction is Fiction

Patrick Rhone, writing for Frictionless, with an anecdote about fixing a grill:

All that angst. All of that procrastination. Moot! Did not need to happen. Instead of digging in right away when I got the grill and spending twenty minutes to discover this fix, I spent five to write it off for a month in order to still spend the twenty I would have anyway. I felt kinda stupid actually. Probably deservedly so.

Sometimes our lizard brains build mountains where only roads exist — mainly so we have an excuse not to venture down them. One side of our brain is naturally built to warn of danger and the other is all too apt to believe it. It is in this tension that even fiction can become friction that slows us down and keeps us from tackling the task at hand. Overcoming the challenges of our lives often comes from staring this friction in its face and seeing it for what it really is — the fear of what we are fully capable of.

Something I’ve learned in the past year of my work with a startup is how to approach a problem with the understanding that you can likely whittle it down to something smaller. The closer you get to a problem the better you can understand it and determine how to overcome it. Usually that means tackling it in smaller, less intimidating chunks. Don’t be be afraid of a problem until you’ve gotten close enough to know whether it’s fiction or not.