Adam Steltzner led the Entry, Descent and Landing team in landing the Curiosity rover on the surface of Mars.
This quote is from his book, 'The Right Kind of Crazy', a great book about breakthrough innovation in the face of the impossible.
"There comes a moment in every creative or innovative process when you're not only lost; you're not even sure where to find a map. Spending time in this Dark Room is terrifying, but there is no easy way out. You have to stay calm, to hold on to the doubt, listen to the problem, and keep thinking of solutions while avoiding the mind-locking panic that you won't find one in time. We were in the Dark Room and the only way out was persistence."
Persistence can overcome a lot of unknowns. When you persist, the problems you need to know about show themselves, rather than waiting to grab you as you go by. It's always best to meet problems on your own terms rather than waiting to wander into them unprepared.
Problem solving requires a strong heart, a calm demeanor, and diverse skills you can mix and match on the fly. The problems you'll face typically get more daunting the closer you get to your goals. This is especially true for innovators, artists and entrepreneurs.
As Steven Pressfield says so eloquently in the War of Art, "The counterfeit innovator is wildly self-confident. The real one is scared to death."
"That's a law of nature. Where there is a Dream, there is Resistance. Thus, when we encounter Resistance, somewhere nearby there is a Dream."
Adam Steltzner and his team delivered the Curiosity Rover to Mars with perfect landing almost 5 years ago. Just prior they were stuck and terrified with no easy ways out.
We all face those moments. Dreams are nearby.
Persistence overcomes resistance.
The Right Kind of Crazy. Adam Steltzner
The War of Art. Steven Pressfield
Purple Gallinule (photo). Mauston, WI, 2017.
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