The Importance of Taking the First Step

personal growth productivity progress success Jun 12, 2023

It is often said that a journey of a thousand miles starts with the first step. Taking that first step can be difficult, but our success is nearly guaranteed when we muster the courage and determination to make it. Being courageous enough to take the first step, no matter how intimidating it might seem, can give us a sense of accomplishment and help us realize our dreams and ambitions.

Moving forward is easier once you have taken the first step.

When you try riding a bicycle, it can get challenging to move during the initial moments of sitting on it, pedaling, and maintaining your balance as you try moving forward. It can get wobbly, and you may fall several times, especially if you are trying to learn how to ride a bicycle for the first time. However, things can get easier once you keep the wheels moving, steady your grip on the handles, and maintain your sitting posture as you move the bicycle more straightforwardly. All these become possible if one takes the courage to ride the bike and do the first steps of trying to be steady while making the initial pedaling steps.

Trying to achieve a goal or dream, especially long-term or significant, can be compared to riding a bicycle. For a first-timer trying to learn how to ride a bike, it can be daunting to maintain your balance while riding the bike and moving it. Nothing will happen unless one tries to pedal and keep the bicycle moving, making it easier to maintain balance once the momentum kicks in. The same thing goes for our goals and whatever endeavor we are trying to pursue. Planning and envisioning a result we want to achieve is easier, but it gets challenging when doing the work needed to get what we want. We can get overwhelmed by thinking about the future and the grand scope of things we may need to do. However, we don't need to fear what's coming ahead of us as everything starts with the first small step you need to make to get everything going. We can get lazy and procrastinate, but once the first step is made, it can be easier to progress and move forward with your work. So how important is the first step to your goals or whatever endeavor you pursue?

1. Everything will stay as an idea unless you start working

Thinking about ideas, making plans, and seeing a bright outcome with our goals and dreams can get pretty exciting. It can also be nice to see a better life after you overcome something that is keeping you down or a problem. Getting fixated on the promising future is easy, but we won't get there unless we take one step toward becoming successful. The first step is often the most challenging, and we may be afraid to take it due to fear of failure, feeling lazy, or getting overwhelmed by what is to come next. However, unless we do the initial step, every excellent idea and result we may be thinking of will stay in the realm of imagination unless we do something to make them a reality. The first step is what can kick things off, and we must learn to make the effort and time to do it.

2. We can only learn if things will work or not once we do something

One thing that can keep us from taking the first step is the fear of failure. When it's our first time doing something, we should expect that not everything will go smoothly the first time as we are still learning the ropes. It's normal to fail during our first attempts, but we can succeed sometimes. As we keep doing something, we can improve our craft, and achieving success will become easier. However, for this to happen, we must not be afraid to make mistakes, and we can only learn if our ideas and theories are correct if we take the plunge and make the first move. It is only by doing things that we can know if something will work or not.

3. The first step acts as a foundation for momentum and motivates us to do more

Even if your first try on something is a failure, the important thing is that you have achieved something. Failure is still an experience and a learning opportunity to do right and better next time. Nothing will happen if nothing gets done. Things won't suddenly come to you without doing anything. We must get out in the world and do something to progress and move in the right direction. It feels even better once we make the first move, and it succeeds. We can feel more motivated to do the following steps until we finish. Even if the succeeding steps are more challenging and we fail, the fact that we accomplished some steps before can motivate us to continue, and it will be a waste if our initial efforts went for nothing.

How to make doing the first step easier

So we now know that making the first step is the answer to becoming successful at anything. However, sometimes, fear, laziness, and procrastination can still get the best of us and serve as obstacles to becoming productive. Thankfully, there are some ways to make it easier to do that first action necessary for accomplishing anything.

  • Big goals, projects, dreams, or anything that seems massive in scale can be overwhelming and freeze us from taking action. While it is essential to look at the bigger picture to know what you are trying to accomplish and get out of it, when it comes to actions, it's better to narrow down our view and think about the more minor things first. Try to break down a massive or long-term goal or project into the most minor task you can accomplish within the first five minutes or hour of a day. The goal is to make it easy for you to achieve something so you can get the ball rolling and work on more important things later.
  • Remove the idea of perfection in your mind while you are still in the early stages of working on something. You are more likely to experience failures while trying out things, and you should use this part of your work as a learning experience. It is essential to make progress first, as perfection is more suited once you are in the final phases of your work and trying to refine things once everything has been accomplished for higher standards or challenging yourself.
  • It helps to have good motivators to get yourself pumping and do something about what you want to achieve. Think about what beautiful things you can get by starting work on something and using them as a reason to propel yourself forward. Motivators can be anything, such as monetary rewards, material possessions, recognition, or simply attaining fulfillment and happiness from achieving something. Knowing why you must do something will keep things in perspective and give you a reason to act on your goals.
  • If all else fails and you can't do anything to get yourself working, having someone else work with you while trying to accomplish something can help you get things done. The presence of another person can make them an accountability partner that will check on you if you are slacking and motivate you to get in line, perhaps because this other person has the same goal as you, is concerned for your well-being, or they are someone who has been through with what you are trying to do now. An accountability partner can be a friend, coworker, coach, or anybody that will be happy to see you succeed.

Accomplishing things may not be easy, and things can get harder the more you work on something. However, nothing can be more challenging than making the first move on any endeavor, and unless we make this step, we won't make any progress. Everything has a beginning, and great things will only become a reality if we decide to act and make the first step, no matter how bumpy or uncertain our initial moves are. Once we accomplish something, no matter how small, it can become easier to progress and get motivated until we finish what we have started.

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