step 1: do something
If you are anything like me, you have a ton of great ideas - whether it's starting a business or starting a healthier diet plan. But your follow through tends to be shaky at best.
There are days when a lightbulb pops on in your mind. You tell a few of your friends, maybe even a co-worker or two. If you're lucky some of your co-workers are friends. And then (if you're like me) you go home and do absolutely nothing about it.
It was a great idea worth sharing. And once it was shared and met with lots of positive feedback, you felt accomplished enough to call it a day and put the idea completely to rest. "Until next time," you say quietly to your own brilliance. And then about 20 days later this cycle starts again.
Lately, I have had to put myself in timeout. "No new ideas until you do something about the old ones, young lady!" I really had to stage my own intervention because this cycle was helping no one. I can hear myself now saying, "Isn't that a great idea? Isn't it? Right?" A day later my attitude was more like "I'm glad that you agreed with me, now let's never talk about it again."
One day I was met with the challenge to start somewhere - to do something - anything. It was tough. My nature was to start a list of all of the resources that I didn't have so that I could focus on them. Then my plan would be to do something as soon as I got those additional resources. That makes sense, right?
Well, I suddenly started to encounter one preacher after another quoting this scripture from Exodus 4:1-5:
But Moses protested again, “What if they won’t believe me or listen to me? What if they say, ‘The Lord never appeared to you’?”
Then the Lord asked him, “What is that in your hand?”
“A shepherd’s staff,” Moses replied.
“Throw it down on the ground,” the Lord told him. So Moses threw down the staff, and it turned into a snake! Moses jumped back.
Then the Lord told him, “Reach out and grab its tail.” So Moses reached out and grabbed it, and it turned back into a shepherd’s staff in his hand.
“Perform this sign,” the Lord told him. “Then they will believe that the Lord, the God of their ancestors—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob—really has appeared to you.”
Now that is a short excerpt from a long story in the Bible. But it was just enough to address my chronic procrastination. I no longer had the excuse of waiting for some grand list of resources. I had to start with what was in my hand - my health, my creativity, my ability to get along with others, my notebooks filled with poems, and the list went on once I really thought about it.
In short, we all have something on our person that could be developed further or shared with others to move us one step closer to our purpose. Start there.