There's one theme or phrase which has come up in so many conversations over the past week or so:
The conversations have all had different themes and the phrase was being applied to different things, but the idea of starting has appeared over and over again.
I've always been a strange mixture of very organised and a master procrastinator, which is a state quite a lot of people find themselves in. I think I always had the subconscious idea that if I didn't start something, I couldn't struggle or fail, so it was probably best not to start.
Recently, I've realised that starting things makes me feel so much better.
Instead of just adding thing after thing to my list, I've been trying to start straight away. Whether that's sending a message, opening up the word document or properly reading a brief and jotting down my initial ideas, it's been a game-changer.
When you just keep adding to your mental to-do list, it's so easy to get overwhelmed. I used to pretend to myself that writing them down on a physical list would empty my head and allow me to carry on with my day.
Actually, a huge list of tasks is daunting whether mental or physical, and the only way to solve that is getting some ticks on the list.
The other thing that can happen when you just add things to the list is that the idea of a task can be so much more daunting than the task itself. In the last month, I've had two big projects I was building up, and once I actually took the plunge to open the documents and get started they were nowhere near as intimidating as I had decided they would be.
This all applies to good old 'new year's resolutions', too.
I'm all for people making a fresh start, and if you want to use Monday 1st January 2018 (it's so satisfying that it's a Monday!) to make some changes then you go for it... but why not start now? If you start now, you're already a couple of weeks into your new habit before January hits.
I was speaking to a friend recently who confessed she's spent the last few months telling herself 'I'll start that in January' about so many things that now January seems a bit scary! We end up setting ourselves unrealistic goals and spending time talking ourselves out of our plans, or thinking of excuses not to follow through.
I've felt a huge shift in terms of my head space since trying to adopt more of a 'start now' mentality. Even if that start is simply reading the brief properly and writing the title, I'm them so much more likely to continue and I'm moving forward with a more realistic idea in my head of what the task involves.
So here lies one of my resolutions, which I've started early: