5 Things About Shutting Up and Doing The Work

This piece was inspired by Alexia Cincy and her tweet: “one thing im applying is to shut up about it and just do the work.”

As we’re winding down to the end of the year/New Year it’s going to be really easy (read: really tempting because everyone else is doing it) to broadcast your plans to the world. And while we’d never encourage you to completely keep everything to yourself, sometimes, our execution gets lost in all our explaining.

The thing is, talking, complaining, or daydreaming about doing the work is not the same as doing the actual work. No matter how much you tweet about it, if you’re not doing the work, you won’t make any progress on your goals and dreams.

Here’s 5 things to keep in mind about shutting up and doing the work:

  1. It costs you nothing. It’s absolutely free.

  2. It takes the pressure off of you.

Announcements come with an audience. And audiences can vary - whether it’s people you’re friends with, people you went to school with, people you work with, people who could hire you - you never know who is watching you and why. But having an extra set of eyes on you, even if it’s because you shared it during a late night Twitter thread, can add weight to your emotions. So if something happens or you don’t follow through, not only are you hard on yourself for not getting it done, you’re also worried about what other people will think, apologizing constantly for not delivering, ultimately making yourself feel like crap.

Why set yourself up like that?

3. It saves you energy. Use it for when you’re doing the work.

4. There’s no audience involved.

Don’t you love telling your friends and peers about an idea and they gas you up? Then, once they gas you up, you want to tell everyone! The group chat, coworkers, family, baes - you see the comments, the likes, the saves, and you’re feeling great about your idea. The support feels amazing but guess what?

The work will STILL be there.

Which leads us to our final point.  

5. It gives you the space to trust yourself (more).

It’s normal to ask everyone else if they like your ideas but if it goes unchecked, that can easily evolve into a another cool way to ask for permission. The only way you’re going to get better at anything is by consistently doing it. When you consistently do the work, you learn about what works for you, how you should work, when you should work, and which part of your work to focus on at the given moment, etc. All of those little quirky things that you pick up help you to learn more about yourself. Simply put, learning leads to trust.

You can either trust in your ability to give empty words or you can trust in your ability to get the job done, when it’s necessary.

Which one will you choose?