Most people have something that they would love to do. A dream, a project, a skill to develop or perhaps a side-hustle to create and many other possibilities. Often times, nothing comes of it because we somehow think about doing something but never get around to starting. The need to get started. How do you get started? Allow me to propose a few possibilities:
- Do you really want it? Is it your dream or someone else’s? Is it something you are passionate about? Is it something powerful enough in your life to keep you going when it becomes hard? Until you answer this question and become convinced that this is something you feel strongly about, nothing much will happen. Because in essence, nothing changes until you do.
- Study, research, and develop a plan. As you are preparing to start your new adventure, project, or activity, it would be useful before you start to do some research. Find some videos or reading material, this will enable you to plan a strategy for starting and finishing the project.
- Find someone who can help you. There are people out there who have done what you are attempting to do. Locate someone and they will not only be a great source of information but encouragement and inspiration as well. You may even see if they are willing to serve as a mentor.
- Block out some time. I remain a massive fan of working in blocks or chunks of time. If it is going to happen, you must put it on your calendar. As Arthur Ashe said: “Start where you are, use what you have, and do what you can.”
- Break it down into smaller pieces. As we have all heard: “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time!” Most of our dreams and projects are so large that it is going to take both time and effort to accomplish them. You need to take the first step and remember progress is doing something daily, consistently, and incrementally. This is the way to get it accomplished. Figure out what needs to be done today and regardless of how small it seems, do it and keep moving forward.
- Start. Mark Twain said, “The secret of getting started is getting started.” I have met people who planned and talked about what they were going to do and never got started. Do not fall into the trap of waiting for everything to be perfect. Begin now, and start.
- Remove distractions. When there are items in your environment that you know are likely to distract you, either remove the distractions or remove yourself! When I need to have a distraction-free space to work, I go to a local coffee shop. The shop has a seating area in the back where I can go and work in a way that assists me in limiting my distractions. This may not work for you, each of us has to find a place where we can work unhindered by interruptions. “The greatest amount of wasted time is the time not getting started.” (Dawson Trotman)
- Remember taking a small step is progress. Frequently we labor under the idea that for something to be worthwhile, it must involve a massive time commitment. Yet if you are taking small, consistent actions incrementally over time this will lead to significant results. Remember the words of St. Francis of Assisi, “Start by doing what is necessary, then do what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”
- Don’t overthink things! At times we are our own worst enemy. We think up things to worry about. Overthinking will cause you to become overwhelmed. If your dream is to write a novel. Don’t worry about how will I get it formatted? How will I get the book edited? How will I find a publisher? You cannot have a text formatted, edited, or published that has not yet been written. Take first things first and concentrate on the matter at hand.
- Reward yourself!
What is your dream? What would you like to do? Go for it, and just get started!