The Starting Line

I’ve had many people ask me, “How do I start a _______?”

→ But this question is unnecessary until you ask another question first.

“When?”

“When will I start _______?”

If you want to start, making the commitment to begin is the only reasonable next step.

Everything else is a waste of time until you answer that question.

There are so many variables with starting anything that you can’t begin to comprehend the possible approaches.

None of it matters on Day 1.

What matters is that there is a Day 1.

→ Pick a date.

→ Hold yourself accountable.

→ Figure it out on you get started.

Nothing else matters until you start.

The Starting Line2023-11-19T20:53:52-04:00

Party Starter

I was speaking with a friend at a party recently and she said she had a lot of things she wanted to do once the kids were settled into school and their new house was all finished.

I asked, “What’s the one thing that tops the list?”  

→ Her eyes lit up. She brought a smile to her face. And she poured out her idea.

I could see the enthusiasm and excitement in her and the energy lifted her up.

Then I asked, “What’s the one step you can take to get started?”

Because that’s where most great ideas lay to rest.

The energy and excitement are there but we think so far down the line.

The goal seems so far out of reach.

It’s overwhelming.

But the first step isn’t. 

It’s minuscule in the grand scheme of things but it has to happen to get us on our way. There’ll be a thousand tiny steps along the way. Some are more important than others.

→ But that first step. That one that gets you moving. the one right in front of you

That ends up being the only one that matters at this point.

Party Starter2023-11-19T10:52:38-04:00

Pod Starter

I was struggling to start a Podcast for 2 years from 2015-2017.

I let self-limiting beliefs from childhood creep in when I was on the brink of starting.

I kept making excuses.

I never started.

Then, 6 years ago I had an epiphany. What if I Just Get Started ?

If I had the courage to start, maybe I could help others muster up their own to start whatever they wanted.

With that idea and a meaning to grab on to, the Just Get Started Podcast was born in November 2017.

Inspiration can hit us at any time but it’s the execution that matters.

Just Get Started and see where the magic can lead us!

Pod Starter2023-09-30T13:44:13-04:00

Squeeze The Creative Juices

When creativity flows one of the worst things we can do is suppress it.

We can’t be certain that the idea or flow of consciousness will ever come again.

We must embrace it head-on.

Write it down.

Start building.

Give yourself a start.

It won’t be complete today but we’ve seeded an idea that was stuck inside and wanted to be released.

It’s now out of our heads.

It’s become real.

It’s time to act on it.

Squeeze The Creative Juices2023-04-22T16:17:38-04:00

Starter Jacket

Let’s acknowledge all of the “Starters” and not just the Entrepreneurs.

A lot of things posted on social media categorize the people “doing things” only as entrepreneurs.

That’s a small minority.

Here’s to all of the people who recently:

  • Started that garden
  • Dedicated time to reading
  • Added a walking meeting
  • Asked out a person they liked
  • Put healthier options in their shopping cart
  • Pondered what was giving them anxiety
  • Started to learn an instrument
  • Put in time on an idea they had

If you’re starting something then I want to give you a big virtual high five.

You’ve crested a hill many are unwilling to climb.

Keep up the great work and keep going!

Starter Jacket2023-04-22T13:06:48-04:00

Fresh Start

Nothing happens until you start.

No experience.

No learning.

No failure.

No nothing.

If we keep it up in our heads or push it aside for one more day it only eats at us like a dead carcass rotting in the road.

Slowly and painfully until we hate ourselves for it.

Regret creeps in and it adds stress to our lives.

We have to do ourselves a favor and start.

It doesn’t have to be pretty or perfect.

It just has to be what we want to do.

Fresh Start2023-04-07T14:56:15-04:00

Cringe-worthy

I was nervous and excited to hit “launch” on Episode 1 of the Just Get Started Podcast 5 years ago in 2017.

Today, I cringe a bit listening back to that first episode.

So many things I’ve learned in those 5 years.

So many accomplishments.
So many mistakes.
So much growth.

If we don’t cringe at our past work it probably means we haven’t progressed that far ahead.

But after we cringe, be grateful we took the chance on ourselves when we might not have been fully convinced this was the right choice.

There we so many unknowns but we started anyways.

We should be proud that we have the opportunity to cringe.

It means we’ve become a better version of our past selves.

We’ve scaled another summit we never knew was ahead.

Bravo!

Now, keep going!

Cringe-worthy2022-11-09T18:09:02-04:00

That Thing You Do

It’s only about doing.

Thinking is important.
Planning has relevance.
Ideation is helpful.

The “doing” becomes what matters the most.

Without the doing, nothing else matters.

Just start and keep iterating as you go.

That Thing You Do2022-11-01T19:37:10-04:00

Minecraft

Crafting well-meaning and articulate messages can take a lot of time to learn.

And that’s the rub of it.

We have to write thousands of bad messages in order to refine our skills, shorten the message, and get specific on the value.

