As I finish an awesome first week at the new job, a recent drawing (bottom) from Nicholas Bate’s blog came to mind. As Nicholas often does, it quickly and simply paints a business reality (in this case - getting stuff done).
As simple as it is, so often folks overlook the reason that they have not finished something yet –– because they haven’t started! Hello!?!
I had two recent personal projects this year that followed this simple methodology: running a half marathon and landing a new job opportunity.
Put one foot in front of the other
This year, I decided to finally get serious about my running passion and take the first step (as it were) toward my ultimate goal of completing a (full) marathon by first completing a half-marathon. There were a lot of excuses to overcome (had gotten WAY out of shape, time crunches, whatever).
But, I gutted it up (or more accurately dropped the gut) by getting a plan, applying focus (getting up at 3:00 am to run in the dark before work requires focus), making a decision (mix in a salad, big boy), abandoned excuses (it’s too hot, I am tired, I am sore) and got started (as slow,painful and embarrassing as running 1 minute/walking 1 minute in public is).
Without starting, I would have never reached the finish line (literally) - which I did.
Westbound and down (loaded up and trucking)
This same, simple process was in play for my job search project. Do you need to find a job? It starts with a plan (network, network, network), focus (triangulate the search on opportunities that fit your passion, your talents and what there is a market for), a decision (Curtain #1, Curtain #2 or Curtain #3), abandoning all excuses (the economy, too much competition, I hate wearing a suit, change is scary) and then it comes down to just starting (and for those that know me - all my job searches start in the same place).
So – if your next big thing is floundering (your new project, your new program, a new product, going after a new market, starting your own company, getting your MBA, a job hunt, a house hunt, a spouse hunt, writing a blog post, writing a book, cleaning the house or that weight loss plan that keeps losing out to Ladies Night), there’s one thing to do: start by starting.
You can’t finish, if you don’t start.