TPS #020: 3 Steps to Stop SOS

Author: Andre Mullen - 3.5 min Read

Read time: 3.5 minutes

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In today’s newsletter, I want to talk about 3 proven steps to stop being in distress with shiny object syndrome.

Shiny object syndrome is talked about and referred to quite frequently as a real source of frustration among artist managers and creatives.

According to Fingerprint for Success, shiny object syndrome is defined as the tendency to follow an idea or trend without first weighing its potential and as a result, get distracted from your current pursuit.

Artist managers and creatives need to set standards in place that will help them to stay committed to their ideas and their goals in order to experience real success for themselves.

Unfortunately, many don’t have a clue what success, goal setting, and having clear objectives really entails.

"Shiny Object Syndrome is worse than procrastination."

Shiny object syndrome takes procrastination to a whole other level.

Procrastination is delaying or postponing something. With shiny object syndrome, you’re literally dropping what you may be currently doing for something else.

There are 3 steps to stopping shiny object syndrome:

1. define success for yourself
2. define your goals
3. define your objectives

Once you lay out these steps, you will have clearly defined what success is for you, complete with goals and objectives to meet those goals. You will have a plan you can focus your energy on completing. Additionally, you can replicate this same plan for your clients.

Let’s work on YOU first, step by step.

Step 1: Define success for yourself

The main reason why most people aren’t successful: they haven’t defined what success looks like for themselves.

Even as entrepreneurs, we have high initiation – that is, we take ideas and run with them. Rather than miss opportunities, or wait around for others to start, we start putting the wheels in motion. Many do this without knowing what will make the idea successful and/or basing the success on the results we may have seen someone else achieve.

Success is a personal accomplishment of a desired aim or purpose.

Success is measured in a variety of ways and is different for different people. Below are some measurable aspects of success:

In my early days as an artist manager, I didn’t experience continuous success because I based success on the accomplishments of others rather than myself.

Sure I had moments of success.

But not sustained success.

I wanted the same success I saw my peers experience. As a result, when I would see someone achieve something, I would compare myself and my work to theirs. I would feel a level of failure because I was not achieving the same success as they had.

Lacking a personal outlook on what success was for myself gave me a severe amount of FOMO – fear of missing out.

It took years for me to realize that the solution to this was simply based on answering one critical question – a question that I challenge and implore you to ask yourself:

What does success look like for me?

Step 2: Define your goals

As you define what success is for you, you will begin to see goals take shape.

Goals are only as important as the work you’re willing to put in to achieve them.

Your goals are the “big picture” object of your effort.

If we plan the work, then we simply need to work the plan.

You cannot do this without clearly defined goals.

Once defined, there is a make-up – anatomy, if you will – to goals, as well as different frameworks. The framework commonly used for goal setting is S.M.A.R.T., as seen below:

Below is an example of how the S.M.A.R.T. goal framework is applied to the goal of building a playlist curator database:

Throughout the years of working in the music industry, I realized the power of working through the above framework for not only my clients but for myself.

The system liberated me and opened my mind to think more concretely and honestly about my pursuits vs. pursuing what I thought others did in order to be successful.

Without defined and workable goals, you will always be frustrated and unfulfilled chasing the shiny object.

Time to change the narrative.

Plan the work. Work the plan.

Step 3: Determine your objectives

Now that you’re armed with definitions for success, goals, and a framework to work your goals, it’s time to create objectives.

Objectives are important because they help move you closer to your goal(s).

Your objectives are measurable actions with tangible outcomes that push progress toward your goals.

James Clear, author of the New York Times #1 bestselling book, Atomic Habits, talks about goals/plans and progress in a simple tweet.

Your objectives are made up of a series of strategies with corresponding tactics or actions. It could look like the framework below:

Far too many times than I can count, I have not drilled down my goals to objectives allowing me to succeed.

When you’re chasing the shiny object, determining objectives is never a thought. This is where most – if not all – begin to fade.

For me, I would think because what I was working on wasn’t happening within a given time frame, then it wasn’t really worth the time and effort.

Time has taught me that isn’t the case.

3 steps to stop shiny object syndrome:
1. define what success is for you
2. clearly define your goals
3. clearly define your objectives

I hope that this helps you.

See you next week.

Whenever you’re ready, here are two ways I can help you:

1. For a LIMITED time, I’m offering a Growth Strategy Session. Let’s put together a growth strategy for your and/or your client’s business.

2. My website offers resources that can help. Check out The Playbook for more information.

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