Before I quit my job I didn’t think a lot about it, what I’d do next, what might happen, I just knew I wanted to quit. Before I asked out this girl I liked, I didn’t take time to think about if she’d like me back, if it’d work out in the long run, I just knew I wanted ask her out. Before I decided to travel the world, I didn’t take time to think about all the different things that may happen, I just knew I wanted to travel. Even before I started this blog, I didn’t take time to worry about what people might think, what might become of it, I just knew I wanted to write and help others.
Usually we fail before we even give ourselves the opportunity to fail.
We think about doing something that we want to do, but shortly after the initial excitement of thinking about what we want to go after, our mind immediately begins to race and think about the possible things that could go wrong and reasons to NOT do it.
Internally we start playing out all the different outcomes of our upcoming decision in our head, and usually almost all of them are negative.
By the time it is ready to take action, we’re paralyzed with fear and anxiety because of all that might go wrong by going after what we want. In our heads we’ve now made up a million excuses why we shouldn’t do, that all sound very reasonable.
No matter how big or small the thing we wanted is, we’ve turned it into a monster and back away from it before even trying.
Introduce: Ready, Fire, Aim
The concept of ready, fire, aim is the moment we know we want something, we need to go after it as soon as possible, before we overthink it, and then you can figure it out along the way. The point of it is to act before we allow our mind to stop us from what we want.
We fail before we even try because we spend too much time “aiming.”
Too much time thinking about it, trying to plan it all out, overanalyzing it, weighing out all the outcomes, questioning it, putting it off until later, waiting for the right time, and then it never happens.
When you find something or someone that you want, you need to act on it fast. The more time that you take, the more time you allow your mind to make up excuses, make up failed potential outcomes, to convince you you shouldn’t even try.
So first, just make sure you are ready to take that first step. Ask yourself “do I want this?” if the answer is a confident “fuck yes,” then go. That’s it.
Getting ready should be extremely quick, just doing the bare minimum to take that first step.
In the dating industry this is known as the 3 second rule. It means if you see someone you want to talk to you have 3 seconds to do it before you start making up all the reasons not to approach them. After that, you likely never will.
Just go. Don’t allow yourself to get caught up in your limiting thoughts, just go as soon as possible. Even if you have no idea how you will continue from there. Just take that first step.
It’s just that simple, yet it can still be very scary and difficult.
In that moment (and even after) your mind will still begin racing telling you stop, not to do it, running all sorts of failed scenarios through your head. But now you’ve already got the ball rolling, which is half the battle.
“He decided to ask. He walked up to the random women, terrified. Everything in your body is telling you ‘just go the fuck home and jerk off, don’t do this.’ But he walked up and said ‘hi’.”
Whenever you make a decision to do something outside of your comfort zone your mind will try to stop you. That is why going after it before letting yourself think too much about it is so huge.
So now you’re off and running. You’ve gotten through one of the hardest parts, which is just taking that first step. You probably still have lots of worries and fears. You may not even fully know what the fuck you are doing or what the next step might be, but that is fine. Figure it out as you go. Going after what you want in life, especially if it’s something you’ve never done, will always be nerve racking.
After quitting my job I was fucking terrified. I thought “what have I done, why did I do that, what will I do next, that was nuts.” After asking that girl out, I was nervous, I wasn’t sure what would become of it. After deciding to travel, I freaked out, I didn’t know how I could do all that alone. After starting this blog, I worried what people would think of me, if I’d actually be able to help anyone.
I had not a clue what would become of any of these decisions, and still don’t for some of them, but I knew I wanted them, and possibly would have not done some of them if I allowed myself to “aim” too long and overthink.
Richard Branson said “If you someone offers you an amazing opportunity and you’re not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later”
You may still fail and it may still not work out. But at least you got to the point of actually failing, instead of just failing in your mind. Now you will know how to do it better next time. And you’ll discover how much more you are capable of.