This week I have published episode 100 of my podcast, A Quiet Life. This is a milestone worth celebrating! But even though 100 episodes sounds like a lot, it has been accomplished over a few years, just a little at a time.
Just like anything worthwhile.
As Bishop Desmond Tutu once said, “there is only one way to eat an elephant: a bite at a time.” As you go on taking bite after bite, eventually you’ll get that whole elephant down.
In 2018, I decided I wanted to make a podcast. I had listened to a lot of them, and I thought about what kind of podcast I preferred and decided to make an interview format podcast. I’d heard some pretty inspirational people speak at various events and I wanted to give them a platform (yes, a very small platform, but it was something). I wanted to do my own little bit to get some stories heard.
So that’s how I started – I contacted people I knew with interesting stories, the elderly lady who visited people in prison, the friend who had climbed Mt Everest, the chaplain from a local hospital, a friend who had just discovered she was autistic, and so on. I interviewed them, doing the best I could with sound quality, and I put the interviews online.
After a while, I found I was struggling with inviting people for interviews, and I was struggling to get excited about the questions I was asking. So I paused for a while and re-evaluated.
And then a new opportunity was offered to me – I could meet up with Scottie, the breakfast announcer at our local community Christian radio station and have a chat with him once a fortnight. A regular segment on the radio.
So I started the podcast up again, and this time I chose to base it on something I could talk about indefinitely. I love to share the things I’ve learned that have helped me to live a quieter, more peaceful, more organised life. Things like time management and productivity, things that have helped me with my anxiety, and helped me find my calling in life. Things that I hope will help you too.
And that’s what I’ve been doing for the past year. Episode by episode, and blog by blog, I have kept going, doing what I could until we got to this milestone. One hundred episodes.
I was listening to a Q&A podcast with Phil Vischer (of VeggieTales fame) the other day. He was asked what his advice was to people wanting to become creatives like him. His advice? Just do it. Just start creating. You can make a movie on your phone, you can, like me, start by recording on your computer and get a podcast up and running, you can sit down and write a page each day in a novel. The important thing is to do it. Just do it.
It’s not just creativity that this applies to either. If you want to save money, don’t wait to have a thousand spare dollars sitting in your account. Put a little away at the beginning of each pay period and you’ll be amazed at how it adds up over time.
If you want to get fit, don’t wait to feel all energetic and then try to run 5 km all at once. Start with a little walk, just a little further than feels comfortable. Keep doing that, and you’ll get there (unless, of course, there’s an underlying illness problem, but you know what I mean).
If you want a tidy house, start by picking up one thing that doesn’t belong where it is, and putting it away.
(I’d like to add that pivoting is not bad either, just like I did in the middle of my podcast. A change of direction is not synonymous with failure.)
It’s been an interesting journey and I’m excited to see where it goes from here. I hope to expand into more public speaking, more workshops (online and in-person) and yes, another book or two. But I know that each of those things will come about little by little.
It’s easy to look at the tiny amount you are doing and discard it as too small, too insignificant to make any difference. But you don’t know where your project will lead. However, we all know, for sure, that if you don’t take the first step, you won’t go anywhere. Let me encourage you today to start. Start small. Take one step. Whether you end up as a celebrity or you just achieve something you never thought you could, it’s totally worthwhile.
Please share with me your own success stories, or let me know the project you’re going to start on. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, find me on Facebook at Ruth Amos Author, or on twitter @aquietlifeblog. And please share this with anyone you know who needs encouragement to start today.
P.S. Here’s a little extra encouragement: A whole tree!