What's that? I'm jumping waaaay ahead of myself? Who, me?
I have listened to the RobCast for a few years now and the host Rob Bell, who finds joy in exploring what it means to be human, has offered some of the best advice ever when it comes to getting started on a goal.
To do anything new - to do the 1 - requires tremendous mental fortitude to not think about 2 or 3 yet.
That time will come. And it is not now.
Now is the time for 1.
You start with 1. And you work on that. Just 1. And when 1 is done, you move to 2.
You break it down into the next step and only the next step -
the next sentence
the next phone call
the next meeting
the next word.
- Rob Bell, How To Be Here, p. 94
And most of the time I'd have to answer "No." Then I'd be hit with a really hard truth to swallow. I think I so often skip to step #202 or 348 because step #1 scares the daylights out of me. When I leap ahead and make excuses about my non-existent film set and the issues we are having with the catering company, I don't have to deal with what is right here in front of me--or what doesn't yet exist. What I still need to make and to do to move forward with this dream.
This summer, I've been working on taking the next step, my personal step #1 and working on a screenplay. My mind gets jittery often and wants to sprint to the finish, but the truth is that we can't get to the top of the staircase if none of the stairs are built yet. To build our dream, we must start with step #1--which Rob Bell also points out is often the most unsexy step. For me and the movie I am dreaming of bringing into the world, it's not a press release or an interview at Sundance. It's a quiet, unassuming writing session in my apartment where I will probably drink a cup of chamomile tea and squirm in my seat and try to find the magic way to shimmy up to the top of the creative ladder, a la finding a secret cotton candy staircase that launches you to the winning space on a Candyland board game. It's realizing that there are no shortcuts to being creative, just showing up as often as you can with a spirit that says "I'm here. I'm open. I'm willing to do the work and the play and fail big and surprise myself in the best of ways."
What are you dreaming of? What is your step #1? Is it something you can get started on today?