Begin Where You Are

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“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” – Arthur Ashe

Are any of these sentiments yours? “I have so many things I want to do, so many plans I haven’t carried out, so many changes I need to make. I have ideas for personal projects, family projects, home projects, work projects, community projects… I have no idea where or how to start.” If your answer is “yes”, then welcome to life. There will always be something we want to do or become, and there will never be enough time to get it all done – if you try to do it all at once, or if you wait for everything to be perfectly aligned in order to begin.

The truth is, if you want to see it, that there is always something you can do right now. So why aren’t you doing it?

  • Is it possible that you are afraid to fail and so would rather not start?
  • Perhaps you haven’t prioritized your list yet and feel overwhelmed as a result.
  • Maybe you are low on resources and that feeling of defeat has crept in.
  • Probably you have convinced yourself that it’s selfish to be taking the time to do something that you want to do when your family members and friends have pressing needs.

I have news for you, whatever your obstacle is.

  • You won’t fail if you don’t try – true. You won’t be happy either – fact.
  • When you figure out what is most important to you and decide to focus on that thing you will no longer feel overwhelmed. Warning: you may even feel exhilarated.
  • No matter how broke you are you can do something. You can begin to research and make plans for the day when you are a bit more flush. The funny thing is that usually as you begin to gather information and find inspiration, you often realize that there’s more you can do now after all.
  • Your family members and friends are important. Yes. But there’s more to the story. You are important. Period. What you want is important. Find the balance, and find it fast. Otherwise, you may find resentment creeping in, or you may begin to lose yourself.

Your dreams and desires are yours to realize. They don’t belong to anyone else, and no one can make them happen for you in a way that will satisfy you. They are not dependent on whether someone else is also doing the same thing, or has more than you do, or has a natural talent you wish you had. They are yours, and as you begin to fulfill them others will be benefitted.  The excuses end here – if you want it, start working in that direction, no matter how small a step you first take. Not every thought you have is true. Question your thoughts, “Is it really true that there is NOTHING I can do now?” Dare to answer honestly.

Don’t worry about where you thought you’d be by now, or what you thought you’d be doing. The only place you can start from is your current position. The only things you can use are the resources – including your skills and talents – you have. Do what you can with what you have. Begin right now.

 

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