I recently started up a personal project that I tried to start a few times earlier this year. Each time before, I started in earnest. I had great intentions. I even checked in with accountability buddies to be sure I stayed on track after starting strong. And each time before, things derailed. Life got in the way. I focused on the urgent rather than the important, where this project was concerned (thank you, Steven Pressfield).
So, when I started AGAIN recently, I found myself saying, “What a waste! Can you imagine where I’d be by now with this if I had stayed on track any of the other times I got going on this project? Ugh! Why bother?”
Sound familiar? Especially when it comes to our creative careers — where traction definitely is a factor — we can easily find our momentum derailed despite our very best intentions, and then feel it’s too late to begin again. “Why bother?”
What’s that axiom about this?
“Do you know how old I’ll be by the time I learn how to play the piano if I start today?”
“The same age you’ll be if you don’t start today. Only then you won’t know how to play the piano.”
No matter what may be blocking you in your creative career (or even in your personal life), how’s about silencing the voice that says, “I should’ve done this ages ago,” or, “I’m too old to start,” or, “It’s too late to move to Los Angeles,” or, “I’ll never get an Oscar,” and instead trying something like, “Better to start today than to regret never having started,” or, “What if this is exactly the way it was all meant to unfold in my life,” or, “While all that negative talk is true, it’s certainly not serving me to keep repeating it to myself!”
Just start. Start today. Launch at 85% (which means, get prepped, know what you’re getting into, but don’t obsess about getting everything perfect before you begin the journey). Starting today is so much better than spending tomorrow wondering “what if” about it all.
And if whatever it is you’re about to begin (because I believe you will begin it — heck, we have a new year starting up soon; what a great time to try to be the YOU you’ve always wanted to be, right?), if it starts to look overwhelming, too big a task, gargantuan even, remember another favorite little ditty of mine:
“How do you eat an elephant?”
“One bite at a time.”
It’s never too late. Just start!
Originally published by Actors Access at http://more.showfax.com/columns/avoice/archives/001914.html. Please support the many wonderful resources provided by the Breakdown Services family. This posting is the author’s personal archive.