Just so we’re clear: this is not a post about shoes or advertising. Seriously. Although, let me just say for the record, that I continue to be surprised by the outrage and wish people would find a more productive outlet for it. If people were as passionate in real life about supporting veterans and ending racism as they pretend to be online, we’d live in a much better place.
But seriously, that’s not what this post is about. This post is about me. What? It’s my blog. I can do that.
I tend to be a pretty big-picture type of person. I have to think through all the things before I get started with something. It can actually be a bit of a detriment, honestly. I generally don’t even start cleaning my house until I’ve made a checklist of everything I need to do and then I check off items as I go. I know this is…how you say…crazy? But those little check marks make me so happy! Even though it’s almost exactly the same every week.
I’m the same with everything new I want to try. I often spend so much time researching and planning and over thinking that I never get around to actually doing anything.
It reminds me of the Jim Gaffigan joke, “You ever have so much to do you just decide to take a nap?” I mean, if that’s not the gospel truth. Analysis paralysis is no joke, though.
This weekend I was having a conversation with my husband about all my long-term hopes and dreams. I was telling him (for the hundredth time) about all my grand ideas for the things I’m going to write–a couple books, a children’s book series, a Broadway musical, you know, the norm… but how I was struggling because I get overwhelmed by all the details and can’t seem to focus my energy on where to start.
I said, “I don’t even know the first thing about getting a book published. And who would I get to illustrate this one? And what if no one reads it? And how do I differentiate my voice from the thousands of other authors? What even makes me think people care what I have to say? And how do I market myself? Maybe I should take a class. Did you know most publishers won’t even consider publishing you unless you have 10,000 followers on some social media platform?! That’s so intimidating! But I don’t want to be the person who just keeps talking about my ideas and dreams and never actually follows through on them!” (Just imagine my voice getting faster and higher pitched with every sentence to really get the full picture.)
And you know what my brilliant husband said in reply?
“You know, I think maybe you should start by just writing the book.”
Boom. There it is. Just write the damn book, Hayley. JUST DO IT.
Stop planning and re-planning. Stop over thinking it. Stop worrying about the million reasons you aren’t ready or prepared or qualified. Stop putting the cart before the horse. Write the book and go from there.
“But Jen Hatmaker did this. And Rachel Hollis did this. And Melanie Shankle did this.”
Husband: As Theodore Roosevelt said, “Comparison is the thief of joy.”
Ugh. So logical, that one. And SO RIGHT.
So, I’m writing this today to tell you that I’m getting started. I’m going to write the book.
And if you’re anything like me, with a tendency to procrastinate or over think before you get started on something, I hope today’s the day you decide to go for it, too. Make it happen. Just do it.
Because honestly, the time will pass, anyway. Might as well make our dreams come true as it does!