Alright, this is slightly embarrassing to admit, but here goes…
I’m a big girl … when it comes to jumping into unheated, outdoor swimming pools.
I always have been.
I make myself feel better by realising that it seems to be some sort of genetic curse. No one in my family seems to like jumping into an outdoor pool (unless there’s been a face-melting heatwave).
Perhaps it’s also because none of us have much “insulation”. We tend to all be pretty skinny, so we feel the cold pretty badly!
Even during a hot day, the best I might be able to do is put my feet in the water. And it’s still absolutely freezing for me!
No matter how many times I believe that if I “ease” myself into the pool one limb at a time it will work, it never does.
Instead, I’ve resorted to the only other option…
Less thinking more action
So lately I’ve been taking the plunge – jumping into the pool regularly, despite my brain telling me that this is most unwise.
Of course, it’s absolutely freezing after I’ve jumped in, but somehow I’ve done it.
Having said that, every time I step up to take the plunge, I still delay it.
I stand there thinking about how cold it’s going to be when I’m in. I’ll continue to think more about this, trying to convince myself that it will be easier to jump in a few minutes.
Of course, those minutes quickly pass, and I’m still standing at the edge of the pool.
Somehow, nothing has changed.
No matter how much I think about it, “thinking about it” doesn’t change the fact that I eventually have to jump into the pool and deal with the cold water.
That water isn’t going to change temperature all of a sudden. My body won’t suddenly become less sensitive to cold water. And I probably won’t suddenly develop an extra layer of fat.
No matter how much I think the situation over, the “action” (me jumping into the pool) is not more likely to happen just because more time has passed.
In fact, chances are that the longer I wait, the less likely I am to do it! So the sooner I jump in the better.
Why am I telling you all of this?
Because I felt like embarrassing myself publicly.
But seriously, the above is an analogy. It can be applied to almost any type of situation (from sky diving, to quitting your job, to starting that dream project).
Too often we believe we can think through everything in advance. Or we put off acting right now because we think it will be easier to act in future.
It won’t be. You know it. I know it.
Eventually you will still be at the same mental point you are right now, as you’re contemplating whether or not to take the plunge. And remember that the longer you wait, the less likely you will be to do it (since you’ll end up talking yourself out of it).
So just do it now instead.
PS: I wrote this article while I was in the pool.