The Law of Diminishing Intent

Written by
Written by

Deolu Akinyemi

I’ve been working on this article for about 5 days now, I’m just coming back from a 4 days exciting adventure in Ilorin, where I saw the future of business in Nigeria. I saw young guys and lady’s making great things happen, utilizing their time well and getting themselves positioned for the future. The more I speak with them, the more these thoughts burn in my mind. It’s the law of Diminishing Intent, not my original idea, but it’s motivating to me, so I have decided to put my thoughts on it down for you, and for the future.
“The Longer you wait to do something you know you should do now, the greater the chances you will never actually do it!” – Culled from The Success Formula by Bob Burg.
Patience is a virtue, it in fact is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. Patience however does not mean slackness. Patience is rather a manifestation of faith that allows you to maintain decorum as you position for the things that are yours while they do not appear to be so. I’m stating this clearly ahead so that you don’t confuse what I’m writing about today with a motivation to be impatient, you need to have the right context about patience. What you have when you wait without instruction or without faith in a possibility is not patience it’s slackness!
One of the clear differences between successful people and failures is promptness in taking action. It is good to know what you need to do, it’s great to do it. While failures philosophize with excuses, successsful people take action. Successful people have learnt that when you procrastinate till tomorrow, tomorrow rarely ever comes!
The most important step for success to happen is usually the first step. In moving a body from rest into motion, the force required to change status quo is stronger than what is required to maintain it. Woody Allen is quoted as saying that 80% of success is merely showing up. That if you have the conviction to start, the grace to finish becomes available.
Visible transformation starts when thinking changes. In order not to be bound by the law of diminishing intent, these are a few thoughts that need to change.
1. Action doesn’t have to be perfect; it just has to be something.
It is better to act and gradually perfect your act, than to wait until you have completely mastered it before you start. The odds are you will never completely master what you have not practiced. When it comes to immitating a system of successful actions and activities, practically any action is better than no action at all. Don’t wait for perfect conditions to act, don’t wait for perfect weather to sow. When you know this is what you need to do, don’t let delay rob you of it.
2. Tomorrow never comes.
Never put off till tommorrow what you can do today, those are the words of the master! Procrastination is the thief of time. When you put off what you know you ought to do today till tommorrow, tommorrow has the habit of perpetuating itself, and tommorrow is always a day away. Do it today, do it now! Don’t postpone the best days of your life, express love, show gratitude, ask for a favour, take a chance, take a risk, do it today! Tommorrow is not yours.
3. “Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly, until you learn how to do it well” – Zig Ziglar
Do you aim, aim, aim and shoot? Or do you shot, aim, shoot, aim and shoot and aim? I guess it depends on the number of bullets you have. It depends on the number of tries you have, and how much time you have. You are not limited to one try. Success comes from experience, and experience comes from failed attempts. Your bullets are useless in heaven, use them now. Shoot, see how far the target it takes you, adjust and shoot again. Even if your bullets miss, you would have entertained the crowd. I like that quote from Zig Ziglar, “Anything worth doing, is worth doing poorly, until you learn how to do it well”. Medicine and Law are called a practice for one reason, no matter how many years you have done them for, you can’t be perfect… you are still practicing 🙂
4. You don’t need a better environment!
Many people I have met believe they need a better job, a better country, a better opportunity or a better background. Interestingly you don’t need a better environment before you condidtion can be transformed. A lizard in Nigeria rarely ever amounts to more than a lizard in any other nation in the world. You do not need to pray for God to help  you change your environment. You odn’t need a different place before you can act, it’s an excuse! In the classical book science of getting rich, the author makes an amazing statement.”Do not wait for a change of environment to act, cause a change in the environment by action.” The first thing you need to do is get clarity about where you want to be, understand the system that has helped others to get there, and act. If you act in a certain way, you will find yourself attracting the relatoinships and actions that will bring you into the environment where you desires can become actualized. Stop waiting for the environment to change, your job to change or your boss to change. Act Now!
I also like the way Napoleon Hill put it in, Think and Grow Rich. – “Do not wait; the time will never be “just right”. Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.” Or the way Jim Stovall put it in , You Don’t Have To Be Blind To See – “Nothing is more powerful than a person who knows his destiny and has chosen now as the time to pursue it.
Is it something you should do because it is a system that others have used to get them to where you want to go? Do it!

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