I Was Addicted to Asking “How?”

When you have to pee, 3 minutes is a loooooong time. That’s how long I stood outside the bathroom at the salon for an appointment I was already late for.

With irritated, irrational thoughts, working myself into a lather.

Then a thought struck: try the door.

Unlocked! Empty bathroom. I rolled my eyes at myself and chuckled.

Classic case of me indulging in irritation. My mind ran away with itself, and I let it happen.

This happens to me when I focus on task completion rather than merely solving for the first step.

I did this in my first business a lot, to my detriment. I spent 4 years being really angry and humiliated because “I didn’t know HOW to do anything.”

My husband – a business coach – told me over and over (and over and over) that there is no one way to start up and run a business.

“Yes, Jen”, [he’d say patiently] “there are strategies and tools and coaching and best practices…but there IS. NO. RECIPE.”

Stubborn ass I was, I didn’t believe him. I figured there had to be a way but I was just too stupid to know how.

Here’s the truth: running a business is basically an experiment.

You implement a tool or strategy, and risk it not working. Then try something else.

You know – just like parenting.

Or relationships.

Or home ownership.

Or interviewing for a job.


Clearly, there is no proven way to do anything. It’s all a crap shoot.

Spending so much time mulling over the HOW is debilitating for any of us.
Asking HOW too much keeps us stuck.
When your particular brand of how DOES work, celebrate the sh*t out of that!
Do you have an addiction to asking “How?” Here’s a strategy that works for me:

Take the first step: ask yourself what you want. Then try the door handle. If it opens, go through! If locked, try something different.

Want to be more organized? Use time better? Get a new job? Write your book? Lose the weight?

Ask yourself two questions:

1. Why do I want this? {Spend a LOT of time on this one. Like – write about it and think about it and talk about it – a LOT}

2. Listen to what you hear. {The world is noisy. Get quiet and listen to what you hear in your head. Stop asking other people.}

I’d bet money that you hear the answer to the first step you need to take:

Pssst, Jen…try the handle.

Pssst, research how to hire a virtual assistant…

Pssst, read that book everyone’s been mentioning to you…

Start to listen to you. Likely you already KNOW what the first step is, but you’re terrified because you cannot see the whole path.

That’s ok. That’s normal. Trust that the next step will show up every time you need it to.

Please – if you do anything this week – use my 4-year ‘mistake’ of not listening to my husband (grrrrr) to learn something for yourself.

Start to see it all as an experiment, my friends!

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