Corey Wilks, Psy.D.

Helping Creators Reach Their Potential

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Tired of Living at the Intersection of FOMO and Shiny Object Syndrome? Here’s Why Theorycrafting is Holding You Back…

Does this sound like you?

You live at the intersection of FOMO and Shiny Object Syndrome.

By the time noon rolls around, you’ve already had a dozen ideas for content, courses, and businesses you want to create in the future.

A deep feeling of abundance, overwhelm, and limitless potential is your default because you’re constantly swimming in ideas and mesmerized by what’s possible.

You’re brimming with potential and let your creativity run wild throughout the day.

So much so, that you’ve got this incredibly intricate content ecosystem that resembles the famous Disney one:

It’s perfectly laid out and just so damn cool to think about.

There’s just one problem…

You’ve spent months planning everything out—daydreaming about how awesome it’ll be, how big of an audience you’ll build, and how much money you’ll make.

But you haven’t actually built anything.

Like, if an outside observer looked at you 6 months ago versus today, they wouldn’t be able to tell any difference. You haven’t built an audience. You haven’t published many, if any, pieces of content. You haven’t sold, or even built, any courses.

But buddy, are you great at thinking up ideas, buying other people’s courses, and lurking on Twitter.

Where’s the disconnect?

Why are you awesome at planning, but not doing?

One reason could be what nerds call theorycrafting.

Here’s what it is…

•••

What is Theorycrafting?

I used to play Magic the Gathering. It’s a phenomenally complex and intellectually-stimulating deck builder game.

Basically, you build a deck with various types of cards (creatures, magical effects, sources of magic to power your “spells,” etc.).

Then, you battle another player who’s constructed their own deck with different cards to see who wins.

There are endless combinations of decks you can build—the company that makes the game puts out about 4 “expansion sets” a year, so there’s a constant influx of new cards, new game mechanics, and combinations you can build your deck around.

Think about it like chess. But instead of 6 different pieces, you have hundreds of pieces and moves you can make.

One of my favorite parts about playing MtG is what’s called theorycrafting.

Theorycrafting is when you study specific game mechanics to discover “optimal” strategies and tactics to win.

I’d spend hours building virtual decks to come up with insane combinations that would totally work in real life. And I didn’t even have to spend money buying real cards because I found a website that let me build hypothetical decks for free.

So I could build a virtual deck with rare cards (that in real life would cost hundreds of dollars, or even hundreds of thousands of dollars, apiece), and run mock games against strawman opponents and bask in the glory of the immaculate deck I’d built.

And the best part of theorycrafting?

You can’t lose!

Because you’re not actually battling someone. It’s just you and your imagination studying the rules, finding “hacks” and exploits, and coming up with incredible ideas.

But here’s the issue with theorycrafting and why it holds so many creators back…

•••

How Theorycrafting Holds Us Back

Theorycrafting is fun.

It feels like an outlet for unbridled, endless creativity.

You get to live at the intersection of FOMO and Shiny Object Syndrome all day long.

And yes, you never risk losing with theorycrafting because you never actually play the game.

But you never get the opportunity to win unless you actually play the game.

Every day, creators tell me about their grandiose plans and how awesome it’ll be once they put them into action.

They’re going to:

  • Create short-form content on every major social media channel
  • Then publish a full YouTube video every week
  • Then write a weekly newsletter
  • Then optimize their tech stack
  • Then put out a podcast
  • Then create courses
  • Then do coaching
  • Then…then…then…

Then I’ll talk to them 6 months later and they’re still tinkering with their master plan but haven’t taken any real action to make it a reality.

They’re still living at the intersection of FOMO and Shiny Object Syndrome.

Because they’re still theorycrafting instead of playing the game…

•••

Playing the Game

You know what most people on their deathbed regret?

Not doing more with their lives.

At the end of your days, you won’t look back and think, Man, I sure did have some awesome ideas!

You’ll look back and think, Damn, I wish I would’ve done something with my ideas.

Is this the reality you want your entire life to culminate in? Regret?

At your funeral, your loved ones won’t talk about all the ideas you had.

They’ll talk about the way you treated people and the things you did.

They’ll talk about your actions, not your ideas.

Because ideas without action are just intellectual masturbation—a self-gratifying thought exercise that has no effect on reality.

You’re better than that.

You’re capable of more than just sitting around thinking about your potential.

You just need to take action.

Action is the antidote to overwhelm and uncertainty.

If you’re tired of living at the intersection of FOMO and Shiny Object Syndrome, stop theorycrafting and start doing.


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