We all know that the first step is the hardest of all.
You've decided to change the one thing that you hate the most. Perhaps the feeling that you're stuck in a situation, or running in a loop of what-ifs and maybe. You want to change so much, but you don't seem to have the power to do it. Besides, there are tons of things that suddenly appear when you want to make a step toward change.
We might never know why, but it's just that obstacles come right at the time that we say we want to change. As if the universe conspires against you. Some of the obstacles are merely a splinter compared to your will. That feel that you're too tired to do it, or a feel that you'd do it in 5 minutes (only to find out you can do it in 30 more minutes. Or tomorrow). Some are more serious matters such as being too tired. Because when you do, your mind will send the signal that you're too tired. If you push it, it'll be dangerous to your body. You're ill! You're not fit enough! Whatever it is, just to stop you from change.
But is it though? Is the change is truly threatening your body, mind, and soul, or it's just a trick our mind does to prevent the change?
A creature of pattern
In order to change, we need to understand first that we are a creature of pattern, and more often than not we can not escape pattern. It's not impossible to escape a pattern, it's just that it needs a tremendous amount of effort to do so.
Our childhood, our upbringing, our growing environment, and even our genetics all count up. It all creates our perspective toward this world. Our mindset.
Our mindset, subconsciously turns into words and action, forming a habit. And after years and years of those habits, it became our character. Now that we think of it, pretty darn hard to change character right?
This is where the change needs to occur first. Not in the first step, but in our mindset. The real implementation? Exploit our reptilian brain.
The Reptilian Brain
90% of our decision-making is influenced by the Amygdala area, also known as the reptilian brain. When we are facing an unknown situation or a situation that we see as a threat, we have three automatic options: Fight, Flight, or Freeze. This is something that is automatic and has been around for ages.
To exploit it in our favor, we need to condition it so that we control the consequences of said threat. For example: should we face a dinosaur, we are presented with these options:
Facing a Dinosaur
- Fight: we die (because they're larger, meaner than us puny humans)
- Flight: They are definitely faster than us, but we might live.
- Freeze: Blank, can't process anything in our brain
It's pretty clear that most of us, faced with a dinosaur in front of us would likely flee or freeze. No brainer. Now let's change the dinosaur with our goal. Let's say that you want to do x (x being a YouTube artist, opening a bakery, or becoming full full-fledged entrepreneur). After you decide what you want to do, you usually have an immediate obstacle: You don't have the time, or you don't have the money, or both. But more often than not, this is actually not true.
"But but, I really don't have time or money. "
Well if you read this, chances are you have. You just don't want to. Why? Because you fear changes. We all fear changes. The unknown. It's so terrifying that we opt to stay where we are now (a.k.a the comfort zone). There's a reason it is called a comfort zone rather than a stagnant zone. Because it's comfy. Being in the known is comfy. We are all so much into certainty and we avoid uncertainty like a plague.
Then how do we actually do it? Let's say that we really feed up with our job and we want to build a business instead. Let's do a mockup of the worst and best that could happen
The worst to happen
Let's make this dramatic. You save up for a year to start your own business. You build the connection. You finally resigned and thought to start your own thing, and you do. Only to be faced with a harsh, unforgiving world of business. You're now broke. Now what? Well, you have two options:
- Learn from the mistake, and build even better business with all the lessons you've experienced.
- You learned that business is not for you. You wave the white flag. Soon you'll browse the job market again to work for someone else. It would be suck, but it's a world you know already.
The first output means you're one step further than where you are now (working in a job that you don't really like). You made a business for God's sake. Yes, you fail in doing so, but you can always try again. And if not, you fall to the second option.
Do note that the second option, is actually where you are now. Yeah, it is precisely where you are now, with the added badge of "built a business and die". So what do you actually lose in the process? Sure, time and money. You'd think "That's a waste of time and money, might not build the business in the first place". But if you do think of that, maybe you don't really want to build the business in the first place. It's just a dream, not a goal you want to achieve. You just want the idea of it.
The best to happen
I don't think I need to write what the best to happen could be. Because you can imagine it already. You know, the usual success and everything that it entails. Financial freedom, having your time, and becoming happier because you achieved your goal. Probably with social approval also. That's what in our mind all the time we think of those dreams that we really want to achieve.
"Okay okay I get it now, but you haven't told me the real key to the first step"
Right. The key is a bit of madness. The leap of faith. Just JUMP. I know what you think right now. That's crazy. No preparation means almost always a failure!
Perhaps. But then we live in a world where information is easily attainable. Connections can be made with a touch of a button. Resources can be gathered way faster than our previous generation. And because of that abundances, we're afraid of failure. We're afraid of being a failure in the eyes of everyone. Truth is, nobody cares. Seriously. The moment people flocked to read this article and critique everything in this article, is the moment that I already made it and published this article. That means success!
I want to say the first step is courage, but then upon thinking of it, we could do better than that. The first step is the leap of faith, a dash of madness.
Did I convince you to move? To make the first step? Did I at least make you think? If yes, congratulate yourself. Pat yourself on the back, put on some music, and enjoy that feeling. Here, let me help you set the vibe so you can just click on it.
Now that you're charged, once you have the courage to start going to whatever your goal is, jump on to the next stage: the path.