‘A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step’ Lao Tzu
I want to write a novel – it’s a daunting task. I need about a hundred thousand words. If I sit down and work out
how long it will take me if I write 500 words, 5 days a week, I will be totally fazed and consider it impossible. So,
what do I do? I write the first word and then the next. Well – that’s the theory!
Don’t get me wrong, there’s a plan. I more or less know where I am going but I can’t get there unless I begin with
that first word. Knowing where I’m going helps but I won’t get there unless I make a start.
That first step is so hard though, isn’t it?
What if I fail and never actually finish it?
What if no one reads my novel?
What if its not the great ‘book club book’ that I am aiming for?
All those thoughts go through my head. All the self-doubt and lack of confidence just isn’t helping at all. But it can
be so paralysing that I am not sure I will even start to write.
I turn to the words of Lao Tzu ( a Chinese philosopher) – he tells us that ‘A journey of a thousand miles must begin
with a single step’ and I suppose that that is blindingly obvious – we must all start somewhere – whatever we are
doing. But once again our limiting beliefs are at risk of overwhelming us. It’s that little voice that says, ‘you won’t
win that competition – don’t even bother entering’. The voice that says – ‘you’ll never be able to run a marathon –
its not even worth doing the training’.
If we listen to that voice we will never get any where and never do anything. I can tell you one thing for sure – there
is absolutely NO chance of you winning that competition unless you enter and you will definitely not run a
marathon if you don’t make a start by learning to run. All too often we allow that voice to be too loud – to tell us
what we can’t do. It’s time to take that first step – only then does the journey really begin – until then it is just an idle
dream – it’s an ‘if only’. I’m determined not to look back on my life and think ‘if only I had ……..’ and I will only
prevent that by taking that first step.
So I am clutching my pen, I am tapping my keyboard and I am writing my novel. You may never see it listed in the
best sellers list – but on the other hand you just might – and the only way that it’s going to get there is if I write it.
What first step do you need to make? And what is stopping you? The training for the marathon will come easy once
that nagging, negative voice has been quietened.
If you need help to make that first step – contact an NLP coach – the words will flow, the miles will speed past and
your energy will be put into what you can do without the worry of what might not work out.