To Be Wildly Successful, Start Way Before You Are Ready!
Sometimes you have just jump in and do it - whatever 'it' is - way before you are ready. You don't know how to do it. You're scared shitless, and you feel unprepared, but you just have to get on with it anyway.
Otherwise, that perfectionism is going to kick in, you start to procrastinate, and before you know it, it has become a thing, a block. Waiting until you’re ready is just perfectionism in disguise and the only antidote is ACTION.
How I got in my own way
For me, it had become video content. I am pretty confident in front of a camera and have made loads of video content in the past, but never for Mavericks. I am super proud of our brand, so I wanted any video content to look great and have impact, BUT I let perfectionism turn into procrastination and then a block.
However, my health has recently become super important to me, and I really want to do it this time, so I have committed to transforming my body composition and starting to do powerlifting.
While doing a HIIT session at the gym, I was listening to Vlog Like A Boss by Amy Schmittauer, and it hit me that there are many regular guys like me over 40 who struggle with weight and health. I am also after massive accountability as I really want to commit to my health. So I decided to start vlogging my journey!
I wasn't ready, but as there isn't much pressure and I don't expect anyone to watch, it is an excellent way to warm up, learn and start producing video content again. Now, I am on day 9 and really enjoying it!
Here's why and how you start way before you are ready:
The anticipation is always worse
Perfectionism is about a fear of failure and rejection. If we don't start, we can't fail or be rejected. However, as Seth Godin puts it, “Worry is the act of experiencing failure repeatedly in your head before it ever happens.” The reality of a situation is rarely worse than our fear and worry.
For me, the feedback has been really positive and has motivated me even more.
Prime the pump
Every athlete warms up before running/playing. The same goes for any other endeavour. A good writer almost always bins the first draft. Great artists sketch before creating the finished article. If you treat your initial efforts as your warm up and take the pressure off yourself, you WILL improve over time.
Launch and learn
We learn by doing. Simple as that. What you think will be a problem and what are the problems only emerge when you take action and jump in. In vlogging, simple issues like 100% making sure I have hit the record button have been a MUCH bigger problem than people’s reactions or managing my perfectionism!
Prepare to fail fast
You are only really setting yourself up for failure if you expect your first effort to be perfect or if you don’t take action. It is far better to know what the gaps and pitfalls are and correct course accordingly. That saves energy, effort and time and gets you on track much more quickly than if you wait until you think you are ready. So, prepare to fail fast and succeed faster.
For me, giving myself permission to create crappy content and laughing at my ridiculous mistakes has massively increased my confidence.
Paint yourself into a corner
Committing to something before you are ready and being accountable to other people kicks in another principle - necessity is the mother of invention. There is nothing like commitment and real accountability to call out your creativity and resourcefulness. When you have no other choice but to step forward, you WILL find a way to do it. Now you have to be 100% committed, not just making some half-arsed attempt.
My version is doing the 31-day Vlog Every Day in August challenge, and I guess by writing this I have made myself accountable to several thousand more people...so it will get done!
People LOVE to support and interact
Jumping in and going public on whatever level (whether to 1 person or many) involves people in your journey. People love to be asked their opinion AND people want you to succeed.
Accountability to other people isn't for everyone or for everything you do, but even if people offer constructive criticism, it is because they want you to succeed. Act on what they have to say, and you will have supporters for life!
The 5-second road bump
Mel Robbins says that all that stands between you and getting going is 5 seconds. Neurologically we have a 5-second window between the instinct to take action and excuses not to act kicking in. So instead of thinking about taking action, when you feel the instinct to act, count backwards from 5 to 1 and physically move into action i.e. act don't think!
Counting backwards requires focus and activates the pre-frontal cortex which puts you into decision-making mode rather than default excuse mode. Physically moving commits you to action.