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Sunday, October 16, 2016

Richard Stine: What Do You Do When You Come Face to Face with the Second Step? Step Up, of Course!

'The man who moved a mountain is the one who started taking away the small stones.'    Chinese Proverb 

Face to Face with the Second Step

I was first introduced to Richard Stine's simple black and white line drawings at a Westwood art faire while attending graduate school at UCLA. 

His series, 'Smile in a Mad Dog's i’ brought a smile to my own and made me laugh.

While I lingered at his booth, lusting after his drawings, I was a poor graduate student and I just couldn't pay $30 for a simple line drawing.  I walked away without buying anything.

Over the next year, every time I found myself stalled and frustrated after starting a school or work project one of his images, 'Dog face to face with the second step',  kept popping into my head.

I could clearly see that silly, flat-faced, wire-haired black dog with his eyes glued to, and staring at, the second step of the stairs. I was that dog. And it was exactly how I felt--face to face, not with the first step, but the second.  When I looked closely, I could clearly see the second step was in fact larger than the first.

I began to see how life was going to progress. Just as I was congratulating myself for finally getting the latest project off to a good start, I had to look out for that big second step stopping me in my tracks.

The Second Step--An Opportunity for a Fresh Start

But the light began to dawn and I came to see the second step in a positive light.

Rather than the second step being a time for getting stuck and giving up, I began to see it as an opportunity to pause and assess my progress, recommit to my vision, and regain the energy and motivation to move on. Instead of being pushed off-track by the unexpected obstacles, I learned to expect the unexpected and turn a potential ending into a fresh start.

WOOF!  Be the Dog ~ Paws and Assess

What have YOU been working on that has you suddenly face to face with the second step? What dream or vision have you been working on that suddenly feels stalled? How long have you felt that churning and simmering in your head, pulling you towards taking the next step? What's stopping YOU? If you were to turn that ending into a beginning, what would you do next?

What's Got You Stalled?

  • Fear of the unknown
  • Fear of failure
  • Fear of public failure
  • Too busy at work
  • Don't know where to start.
  • No money.
  • Work exhausts me and uses up my creative energy.
  • I focus on helping other people, and then am too tired to help myself.
  • I don't believe I deserve to achieve my dream.

You can always feel the second step staring you in the face. You may not always be able to articulate what's blocking you from moving forward but you can feel the invisible barrier just the same. Recognizing it's there is the first step to moving past it.

Now is the perfect time to clear your path to making forward progress. Why not make today the day you choose to move past YOUR second step?

Three Steps to Get Past the Second Step--Again and Again

  1. Make Yourself #1. Give yourself the first part of the day. Get up 1 hour earlier to devote yourself to your dream. Don't let yourself be distracted.
  2. Choose.  Choose the one thing to focus on NOW.
  3. Act today. Put your thoughts on paper, and convert those thoughts to do-able actions.  Choose to act on one step today.  

What do you do when you come face to face with the second step? Step up of course!     Lightarted Sue

Step Up. Step In. Move Forward.

If you'd like to see Stine's 'Face to Face with the Second Step' (newer colored version) click on link below.

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For more than 35 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.

If you're interested in learning more about closing the gap between where you are now and where you want to be, sign up for free e-mail subscription.


Cynthia Kendall said...

Cynthia(Cuz), I need to take that second step. Thanks for the information on doing just that.

Susan J Meyerott, M.S. said...

Well Cuz--we all need to take that second step...over and over and over again! Hugs and Love!