We’ve all been there… we are just living our lives, grinding away at our business and BAM! Something new and shiny comes along and we drop everything and go all in on it! (cough cough clubhouse, cough cough reel…) Maybe it’s an opportunity, maybe it’s a new app, maybe even a new idea that we can’t seem to quiet. Whatever it is, it is something that totally derails our flow. This is called Shiny object syndrome. And according to Wikipedia, Shiny object syndrome is the situation where people focus all their attention on something that is current and trendy (aka shiny compared to everything else you’re doing), yet drop this as soon as something new (and shinier) comes along and takes its place… I feel attacked…
So how the heck do we fight this? And why does this happen to even the most focused of us? I have some thoughts…
You know that you have experienced the shiny object syndrome if you can relate to the following: You have a list of business ideas but nothing gets executed. You constantly start new goals but never see them through to the end. You jump from one course to another, drawn by the wild claims of each course… etc. etc. and the list freaking goes onnnnnnn. So, we know what it is. We see ourselves fall victim, but how the heck can we fight this? I have some tips!
Get real with yourself- We all fall victim to the shiny objects, but if this keeps happening, you can start to feel like a squirrel running on a hamster wheel. It’s time to sit down and have a heart to heart with yourself. Are you avoiding something? Are you struggling? What is REALLY going on? If you’re feeling stuck or facing a challenge, it can feel easier to start something fun and new than to face the hold up in your current business or task. So face it. Name it, and then get back to business.
Set solid goals - When you start to get lost in the beauty of a shiny object, go back to the basics and remember your goals. Does involving yourself in the shiny object fit into the big picture? If the answer is yes, map out how it fits in, and how you can use it to reach your big picture goals. If the answer is no, resist the urge to leap into now. You can make a later list to come back to when it makes more sense for your business.
Make a plan and stick to it- Sometimes when we bite off more than we can chew, we just end up not doing any of it. So, make sure you're feeling good with your priorities and time blocking. Only tackly one task at a time so that you don’t encounter that spiraling, floating through the abyss with no direction feeling. Creating a plan full of focus and intention will help you block out the shine and focus on what’s important right now.
Create a later list- I mentioned this above, but a later list is basically like a brain dump of ideas that just aren’t going to be a priority right now! Oftentimes, if you just get it out of your head and onto something else, the urge is satisfied. And, if it’s a really good idea, you won’t totally forget about it… you’ll just forget about it for now.
Find an accountability partner- Remember that you don’t have to do this alone! An accountability partner is a great way to talk you off the ledge of going all in on something that isn’t beneficial right now. Also a great resource to brain dump and rework your plans to reach your goals. It feels good to talk it out, and finding the perfect accountability partner for your business and life is a win on so many levels!
Quiet the noise- When you sit down to focus on a task, try to reduce your distractions as much as possible. Put your phone on DND, find a quiet place to focus, and stay off social media!
Stop comparing - One of the biggest culprits of Shiny Object Syndrome is comparison! It can often seem like everyone is doing something cooler, bigger, and better than you are. That’s just not true! You know it, and so do I. So, lean into it and believe in what you’re doing and stop trying to keep up with everyone else.
Remember your WHY- This is so important in so many aspects of your business, but especially this. The stronger your conviction is, the more passion you have, the more clear your driving force is, the easier it will be to stay focused. Make sure you have clarity on your why… like real, deep, detailed clarity. If you take anything away from this, it should be this. Knowing and understanding your why is the key to success in your business.
Stop fueling the FOMO - FOMO is real, and let’s be honest… It sucks. We all battle it, and when it creeps into business, it can be really hard to stop fueling it. The number one way to stop the FOMO is to limit social media time. This will also help with the comparison issues! When you start your business, create your offer, share your creations, you feel great about them. Then you jump on social, and it seems like everyone in your line of work is a step ahead of you… doing something cooler… and you just can’t keep up. But that’s right, you can’t keep up. And you shouldn’t.
Don’t beat yourself up- If you are battling with Shiny Object Syndrome, just remember we have all been there. And we will all be there again. It is impossible to avoid it completely, and sometimes it will get the best of you. If you really can’t shake it, this may be an indicator that it’s time for a break. Walk away, clear your mind, and come back clear headed and with more focus.
At the end of the day, just remember to stay focused on the task and remember the long term goals for you business. Shiny things will come and go, you've got this!
How do you fight the battle with shiny object syndrome? Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org