I was never truly ready.
In fact, if I had waited until I was ready I never would have become a parent, written my first book, become a pastor, and launched my own business.
In each case, I was in over my head. Honestly, I still am.
It’s why I’ve often returned to this quote from T. S. Eliot:
“If you aren’t in over your head, how do you know how tall you are?”
If you’re pursuing what’s next or trying something brand new or finding yourself in unchartered waters, welcome to the “In over your head” club.
While you’re here, you’re going to discover two voices inside of you that are limiting your progress — the voice of the self-critic and the voice of fear.
If you’re like me, the biggest critic you have is you. And once I show myself some grace, fear takes over where self-criticism left off.
The goal of both voices is procrastination. “Play it safe. You’re not ready. Keep your head down. Stop dreaming so much.”
That’s why we have to understand the difference between patience and procrastination.
Patience is wise. Procrastination is costly. And the difference between them is wise action.
Let me give you a couple of examples — one from my life and one you can consider for yours.
I’ll go first. I’m currently doing something that feels like I’m at the bottom of the ocean staring up. I’m writing a novel. Even typing those words and letting you know makes the ocean floor drop even more. I’m in over my head, and I don’t even know if this will ever see the light of day. But the good news is I’ve been here before. I know what it feels like, and that means I know the path to follow —> Take Action.
Again, the difference in patience and procrastination is action. Not rash, unwise action but a step forward of some sort. Knowing this, I’ve taken two specific action steps. First, I’m writing the book. Second, I’ve hired a writing coach. Both actions have helped me turn down the volume of the self-critic and fear.
Okay, now let’s talk about you. My hunch is you’re going to need a push. Some inspiration. Here’s a suggestion. Next month, I’m joining John Maxwell and hundreds of other leaders in Orlando, Florida for Personal Growth Day. It’s all about turning down the volume of the self-critic and fear. Details on how to sign up are below. Just clicking the button and learning about this event is one, small way of winning the battle of procrastination today.
And yes, it’s a daily battle. But it’s only a daily battle for those of us who are trying to grow and explore new areas. If that’s you, and if you made it this far into the email then you passed the test, there’s only one other question to ask: What are you waiting for?
Take Action. Today.
P.S. For more information on Personal Growth Day in March, click here: https://www.maxwellleadership.com. I’ll be there and we can turn down the volume of the self-critic and fear together.
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