It’s too easy to get caught up in the big issues, things that are intractable at first glance and that feel like they an never get better.
If you stop and look a little closer, you will find that there’s something that you can do to improve things. It might be a very small step, and it might not feel worth doing, but fixing something small is a great start.
It changes your mindset, you become powerful rather than powerless. It starts to build momentum, powering up the Flywheel of Change. It also marks you out as someone who “gets things done” rather than complaining about the way things are.
Even if you can’t find something that’s tied up to the big problems, there’s bound to be something that’s small but annoying to you and your teams. Set aside a few hours and get it sorted out. Cancel a recurring meeting if it no longer provides value. Fix some spelling mistakes in documentation. Make a template for a weekly update. Delete some tickets that you know will never get done.
Once you’ve started, it’s easier to keep going. You’ll be able to break down some of those tougher problems and make good progress, and each change you’ve made will improve the overall state of play for everyone, so each one is worth doing.
Don’t complain, don’t let overwhelm win, go out and fix those small problems!