How to Start When You Don’t Know Where To Start

Pssst did you know you can highlight any sentence to automatically tweet it? Give it a try!

So you’ve got about a million ideas of things you want to do with your life. A gajillion interests that are pulling you in different directions. You want to travel! And knit! And you love taking pictures! And you love starting businesses! And you love educating yourself on the newest trends in hipster fashion!

Which should you pursue?


How are you supposed to start when you don’t even know where you’re going?


I have two answers for you, both super simple, and both totally contradictory. You have been warned.


Option 1: Just Pick

Just pick one and START. Seriously. Just pick. The more time you spend in your head analyzing it, trying to make the decision about the exact perfect one, the more time you’re NOT out there doing it. Which is the whole point, right? Nothing is life or death, not decision is forever. Pick the one you feel most compelled to pick, and see where it takes you. Life is all trial and error, and you’ll ever know how it will go til you try.

Option 2: Don’t pick

Don’t pick. Seriously. Don’t pick. Why should you have to choose? Find ways to do them all. One might be a small side project. One might be a full fledged career. One might just be a hobby. Some might help make you money, some might not. But there is no reason why you can’t just continue to do them all and, similar to option #1, see where it leads you.


The longer you stay in indecision, the longer you’re not actually doing anything.


Don’t get stuck in the trap! The best way to get started, is to just get started.

Do something. Anything. And trust that you’ll know what your next move is.

Be sure to leave a comment on this post telling us where in your life you have been stalling on getting started, and what you will do to shift into action.

Screen shot 2013-02-15 at 8.24.14 AM



Read 8 Comments & Leave Yours

  1. ikilledjoneses

    The hardest things to figure out (err..umm..the things that feel hard) usually have the simplest answers, ay? [Accept picking out paint colors for my tiny house, THAT SHIT IS HARD].
    People have told me my whole life I have a focus issue- like I don’t know what I want. So opposite, I just want so much! And that, I have decided, is a-okay. So I focus on my main biz, and dabble in others. “Why Not?” seems the be the best answer for just about everything. Again…accept paint colors. Tie-dye doesn’t seem like a solid choice for that situation ;)

  2. Great blog Rebecca.
    I spent three. long. years. dithering about what business to start, thinking myself into total analysis paralysis. In the end I cornered myself into a situation in which I was forced to make a choice (having a baby + quitting my job!). So I followed your first piece of advice and just picked an idea. And guess what? I realised pretty soon it was the wrong biz idea me. A year on I’m on Lotte biz iteration numero 3.2 and I’m totally happy with this. I have learnt so much more about what I do and don’t want to do, and what will and won’t work for me by JUST TAKING ACTION.

  3. Love the advice. I knew the two options inside. I can see where I get paralyzed with in action.

  4. ahmad

    all i wanted it was so simple a normal family like anybody else somewhere to call home, an innocent wish that sometimes keeps at night awake along with questions i didn’t find answer for , i never choosed this life for sure it was a life that was chosen for me it was my parents mistake, there where i made a decision to make it up to my self without them support, since then all i did brought me right here, right to the middle of the no where, now i’m just tired .

  5. I’m sorry you’re feeling that way. I would like to encourage you to find a community of people to become your support system. It will take time, but by starting small — finding someone you have something in common with, and gradually cultivating a friendship — you can find and tap into a group of like-minded individuals. Also, you will probably want more than one group, since you have more than one set of goals. (This can also avoid friend burn-out, by letting you not rely too heavily on one friend or set of friends.) I’ll be praying for you to find the energy to take one step toward your goals.

  6. Pingback: Beating Procrastination Made Simple: [A TWO-STEP GUIDE]

  7. Katy

    Last december I turned 22 and I’m really scared, I feel I’ve wasted my teen years because I’m not where I thought I was going to be at this time, I always want to do so many things but I end up not doing anything, I don’t know what is going to happen this year but I’ll really try; I needed to read something like this so thank you.
    (Sorry for my broken english, I’m still working on it)

  8. Hey Katy! Your english is great, don’t you worry! And you still have SO much time to figure it all out. I don’t know very many teenagers who do very much in their teens other than get into trouble and learn about drinking and sex haha. You have YEARS to get to wherever you want to be. I don’t think I really got there til I was 30, and even now at 35, it’s still a new adventure everyday. Stay true to what you believe in and you’ll find your way xo