Your first everything will probably be terrible (and that’s okay)

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your first thing doing anything

What was your first tweet like?

What is your first blog post like?

If you did video before, how did your first video like? Were you uncomfortable and look stiff in front of the camera?

If you’re a photographer, how did your first photo look like? I recalled the first photo I took with my DSLR, I deleted it right away. It was that BAD. You would think I took it with a phone with low coloured resolution.

What about the first time you rode a bike? You probably fell numerous time. Did that stop you? No. First time I sat on a bike. I was so afraid, my palms were sweating so much and due to me holding on to the bike so tight, but when I was able to paddle two full circles I felt I was the king of the little road …….. of my house.

My first blog post had so many grammatical errors and spelling mistakes, it was as if a first grader wrote it. Many of my friends noticed and pointed it out for me to quickly correct it. Heck, I remembered people telling me I shouldn’t be writing. Harsh huh?

Chances are, if you did anything for the first time, it’s going to be bad and you know what? It’s okay!

What I want to say is, we all need to start at the very beginning. 

Here is a beautiful quote I found and it resonates with me a lot. don't compare quote

Most professionals you know today started at the beginning. Many of them were so terrible when they first started.

However, they didn’t give up…they continued to persevere and today they are making an impact because they continued to sharpen their skill and improve.

Don’t believe me? Go take a look and some of the most popular video bloggers on youtube, look at their first video. Chances are, you’re going to laugh because they look so amateur compared to their videos now.

Even most of them laugh at themselves for putting those videos out. What makes them so great in what they do today is they practice and they improved themselves.

A few weeks ago I sent an email to John Lee Dumas to talk about his latest course Podcaster Paradise. I wanted to know whether anyone could be a great podcaster . He told me to check his first 50 videos on his site and wow, wow… he too has come a long way. Today he has interviewed over 456 people on his podcast at Entrepreneurs on Fire.

Most of us are afraid if we put ourself out where people will judge and criticize our work, you know what? Chances are some of them will, and it’s fine…. remembered our quote earlier?

I realised after using social media for a while that people will still judge even if you don’t do anything. I learned that, those who judged shouldn’t be your friend IF they can’t give  you constructive criticism to improve your work. .. that’s how i feel.

Over the years, I’ve learned to tune out as well as remove friends who I’ve felt were life drainers that were too negative.

I recalled a Facebook friend who continuously criticise, giving negative feedback whenever I posted something on my profile, when I couldn’t take it anymore, i approached him about it, he told me that that is the way the world works and that if I couldn’t take it, I shouldn’t be alive.

Safe to say, I blocked him and he is forgotten. Don’t even remember his name today.

What I want to say is, if you want to do something, do it. If you’ve always wanted to write a blog, WRITE it.

Don’t worry too much about your blog looks like. Stop waiting for something to be “perfect”. Stop stalling yourself. Go create your ART. 

Don’t worry if it looks bad or your writing isn’t perfect enough. Hustle, practice, hustle, practice and then hustle and practice even more to improve it and sharpen your skills.

Photo credit: by willholmes

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  • Crystal Vitelli

    Thanks for the post. My first “personal” blog post is sitting in drafts waiting to be perfected…it may be time to just post it! love the quote too btw

  • Michael Cairns

    Just take a look at the first season of the Simpsons!

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron Lee

    I’m intrigued, you got my attention. Gotta check it out.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron Lee

    Time to hit that “publish” button. Good luck!

  • Michele Wasko Hlewicki

    This is so timely for my professional life. I am starting out as a marketing consultant and questioning every step I take. Thank you for the kick in the pants to keep going!

  • http://marketkulture.com/ Nicholas A. Kosar

    This is beautifully written with wonderful sentiment – from the heart and from experience. Thank you – I am going to show it to my wife and daughters. On a very personal note, my father died last summer at age 83. It was a rather “beautiful” passing for him (and all of us around him). He was not perfect, like all of us, but I was amazed to see how “perfect” his life ended up because he did things, tried things, took risks. It was not always pretty or 100% successful and there were years of what looked like “failure,” but I realize that in the end, he was 100% successful with what he left behind – his intentions were based out of his head, his heart, and love. Hard for me to say in better words, but he left me with the distinct feeling that I always need TO TRY and then let life happen.

    I feel a bit crummy about this, because it’s the first time I’ve commented on your blog (I’ve been looking at your tweets for quite some time), but I’d like to share a link to an article I wrote about marketing and perfectionism on my own blog. I don’t paste in links every time I comment on others’ blogs, but I hope this might give some people some ideas that they don’t need to be perfect when trying to make a living/marketing. Just Do It: http://bit.ly/17IpEOL

  • Konrad Sanders

    Great points, thanks Aaron! Being a perfectionist all the time won’t get you very far – but I have to say, it’s pretty darn hard to avoid when you naturally feel inclined to be that way! One of the best copywriting tips I got (from Joe Vitale) was to cover the screen and just write. Don’t read or edit it on your first attempt, just spill your thoughts onto the keyboard. Once you’ve got it all down, go through it and edit militantly. First, write with your heart, then write with your head! It really helps.

  • http://browntel.net/ Terence Brown

    All you have to do is take the first step.

  • http://thetopfivepercent.com/ Stephen W. Anderson

    It’s always the right time to get started, cobbled together our efforts might be. Unpolished, amateur, not quite perfekktly spell checked. But the only time we can get anything done is in the here and now, that’s what we have so we might as well make the best of it.