That rationale can apply to many things we do in life. We must be comfortable being bad at something in the early stages in order to hurdle that gap from not knowing to knowing. From novice to proficient.

Once we start to “get it” and are feeling comfortable then we know we’ve acquired the correct knowledge, mostly through consistency and practice.

That’s when it might be time to look at new ways to be bad again.

To become a beginner learner in a new area.

To once again scale another mountain for growth opportunities that we haven’t yet considered.

Minecraft2022-08-23T09:01:25-04:00

A Full Revolution Begins with One Motion

I enjoyed writing for many years and would normally write in journals or random blog articles from time to time. The content structure and topics changed over time but similar messaging was at its core.

Positive Mindset. Consistency. Action. Progress.

A little over a year ago, leading into April 2021, I made a decision. I was a few years into my Just Get Started Podcast and loved doing the show and wasn’t going to stop anytime soon. But those are longer-form interviews. I wanted another medium to share my thoughts, my voice, and my perspective. Blogging, and really “micro-blogs”, were something I enjoyed. Something about dispelling a message into as few words as possible and making it relatable and enjoyable (and a little vulnerable) was intriguing to me.

So I made a commitment.

Launch a blog article every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday each week. I knew it was going to add some more time to my plate but it was important for me with where I wanted to go and the message I wanted to share with the world.

The message above all else is to Just Get Started.

I’m proud to say that after 12 months and over 140 blog articles later we are back in the month of April, a full year after beginning this project. I am more excited than ever to keep writing and sharing these stories and observations and I hope they have been valuable to you.

We don’t know what will happen or how it might impact us but if we believe in something or find a purpose in pursuing a meaningful project then we have to take the steps to get started and keep moving forward. Consistent action over and over again works.

Too many times I’ve sat on the sidelines and wondered and wished and never just did.

It may not work out as we want it to or we might pivot to something else but we don’t know that at first. All we know is that we want to do it.

So go do it. The only thing holding us back is ourselves.

I’ve been in the position where I sat on the sidelines because I was scared to get in the game. I didn’t believe I could do it. We all feel that from time to time. It’s when we realize that it doesn’t actually matter if we believe we can do it or not and what matters is that we try and we build on it from there. We take a leap of faith. We become brave.

Confidence breeds confidence. You only get that from being in the game and being a part of the action.

So, go do it. Whatever it is that you want to do. Start small if you want. But just start.

Whether you succeed or fail never matters, it’s that you can look back at some distant point from the future and be proud of yourself that when your number was called you suited up and checked into the game.

You weren’t going to miss this opportunity.

A Full Revolution Begins with One Motion2022-07-29T17:26:12-04:00

Comparison Matrix

It’s interesting to find comparisons in creative works that are so seemingly different from one another.

  • Harry Potter
  • The Mona Lisa
  • The Cat in the Hat
  • Red (Taylor’s Version)

What could these possibly have in common?

What we know is that each creator worked consistently over an extended period of time to create it. They made a choice to start and didn’t quit until it was finished.

Some of the greatest “potential” work of our time was probably never finished. Maybe it was barely even started.

Ideas are important, passion is needed, and a positive mindset is useful.

But, we have to believe that our project is worthy of starting.

And then, we have to keep pushing forward, pass the resistance, through the great unknown, and find a way to finish.

Comparison Matrix2022-01-18T16:45:04-04:00

Tomorrow Never Comes

The hardest time to start something is tomorrow. It appears easier to plan for it and then go full steam ahead but it doesn’t always work out that way. Something foils the well-laid plan and usually, it is ourselves.

Build momentum today in a very small dose and you’ll be better prepared for tomorrow. If you’ve already accomplished something small then doing something small again tomorrow will seem easy.

As an example, if you want to start working out there is no need to run a marathon. Do 10 pushups, walk around the block, go for a short jog, or pick your kid up and down a dozen times. You’ll feel a little energized and that will fuel the excitement for the next time.

The longer we wait to do something the harder it becomes. We build up more fear, anxiety, and worry in our heads. We sike ourselves out of it.

Start small today and you’ll thank yourself big tomorrow for getting the momentum moving, even if just an incremental amount.

Tomorrow Never Comes2021-07-07T16:58:46-04:00

F.E.E.L. Framework for Goal-Setting

If you’d like to hear the full audio version of this article on my Just Get Started Podcast click here -> The F.E.E.L Framework for Goal-setting or you can listen on any major Podcasting platform.  

Every year-end most of us reflect on the prior year and assess the areas we achieved in as well as the areas we came up a bit short. It’s inevitable to think about this as the calendar turns to another year.

Typically, we are also making goals for the upcoming year.

→ Did you set any goals or resolutions for 2024?

How are they going in the first two weeks?

Oftentimes, when assessing our goals, we either completed them too quickly, not at all, or there were too many to focus on and put the correct amount of energy into.

