So you've committed to your big fat crazy, fuzzy, lovable, gigantic dream.
Wow. If you're dream was alive make sure you invite me over to meet it!
But I digress.
You've committed to your dream and now it's time to start taking steps to seeing that dream become a reality.
I've been thinking a lot about next steps and how do you figure out what those next steps should be when you're going after that oh so lovable dream of yours.
So here I share three things that you can do if you're in that position.
1. Write it down.
I KNOW that you've heard this a trillion times before. But it's funny how few people actually do this. There is so much research out there on how this helps goals actually HAPPEN and yet there are no gel pens moving on sheets of paper!
It's almost like people who are in the hospital with COPD and still take smoking breaks.
But I digress again.
Write that idea down. Make it big and beautiful and don't you dare hold back.
Now that you've got that off your chest I want you to think about your dream and then focus in on the part of your dream that takes up most of your time when you are trying to figure out next steps. For example, what if you want to start a teen movie night at your church. It's a big beautiful idea but you don't know where to start yet you find your mind drifting towards all the amazing types of movies that you want to show (for free of course) at the movie night. But instead you keep trying to focus on other boring details first.
Well sometimes it's a clue that this particular piece of the puzzle is attracting your brain cells! Stop fighting it and take a few moments to write down a list of films you want to show.
Next think about the resources and networks that you have in front of you. Maybe there is someone that has a great movie collection and will let you borrow their films for the cause. Maybe you know someone who has had experience with starting the same thing you've been wanting to start.
Sometimes it's a good idea to give some attention to that thing that's been attracting your brains cells and break it down so you can move on to the next thing on your list.
2. Find out what is the next clear thing.
I used to be the first person to jump up and try to do EVERYTHING at once for my big cuddly, fuzzy idea. But it would just get so overwhelming to me. As I've gotten older I've developed this visualization that I do to find out what is the next thing I can do.
Some might call it reaching for the lowest hanging fruit.
I like to think of my goals as a map and I'm moving a magnifying glass over that map and whatever part of the map comes out clearest to me is where I jump to. Because in my visualization I have the power to space jump.
Anywho, instead of trying to orchestrate the whole puzzle I just do the next clearest thing. Kind of like when you enter a grocery store and you take that first step and the doors open for you. Then you take another step and you can see all the produce clearly. Then you take another step and you can see the coffee and so on.
Life is like a grocery store. You gotta get past the glass doors to see the fruit.
What is the next clearest, simplest thing that you can do for your goal? If it's get into shape - maybe starting with drinking more water is the easiest thing to do. If it's starting a business maybe it's about researching your target audience.
Take the next clearest step you can take.
3. Go to sleep.
No really. Go take a nap.
In the process of creativity it's important to take some time away from your project. Whether it's a shower or a walk, or even a nap you need to give your conscious mind a break!
Psychologists talk about this phase as illumination where the unconscious mind can make novel connections related to your project. By doing something like walking or taking a shower you're giving your mind a chance to daydream and wonder allowing your subconscious mind to go to town solving problems.
So don't be afraid to take a break and come back with a fresh new perspective after your subconscious mind had a go at it.
For more information on the creative process read: