It’s the year of completely unexpected book releases. First there was the news a couple of weeks ago about Harper Lee’s sequel to “To Kill a Mockingbird.” And just today it was announced that a new Dr. Seuss book will be available this summer
Here’s a brief description of the book from Amazon, where it is currently in the top 20 of all books for sale.
This never-ever-before-seen picture book by Dr. Seuss about making up one’s mind is the literary equivalent of buried treasure! What happens when a brother and sister visit a pet store to pick a pet? Naturally, they can’t choose just one! The tale captures a classic childhood moment—choosing a pet—and uses it to illuminate a life lesson: that it is hard to make up your mind, but sometimes you just have to do it!
It sounds like a life lesson that applies to all of us, not just children.
It is hard to make up our mind, to make a decision and be willing to face the consequences. It’s hard to make a change, even when we know it’s for the better. It’s hard to make a commitment that we need to honor everyday.
But as the book points out, sometimes you just have to do it. We can’t spend all of our time researching our decisions, the result is what is known as paralysis by analysis. It’s easy to get caught up in doing the research, because it allows you to avoid making a decision.
I remember when I was thinking about opening a personal training studio; I called almost every franchise owner I could, asking them a series of questions designed to help me make the right decision. This went on for several weeks, and while I may have gathered some useful info, I probably had every answer I needed after a couple of days. But making the phone calls and gathering the data was allowing me to postpone making the decision.
But it all came to a head when I made a phone call to a studio owner in California. The young woman, who was probably about half my age and had been running her studio for a couple of years, kindly answered all of my questions, but then she finally said, “Jim, it’s important to get the info you need, but at some point you have to stop making phone calls, and just make a decision.”
She was right, and a day or so later I made the decision to open a studio. And just like leaving a pet store with a new family member, once you make a decision, that’s when the fun (and the hard work) begins.
And while I am sure Dr. Seuss’ book will have a happier ending than my business, the lessons I learned were invaluable. And those lessons were made possible thanks to a stranger on the other end of a phone call.