Take That First Step


What does essential mean?  This has been on my mind a lot in the past few weeks . Obviously, I have been applying that question to what students need to bring with them when they go to college.  Feeling prepared, which involves having things which help one feel comfortable, is a step toward making a good transition.  What I am focusing on now is what is essential to feeling prepared?  And, how prepared do you have to feel to make that all important first step in an unfamiliar path?

I have used OPTION PLAY with high school seniors.  Often, they tell me I should get real scenarios, and many more answer card possibilities.  Filled with resignation, I smile and once again say that the scenarios are real (right from college freshman). I know that there will never be enough answer cards because the point is to use what is there.  In life, we don't always get to put a specific option down and pick up another card.

A transition is a path from one type of situation to another.  It can be simple like choosing to use an exercise bike at the gym, instead of walking around the track.  How do you get on, how do you adjust the thing, will different muscles feel something?  Or it can be complicated, like going to the gym for the first time and deciding what to do.  Perhaps, you have never gone to a gym.  You have to figure out the locker room, make sure you have clothes to exercise in, figure out what each piece of equipment is for and if you have to sign up to use it.  How much do you exercise?  What if you fall off of a piece of equipment?  Are you supposed to talk with other people who are exercising?

What is essential in either of these transitions? Taking the first step. Will it be comfortable? Probably not. Will it be worth it? Yes, but maybe not immediately. Boring, really, boring. Then why am I smiling? Because, if I took the first step my self-confidence rose 1/1,000th and I could feel that. If I observed how someone else used the exercise bike, or asked someone for help then I could master it. If someone just thinks about trying to take that step, they have moved into the transition.

I believe breaking transitions into manageable steps help us to make progress toward whatever goal we have chosen or are forced into. Using a game, like my OPTION PLAY introduces a new way of tackling the steps.  I believe games help us to break barriers we set for ourselves, like taking a first step.

It was good to write this post because I am facing a first step myself. I need to figure out what is essential in growing my business and continuing to design useful products.  I need to put a realistic cost on OPTION PLAY. It is scary and overwhelming. Will it be comfortable? Probably not. Will it be worth it? Yes, but maybe not immediately. I can't say it's boring, but maybe I feel a smile coming on.