How to Overcome Fear, Part 4

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Welcome back!

Let me ask you something…

Let’s say you need to find an address for a place in your city that you’ve never visited before. And let’s further suppose that you’ve never even heard of the street you need to get to.

So here’s the question: Would you just jump in the car and start driving around aimlessly until you eventually found the street?

Of course not! Instead, you’d look on a map, ask for directions from someone who knows, plug the address into your GPS device, or maybe you’d use MapQuest. Point is, you’d get directions – a “road map” – before you started on your journey.

You need the same thing before you set off on the journey of achieving your goal. That is, you need to draw up a “road map” – a plan – that will get you from where you are today to where you want to be.

For example, if you want a big publishing house to publish your book, here are the main steps you’ll need to complete:

  1. Write the book.
  2. Find an agent.
  3. Get offered a deal.
  4. Negotiate and accept the contract.

Within each of those main steps are dozens of smaller steps. For example, “write the book” may include smaller steps such as:

  1. Do research on the topic.
  2. Outline the book.
  3. Write the book.
  4. Rewrite weak sections.
  5. Proofread and final polish.

And within each of those sub-steps are even smaller steps. For example, Step B (outline the book) includes:

  • Outline the introduction.
  • Outline Chapter 1.
  • Outline Chapter 2

… and so on.

The reason I point this out is twofold. First, your plan should be as detailed as possible. If you don’t know how to do a step, then ask someone who knows or do some research. But your plan needs to be complete.

Secondly, it’s a good idea to break your major steps down into smaller steps. That’s because these smaller steps are the things that are going to end up on your daily “to do” lists.

Let me explain…

Let’s say you want to set up a website. If you write “set up a website” on your to do list, that’s going to seem awfully overwhelming. And it will likely take you several weeks to complete this step, so you’re not going to feel like you’re making much progress on a daily basis.

Instead, you need to break this down into smaller, more manageable steps. These steps might include:

  • Purchase a domain name.
  • Buy web hosting.
  • Change the domain name servers to point to the web host

And so on.

You can see that some of these items only take a minute or two. And that’s good! That’s because crossing these small tasks off of your to-do list as you accomplish them makes you feel productive. It keeps you moving forward because you’ll feel the momentum.

Now what I want you to do today is create as detailed of “road map” to your goal as possible. Next time you’ll find out how to organize these tasks and use them to create your to do lists.

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