Start to stop doing what you know to be wrong. Start stopping today. Don't waste time questioning how you know that what you're doing is wrong, if you are certain that it is. Inopportune questioning can confuse, without enlightening, as well as deflecting you from action. You can know that something is wrong or right without knowing why. Your entire Being can tell you something that you can neither explain nor articulate. Every person is too complex to know themselves completely, and we all contain wisdom that we cannot comprehend.
– Jordan Peterson
Simple, powerful advice. I am one of those people who spend a bit too much time questioning and analysing and listening to chatter in my head. Sure, there are complex things that do require more thought. But starting with simple stuff that we know to be wrong does not require any thought.
For example, opening or switching to another browser tab as I write this post is wrong. I don't need to do any more research - opening a tab is just procrastination. I certainly do not need to open Reddit and waste time, allowing my brain to percolate (a glorified way of saying I waste time uselessly.)
There are tons of small things like this where I can start.
Most times, my gut tells me things that my brain does not understand. It takes months, if not years. While I cannot jump blindly with my gut in many instances, learning to pay a lot more attention to it than my thought process (which always over-complicates things) has been a huge learning for me over the years.
You have a mind?
Well, why not use it? Isn't that all you want - for it to do its job?
– Marcus Aurelius
This is one of the most recommended books out there, and it is easy to see why. The honesty, the earnestness, the humility with which Marcus Aurelius writes is mind-blowing. This guy was the emperor of the Roman empire and his journal reveals his inner struggles and thought processes.
The amateur believes that, before she can act, she must receive permission from some Omnipotent Other - a lover or spouse, a parent, a boss, a figure of authority.
– Steven Pressfield
Following on the first quote, over-thinking and waiting for a sign before doing something, or having a larger goal to do something is nonsense. I wasted years before re-starting writing on my blog because I was not sure what I wanted to write about, who I wanted to write for, or what goals (how many people to reach) I should set.
Finally, one fine day, I just started writing. I still do not have answers to most of those questions. But come Mon/Wed/Sunday, I write a post. One small step towards something.
What are you waiting for?
Thanks for reading.