Like a disengaged gear spinning, or like Wile E. Coyote – legs still moving – in the moment after he has left the cliff edge and before he plummets into the abyss, motion is not the same as action.
It can be easy to convince ourselves that movement is what matters. A good question to ask concerns the relationship between your activity and your goals. If the goal is to “look busy” when the boss walks by, then activity for activity’s sake is fine.
If the goal is big enough, then any game worth playing will not tolerate for very long movement that does not offer progress – even if it ends up being progress in the wrong direction.
It’s not that there is always a direct line between our intention and our goal, or that the path forward is always clear, or that plans don’t change. But if your goal is to bring your intentions into reality, learning to tell the difference between motion and action is essential.
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