Getting started is the hardest part. We’ve all said it before.
Either in small talk with a colleague in an elevator complaining about the project we’ve procrastinated for days. Or in our heads when we’re thinking about writing a sympathy card for a friend who lost a dear loved one. Getting started is hard, but why? Why is it so hard to take just one simple step?
Through my own experiences, I’ve come to believe that getting started is hard because there’s a committee in our brains in cahoots with fear provoking us in the middle of the night with questions like this: What do I say? Where do I begin? What am I doing?
Those questions alone tend to stop us in our tracks.
Then the longer we wait the committee gets a little louder and more judgmental with voices like this: Who do you think you are? What will people think? Am I good enough to do this?
Let me tell you something about getting started and dealing with fear. I started a blog this year – Let the Light In – after nearly five years of thinking about it.
Yep, that’s right. I read other people’s blogs in a state of utter envy for a really long time before I got started. Then one day I decided I just needed to take a step, any step.
But I knew there was something else I had to do first. I took the advice of acclaimed writer Elizabeth Gilbert, who has spoken at length about the topic of fear and creativity. She believes that fear has a place in our lives, and it’s unrealistic to be “fearless.” Rather, she suggests it’s part of the journey, but it doesn’t ride shotgun. So, I had a conversation with my fear and asked it to quiet down a bit and be with me, but to move into the back seat. Here’s how that conversation went.
Fear: Who do you think you are?
Me: A person who likes to create and write.
Fear: Am I good enough to do this?
Me: Yes, I am! I’m a worthy human being.
Fear: What will other people think?
Me: I don’t know, but it’s not my job to worry about it.
I’m no longer staring at other blogs envious of the authors telling their stories — I’m now telling mine. I took that first step, and although my journey continues to wind and unfold, I have confidence that I can keep going.
And when I reflect on how many times I’ve just gotten started in life, I’m always amazed by the momentum that’s unleashed. It’s kind of like popping the top off a bottle of champagne. That sparkly, beautiful beverage has been sitting idly for so long, but once open, the effervescent liquid pours out beautifully and intensely, filling your cup and engaging your senses.
Getting started unleashes momentum, and what’s cool about momentum is it can actually be hard to stop. So go now with confidence: Tell fear to sit in the way back, take that first step toward starting a travel blog, and see what pops open for you.
[Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can fund your travels and make an extra income with photography, travel writing, blogging, and more in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel. Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Profit From Your Photos: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]