Big. Impossible. Life changing. Do any of those words describe your “elephant” – the dream, project or goal you just can’t wrap your head around? I know they describe the elephant I have been facing.
A while back, God unsettled me. I was at the Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies OBS Dreams retreat in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina. Surrounded by friends, many I was meeting in person for the first time, Melissa Taylor, Lisa Allen and Nicki Koziarz challenged us to dream. Dream big.
God was awakening something in me, but I didn’t know what it was. Or what to call it.
It took almost a year for God to define that dream. I’m not made to be the one on the big stage. My words, spoken or written, don’t flow easily or creatively. I’m too wordy. Too detailed. Too much most of the time. But as a member of the OBS Executive Team, I found an outlet to use that detailed, procedure-oriented bent to make others look better and be more effective in their ministry. I know how to help people do new things.
And so began Do A New Thing, my web-based business to provide coaching, project management and administrative support to women in ministry. The beginnings are humble. The beginnings are hard work. But I began.
So even though it seemed big, impossible and life-changing, I was able to break it down into bite-size pieces and work it a little at a time. I used some tried and true techniques of elephant eaters everywhere to get started.
Looking at the long-term, not the immediate
Starting something big can’t be done overnight. Recognizing that this would take weeks to begin and months to feel really proficient took the pressure off of doing everything immediately.
Turning to experts
Learning from people who have been down the same path is helpful, but I had to be careful not to compare my beginning to their ending. I’ll get there one day!
Bringing my friends
I’m thankful for the few close friends who really understood what I was trying to do. When I thought I was in over my head and allowed fear to put up barriers, they came in with the sledgehammers to tear those walls down.
Making a plan and schedule
Yes, plan is a four-letter-word. But the time spent planning, and breaking the impossible down into very possible steps brought relief and peace.
Evaluating and adjusting
As soon as you have a plan, things don’t go according to it! So periodically evaluating and adjusting allowed me to move some things forward, back up and try again on others, and keep making progress towards the goal.
Over this series, we’ll dig deeper into each of these techniques and help you break your elephant into bite-size pieces. If you haven’t met my friend Zohary Ross yet, head on over to her website and see how she will be helping also. We are collaborating on this series to give you the emotional, motivational and practical tools you need to eat that elephant.
So how about it? What elephant do you need to eat? What help do you need most to eat that elephant?