Years ago I owned a home and I had completely let the landscaping and lawn go. It looked like garbage and I was “that guy on the street” who was bringing the property values down. I knew this, I didn’t like the way it looked, and I wanted to change it (the notes on the door were also getting annoying)…mostly out of spite and pride but I wanted it to be different.
I’m, by my own admission, not the Home and Garden and DIY guy. I’m not handy and Home Depot makes me nauseous and anxious. I had no business owning the homes I’ve owned over the years. But all that being said something had to be done about the lawn at this particular time.
So I go to the the local authority in lawn care and landscaping. I explain I have no idea where to start or what I’m doing. They take me step by step-the most basic, easy to follow plan-to get my lawn looking better. They gave me precise action steps and a schedule. I bought all the crap. I got my mower serviced. I was ready to mow grass and sprinkle stuff all over the yard and give the “wink and gun” to all my neighbors who were walking their dogs by my house. I was taking action.
And what did I do? Next to nothing. I cut the grass once, I messed up some grass seed process and broke a wheel on some device which was going to “aerate” my yard because I kicked it.
So, in the end, I WANTED to change something. I sought out an expert. I got great advice. I bought stuff…
…And the second I got uncomfortable with a new process, I got frustrated and stopped.
I made excuses:
1. I’m the only single guy on the street and these other people have their spouse helping them.
2. My life is chaos and I don’t have time for this.
3. I’m building a business and I don’t have the money to allocate towards this long term.
4. And so on and repeat martyrdom self talk.
The end result? The lawn still looked like s*it. It actually got worse and I ended up selling the place. I COULD have spent some time learning a process, taken some bruises, and failed forward. I just made excuses and watched crab grass grow and then complained about that too.
My point here is that there is a difference between wishing and wanting vs. doing and implementing. There is period of being uncomfortable before you get comfortable with something that is new.
“I can’t cook.”
“I don’t know how to meal prep.”
“I’m not cut out for this.”
“This is too rigid.”
But you also want the results yeah?
Back to my little anecdote here, I wasn’t being asked to reconfigure NYC’s subway schedule or ace bio chemistry…I was being asked to walk a self propelled lawn mower through a yard in a straight line. I was being asked to sprinkle some stuff in certain areas and turn a hose on. I had done things and achieved things far more difficult than this but, for whatever reason, this was off the table for me.
It didn’t have to be. I CHOSE for it to be and lost perspective. And when I realized I didn’t do the work to reach the goal I said I wanted to, I then complained about the work I didn’t do and tried to justify my behavior.