What are you pursuing? What is your “quest”? What are you goals? All simple questions, or at least they should be. But for many people, when asked these questions, they tend to freeze up, or laugh it off, or give the same generic answers as 99% of the population: I want to be successful, raise a family, travel, be happy. But aren’t theses answers too abstract? I mean, who doesn’t want all those things? Why don’t we answer these questions with something more meaningful. Hell, why not be more truthful?
I’d be willing to bet that even though you answer these questions with generic answers, deep down you probably do have a goal you’d like to achieve. Is it a business you’ve always wanted to start? Or did you want to try your hand at recreational metal working? Perhaps you want to take on a leadership role at your church? Whatever it is, why not start answering those questions truthfully? I believe the main reason people don’t has to do with the fact that they haven’t actually pursued those goals just yet. We spend far too long “planning” in advance. Doing the research. Getting all the information you need to start….next month. Or next year. Or whenever. We keep bull-shitting ourselves and putting it off.
Truth is, that finding the perfect execution plan for any goal or quest is a lost cause. No matter how well prepared you think you are, life is going to hit you with something you didn’t see coming. Period. “Life is what happens while you’re busy making plans”, we’ve all heard that. Life is going to happen to you, with or with out the perfect plan. While its okay to not make rash decisions and go in blind, its far more effective to take action. Choosing to take that first step is what gets you to that second step. Watching videos on how build that perfect rocking chair isn’t going to make you much better at it. Go get the wood, start cutting and hammering and nailing and figure out how to make the damn thing as you go. You might end up with a really bad rocking chair, but you’ve likely learned more than the video taught you. Remember when Thomas Edison said “I didn’t fail. I figured out 10,000 ways how not to make a light bulb”. You learn by taking action.
The point is summed up really well by an excerpt from a book by Kyle Enschenroeder: “We don’t consider ‘refusing to choose’ as a choice. We think we’re safe if we don’t expose ourselves to failure. We don’t appreciate the consequences of inaction because they are slow, chronic and less obvious. That is what makes them dangerous. The pain that comes with action is acute, scars you, makes you grow. The pain that comes from inaction is low-grade, softens you, decays your soul”. By just gong through the motions of daily life it is possible to numb the emptiness of not having something to pursue, but deep down you feel it there. It is a much heavier burden than it has to be.
So whatever it is that you have always secretly wanted to do, get off your ass and do it, Chances are you’ve already done all the “research” thats going to be of any use to you. Who cares if you fail. You’ll likely learn something from it.
P.S. Writing this blog was something I’ve always been scared of. But I finally did it. It is definitely my broken rocking chair right now, but I’m figuring it out. Ill get better as I go. But ultimately for me , the action of writing is far more rewarding than the quality of the finished product.