“For all of the most important things, the timing always sucks… The universe doesn’t conspire against you but it doesn’t go out of its way to line up all the pins either.”
“Conditions are never perfect. ‘Someday’ is a disease that will take your dreams to grave with you. Pro and con lists and just as bad. If it’s important to you and you want to do it ‘eventually’, just do it and correct the course along the way.”
I stumbled across the above quote in this blog post the other day and it has stuck with me since.
While the post is about weight training and overcoming the plateaus you hit, the words and insight apply to pretty much anything you want to do in life.
Saying ‘someday’ is either a replacement for fear of not knowing how to start or used in place of ‘no, this is not important right now.’
Either way, saying ‘someday’ is not the best action you can take.
If you say ‘someday’ to something that’s important you, it’s obvious that you’re saying this out of fear: fear of not knowing how to start—of not knowing the first step.
The easy way out of anything important is to say ‘someday’. You fake yourself out by putting it in a schedule to do one day. You haven’t given up, right? It’s in the schedule. For ‘someday’.
But this won’t work. If something is important enough to you, do it with what you have and what you know today. Just start.
Everything evolves. Part of doing the things you want in life is to recognize that you’ll have to grow and change your approach as you go along. No matter how good you think your idea or plan is, there are a million+ factors that will change.
3 months of working on your thing, even if it’s in the wrong direction, is better than no action. Through any sort of action you learn. You adapt. Making you better off today than you were the day before.
Plans change. Ideas evolve. There will always be a new way of working out. A new philosophy for starting a business.
But focusing on the ‘how’—all of the new and exciting ways to do things—can be a distraction when you’re starting out.
You can’t think about winning the title fight if you’re not even in the ring. And action is what gets you in.
If you’re looking to start now, I’ve put together a few of my favorite posts on getting over the fear of starting and learning how to take action:
The truth about the right time…
Is that there is no right time.
Learning to let go of your fears and dive headlong into the unknown is something few of us focus on. Yet it is the one thing that is guaranteed to change our lives.
As Sean Smith tells it in his own story of taking a leap of faith:
“We have to ride our motivations through this roller coaster we live every day, or suffer from the lack of action just as much as if we were defeated while trying—but with the guilt of having not tried at all…
Stagnating on an idea, or failing to act leads to anxiety, bitterness, and all around angst. We have to let that go, we have to act, we have to move forward. We have to recognize fear for the fantasy that it is, and act logically towards what will make our life, and those around us better in the end.”
Not trying is worse than trying and failing. Fear is something we can overcome with a bit of mental grit and our eyes on what really matters.
Breaking out of your comfort zone
There’s a psychological reason you put your dreams and goals on ‘someday’. Our minds are adverse to actions that place us in positions of uncertainty.
In evolutionary terms, doing something different ‘today’ might kill you. ‘Someday’ is safety.
That’s why it’s so important to recognize when we’re putting off the things we want to do and ask ‘why?’
Push your own boundaries. Get uncomfortable and see where it takes you.
Learn to turn off your negative internal speech
We all have an inner dialogue—a voice in our heads that talks us through problems, helps us memorize facts and numbers, and generally makes us who we are. This voice is how we maintain our psychological autonomy. It’s the basis of our self-awareness.
Yet as we’ve all experienced, that voice isn’t always on our side.
“They said they liked my work, but they were probably just trying to be nice because they feel bad for me.”
“I feel so worthless, so I must be worthless.”
“I didn’t do well when I had to speak in public last time, so I shouldn’t try that again.”
We rationalize unfairly and convince ourselves not to try new things. We push our goals to ‘someday’ because it’s easier than fighting against our own uncertainties.
Yet with awareness, perspective, and a little bit of courage we’re able to push back against our internal dialogue and press on with what we truly want.
If something is important to you, make time for it now.
If you take action, you’ve already beat out 90 percent of the people who say, “Someday.”
Image credit: Cameron Kirby on Unsplash