This sequence actually wasn't meant to be about productivity and the challenges of the information overload. It is what Brian Solis and Deidre Breakenridge told PR professionals (in their book Putting the Public Back in Public Relations) when it comes to the changes that are taking place in the PR profession as the whole industry is being reinvented in the new world of Web 2.0 and social media.
However, this sequence caught my attention because it also reminded me of many of the concepts that we evangelize and teach to help today's busy professionals become more effective in today's everything overload (information overload, competing priorities overload, interruptions overload). There are lots of time management tips out there, but the above sequence is not just about tips, it is a series of mindset and behavioral changes that can bring about more significant outcomes. Let us expand on it a bit in the context of managing the overload:
1. Face it. Let us face the fact that the overload is here to stay and get worse! Sorry! No point in fantasizing that it will go away or that we can somehow bypass it.
2. Accept it. Resisting it instead of accepting it will only make us ineffective in dealing with it. It is only by accepting that we will be ready to move forward and effectively manage it.
3. Move forward. In other words, move to action. Action is it. At the minimum action gives us real data and prepares us for taking correct or better action. At best it gives us the desired results and an incredible sense of accomplishment.
4. Change. While action is momentary, change is lasting. Now we are moving from one time action to on-going practices and shifts in mindset. Now we are talking!
5. Continually learn. After all it is "all" constantly changing. Ideally it is not just about taking action and changing, it is about getting adept at this sequence so it becomes second nature.
So when we think things are overwhelming, let us think again, and follow the sequence! Let us get to action sooner than later and keep learning.