How To Shift From What If Into Action

That “What if…..?”

“What if…” is the single most stimulating and frightening phrase in human communication.  Many of us have grand plans and dreams, but very seldom follow through with them.


Because we are afraid.  The haunting  “What If…” hounds our steps everywhere.  How do we let go of that constant replaying of “What If?”

Let’s break it down to one step at a time.

blog post what if

  1. Start small. It can be hard to silence twenty years or more of discouragement all at once.  Choose one area of your life to start with.  That could be healthy living, procrastination, or finally taking that leap into the unknown.  Make an agreement with yourself, like “I will not smoke that cigarette this morning like usual. I will chew sugarless gum instead.” Slowly one cigarette turns into two, then three, and etc. When you fall off the bandwagon, just pick up where you left off; everyone wavers.  Forgive yourself and move on with the day.

  1. One thing at a time.  Don’t take on the whole world.  If keeping a clean home is a struggle for you, do one thing a day. For example: Mondays clean the bathroom, Tuesdays vacuum the carpets, Wednesdays dust the furniture, Thursdays organize the kitchen, and Fridays wash laundry. Or skip Wednesdays – dusting? What is dusting??? 😀

  1. Enjoy your work.  When you have work to do, just do it.  Don’t worry about how long it will take or if anything gets accomplished.  Make a small goal and chip away at the bigger picture.

  1. Acknowledge progress.  When you reach a small goal, celebrate it.  Watch a movie you enjoy, get a pizza, go dancing, or whatever you enjoy.  Those small goals will add up over time and you enjoy your life as you make positive changes.

But what about that anxiety that settles into the pit of your stomach when you think of a “what if?” Well there are some tips for that too.

  1. Just do it.  Really, just do it! You are a success for starting.  Worse case scenario it falls flat and you have to start over. At least you’ll have a better idea of how to go about it.

  1. Tell it to your journal.  If you don’t have a journal, then start one.  Writing down what holds you back puts it into perspective.  Talk yourself through it, and you may find that fear is baseless or even silly.

  1. Remember trial and error.  When you fail, there is a lesson.  Sometimes this lesson is more valuable than the objective.  It’s okay to fail, just don’t let failure stop you.

  1. Don’t slow down to get scared.  If you give yourself time to think about it, you might talk yourself out of it. This doesn’t mean ignoring common sense or instincts.  Just remember you’ll never know until you try.  Use the energy that comes from new ideas to act immediately and break through the fear.


After all…What If your success is on the other side of the fear?