Start Today

Photo credit: web4camguy via Foter.com / CC BY-SA

John Maxwell recently posted a fantastic short piece on LinkedIn about how starting is the great separator.  This quote really got me thinking:

“Successful people don’t wait for everything to be perfect to move forward.”

Why aren’t we making a change today toward greater success in work and life?

  • As much as I know I have what it takes to start my own business, it’s not the right time to take a financial risk. I have two kids in college, after all.
  • There’s an opening on the management team and I know I could really make a difference, but I don’t agree with the current strategic direction of leadership.  I’ll go for that promotion as soon as the current CEO retires.
  • I am a new parent of twins, and I want better work-life balance, but I’m afraid to appear less than committed to my career. I’ll just suck it up and keep working extra hours until the big project is over next year.
  • I want to focus on my health and quality of life, but my job is pretty demanding. In two years, I’ll be able to retire, so then I’ll make it my priority.

Success is never guaranteed, even if we wait until the stars are aligned to make our moves.

Imagine if we just focus on starting:

  • I’ll start by networking and building my brand, and even moonlighting on the side if my current company allows it. That way I don’t have to give up financial security while I begin to build my business and explore how I’d like my future to look.
  • A mentor in leadership in another area of the company will help me learn more about the basis for the company’s strategic direction, and I can seek feedback on my ideas while building an internal network that can support me in my career aspirations.
  • I’m going to focus on networking to begin to identify a new position that better fits my long-term work-life balance goals. I’m great at what I do, and I know there is a job out there with a team that offers the right blend of flexibility and challenge.
  • I’m going to look at what wellness programs my employer offers and schedule time in my day to make myself a priority before I focus on work. If I truly feel like I can’t make it fit, I’ll consider talking to my manager about a phased retirement that lets me have more flexibility in my exit plan.

First steps. That’s all we need to focus on. In Maxwell’s piece, he likens it to holding a lantern in the dark, and all we need to see is our next step. We don’t need to see the entire path from the beginning. Let’s get out our lanterns and get started!


Photo credit: timetoewill via Foter.com

 

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