Is it time to pick a runway?
About this time 6 years ago I started working with a coach (Lee Jones for those of you in the London, Ontario area, look her up, she’s awesome). I knew there was more out there in terms of a career but I only had ideas and wasn’t sure where to start.
My first task was to create a vision board of sorts (hold your eye rolls). I was to put everything I wanted to do/try on this board. Naturally I got a big piece of Bristol board. Cause I had lots of plans, ideas and to-do’s.
But I didn’t quite fill it. Going into our first meeting I was thinking I was a failure for not having enough in the board. For not filling it. For not having more ideas. When I showed it to Lee, she had the opposite reaction.
She gave the best analogy for my situation. I was like a plan circling the runway, not knowing what runway to pick. At which point I laughed, partially because it was true, partially because I was nervous (because I knew what was coming next) and mostly because it feels good to laugh at ourselves (at least it feels good to me).
So often we have ideas and they stay on lists, in our notebooks or minds as “what could be” and “what if”. Chances are you’ve experienced the restlessness, sometimes irritability and frustration that happens when we never do anything with the ideas and simultaneously wonder why nothing in our life “changes”.
I get it. Ideas are cute, fun, and sexy when they’re in our notebooks and minds. They’re perfect and don’t involve breaking a sweat. But if you really want to experience the “what could be” and “what if” you need to pick a runway.
But don’t worry. It won’t be the only time you pick a runway. You’ll get to keep picking them over and over again. And they don’t have to big life altering decisions, either. They can be experiments that take a day or a week, that give you a feeling for what it’s like. Not just what you think it will be like. But actually doing it.
If you want to write a book. Interview some writers. Write a short story. Heck start with writing a one paragraph story. If you want to host a retreat, start with planning a 1 hour workshop, or doing a live video. Get a feel for what the process is like before going all in.
I don’t say that last point because I don’t believe in you. I say it because sometimes we like the idea of doing something..but when it comes down to it we don’t actually enjoy doing it. I’ve liked the idea of many things - personal training, therapeutic recreation, coaching. And not to be all cliche and all, but we don’t know until we try. So instead of spending months and years waiting, wishing, wondering. Experiment instead. It’s the only way to really know.