Go on a journey with me here.
Imagine that you have a decision coming up. Doesn’t matter how big or small, but it definitely has some kind of meaning. Let’s imagine that you’re picking out a dress to wear to your sister’s wedding.
So, your sister is wearing white (clearly), so the adorable white dress you have is out. And the bridesmaids are wearing green; say goodbye to earth tones. You have a red dress in the ol’ closet – but is that color too loud? You don’t want to upstage the bride. You could go look for a new dress – J. Crew is having a sale, after all – but is that overkill? Or should you try Rent the Runway? So many people love those dresses! What about a jumpsuit? Those are so trendy now. You’d look like a fashionista…or a freak? Back to dresses. Maybe you can borrow one?
Before you know it, it’s a week before the wedding and you’re. still. stuck. You end up running into the closest Target and buying the first dress you try on. It’s okay. You look back at the photos and think you look just okay. What went wrong with this seemingly simple choice? It’s just a dress!
Paralysis by analysis, my friend.
I chose a superficial example, but this concept plagues people in business, in hobbies, in seemingly simple choices all of the time. You want to expand your service offerings, but there are so many to choose from, and so many that interest you! Are you even good enough at [X pursuit] to start a business? You want to get a dog, but ALL THE DOGS ARE CUTE. And do you have enough time for a dog? And would a cat be better? What about rescues vs. purebreds?
Breathe, my friend. I am with you on this.
I suffer from this greatly. Especially when I was deciding to take up calligraphy.
I didn’t know what supplies I needed, what teachers were the real-deal and what tools were quality. I was lost, and I spent more time feeling lost than I did making choices.
When I finally did make decisions, I often made them on impulse, like I described in the dress scenario. I bought the wrong nibs – they didn’t fit in the pen I bought. I grabbed ink off the shelf at Michael’s and it was a horrible consistency, making me feel like I sucked at calligraphy from the beginning. I took a video class that was super informative, but I rushed through it and my grip was all wrong. (That one might be entirely my bad.)
The thing I think greatly helps analysis paralysis? Being able to follow a clear plan.
Whether you write that plan out yourself – going through all your options and pro-conning it – or you rely on a plan made by someone else – like an instruction book or a course – relying on the knowledge of others who have been where you are is so helpful. It made me feel like I wasn’t floating on an ocean alone.
I reached out to some of the other business masterminds in the Think Creative Collective group on Facebook to see what they thought about analysis paralysis. They recommended these tips:
- having someone hold you accountable to decisions
- imagining the “worst case scenario” and becoming (more) comfortable with it
- creating those pro-con lists and going through a logical process
- keep a positive, “just do it” mentality
Do you suffer from this affliction?
If you’re trying to take up lettering but are feeling super lost, you now know that I totally get where you’re at.
That’s why I wrote Quick-Start Calligraphy, an digital guide to exactly what you need to know when becoming a lettering genius. No fluff. No fancy tools. Just the basics.
And – to help you in the WAY beginning of your journey – I wrote the One-Hour Lettering Guide. In literally one hour, you can get your supplies and systems in order to make sure your new hobby starts off in the right way. No stress about a fun, creative hobby! We’re here to write pretty words and take names, friends.
Download the One-Hour Lettering Guide here. And follow along on the blog to learn more about Quick-Start Calligraphy – it’ll be released soon, and I can’t wait to show it to you!