When Courage is Calling
Take that FIRST step
Baby Steps. We know that no baby is born already knowing how to walk.
Developmentally-speaking, there are movement sequences we must learn in order to walk.
The quantity of consistent time infants spend on their tummies, crawling (not required, but incredibly beneficial to coordination later), and rocking back and forth builds muscle strength and coordination, integrates reflexes, and eventually leads to standing up, maybe cruising the couch, and finally: taking the first step.
Put in the Time
Build up your Strength
Breathe in, find your brave and try it!
It All Comes Down To
Starting a blog, website, business, and/or a podcast is similar. When, I committed to launching a website, I knew it would not happen overnight.
Chipping away at the multiple tasks for this massive project was like creating an ice sculpture. The number of new accounts to open, passwords to set up and try to remember, subscriptions to pay for — would make any person who was not all-in give up.
And, I nearly did.
For me, I had to say it all out loud — intentionally, so that fear did not win. It was a close call.
There was a lot of positive self talk: “Take that first step. Do the next thing.
Even when it is hard. Hill — you are one step closer to launch (or open the doors) every day.”
But slowly, the parts all came together, and I got a sneak peek of what the final product will look like.
Far from perfect, but one step closer.
Take that FIRST step.
Do the ONE next BEST thing.
Even, no ESPECIALLY when it is hard.
One might wonder what are the steps to take?
First, strengthen my postural muscles for sitting or standing at the computer and my eye muscles to focus on the task of the day.
I ordered new blue-blocking computer glasses to combat eye fatigue.
Next, I worked on the coordination of the concentration balancing act: train my brain to pay attention to one detail at a time, and occasionally zoom out to notice the big picture.
Then, allowed myself take breaks and tune out (head for the couch for some binge-worthy or mind-numbing shows, play a 80's video game, or go for a walk with my dog, Kahlua). This took just as much discipline to pull back from hyerfocus of the actual work.
My mind was a battlefield (cue Pat Benetar) - the pitfalls of “negative Nellie” thinking —
Why would you spend money on supplies that you have no clue how to use?
Why are you wasting time and energy that could be used for something else?
Will anyone read this or listen to the HillTalks podcast?
— made me feel like giving up time and time again.
I got distracted, made mistakes (a lot), felt frustrated, considered giving up, then PICKED MYSELF UP, AND TRIED AGAIN.
“Write.” The only word I heard this year when I prayed for direction. I got distracted, failed, picked myself up, and tried again. I joined a writer’s workshop for encouragement and guidance. I outlined the book that was lingering in the back of my mind. I even began the book proposal process.
And then, the literary agent from the course asked: “Where is your platform?” Sigh… my what? Discouragement and angst crept in like shadows on the wall of a child's bedroom like the nightmare in a movie. Ugh.
The fear of rejection and criticism I might experience by reaching out to people, connecting with readers or listeners, and developing an online presence left me frozen. I nearly gave up. Again.
BUT, I REMEMBERED THAT I HAVE A VOICE.
But, I remembered that I have a voice.
And I like to talk — I mean a lot (my husband and kids will tell you).
So… what if I tried podcasting?
Talking to people, with people, and sharing stories?
I LOVE stories - reading them, telling them, and writing them. Heck yeah, I can do that!
And here I am.
Braced for criticism, dedicated to a full year or more, and walking in obedience to the call to write.
Just try it out.
Maybe some people will listen in and feel less alone.