First, you start…Then you worry about how to improve

This year, 2017, I learned how to start. It’s something easy to understand, yet difficult to practice.

Let me give you some context.

My commitment to New Year’s resolutions

Every year, I give myself one resolution I have to complete, no matter what. The goal is to push myself beyond my boundaries. Although, I make sure it is something really achievable as well.

In 2015, it was to read 30 books in a year. I completed 32. While I’m proud of this accomplishment, I wouldn’t recommend it.

Why? Because the trade off of reading so many books was the lack of time to appreciate each book’s full value.

If the author took months or years to write it, surely we’ll miss out on important things if we only read it once. So I’d rather read 10 books fully than 30 books quickly. Life doesn’t always have to be a rush.

In 2016, it was learning to quiet the mind. The mind can be a crowded place. And if you allow all the voices within it to flood your thoughts, then get ready for absolute chaos. Peace begins in the mind before it permeates outside.

So to help me achieve that, I went for a 10 day Vipassana meditation retreat in Sri Lanka, made a conscious effort to only do one thing at a time, and to stopped worrying about the things beyond my control.

Now, onto 2017

This year, my goal is to forget perfection and focus on starting. For the most part of my life, I’ve only wanted two things. The first was to be a full-time writer and storyteller. The second was to be my own boss.

But, unfortunately, I’ve committed to neither. So this year was the year I sought to change that.

After completing my first novel in 2015, I’ve been stagnant. I wanted to break out of that mold of worrying about writing the perfect novel or telling the best story. If I was serious about it, I had to worry about perfection later. It was important that I start, no matter how bad my abilities were.

So I thought, let me set an easy goal. Let me do a Vlog series about chasing my dream of being a writer. I would do 8 episode covering 1 useful topic each week.

Useful Tip: Setting a goal is only the first step. The next step is to make it measurable. 

It was tough breaking out of my comfort zone. And in my very first video (below) you could see how uncomfortable I was.

Eventually, by the midway mark, I was starting to see improvements in the way I told my stories.

My main point

The reason I’m telling you this is not to prove to you that I’m awesome. It’s really just to drive home the point that there’ll be many reasons not to start.

For example, with this vlog series. I could’ve easily said that:

  1. My acne scarred face is not meant to be in front of the camera
  2. I don’t know how to edit videos
  3. The video quality of my webcam and the sound quality of my mic sucks

But, in the end, there’s really only one reason to start (no matter how terrible you might be).

It’s the only way you can get to the next step. 

In conclusion: Start!

That’s my advice. Whatever it is you want to do or accomplish, just start first. You can worry about improving along the way. But you’ll never reach your goals if you worry about perfection before you even begin the journey.

Good luck my friends!

And if you’re already motivated to start your journey, find out what else you need besides motivation.

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