When you are beginning a new project (in any phase of your life), you need to learn a lot. There is likely new terminology, procedures, new relationships, and more. You will also need to plan. What are the next steps? What might they look like? How many steps will there be? Are there books I should read or videos I should watch? It can be overwhelming.
The problem with many projects in life is they get “stuck” in the learning phase. We go from being totally excited about the opportunity, to being frozen. We don’t know what we don’t know. And as we learn more about the project, we can become paralyzed with the fear that we don’t know enough.
At some point you need to take action.
In my experience, most endeavors don’t fail because the participants don’t know enough. They fail because those involved don’t take enough action.
Here’s a harsh secret: most of your goals will take more activity than you anticipate. If you think it will take two weeks, it will likely take 3 or 4. It’s hard to estimate when you don’t know. So the sooner you start the better. And, if you take the wrong action, you will learn quickly! Then, with that new knowledge, you can take new action to move the project in the right direction.
That’s right. You will actually learn more (in many cases) by taking action.
What often holds us back is plain old fear. It’s natural. No one wants to look stupid or to fail. So here is my rule of thumb. If I find myself feeling fear, it’s a hint to me that I am on the right track. Your brain is trying to keep you comfortable. And as we have discussed before, your goal is usually just on the other side of comfort.
So if you are stuck on a new project because you feel you are not ready, it might be time to lean into the fear.
Take the next right step. Then navigate the next step from there.
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