I like to consider myself a bit of a risk taker. I always have to go off the BIG ski jump; I have to ride the BIG waves; I have to run the LONG race. I have to work for the startup doing something new.
There’s something about being revolutionary that inspires me. It’s something new, something unique. I’m forging my own path!
But is any of that technically revolutionary? Is it really anything new? Is the risk that great?
I sat in the lineup with 10 other guys waiting to get pummeled by that wave. I followed a well groomed trail to the base of that ski jump. I started the LA marathon shoulder to shoulder with thousands of other “revolutionaries.”
Off the Map
When I label myself as a “risk taker” for doing these things it makes me feel good, but it’s locking up my true potential. I’m letting myself settle for “pretty great” because I got props for landing a big jump.
But when it comes to taking a real risk I seem find a way to avoid starting.
Now there’s no neatly groomed trail to follow.
Now there’s no crowd to follow.
Now there’s no map.
The worst kind of expert
My personality tries to overcome adversity with information. So I research, and I research, and I research. I read blogs. I buy info products. I watch videos. I compile a mountain of information and I begin to plan. I plan, and I plan, and I plan.
And what I wind up becoming is the worst kind of expert – an “expert” with no experience.
Start before you’re ready
So to really start something new I need to do things differently. I need to find a way to avoid the pitfall of endless preparation. And if you’re anything like me I’ve got some good news – I found the solution. It’s going to be scary at first, but it’s the only way to avoid never becoming anything.
Start BEFORE you’re ready.
If you wait until you feel ready to start, you’ve waited too long. If you wait until you feel ready, you’re in for a long wait. Trust me – I’ve waited it out many times.
Practice makes… something
The things you start will never be perfect at first – they shouldn’t be. And like anything else you want to get good at, practicing is important.
- Henry Ford had five business failures that left him broke before he created the Ford Motor Company.
- The 1980 “Miracle” hockey team was pummeled by the Soviets days before the Olympics opened. They would go on to defeat
- Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team.
This blog is one of the places I practice mapmaking. No one sets my agenda here. No one tells me what Life Stoked will become – it’s up to me. And I can tell you this much, I started before I was ready – and I’m so thankful I did.
Have you ever started something before you were ready?