Just Begin

Every day, someone approaches me interested in writing a book or making a movie. They ask how to make it happen and most walk away further away from starting than they were when they inquired.

My response varies with every situation.

Sometimes it’s not the easiest to come up with a cogent reply in a rush to nab some cucumbers in the produce section of the grocery store. No matter where I am or what I’m in the midst of when the questions pop up, there is one element of the response that is always present – “just begin.” There is a 0% chance of completing anything you don’t start.

I promise our fearful minds will produce every reason possible for us not to begin. When I have time to help people debunk their own myths, I seize the moment. I’ve had people say they plan to start writing a book when they get a computer. I let them know a pen and pad work just fine. For more years than not, it was the way to get any writing done.

If you imagine that I haven’t been bitten by the excuse bug a time or two – perish the thought. For years, people have been encouraging me to blog. I even started one about a decade ago that quickly floundered. The first failure was my excuse for not starting this one sooner. I figured I didn’t know how when I started it and only two people read the few pieces I published. (Thanks mom and random other person who supported.)

What made me begin again? I learned a few more things about writing and what it takes for something to catch on. The first thing, which we have already covered is that you have to begin. The second is you have to do it for you and you alone. I love writing and I look forward to putting this blog together once a week – regardless of who reads it.

Finally, you have to remain consistent. As you are writing your amazing novel, transforming your body or learning to play the bass guitar, you must remain committed from start to finish. The best way to do this is by carving out some time each week to work toward the goal. If you really want to add fuel to the fire – work on it daily.

When your mind and body get into the rhythm of the daily activity, your results definitely improve. The more important outcome is that your passion for the process increases. Over the years, I’ve gotten into the rhythm of writing every day. If I miss a day, I feel like a piece of me is missing. It doesn’t take a lot of effort to churn out a new book or screenplay, because it has become second nature. That comes from years of consistent investment in myself as a writer.

Some days the writing is better than others. Some days the writing is absolutely dreadful. It doesn’t matter. I know that because I’m committed to doing it every day, I will have enough material worth sharing eventually.

Clearly, my thing is writing. What is yours? No matter how big, complex, difficult, or IMPOSSIBLE you think it is, my challenge to you is BEGIN. Start with one small consistent activity and allow it to guide you in a wonderful journey to discover the greatness hidden away inside you.

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