Analysis Paralysis is best described as the act of over-analyzing or overthinking a situation, so much that a decision or action is never taken, thereby “paralyzing” the “potential” outcome.
Many of us have indulged ourselves in the habit of planning until there is nothing left to plan, no ground to cover, to angle to look from, no more possible disaster but inadvertently and ironically, there is no time left to carry out our “perfect” resolution. While others are so dazed by the beauty of the solution that they end up doing nothing just as another category is blinded by the enormity of the potential disaster, so they also end up doing nothing.
Not to be a contradiction to perfection, but many people who have bound themselves to the yoke of this habit like to brand themselves as “perfectionists” which isn’t true. You see a smart guy refusing to take action, claiming to still be in the preparation stage, while a less-smart but more enthusiastic fellow goes ahead and gives it a try and emerges successful. The smart guy will put the less-smart guy’s feat at the feet of luck, he will analyze and show you every mistake made, where his counterpart could have gone catastrophically wrong, as well as how the end result can be bettered, but he will never go-ahead to take a shot at it.
There is a quote attributed to Abraham Lincoln on how he would spend twenty hours sharpening his axe and four hours cutting down the tree if he has only twenty-four hours to fell a tree. What some folks do not take into consideration is the fact that he actually begins to cut the tree, he doesn’t spend the whole day sharpening his axe and never laying a strike on the tree. That is why the tree will end up on its side at the end of the day. Also Abraham Lincoln knows how long it would averagely take to cut down a tree so he is balancing preparation and action with proper time management. the “Over-Analytical” would rather spend twelve hours grinding his axe, another six hours reading about the tree and a further six hours observing the tree from all possible angles, then ends up neither making a mark on the tree, nor cutting it down.
True enough, proper prevention prevents poor performance, but action does speak louder than words (or thoughts at that).
One of my biggest influences in recent times likes to say “Passion trumps talent and genius nine out of ten times” while I would like to say “Drop the blueprint, just do it”.