January 28th, 2011
02:10 PM ET

Letters to the President #739 'Just do it'

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Reporter's Note: President Obama is putting all of his players into place for the second half of his term, obviously with hopes of winning a second term in the process. Personally, I think he wants to stay in office just to keep receiving my daily letters, but who knows?

Dear Mr. President,

My morning run was not exactly pleasant I must say. Snow, slush, and standing water all over. In many places the sidewalks were impassable, and the roads were plowed just enough for cars to get by, so I ended up looping through the neighborhood for eight miles, slipping and sliding up and down the hills. I think I actually blistered the tips of my toes trying to grab a little traction inside my wet shoes. Still, I put my head down and trudged on.

I suppose I looked a little silly to some, but I am trying really hard to stick to a training schedule I got from Runner’s World, so if you hear any making cracks (ahem…Biden) tell them to cut me some slack.

And frankly, as I endured the elements this morning, I was reminded of a valuable lesson. Sometimes the secret to accomplishing great things is getting past all the excuses, all the difficulties, and just soldiering on. It really can be that simple. I think that is a concept that you might want to push at the new alignment of players on your team as you burn into your second two years in office. It is far too easy for even great ideas to be dragged to a halt by too much study, too much debate, and too much noodling around. As valuable as such things can be, at some point you have to put your head down and confidently charge forward.

After all, the biggest impediments to progress for most companies are internal; they simply get all twisted up trying to sort out all the possible outcomes of plans that are far too complex, and they end up doing nothing, or investing so much time and money into their idea that by the time it is finally launched it is inherently doomed. Same for politicians.

Look, I could have sat around all morning looking at the weather forecast, trying to pick the precise moment when it would be warmest and driest outside. I could have fretted about my socks and how many layers I was going to wear. I could have agonized over which of three different hats would keep me the most comfortable. Instead, I strapped on my shoes, hit the road, and an hour and a half later I was done. It wasn’t pretty. But it was pretty effective. And sometimes that’s really all that matters. Hope you are staying dry. Call if you can.


Follow Tom on Twitter @tomforemancnn.

Find more of the Foreman Letters here.

soundoff (One Response)
  1. Sandy Higham

    For all the people who don't want to have a National Healthcare, two question I want to ask them "Are you ready to give up Medicare, which IS a National Healthcare program"? The answer will be NO, of course not. So why do you not want every American to have the same coverage? Also putting people to work can ONLY be done if the American people say "NO' to ANY product that is not MADE in the USA, yes you may pay more but there are families out there THAT is how they are paying their bills, You would be putting people to work HERE. From the tube of toothpaste you buy, the car your thinking about buying, to the telemarker on the phone THINK and LOOK BEFORE YOU BUY ANYTHING to see where it is made. If it's not made in the US, pass on it and tell who ever why your NOT buying their product "IT WAS NOT MADE IN THE USA" if we all did this HOW LONG to you think it would take them to bring OUR JOBS back to the US. The gov could put a huge tariff on these products, that makes them equal to what it would cost these companies if they would have been made in the US for the prices to compare to each other (Salaries,benefits,etc). Then what would be the reason to TAKE the product out of the US to be made? There used to be a windfall profit tax on these companies can that be implemented back into the tax system? The goverment cannot do this alone it will take ALL of us to get OUR country to WHERE it belongs.

    January 28, 2011 at 5:08 pm |