May 23

There are times when the best strategy is to wait. Maybe you need to see how dynamics develop before investing time or resources into work. Maybe a key decision-maker has yet to weigh in, and it would be unwise to take any step forward until you know your efforts won’t be in vain. You need to be patient.

However, sometimes we conflate patience with passivity. We excuse inaction by claiming that we’re being “wise.” However, often we’re only abdicating responsibility.

Patience has a plan and knows when to take a step. Passivity is wait- ing for things to work out.

Patience is forward leaning. Passivity is backward leaning.

Patience is strategic and as needed. Passivity is a mindset and lifestyle.

Patience is poised to make things happen when the time is right. Passivity will let things happen.

Do you see the difference between these two? Patience has a bias toward action, whereas passivity embraces the pause as a relief from the necessity of action.

As a creative pro, you must occasionally exercise patience as ideas develop and team dynamics play out, but your bias must be toward action the moment you see an opportunity. Don’t excuse passivity under the guise of patience.

Know the difference between being patient and being passive.


As you consider your work, is there an area where you are being passive rather than patient? What will be the signal to you that it’s time to move forward? How will you know when the time is right to make an aggressive move?

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