We have all been there. We have found the initiative and motivation to begin something. We are excited; we have energy. Then we lose that momentum. What then?
I once heard Rick Hall, father of Muscle Shoals music, talk about a time when his professional life as a producer and studio owner had come to halt. I wish I remembered the details of this story, but I do not. As I remember it, he said he was off the wave of his first successes as a producer. He was in a slump. Phones weren’t ringing. He had no production deals. One day he picked up a rubber ball which was on his desk. He threw it against the wall; it bounced back. That was a light bulb moment for him. He knew to get moving he had to do something. He picked up the phone and called people he had worked with in the past and reached out to others. His phones started ringing again. He was back in the game. He quit waiting for other people’s actions, he acted. (I think I have read other accounts by other people of throwing a red ball against the wall as an example of momentum, but I heard it first from Rick Hall.)
I have momentum developing this blog and writing a book. I guess the ball is bouncing back to me. I am in the middle of two Jeff Goins online classes: Intentional Blog and Write a Bestseller. I was motivated to take the classes because of desire; I want to develop this blog and I want to write a book. The classes are giving me confidence and thus more motivation and momentum.
In reading in facebook groups for people in the classes, I see I am not the only one who begins, stops, begins, stops. The trick is to keep beginning again. Each stop makes it harder to begin again because your resistance to what you want to do builds. You begin to think and say, “What’s the use. I have tried this before but never followed through. Why will this time be any different?” Once you come to a standstill, to a state of inertia, only action can get you moving again.
In both groups, the question is being asked. People are asking how they can keep the momentum or even get moving again. Jeff Goins’s advice is somewhat similiar to Rick Hall’s. Do something. In answer to the question, he suggested as soon as the Q&A call was over for each of us to do something to move us toward the goal. The smart part was he limited the time to ten minutes. Do one small thing. Momentum builds, but you have to throw the ball. I suggest you go to goinswriter.com/ . He is a great writer with a lot of success.
I went from wanting to sleep most of the day to being ready to get up in the morning, go to my laptop, and begin writing. With me beginning something new, obsessing with it, and then losing interest is an old pattern. Some people call beginnings that stop, false starts. For me they are true starts put on hold. I have learned enough to know promising myself I will spend a short amount of time each day gets me going again. I may have to promise myself more than once before I do it. The important thing is not to give up.
We probably all have something we have given up on. If it is something you really want, revisit it. Do one small thing. Throw the ball.I would love feedback. Blogs are wonderful, but they are vacuums until the writer and the readers get conversations going. I think my settings allow anyone to comment. Please, do, or email me.