"I'm going to get back to working on Charlie this week! It's going to be our best escape room yet and Windsor doesn't know what's going to hit it!" I tell myself... every week. Also, for any non-Hidden Trail employees reading this, Charlie is what we refer to as our third location (Alpha, Bravo, Charlie and I assume Delta will be what we call the fourth).
"Yes but you can't even think about Charlie until you get your permits in order!" I say internally, a little louder than the last time I said it a week ago.
"That's right! Let's get those permits sorted! Oh but hold on... You can't do that because that's expensive and you need to sort out your finances first. Maybe do some marketing to bring more people in!" I shout... internally... trying to drown out the other statements.
"Hold on a second here. If you just open that location in that other city you were thinking about, you should have more than enough new customers to help cover costs on Charlie!" I scream.... also internally. My brain's vocal cords are starting to blow out.
*Sleep* *Repeat* *Sleep* *Repeat* *Sleep*
This has been my pattern for the past several weeks. It sounds depressing, I know. There is a good reason for it but this pattern is something that I'm aiming to stomp out but when I try to stomp it out, it seems like it causes more problems to arise. Like a fire that's on the tops of my shoes so I just keep breaking my toes as I do it. But putting out fires is good so I just keep stomping away.
If you've kept up with our blog or social media or you've done one of our escape rooms and spoken to us about our plans for the future or incidents in the past, I'm sure you've heard of THE FIRE. You've probably also heard about our plans to make THE BIG SCARY ROOM® (coming soon). Despite how long we've just been running our mouths about THE BIG SCARY ROOM® (coming soon), I can assure you that it is truly a very real project that we very seriously are working on opening. I just need to get over this relentless spin cycle of worries plaguing my attempts at any real progress. If only scientists could hook up a generator to my brain. Free clean energy for everyone.
The problems all started with THE FIRE which burned down our Cherry Meadow Asylum room and carried over that stress and anxiety that comes with losing a third of a company in to future projects. I was paranoid that our insurance wouldn't get paid (which it hasn't) and that our next room would run in to fire code issues (which it did) and that the two newest rooms we had built would need constant attention to safety features (which it didn't, but I was paranoid nevertheless). This constant worrying and working on genuinely meaningless errands put the brakes on my ability to tackle the real stuff. The stuff we've been promising we would get done for about a half of a year now.
It's been since July that these thoughts have been putting a serious halt to progression in Hidden Trail and I had to look up what it means when there's just so much to do that you end up just doing nothing. Apparently it's a fairly common issue and the best term I found given to it is "Workload Paralysis". Pretty fitting title for the sensation in my case. It's like no matter how hard you try to think about one task, 20 or so more flood in and my brain panics straight in to hibernation mode and takes my body down with it. Now, I'm not a huge fan of using online steps to but I did find a pretty good article outlining 4 steps to overcoming this demon. I did redact the list for my own needs and made it more Brent-friendly. So here's my 2 step approach to moving forward out of this several month long trench.
Step 1 - Pick one thing and finish it
That is taken straight from the article. No changes there.
Step 2 - Do that some more
That's my own baby right there. Where's my trademark stamp? ®
So this is where we're at. It hasn't been the most fun to type out and share with the universe but I have a feeling that putting it out there will challenge me to take action. I made 2 steps for myself and I just checked and I have exactly 2 feet so this should be a no brainer.
Also, before I close this out, I just want to say thanks to everyone for staying excited about this project that we've been boasting about for so long. I spoke to a customer who did all of our rooms literally the day that they opened and he's still pumped about the new one. We have way too much cool new tech and ideas to not finish this thing. If not for ourselves, we're going to do it for everyone we said we would do it for.