The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.
Do you have a someday list?
If not, you should.
I write a lot about productivity, and one of the most basic tenets of any sound productivity system is getting things out of your head and down on paper. Or your computer, whatever.
And frequently, there will be things you think about doing, just not today. That is the purpose of the someday list. It’s great for things like clean out the garage or start an alpaca farm.
What it’s not good for is anything that begins with, Someday, I would like to…”
Someday I would like to learn Spanish.
Someday, I would like to play the guitar.
Someday, I would like to… whatever.
That’s not a someday thing. That’s a today thing.
That’s a right now thing.
Do you have anything like that on your someday list? Then here’s what I want you to do. First, finish reading this article. That may not be important to you, but it’s important to me, so thank you for that.
Then, take that thing off of your someday list and put it on today. Give it a high priority. Make it a recurring task that repeats daily.
Now, you have begun.
Next, you need to make a plan. What is that first step? Download or subscribe to a language learning app. Research buying a guitar. Define that first step.
Then do it today.
You don’t need to know the rest of the plan yet; you just need that first step.
Once you have completed that first step, then make a plan.
If you have read many of my productivity articles, you will realize this is backward from most things I have said. The reason is simple. That someday thing you’ve always wanted to do has been put off long enough. Making a plan is just one more delaying tactic. You can research and plan forever and not actually start doing anything.
So don’t do that. Do this.
Take that first step. Today. Right now. (Well, after you finish reading this article, let’s not forget that.)
Then, decide the next step and put it down for tomorrow.
Now, make that plan. Spend some time researching how to do the thing you want to do and create short, mid-, and long-term goals. Write those down. Incorporate them into your plan. When you finish this part, you should have, at a minimum, your daily tasks for the next week. You should also have your monthly goals for the next six months.
That’s right, six months. This is a long game. This may very well be a lifelong game. Remember, this is something you have wanted to do for a while. It’s been on that someday list so long, you probably have been ignoring it.
Ignore it no longer. Trust me; you will thank me for it a year from now.
I’ve mentioned that we moved into a new community about five years ago. Like most people, we established new routines, patterns, and habits. At least until Covid knocked our wheels out of alignment. But on Sunday, we went to a local restaurant for a late breakfast or early lunch and then went to Walmart. Don’t judge.
Like most Walmarts, this one has a row of leased space at the front where other vendors take advantage of the highly discriminating consumers that flock to their stores. And tucked in between an eyeglass store and a nail salon was a music store. Hanging from the walls of that store were guitars. Lots of guitars. And I wanted one.
But I didn’t get one then. Every week, I walked past that store and thought, someday. But we all know when someday comes, and one day, the store was gone. But I still thought, someday.
Someday finally rolled around six months ago. I have enjoyed practicing every day, but one thought is always at the back of my mind. I could have five years of experience right now instead of six months. I would probably still suck, but I would suck less. The road ahead would be just as long, but the road behind would be much longer.
So, don’t do what I did. Take that thing off your someday list and put it on your today list.
Whatever it is, start today.