So you’ve made that life changing decision. You hand your notice in at work, spend the next four weeks of your life sat at your desk excited to be on the precipice of a new beginning. You have a farewell party with colleagues, you have plans….big plans….and then….
……and its just you.
You and your plan.
You and your big idea.
You and your many ideas…
The big question is ‘where do you start?’
Suddenly you become very aware of the thought processes in your head. The positive words you’re telling yourself to help get you out of bed and working on your ideas at the crack of dawn, but also the negative thoughts of self-doubt. The latter can become demoralising, with thoughts such as; ‘you’re making it up as you go along and you’ve so many things you want to do and accomplish. How do you know which one to start with first?’
You can easily find yourself in a state of analysis paralysis.
When these thoughts jostle for space in my head (also see previous post When Self Doubt Ruins The Party…) there’s a very random yet amazingly simple phrase that springs to mind, which my manager at my previous job told me on my first day:
‘Remember, don’t try to eat the elephant all at once. Eat it bit by bit’.
Now, I just want to clear up right here and now, I don’t advocate eating elephants! It’s simply about what the elephant represents. It’s acknowledging that, like elephants, big plans and big ideas are…well….big! They can’t be accomplished in one night.
Looking at the big end goal of what you want to achieve when you’re stood at the starting line can be too overwhelming, and can lead you to not getting out of the starting blocks at all.
The key is to be consistent, and couple this with breaking down your goal into manageable bite-size chunks. Then once you’ve done this you can start cracking on with it, bit by bit, little by little.
Here are some examples:
- It can start with a timetable of how you’re going to manage your time.
- It can start with writing just one paragraph of a chapter.
- It can start with brainstorming your ideas.
- It can start with making a decision to reach out and make contact with someone that will kick-start your networking circle.
- It can start with heading to the local library to find a relevant book to do some research.
- It can start with heading to a busy park to just sit and get some inspiration.
Ultimately, it can start any time and any place you want it to happen. Focus on breaking it down, and reminding yourself;
Little by little
Bit by bit.
After a while you’ll be able to step back and see how the whole ‘big elephant picture’ is coming together.
So don’t think too much.
Ps: On a separate elephant themed note – how do you fit an elephant into a fridge?
*UDPATE* I am now a fully certified Business & Personal Coach. If you would like information on services that I offer and pricings, please do go to my Coaching Services page or email me via my Contact page.