The truth can hurt and reading the data can sting, but as writer Joseph Campbell stated, if you are falling....dive. I recently heard this quote and loved the perspective and truth. The passions we pursue are worthy of getting right and rarely will we nail it the first time. We need to look at the data and adjust. Everything is continually changing; either growing or decaying. We must embrace the change, fight decay and foster growth.
My tendency is to charge ahead with what I believe is the right answer, based on feelings and because I want it to be so. Data is an emotionless friend that presents the facts, sits back with a blank stare, and awaits a response. The trick is to ensure you are gathering the right metrics, so this friend reveals the good data points. Spend time noodling through the results to ensure the analytics are understood. Then decisions can be made and action taken.
The passions scream, keep pressing forward, look at all I have invested in getting this far. The brother has been convinced from the start that you are crazy. The emotions get tossed back and forth based on the ebb and flow of likes or followers. The fans applaud the silver lining of the trials. The data quietly sits by waiting to be asked, then states, either pivot or continue the dive. The data is the calm voice among the noise, and there is no need to fear this loyal friend.
It may be time to run a query on the database with just the right questions then take your friend out for a coffee. Read what the data says. For some, the evidence says it is time to move on to the next dream on the list; this one is heading nowhere. For others, the data says there is more for you to learn and grow through this passionate pursuit, now is the time for you to double-down and run hard. You can't tell your friend what to say; you can only listen then make a decision.
Going Further: What data points are you tracking? What data points do you dislike? How do emotions rule your decision-making process? What data point is it time to heed?