One thing at a time

Some people struggle with boredom. They don’t know what to do. Others struggle with passion. They want to do everything. Both groups of people have one thing in common: they ended up doing nothing.

The boredom group lost their minds in the emptiness and they ended up wasting time doing activities that are equivalent to nothing. The passion group lost their minds in the noise and they ended up paralyzed and thus do nothing.

I am in the passion group.

Although many of us would love to have passion in what we do because it gives our life meaning and drive, we have to be prepared with the possibility of being overwhelmed. We want to do it all. We want to master everything. We want to save the world!

To make things worse, there is this voice in our heads that yells, “Time is running out!” and that pushes us to rush things in the pursuit of wanting to do it all, master everything, and save the world. Indeed, time is running out because our time is limited. But, this is not a race.

So, I stopped for a moment.

If this is not a race, then what is it?

This, is a journey and in a journey, you should savour every moment of the journey. You don’t rush things in a journey. If you are in a fast moving car, it is difficult to appreciate the trees by the road because all you see is a blur. That’s a shame, because much can be learned by taking your time and observing trees.

The Quran, for example, uses trees as an analogy in multiple situations.

So when you rush, you are missing out on important things that you should pay attention to. Though you are passionate, if you want to do everything and you rush in doing it, you might end up with a product of little to no value.

But, what if I die before achieving everything?

Simple. Don’t try to achieve everything. You’re not supposed to. You’re not designed to. That’s not the purpose of your creation. You are created to do your best, not be the best. You can’t be the best, because that entails that perfection is attainable.

It is not.

Stop chasing it. Do one thing at a time, and be good at one thing at a time. That’s much better than doing everything but not be good in any of them. At the same time, don’t spend too much time in one thing. Keep moving to the next thing on the list, while carrying what you learned from before.

Focus on progress. Not perfection.