Newsletter: What’s Your First Step?

just take the first step

How can time fly and stand still at the same time? I’ve been asking myself that question as a I contemplate the start of fall and the coming sprint to year end. I’m noticing that while we are more productive than ever, some projects are languishing, including a big one on my plate. Earlier this week I had a breakthrough that may be helpful if you too are feeling some malaise or guilt about not getting something done.

In February I volunteered to put together a plan for targeting a new client base. Since then, literally nothing has happened except the development of some creative explanations for my lack of progress (you’d be impressed). Yesterday, I admitted this failure to my colleague and then we had a short brainstorming session about what needed to happen. Importantly, we agreed upfront not to worry about the who or how of any of the tasks. We just data dumped into a list, which got these ideas and the shame associated with not having pursued them off my mind.

Then, we looked at the long, intimidating task list and suppressed our planning instincts. Instead of putting structure around how to tackle everything, we agreed on only the initial thing that needed to happen and by when. Guess what? That item will require only about 15-20 minutes of my time. Once it’s done, we’ll do the next first step.

Is there something weighing on you: a big project, a big personal decision, a big career move? Learn from my mistake. Don’t worry about the whole staircase; just take the first step.


Precious Williams Owodunni | CEO & Founder of Mountaintop Consulting

This letter was originally published in Mountaintop Consulting’s monthly newsletter. You can read the full newsletter here.

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