Start before you feel ready

One of the (million) things I am learning as I transition into the world of business is that you really can spend all your time learning about how to do something rather than learning how to do something.

I remember spending a long time reading about how best to set up e-mail automation on my website, before I even published a website! I wanted it to be ready to welcome my readers, but underneath that story I was telling myself, I really just wanted to feel ready to take the next step. I wanted to ‘be’ (i.e., feel) prepared. Just in case.

Stalling until we feel ready is a way we try to stay in control when facing uncertainty.

In general, this stems from overestimating the costs of what might happen (“If visitors to my website don’t get a smooth user experience, they will never return… and that’d be terrible”) and underestimating our skills and abilities to solve problems as they come up (“I wouldn’t be able to set up e-mail automation quickly enough after the website launches… and that’d be terrible”).

By diligently doing our research, we can calm the fear of the unknown, and sure, by learning we can increase our knowledge base. But it is only by doing that we can learn to trust in ourselves.

Because it is when we start, that something beautiful happens. We either discover that we can in fact “do it”, or the obstacles that come up in our way guide us to what we actually need to learn and do to overcome them – and ​this is where growth happens.

So, whatever it is you really want to do, start before you feel ready! Because we learn best by doing, and no amount of “how to” advice will move you closer to where you want to be unless you take those first steps forward.

​Will you join me on this imperfect, uncertain, terrifying yet thrilling journey of growth?