Why is starting the most important step in any project?

This sounds like a trick question and the response should be ‘of course it is, if you don’t start there is no project’. So why mention it at all?

Why indeed?

If you are anything like me, you will have a number of projects that you would like to initiate. These include writing a short story for my daughters, putting together a zine, selling at least one piece of art and getting another peer-reviewed article published to improve my CV, among other things. I can spend ages coming up with ideas, writing lists and planning them in my head. However, most of them have not happened. Why is this?

Again, why indeed?

It is because, although I have good intentions, I cannot do everything and there are myriad distractions stopping me from starting some of these projects. It might seem more important to do the washing up and tidy out my box of magazines that I keep for collages, rather than putting a piece of art on an online shop. These tasks do not move me closer to my goal, but make me feel like something has been done, they give instant gratification and are a reward unto themselves.

So of you are aware of this procrastination, why not just do what you want?

There is only one reason, and that is fear. Fear that the story might not be perfect, fear that I will try to sell something and nobody will want to buy it, fear of trying something new and learning new skills, fear of meeting new people. All these fears and insecurities are masked by procrastination and the only way to over come them is by taking a small step towards your goal. That one small step will start your journey to your goal. It might be as simple as announcing your intent to your friends and getting them to provide support and nag you into doing something, or putting down a title or setting up an account with an online marketplace. Once you have taken that first step, you need to follow it with a second and by taking those initial small steps, momentum will grow and drive you to completing your goal. So for example, if you want to write something, if you write a small amount consistently every day you will soon have more words written than you expect!

So go, don’t procrastinate with social media or reading blogs, and take teh first baby step towards one of your goals!