    Thank you Aaron. I have started a lot of things in my life, started over once or twice, and it is always encouraging to remember that its a process.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron Lee

    Right on my man! right on! First step is often the hardest. thank you for your comment.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron Lee

    Thank you Michele and all the best! :) have a great year ahead.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron Lee

    I love love love the line “first, write with your heart, then write with your head! Will be writing this somewhere and go back to it again daily.

    My partner and working partner is a perfectionist so I definitely understand where you’re coming from. It’s HARD to just let go. Sometimes I have to force her to simply let go and get something out first and then go back to it to do any re-work.

    oh. I’m showing her your quote.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron Lee

    Thank you for your comment and sharing your experience Stephen.

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I recalled seeing a quote somewhere which goes like this “Someday is not a day of the week.”. I just stopped and say time to do it now.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron Lee

    Nicholas,

    Thank you so much for sharing a thoughtful comment & sharing your beautiful story about your dad and what he has left behind for you and your family.

    For the first time I’m out of words, simply by reading your story, I can tell he is such an amazing man.

    If you don’t mind, I would love to screen shot this comment and share your story with my friends and family.

    Beautiful comments from yours and the rest reminds me of why I love doing what I do.

    Thank you,

    (Heading to your blog after this.)

  • http://marketkulture.com/ Nicholas A. Kosar

    Aaron – wow, thank you for your response. When I got your tweet about this, I had forgotten what I wrote! I’m glad it was worthwhile for you. By all means share it as you wish, after all I did publish it publicly on your blog. Best wishes. :-) Nick

  • http://thetopfivepercent.com/ Stephen W. Anderson

    Tomorrow is not a day of the week either, :-) Just one that many people seem to think is the best time to get something done.

  • Larry Crane

    Nice post, Aaron. It has all kinds of tie-ins for everybody out there. It takes guts to try something new. It also can be just folly. I thought it might be fun to sing in the church choir at school. I thought I had a good enough voice. I tried out. The choir director was nice. He assigned me to the B Squad where I belonged. The thing is, I’m not going to get better at it. The first effort stunk and I learned at least two things from the experience: (1) it doesn’t hurt to try. What’s the worst thing that can happen? (2) Recognize your shortcomings and learn from them. I’m no singer. So what?

  • http://about.me/alimostofian Ali Mostofian

    I have to smile now because my first blog post was in 2009, Feb 25! I was not afraid but felt insecure and then I said to myself go on and try to write down your idea! Just be yourself and try to write as you would talk to a friend! This has helped me a lot and from there I haven’t tried to write for google or to be liked but just to be me and to share my thoughts. I’ve just started to write more in english and again I feel very insecure but I think it’s ok because I’m not a native english speaker and I had to learn 3 languages in my whole life. I just want to be personal and to share my knowledge and thought with others. You want to judged me for misspelling?! Or bad gramer, ok… But I’ll not stop to write and to give my best… It’s the same with many things… to write in another language is a very simple and maybe not really important thing. To start something new and to leave the own comfort zone are much bigger and only this things help us to grow and to achieve our goals and dreams…

    Don’t give up maybe sounds too… too easy to say!? Yes… but it’s the only way no matter how it sounds…

  • Stephen Sim

    i’m not quite sure how I stumbled upon your blog but I’m sure glad I did. This post really hit me deep since it is something I struggle a lot with. It’s weird because we tend to think that we are the only ones who go through this self-criticism when in fact everybody goes through this. even the seasoned veterans.. it’s just a matter of not giving up and to keep working. Definitely glad I came across this blog! you’ve got a new regular!

  • http://jsncruz.com/ jsncruz

    I can totally relate – looking back over the past two years’ worth of articles on my blog makes me feel embarrassed on one hand, yet encouraged on another. What’s critical is the ever-improving journey for the self, rather than improving for others :) Great piece, bro.

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  • http://www.mynotetakingnerd.com/blog Lewis LaLanne – NoteTakingNerd

    One of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever gotten on this topic is, “The name of the game is progress; not perfection.”

  • Anisul Islam

    I am glad that I came across this post just before publishing my next blog article :) Your writing just doubled my confidence! Thanks Aaron :)

  • Thomas E Ortiz

    I have been sitting on the sidelines since my last company failure and your article has sparked a new light in me. I have been afraid to do anything because of the most recent closing of what I thought was a good idea. But I now realize that this failure has prepared me to do better next time. Thank you for this article it was very inspiring and motivational.

  • http://www.yalinosgb.com YALIN OSGB

    Thanks for the post.

  • Lakotai

    I love this post! Tomorrow I have decided to start editing my first book ever and publish it.

    For a very long time I have been postponing it–fearing it unprofessional touch. But anyway, I have to pull it out for those that need it.
    Thanks Aaron!

  • http://www.webhostingsecretrevealed.net/ Jerry Low

    This reminds me of my first website – the one that my good friend called it ‘old newspaper’ coz it looks awfully ugly. Good read btw, cheers!

  • http://www.endingthegrind.com Steve Roy

    Hey Aaron,
    This has been a curse for me and I find myself comparing myself to others constantly. What’s made matters worse is that my blog was doing really well in 2012 and I decided to stop writing for personal reasons. I took 2 years off and am now back to it and compare myself to all me peers who were building their sites back then.

    Many are doing really well and I feel like I am starting from scratch and I hate it. I am in this for the long-term though and have to keep reminding myself that if I put in the time and effort and really care about my readers, my success will come..

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