The first step
The first step is always the hardest. . . . . . It's easy to flirt with the idea of moving forward without actually committing to it. The thrill and excitement of where that step will lead can have you teetering on the brink of leaping right in . . .and . . . running away pretending that you never wanted “that” anyway. Have you found yourself in this intimate struggle with starting something new? Setting a goal, seeking a PR, chasing a dream?
Personally, I have come close to perfecting this particular dance! So close, that at times, I’ve convinced myself that it's simply easier not to dream or set goals, than to teeter on that terrifying precipice of deciding whether or not to start by taking that single step. It’s in those moments when I’ve held back or walked away, that I look back and wonder . . . . what if . . . . .or, if only . . . . . Both trains of thought are tinged with regret for letting fear direct my actions. Reflection and awareness are incredibly powerful forces and they have slowly worked their magic and stirred my soul and awakened within me the enthusiasm and joy that are intertwined with endless possibilities and bold dreams!
With each of these dreams and aspirations, there is a defining moment of whether or not to move forward. Recently, I decided to challenge my fitness level and capture my progress with professional pictures. Well, that required a photo shoot . . . . . and not just any photo shoot, it required a fitness themed photo shoot! *deep breath* *gulp* *deep breath* The fear of standing in front of a camera had me TERRIFIED! Not slightly uncomfortable, but knees shaking, wanting to hide and pretend that the thought never crossed my mind scared! There was such power in how I felt, that I knew the only way that I could circumvent the fear of regret was to trump the fear that had the ability to keep me from trying. So, I resolved myself to trying. I wasn’t just going to step outside of my comfort zone, I was going to sky dive out of it J
The first step that I took was scheduling the photo shoot. Finding a photographer and committing to a date and time immediately transitioned this challenge from theory into reality. I was now accountable to moving forward. The fluidity of my actions and planning from that moment forward was entirely up to me. How I showed up for that photo shoot was my choice. How I looked in those pictures was entirely up to me. I could develop a plan and follow it to a “T” . . . . . I could completely improvise my way through . . . .or, I could develop a plan and adjust along the way as life intervenes. I chose to develop a plan and to adjust accordingly. This challenge wasn’t about being perfect. It wasn’t even about having the perfect pictures. It was about setting a goal, facing my fear, and moving forward despite it. I have to admit that it wasn’t easy. There were times that I wanted to quit and I was so close to talking myself out of it. After all, it’s not like I was working to establish world peace, it was a photo shoot. However, I held firm to my resolve and overcame the obstacles and challenges that presented along the way and the feeling of empowerment that accompanied me on reaching my goal was worth every step of the journey it took to get there!!
I’m sharing this story with you to show you that despite your fears and challenges, you can chase your dreams too! The beauty of a dream lies in our ability to define them. We can create the boundaries that define our vision. We can create the paths to our achievements. Our steps are not limited, we can travel forward, backward, sideways, over, or even under obstacles. We simply have to take steps. The quintessential element of success hinges on whether or not we take that single, first step J
Isn’t it amazing how simple it can be? We don’t need a perfect plan or endless details and prescribed responses. We just need to take that first step. Without it, my dream would have remained a dream and regret would have been lurking around the corner waiting to greet me in time.