“You have to learn to be bad at something before you can learn to be good at something.” — John Oliver
If I hear one more talk about the future of my industry, I’m gonna be sick.
The future. Goodness, what the hell do we know about the future?
We have no clue what happens next. None. We are consistently, ridiculously wrong when it comes to predicting the future. We are just bad at it.
Here’s what I’m interested in:
What are we doing now?
What tools are we working with now?
What are we trying to accomplish now?
We shouldn’t stop trying to make our world better, but we have to start now. We know what people are doing now, and how people are reacting now. That’s where we should start.
But we get lost in talking about what’s next.
We are constantly trying to sift through all that’s happening now to predict what’s coming next. That’s where we get lost — trying to follow the thread a little too far into the future. We want to write the story as it’s happening. We all want to feel like we’re a step ahead.
But forget about the future for a second. We chase it too often. We follow it to dead ends.
All we can do is put our work in right now and see where it takes us.
The work leads us to the story, not the other way around. Go do the work. Go ask your colleagues what they’re working on, and try to learn from it.
Just remember: Some predict the future; others make it.