If you want to take a piece of land and convert it into a garden, you need a plan for the garden and then you need to clear it from its existing vegetative state before you can ever plant the first seed.
If there is something you want to do – write a book, open a business, change jobs, run a marathon, meet the love of your life – you need a plan and you need to prep yourself by clearing the path of all the obstacles.
I have recently seen the value to the clearing. My husband, Dave, and I are opening a brewery. We processed through what we wanted, wrote a business plan, moved to where we want to open the brewery, revised the plan, started looking for investors and property. It wasn’t until we did some clearing that things started taking off.
Over the next month, I will share the process that helped us, broken down week by week. This is a stoic exercise I learned from Tim Ferriss. I’ve put my own spin on it.
Start by naming what you want- travel the world, start a podcast, write a memoir, open a business, buy a house. Notice how it feels to actually name it. It may not bring any fear up at all if you’ve been thinking about this for a long time. It could surprise you what you wrote. Or it may feel terrifying writing it down.
What is the absolute worst that could happen if you did what you’re considering? What doubt, fears, and “what-ifs” pop up as you consider the big changes you can—or need—to make? Envision them in painstaking detail. Write those down. It’s like imagining monsters in the dark, until you shine a light, they get bigger. Writing shines the light.
Would it be the end of your life? What would be the permanent impact, if any, on a scale of 1 (no impact) –10 (enormous impact)? Are these things really permanent? How likely do you think it is that they would actually happen?
Start there. Be intentional as you explore these questions. Be wiling to be courageously honest and also surprised. Naming the fears allows you to face them and decide what’s real and what’s perceived so you can actually address them. As you move through the days following this exercise, notice the stories you tell yourself about this dream and these fears. Notice the distractions you engage to avoid taking action. Be mindful.
Next week we’ll do step two.