What is Effective Action, and how to do it properly?
The Effective Action Problem
The process of effective action is desire, act, achieve (receive). The problem we have is that we are experts at the desire part, but the second and third steps elude us as to how to go about them effectively.
Acting effectively means moving towards your goals in a calculated, planned and double-planned and full-proof (as much as possible) way.
Many of us get stuck here because we do not understand the weapons we have in our arsenal (read about strengths here) and figure them out here ().
Effective Action turns into Effective Achievement
We also get hung up on how to take what we have achieved and achieve more of it while maintaining what we already have.
The first step to effective action is a solid master plan.
A master plan includes
- What you are going after
- How long it will take
- The main goal is broken down into smaller bits
- How much time you plan to dedicate each day and for how long
- Possible roadblocks and how to avoid them
- All the resources you will need
- How much progress needs to be made in certain amounts of time
In other words, a master plan is the NECESSARY first step in preparing for effective action.
2. Best, Probable and Worst Outcome Plans
Effective action also understanding what your best, most likely and worst possible outcomes are, and preparing for each of them accordingly.
This has nothing to do with being a pessimist or an optimist and has everything to do with having a decent mix of both.
- You plan for the best and expect the best possible outcome because you believe in yourself, what you’re doing and know that you deserve good in life.
- Effective action also means planning for the worst, because that is how you are going to avoid disappointment, bounce back immediately and take the lesser outcome in stride, learning from your experience in the process.
Planning for the worst is also healthy, because (let’s face it) we’re not the center of the cosmos, and not everything is meant to go our way simply because we want it to.
- When you are concerned with moving away from sloppy action, you also compare your best vision, worst vision with the most likely outcome, understanding that you are ultimately at the mercy of all the other variables at play, even if you are a powerhouse achiever.
3. Experimenting to Increase Your Effective Action
If you stick to one thing and it’s not working over and over again, refusing to change is asking for failure.
Giving up is not the same as seeing what works and moving towards that while seeing that something is not working and moving away from it.
In business, it’s called the pivot. You could try and force something that is not supposed to happen down someone’s throat, or you could try a more effective approach. It’s called strategy more than anything.
The famous example is Instagram. They started as a simple calendar app that tanked. Once they switched to image sharing platform (something that was desired by people) they became the huge company that calls every smart-phone in circulation their home.
All because they were willing to consider forging a new path while staying true to what they wanted to do at their core.
To do this effectively, you will need to understand the essence of what you want to achieve and why.
Do this by asking yourself “why” you want to do something until you cannot go any deeper.