Recently, I asked this question on Twitter, “If you could do one thing, right now, to set an idea or project in motion, what would it be?’ As people replied, I started to notice a common theme: The ideas and projects people wanted to set in motion – we’re talking amazing business ideas, loft conversions, huuuge money goals, hosting a yoga retreat – (and I was wildly inspired), were so big that I got the feeling that the space between right now and the ‘thing’ happening was too big.
Does this sound familiar?
Maybe you want to host a running technique workshop, or enroll in a degree in further mathematics, or save £30,000, or learn to swing dance or sell cupcakes at the local Sunday market. You think about it a lot. You Google other people who are already doing it, you visit the website over and over and re-read the application form for the hundredth time, you sit on the bus and stare out of the window and feel exhilarated – you know exactly how you’re going to teach people and what your logo will look like and what you’ll say and where you’ll put the bed in the new loft conversion. You just know this is something that you really want to do. But what you actually do is nothing.
Because from where you’re stood right now, and where you’re aiming to be is a Grand Canyon-sized chasm and you have no idea where to even start in order to get across.
So you press the pause button. You make a cup of tea, or mindlessly scroll through your Twitter feed. You start looking for new car insurance, you stay in the job you hate, the relationship you’re desperately unhappy in. You tell yourself, “Oh, it’s fine, there’s plenty of great yoga retreats out there, no need to add mine to the mix”. In a nutshell, you do anything to avoid having to face the edge of the Grand Canyon and take a good long look across, because you know you need a bridge to get there and you have no idea how to build bridges.
Except you do know. Because you do it every day without realising. You wake up and switch off your alarm and make a cup of coffee and have a shower and drive to the train station and get on the train and go to work. You do this by building a bridge, plank by plank, that slowly guides you throughout your day, right until that last step when you climb into bed at the other end of it.
If we look at this notion, when considering our ideas and projects, we can do the exact same thing. Instead of ‘build my loft conversion’, try, ‘fill out planning permission application form’, or, if you’re not even at that stage yet, ‘download application form and print it out’. How about ‘call three potential yoga retreat venues’ instead of ‘host a yoga retreat’. These are the things you can do right now, today – plank by plank. And then tomorrow, you add another plank. And another and another, until the gap between where you’re stood right now, and where you want to go, is a bridge to the other side.
A question from me to you: What’s the one thing you can do right now, to set your idea or project in motion?