The myths of taking action
“You must have confidence before you take action.”
Much of your confidence builds after you start taking action, not before it. I have read and heard others say that you must have a massive amount of confidence before taking that first step and that is simply not true. I remember the first time I went into the lake and had my first swim lesson there. Now, I had on a full wetsuit, providing me with the buoyancy to stay afloat. Consciously, I knew this, but subconsciously, the panic alarms went off, overwhelming me with fear. Was I confident that day in the lake? Hellno! But the most important thing was taking action. Even though I only swam 100 yards before returning to shore, I still swam 100 yards. Is that as much as when I would swim 2000 yards plus in the pool? Not at all. The size of the actions didn’t matter. What mattered is taking the action. It was small yet powerful because I built the confidence each time I got back into the lake to practice. Remember,you may be scared out of your wits taking action but understand that your actions, no matter how small, compound upon one another, allowing you to build your confidence over time.
“You have to fake it until you make it”
I am all about having congruency between the internal person that you believe you are and the external person that you wish to be seen as. I Have never liked the negative connotation of “fake it until you make it”because there are people who “fake” it and that is a good thing.
Let me explain.
During my years as a physician, speaking to others was natural to me because I would speak to hundreds of patients, month after month in the office and in the hospital. However, as I began my transition to entrepreneurship, I migrated to speaking to larger and larger groups. It was challenging for me at first, being looked at by many more people, but as time went on, I became more comfortable with it. Did I “fake” being confident with public speaking? Yes, because I needed to present a position of authority and confidence. It’s challenging to change people’s lives if they see and feel that you’re not confident in yourself. So yes, initially my public speaking may not have had 100% genuine confidence at the time. The more important thing is that I took the action to overcome the challenge and move closer towards my desired outcome. The point is, don’t think of “faking it” as a negative thing,especially if you are taking action to alter your comfort loop.
“Opportunity only comes once”
Some feel that when opportunity knocks on their door, they just drop everything and act right then. Again, a misconception put forth by people who lack vision. Opportunity is around you and knocks, sometimes bangs,on your door multiple times. The question is this: are you paying attention to the knocking? Those who say opportunity only knocks once only can see an outcome for their lives in one way and hastily jump in when they see it. It’s great they act but if you don’t have a plan and an outcome, it’s a recipe for disaster. Keeping your mind open to the possibilities, having that positive attitude regarding your actions and outcomes, you will begin to realize that opportunity is all around you and you just need to decide how that action affects your current comfort loop and how it can potentially change it for the better.
So, don’t fret when you miss an opportunity. Opportunities will come, so just look for the signs of them. Remember, action doesn’t have to be massive and instantaneous because even the smaller opportunities and actions will serve you just as well.
Until next time, take care and be well!
Terence Young, MD
a.k.a. The Doctorpreneur
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