“It’s not always about knowing why; sometimes, it’s all about knowing what and that’s enough to keep you walking, every day.” — ‘Walking Shoes’ by Mali Music
The first step is never easy by any stretch of the imagination. We’d rather dip our toe into the pool before taking the plunge and jumping right in. Go on a sabbatical to “find myself” instead of turning in a resignation letter in case there’s no self to be found. Babysit a few weekends a year or buy a pet to see if we have parental skills before starting a family. Help a friend or associate build their business because it’s safer than starting and building our own. Move in together before marriage or even engagement just in case we realize we’re with the wrong right.
Testing the waters first before fully committing to anything feels better than going all in and it not being the right decision.
Who says it has to be that way? The story of Peter in the Bible is often referenced when discussing taking the leap of faith: “Peter had to get out of the boat before he could walk on water.”And that’s just it; we have to take that first step in order for the next step to follow.
If you never take a step forward, you remain right where you are and that’s not always the right place.
This is not the time to be stagnant, to be fearful. To remain in the same place you were in last month or last year. You want to do something, build something, go someplace. In order to do any of that, You. Have. To. Take. The. First. Step. You have to trust it, believe in it. Give it all you’ve got. The first step pulls the anchor up. It tells doubt and fear that you’re serious and that it can go ahead and release its position.
Back to the lyrics to ‘Walking Shoes‘ at the beginning of this post: “It’s not always about knowing why; sometimes, it’s all about knowing what and that’s enough to keep you walking, every day.” We don’t always have to know why we need to take a step: why we need to end a relationship; why we need to resign from a position; why we need to enroll in a class or school; why now. Sometimes, all we know is that we need to take a step, we need to do something different, experience something different and just go for it. It wasn’t easy for me to start college a couple of weeks before my 36th birthday, but I haven’t looked back since the day I registered for my first class. All I knew was if I took that first step, the rest would follow. That step would lead me to the next and the next after that; it would be my guide, and has not failed me one bit.
Trust that first step because it always leads in the right direction.
When you know what you want to do, the how works itself out. Don’t sabotage or delay your first step trying to have it all figured out. You never will. And, if by chance you have superpowers and do have it all figured out, it won’t necessarily go as planned. Your what and your why evolves as you continue walking. You will make new decisions. You will take more first steps. Your distance will increase because you have the confidence of past steps.
Your first step will not be your last.