Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step. – Martin Luther King Jr.
What does that mean?
Have any of you waited until you knew everything you needed to know before you started something? Or at least were reluctant to start until you could learn a little more? To me, that’s what the quote is saying.
It says that you should take the first step, with the faith that the rest of the staircase is there, and that you will be able to get to your destination, if you can manage to keep taking step after step.
As you take each step, the next step becomes the first step in the rest of the staircase, right? And in this manner, you can continue making progress, as long as you have faith that there will be another step waiting for you when you finish taking this step.
Why is faith important?
While the quote’s author was a religious man, I believe that the faith that is stated is more a certainty that a step really is there, even if you can’t see to the top of the staircase. If a faith in God helps with that, fine, but I don’t think it is required for this quote to work.
To me, the staircase is a very flexible metaphor, and each step could be a step in any process. A developing relationship might be one of the staircases you might start climbing up. The faith would be that the other person is as interested and committed in getting to the top of the stairs as you are.
It could also be the climbing of the corporate ladder. Having the faith that your night classes will get you a degree or the training necessary to advance your career. Having faith that the company is interested in your talents, and will do what it can to retain you. Having faith that the economy will start pulling up soon, and that the services or products of your company will be in high demand.
Where can I apply this in my life?
This quote is kind of the story of my life. I’m a bit of a perfectionist, and I tend to try to get everything fairly well planned before starting a new project. When my wife started hinting that she wanted to start a family, I started preparing.
Several years later, she was still hinting, and I finally realized that this was a situation for which there simply is no way to be completely prepared. When I realized this, my wife was quite happy, to say the least.
While this quote wasn’t in my mind at the time, it certainly did apply. I knew there was the first stair, and I knew there were stairs going on up the staircase. I’ve been taking steps ever since, and still can’t see more than a step or two ahead, but I have faith that the stairs are there.
I gave a pair of examples of other possible staircases to take one step at a time in the prior section. What other areas of your life might a little faith in taking the next step be helpful? Perhaps writing a blog, one step, one post at a time, might be a good example?
Grab some paper and write down a couple of things you have been reluctant to get started on do largely to a lack of faith in your ability to complete the entire staircase, or to eve be able to see all of it. Think about all the different roles and aspects of our life, including work, social, family, etc…
Next to each item on your list, write down what the first step (or two, if you can see that far up the staircase) is or what action it involves. How difficult was that? As long as you know where the staircase will take you, and where the first step is, it shouldn’t be too difficult, if you faith.
Select one of your staircases, and get ready to climb. Look at what you wrote down for the first step in this staircase. Are there smaller steps within that step, or are there preparations you need to make before you start? Take a moment and think about that, and write down anything that comes to mind.
Now that you know what you’re doing and have an idea what steps are involved, the last two things are to do what research you need to do (presuming there are things you think you should know before starting up the staircase), and to actually take that first step.
Once you have taken the first step, feel free to repeat the process on paper for as many steps as it takes to become familiar with the process. Eventually, you will simply do them, because they will have become part of you and how you operate.
From time to time, things will go wrong. You will falter, you may even fall. But with faith in yourself, faith in the presence of the staircase, and faith in the next stair, you will get there. And the journey is half the fun, isn’t it?
From: Twitter, @AR_Foundation
confirmed at : http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/m/martinluth103425.html
Photo by rpongsaj