We’ve all heard the saying you got to start somewhere, to which I would add starting is better than overthinking where you start. Time spent not taking action is time wasted which might not mean much in the grand scheme of things, but you’ll probably look back at the hesitation laughing at yourself. Nothing is permanent. You can only improve once you have something to work with.
The planning stage is when self-doubt can sabotage any chance to act and succeed. Our mind can obsess over the possibility of failure rather than the possibility of success, making us paralyzed with fear. It is a cheap trick that keeps us trapped into our mediocrity and our comfort zone. As much as we need stability, we need growth. And growth cannot happen just by thinking about it, but it does start with the thinking mind.
For many of us, taking action is not a button that we switch on and enjoy its unlimited stream of growth. It’s the decision we make every single morning to push through, regardless of the circumstances, and give our best to materialize the idea. Thinking and acting always generate success due to the steep learning curve that cannot be replicated through passive learning. If you’re at a thinking stage and have been there for a while, start with the smallest action. Not the most grandiose action, but the one that can set a strong foundation for your project. How do you start? By doing something.
We all know that while we’re asleep someone in a home garage is working 10x faster to progress on the same idea as you. We also know that an idea is worth nothing. How do we balance the sense of urgency with looking after ourselves?
My experience so far was at the two ends of the spectrum – either being fully committed to my personal projects or acting as if I’m 10 during my summer holiday – which means not getting anything done. I was taught recently about the impact of small victories. We need to remind ourselves that it’s not just alright to get tiny bits done, but that these are small successes worth celebrating. Celebrating the process rather than that one moment when we put a product on the market or we launch our idea is providing fuel to work continuously and to grow continuously. So it’s fine fine to sleep, as long as you remember where you left things first thing in the morning.
I was recently told that if I want to write a book I should aim to write six or more and the reason being that through different projects we get closer to perfection. When we think of one thing to do – one dissertation, one poem, one painting – we fantasize over a flawless masterpiece.
Rejecting failure leaves no room for progress. If we don’t believe that we have so much more to offer to the world than just one song or business idea, we limit our progress. So if we are to dream big, we should multiply the dream at least by five. And rather than looking at the end goal and measuring the overwhelming distance with our eyes, it’s easier to look for our next few steps into the right direction.
What is the one thing that makes you sit in fear when thinking of even making a start on it? And what are the first small steps you need to take to start moving into the right direction?
At the end of the day, what is the one thing that helps you sleep well at nigh? Did you do what’s right? Did you go the extra mile? Have you powered through the day despite all likelihood of doing so?
Now that you’ve found something that makes you feel proud of yourself, try and think about the other part of the spectrum. How can you improve? What can you improve? Where do you feel like you’ve really let yourself down? Only you can change that. Start today.