Every project I embark upon follows a similar rhythm. It’ll start with a flash of inspiration that sets my mind in motion and fills me with excitement. Yes. Let’s see if I can make that happen. Those early moments get peppered with new and exciting ideas.

Then, like clockwork, right around the middle of a project, I’ll hit a wall of self-doubt. Maybe I’ll question the project itself - perhaps the whole thing feels absurd or self-indulgent - Is this really how I want to spend my time? Often, I’ll question my abilities - What if I can’t make this work?

It took years of practice to realize it was just a phase - that the middle of a project is always hard. It’s a massive amount of effort to move forward, and it was Tom’s 10th bullet - Persistence - that gave me a better compass for navigating those darker moments. I often imagine Van Neistat narrating “Press on.”

Then - just beyond the strongest desire to give up and quit, I’ll find a way and scrape out the other side. Yeah. I’ve got this licked. Most people have to jump out of an aircraft to get the same kind of adrenalin hit that comes from overcoming what I feel during the middle of a project.

The final stages are mostly muscle memory. Execute a bunch of steps and close the project. Usually, I’m already thinking about the next idea and looking for a new adrenalin hit.

A screengrab from Tom Sachs' Ten Bullets - showing the press on quote attributed to Ray Croc.

Originally written for the Sachsian Syndicate.

Previously: TGIM 47 - and one day someone pipes up: “My Dad made that.” The entire class erupted. It was mayhem sprinkled with calls of ‘Yeah right’ and ‘You’re so full of it Taylor.’ My friend bristled, ‘Stuff you all; I’ll bring in the Queen’s head.’


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