3 Things You Need to Stop Doing to Get Started

3 Things You Need to Stop Doing to Get Started

“It is never too late to be what you might have been.”
George Eliot

Getting started with doing what you deep down want to do in life can be hard.

No matter if what you want is to start exercising, create your own business on the side, write a book, see other parts of the world, improve your relationship with yourself or something entirely else.

But often we make getting started a lot harder than it needs to be by standing in our own way.

So today I’d like to share 3 things you need to stop doing to step out of your own way and make it so much easier to actually get started instead of just keep dreaming about it.

1. Stop making it a huge and vague thing in your mind.

The more you think about whatever you want to get started with the bigger it tends to become in your head.

And as you keep thinking about the various ways this could go it tends to become scarier and scarier.

So do this instead:

Get knowledge from the others who have been where you want to go.

To defuse vague fears about what could happen if you got started and about the unclear unknown, get information from people who have already gone where you want to go.

It is easier than ever to find them today.

Look them up online and read what they have written and said or send them an email.

Or go ask someone you know in real life that has done what you want to do.

Ask yourself: Honestly, what is realistically the worst that could happen?

Take a couple of deep breaths to calm down your mind a bit.

Then ask yourself this question.

You’ll realize that in most cases the worst thing that could realistically happen is not that bad.

It may sting for a bit. But it is something you can handle. And it is a situation you can find something to do about if this worst case scenario were to happen.

The clarity you get from this question can – in my experience – reduce fears quite a bit.

2. Stop trying to control everything.

Being prepared and knowing some things certainly helps.

But it can become a trap when you try to control it all or think things through 50 times to be on the safe side and to not risk making mistakes, fail or look like a fool.

What to do instead:

Realize: you will stumble and that is OK.

It happens to anyone who steps outside of his or her comfort zone. It has happened to everyone you may admire and who have lived a life that is inspiring.

It is simply a part of a life well lived.

And if you reflect on what you can learn from a mistake then that will be invaluable to help you grow and improve.

Learn to set time-limits for small decisions at first.

If you have trouble with overthinking then set a time-limit for when you have to make a decision. This might seem a bit scary though.

So start small and set a 30-60 second time-limit when trying to decide if you are going to work out or reply to an email.

Do that for a while and then move on to slightly bigger decisions. And then even bigger ones after that.

3. Stop thinking that you have to get started in a big and spectacular way.

If you have a big goal or dream or even a medium sized one then it is easy to think that you have to take an action of the same size to get started or to get where you want to go.

That is most often not true though.

What to do instead:

Go small.

Just ask yourself: what is one small step I can take today to get the ball rolling with my goal/dream?

Then take just that small action.

And tomorrow or later on today you can do the same thing again. If that question still lands you in procrastination then ask yourself:

What is one tiny step I can take to get the ball rolling?

Single-task each little step.

Focus on just the one step you are taking. Nothing else.

Otherwise it is easy to get lost in thought, to go off track or to feel uncomfortable or fearful. So keep your attention on just this one action and step forward.

And after that, the next one.

Let these actions build day after day into something bigger.

And before you know it you’ll have gone quite a distance on your journey.


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81 comments… add one
  • thank you

  • Adrienne

    Thank you for this article. I really struggle with the first one on the list. Ideas always seem so huge and undefined. Great advise to ask someone who has been there before.

  • Tricia

    I really liked your third step! Whenever people talk about making goals they always say set them big and then set a smaller one. This can halt someone from reaching their goals. Its best to make small goals and then build upon them and eventually you can make bigger goals when your ready. Thanks for your blog post!

  • David

    Getting started is some of the biggest challenges of any new thing, I like how the blog suggest 3 small things to do, I´ll try to incorporate them on my life.
    Thanks for the blog I just subscribe and it´s good to have a place where you can look for happiness on a daily basis.

  • Janette

    Great advice on how to get started on something. Don’t get overwhelmed, break it down into smaller steps, and get knowledge from someone who’s been where you want to go. You used one of my favorite quotes at the beginning of your article: “It’s never too late to be what you might have been”. I love this thought. Thanks for the great article.

  • Streletsky

    Thank you for your advice and thoughts in this article. I especially liked the suggestions for go small. On the one hand, this is what is easiest to do, but on the other, small steps seem insignificant, and therefore not so important for implementation. Therefore, taking small steps can be a double-edged sword, with insufficient motivation for action.

  • Shanique White

    This is one of the best articles that I have ever read. I think a lot of people like myself struggle with overthinking and finding the strength to start something that we have long wanted to do. I loved what you said in number 2 about it being ok to stumble because no successful person’s journey isn’t full of roadblocks. These are practical and realistic tips that can be used even by a student like myself, I appreciate the advice and steps given to achieve even the small things.

  • Neena21

    Thank u for this. It’s just what I needed to hear.

  • Josphine G

    Thanks for this useful piece to get started on tasks, it will go a long way to help minimize my anxiety attacks.

  • Crail Gordon

    You have had such a positive impact on how I approach things both personally and professionally. Thank you. Oh, I’ll be posting your article on LinkedIn. Be Safe.

  • Stephanie

    Thank you for embolding the key points for those of us who feel the need for key points & quick relief. It’s nice to go back and re-read later, when I feel calmer.
    Mahalo & Aloha,

  • JM

    I really enjoy and find comfort with your blogs. They are a great morning read with so many no nonsense helpful pathways to explore. Truly beneficial when actioned. Great sharing
    Thankyou Henrik

  • Anonymous

    You are the best thank you for your valuable advice every week

  • Wow!
    This is pretty much exactly what I needed to hear and exactly how to break down the daunting intimidating task I have of starting my dream of a restaurant thank you for inspiring me! If you ever get time please visit us on loopholesonlife.com it’s a side project/podcast me and my best pal do. Sincerely !

  • Very nice post :)

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