the first step is taking the first step
when you’re staring down the barrel of a deadline or a large task ahead, you might be thinking, “how in the ____ am i ever going to get this done?! this is impossible!” but the best way of getting where you’re going is to not think about where you’re going, only about where you are. if you keep thinking about how you’re going to get to your destination, you’ll never reach it. having problems getting that report done for your boss? can’t find the words to put in your term paper? struggling to code that application for the client?
just start working.
forget about the finer details. don’t worry about getting things done right the first time. pro tip: things are never done right the first time! so why worry about it? just get the ball rolling.
start building up momentum.
and when you start putting pen to paper, or those first include statements in your java programming, you’ll find that (as robert frost famously said) “way leads on to way.” you’ll be so focused on your work that you don’t pay attention to your progress. but you’ll take a break for a moment because you’re starting to feel stressed and when you look up, you’ll be surprised.
“how far did i just come?”
without even knowing it, you’ve made amazing progress. and that feeling alone leaves you energized. just as you were feeling stressed, you find new wind in your sails and carry on. progress at this point will begin to slow, because you’re starting to look over the finer points, perfecting your work. “why did i code that? i could have used a ‘select case’ instead..” and you’ll start to look up more often, wondering what progress you’re making, but don’t be discouraged! by this point your nearly done. then, you finally make it to the finish. report closed, paper done, program up and running.
you’ll say to yourself, “man (or ‘guuuurl!’), i can’t believe i was able to do that.” you may give praise to your colleagues or classmates for helping you along the way â€” or attribute it to an act of divine intervention â€”but the truth is that you were able to climb that mountain because you had the strength to jump right into doing the work. because when it comes to making such a monumental journey, the hardest thing is taking that first step.