If I want to work out each morning, the key to getting started is not getting on the treadmill. The key is just going downstairs. That is the real first step.
You see, my treadmill is in the basement. It’s not far out of the way…but I have to want to go there. When I was creating my morning routine (here is mine), I found out that going into the basement was really the first step to working out. If I was going to miss, it was at that decision. I could talk myself out of the workout before it began. But if I made the commitment and walked down the stairs, I always worked out. Always. I never went down the stairs and said “Screw it.”
So the decision was to go downstairs. Once I made that decision…I was going forward.
I was reminded of that when listening to Donald Miller (author of Business Made Simple) the other day. He was talking about creating a habit of getting in the pool. He convinced himself to drive to the pool and get in. That’s it. If he got in the pool and then got back out, he could check the box. But he never did that. Once he was in the pool, he did laps. Always.
In that way, it’s about tricking your brain into starting.
Whatever your goal is, there is a “real first step” for you too. If you want to write, it might be sit down and open the WordPress site (that is mine for this). Once it’s open, you might find that you can write. If you want to make calls, the key might be to have your script, laptop and coffee is a specific place so you are confident.
Regardless of the goal, it’s about finding the real first step. The real first step is the first place you have to make the decision. Once you make that decision, you could be well on your way to doing the work.
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Kirby Hasseman is the CEO of Hasseman Marketing, a full-service marketing agency located in Ohio. Learn more about Hasseman Marketing here. And if you are interested in having him speak at your next event, you can learn more here.