I spent last weekend at Chris Guillebeau’s World Domination Summit Event in Portland, OR and it was, as always, absolutely amazing. What I love about attending events with multiple speakers is that we all receive the individual messages we need to hear through ideas interwoven into each talk. Our minds are amazing that way, so even though each talk is unique, we hear what we so need to hear in the moment while someone else hears something totally different.
There were two things that came up for me repeatedly… things “I already knew”. While I’m not generally one who goes into experiences thinking I know everything and there’s nothing I can learn, I was very surprised to get these messages over and over because I’d been reminding my clients and members about one for the last three months repeatedly.
The first thing I was hearing repeatedly was to just start, and continue taking imperfect action.
This is something I feel really awesome at, and is definitely something I’ve been doing for some time now. I started this business before I knew what kind of business it was going to be by throwing up a website and starting to blog. I put Your Passion-Based Business on my Mastery sales page with a general idea, but no real plan of what I would deliver in the program until I had to get started. I pushed out my new website before it was done. I take imperfect action all the time, and I’m always telling my clients and members to do the same.
The second thing is that life is really, really short.
One amazing speaker named Michael Hyatt shared some startling statistics with us. Out of the 2,500+ people in the theatre that day, two of us would be dead within 30 days. He followed it up with a joke, saying “I know what you’re thinking… it’s the guy next to me.” But when I heard that number I stopped breathing. I’m a person who lives with a strong sense of urgency, and have for as long as I can remember. I have the very distinct belief that “I’m running out of time to do the work I’m here to do.” This can be stressful at times, but it’s something I’m incredibly grateful for, because I don’t take my time and life for granted. Instead, I feel the constant pull to do the work I’m here to do.
So why was I hearing these messages?
And then, like a dramatic and cliche bolt of lightening from the heavens, it hit me.
Three years ago I discovered my passion for personal responsibility and started this blog. Two years ago, I had an idea for a passion project that would teach personal responsibility to the world.
For two long years, I’ve been clear that my life’s work is to teach and inspire personal responsibility. And yet, I’ve done hardly anything around this passion project but think about starting it “soon” (though, points for me, I designed a logo at one point!). I realized I’ve been using every excuse in the book, and every excuse I’ve coached my clients around to put it off.
That’s two years I could have leaned deeper into my calling, purpose, passion project, and life’s work but haven’t. And you know what, life is really, really short and I may be one of the two people to die in the next month… do I really want to die without bringing my life’s work to the world?
So, my dear friend and I headed off to a coffee shop during Sunday’s lunch break with the intention of taking brave, bold and imperfect action towards our big scary dreams. She started writing her first book, and I threw up an imperfect website and blog post for my “For Purpose” website in just two hours. I took my own advice that I’ve been handing out for months, and the advise of the amazing speakers, and I started.
It was scary, felt oh so amazing, and is something you can do too.
How to take brave, bold and imperfect action:
1) Decide what’s really important to you right now.
If you only had 30 days to live, what would you pour your heart and soul into? What’s your passion project or life’s work that’s being neglected or pushed to the side? What’s a goal or dream you’ve deferred for far too long? Decide on one thing that’s really important to you right now… not your family or friends, or your boss or co-workers, just you.
2) Take brave, bold, and imperfect action around it. Today.
Choose one way you’ll take brave, bold, and imperfect action around this thing that’s so important to you. Do something to move it forward, no matter how small, huge, incremental, or scary. Be brave, be bold, and let go of your perfectionism. As I always say (and now always do), you just have to get started. You’ll build momentum from there, but just start. Take the first step and register the domain, call the person, write the first words, throw the first colors onto canvas… just start somewhere and build from there.
3) Create momentum by continuing to take imperfect action.
It’s not enough to start, you have to keep moving. Even if it’s something tiny every day or once a week, keep building the momentum by continuing to take imperfect action. I put up my passion project’s website yesterday and today I made some tweaks and published another blog post. Every single day I will do one thing, including post something relevant to the conversation on the blog, to build momentum and start bringing it to life. What can you do every single day? It doesn’t have to be massive, it just has to be something. Brave, bold, imperfect action.
I don’t think I have to say it, but…