I was watching a YouTube video of an interview of Brad Rushing where he said, "If you want something you've never had before, you have to do things you've never done before." I found that to be strikingly elegant, as these pithy "self-improvement" phrases tend to be.
I've had many thousands of dreams in my life to this point — many of which still live in the lined caverns of my notebooks. Yet, even after a fiery burst of inspiration, it's so easy to then simply go about my day — maintaining the same routines I've always done and wonder why nothing has changed. Sure, maybe every once in a while I'll take a small step away from my daily march, but rarely does my detour lead to a new destination. And it comes down to courage. Am I willing to fail? Am I ready hack through the woods of life in a new direction that isn't already paved by the frequent passing of my past self. Sure, sometimes I will fall on my face. Some paths will lead to cliffs. But until I venture into a new direction, I'll continue to travel the paved roads like I always do, and I'll end up in the places that I've already been. That's not always a bad thing; there are times when I've done the work paving a road to a fruitful groove, and it's best to re-walk this path until the weeds have been matted down and the dirt becomes a trail. But often, it's just a cop-out. I'm walking the same path because I know it. Because it's easy. Because I know my dreams will be hard to get to. And the weeds will not cut themselves out of the way.
So anytime I attack a new goal and I start to feel uncomfortable, like I'll never make it, I'm trying to remind myself that uneasiness is actually the only guidepost I'll get in these uncharted woods. It's a sign I'm moving in the right direction.