Try Something New

“Going in not knowing what you’re doing and it changes your life.”

I heard someone say this statement a few days ago and it caught me so off guard I had to write it down.  

It’s easy for me to believe that when people step out to make a change, or start something new, that they know exactly what they’re doing and exactly how to get where they’re going.  They look so confident and focused, never terrified and confused like me.  

This statement argues something different.

Sure - there are plenty of people who have a thought out, well organized plan of exactly what their new step will look like.  I’ve had those plans before, especially when searching for jobs as a news reporter.  Without knowing what you’re doing, you’ll probably fail.

But what about the moves that don’t come with guidebooks?  The decisions that leave the mentors behind.  The life changes that are left squarely on your shoulders and no matter how hard you look, you can’t manage to find a safety net.

Faith.  Courage.  Hope.  Maybe Love.  They all say, "You make that step anyway."

Fear.  Doubt.  Anxiety.  Maybe Anger.  They all say “You don’t know what you’re doing,” while demanding to know who you think you are jumping into something you’re so underqualified for in the first place.

By then, hopefully it’s too late.  You’ve already stepped out.  So just breathe.

One of my favorite quotes from Douglas Adams.

One of my favorite quotes from Douglas Adams.

Most people didn’t know what they were doing the first time they tried something new either.  

Yes, it’s easier to always walk where our path is clear before us, each detail filling us with confidence and satisfaction.  But we know what’s coming.  We know what’s around each corner so there’s little opportunity left for the change to change us.

But when you go in not knowing, filled with terror that someone will wake up and realize you have absolutely no idea…there’s an amazing space for the change, to change your life.  And not just your circumstances, but maybe even change who you are.

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