👣 Taking the First Step is Scary.
Taking the first step can be challenging, but we all know that change can be beneficial on some level. To embrace new opportunities, all you need is a growth mindset.
When you take the same route to work every day, you probably go on autopilot and lose yourself in thought. However, if you’re forced to take a detour one day, you might initially be annoyed. But eventually, you may discover a new route or become more aware of your surroundings.
🔄 Embracing Forced Change
COVID-19 forced all of us to adapt to changes such as working or learning remotely. In a way, forced change is easier than voluntary change because you have no alternative but to take the first step “now.”
⏳ Overcoming Timing Obstacles
When you initiate change on your own, timing often becomes a barrier; it’s always “too late” or “too soon.”
🎨 Overcoming the “Too Late” Mindset
If you want to learn how to paint, play the guitar, or master a programming language, you might think it’s “too late” to start. You may tell yourself, “I should have started this a long time ago when I was younger. If I start now, I won’t improve much anyway. So why bother?”
In his book Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World, David J. Epstein discusses the Dark Horse Project at Harvard University. This project examines the career paths of individuals who have fulfilling and successful careers. A common thread among these people is that they’ve built their careers through circuitous routes, rather than linear, efficient ones.
These individuals don’t worry about falling behind due to detours. Instead, they remain open to possibilities and are curious about what they might find along the way.
🌱 Adopting a Growth Mindset
Having a growth mindset can help you take the first step. As Carol Dweck describes in her book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, those with a growth mindset are always open to new opportunities and possibilities, whereas people with a fixed mindset tend to stick to what they’re good at.
Embrace the idea of seizing opportunities and seeing where they lead. Each experience in your life helps shape who you are, and taking action is more important than dwelling on what you haven’t done.
⌛ Overcoming the “Too Soon” Mindset
Conversely, you might think it’s “too soon” to take the first step. If you want to start a business or write a blog or book, you may tell yourself, “I will launch when I am perfectly ready.” However, this constant preparation can lead to never feeling ready and never taking action.
In Invent and Wander, Jeff Bezos states,
“You know the business plan won’t survive its first encounters with reality.”
Nothing is perfect on the first try, so why expect perfection from yourself?
When you take the first step, hardly anyone is paying attention unless you’re a celebrity. Take advantage of this obscurity; experiment and have fun with it, as Austin Kleon suggests in his book, Steal Like an Artist. It’s better to practice before you actually need a new skill.
🚀 The Best Time to Take the First Step is Now
The ideal moment for you to take the first step is “now,” when you decide you want change. Begin your journey, and with each step, you’ll gain momentum, making future steps easier. Embrace the unexpected and learn as you go.
Life is a journey, not a destination. Enjoy the process and the experiences along the way.
🏃♂️Take Action Now:
Embrace a growth mindset and seize opportunities!
Taking the first step may be challenging, but a growth mindset enables you to overcome obstacles and embrace change. Learn from each experience as you progress.
As your confidence and momentum grow, remain open to new possibilities and adapt when needed. Embark on a journey of growth, opportunities, and valuable lessons, and enjoy the process along the way!