I discovered that I was in the “too many goals” camp and would never have enough time to accomplish them all.

I needed more structure and intentionality to advance.

This led me to create the F.E.E.L. Framework for Goalsetting.

I hope it helps you think differently about setting goals.

Here’s how it works.

→ There are 4 total categories; Focus, Eliminate, Experiment, Learn

→ Choose 1 item/topic within each category and work to achieve it for 90 days.

→ Then assess, refocus, and either stick with it longer or pick a new item for the next 90 days.

Let’s first look at each category…

FOCUS

This category will contain our big projects or most important endeavors.

What are the key items we’d like to complete that are going to help us get further ahead and bring more fulfillment to our lives?

Based on our lifestyle and mission, these could be anything from writing a book to starting a Podcast to creating a garden to losing 50 pounds to whatever.

→ What are some things that we’ve wanted to accomplish that got pushed down the list or is a new idea that has become important we’d like to spend more time on?

This could also be a part of a larger project that might take many years but completing the first part gets us to the next.

Imagine you want to run a marathon someday but first you need to be able to walk a mile without getting tired

Remember, each of these are our goals and our goals alone.

Focus on what will make us happy and lead us to a more fulfilling life and that should make choosing much simpler.

ELIMINATE

As we begin to focus on new projects and things we enjoy, it’s also time to look at areas that are creating stress or strain in our lives.

The bad habits, distractions, poor relationships, etc, that are taking us away from our priorities.

What could we eliminate that would help us achieve our goals, remove stress, make us healthier, etc?

Could be anything. Biting our nails, excessive Social Media/TV, sugary foods, negative friends, useless meetings, procrastination, etc.

As we consider our situations, what one thing would be a huge win?

EXPERIMENT

I’m a firm believer that we should acquire new skills that are related to curiosity or tied to something that might help us achieve future goals.

What new hobbies or interests have we been curious about but haven’t attempted to try?

Experimenting (or trying) new things is always exciting but it can come with fear, anxiety, and doubt when entering a new arena we haven’t ventured into before. That is part of the fun because it’s supposed to help us get out of our comfort zone and create new opportunities that otherwise wouldn’t have existed.

Examples of this might be learning the guitar, doing Improv, learning Karate, taking up golf, etc.

As for me, I just bought a guitar and I am playing it right now! Just learned how to tune it and I’m excited to strum a few cords that are pleasant to the human ear.

Everyone will have different initiatives and drivers in their life. Choose what is best for you.

LEARN

The Learn category is geared towards topics that we are curious about, passionate about, or would like to get a better understanding of. This is not so much about acquiring a new skill but about acquiring a deep knowledge of a subject versus “headline reading” or doing a cursory search of a few articles.

Often, we tend to read a very small amount about a topic or get some stories from our peers, Knowing the name of something is not actually “knowing” something.

The learn category is all about depth.

What are some areas you’ve wanted to learn more about but haven’t invested the time in?

Examples could be to learn about nutrition or gut health, learn about flying to Mars, understand our political system, learn about Stoicism, etc. The topics are vast and the most important thing is getting a few layers deeper than normal and exposing ourselves to new learnings.

So that’s the Framework!

  • Focus

  • Eliminate

  • Experiment

  • Learn

Organizing our goals into a more structured framework will help us create more actionable and repeatable goals that last far longer than the “New Year resolution smell” that normally wears off weeks into the new year.

Here’s my Challenge:

→ Pick 1 category from the F.E.E.L. framework and set it as a goal for the next 90 days.

→ Then, make a commitment to how you are going to prioritize it gets achieved

Then, stick with it when it gets hard.

We need to hold ourselves accountable in setting time aside for these important items but not be afraid to adapt or change them as we see fit throughout the year.

We also don’t have to “pitch a perfect game”. If we miss a day or mess up, no worries and let’s get back at it next time.

This is supposed to be a fun and motivating process so we need to make sure we keep an optimistic mindset about it.

→ Challenge yourself and you’ll be rewarded at the end.

Not because you made it to the “finish line” but because you were able to commit to what you said you were going to do.

That’s when we get all the feels about a job well done!

F.E.E.L. Framework for Goal-Setting2024-01-07T16:02:18-04:00
  • Dylan Gambardella Profile Headshot

Dylan Gambardella

Dylan Gambardella Profile Headshot

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PODCHASER

Episode 109 features the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Next Gen HQ, Dylan Gambardella. I was grateful to meet Dylan last year as I attended their Next Gen Summit in NYC and I love what him and the team at Next Gen HQ are doing to help create momentum for young entrepreneurs on their path to achieving their mission in life.

Find Dylan Online:

Website – dylangambardella.com

LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/dylangambardella/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/DylGambardella

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/dylangambardella/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/DylanGambardella

About Dylan:

Dylan Gambardella is a 24-year-old entrepreneur, speaker, and investor. Dylan is the Co-founder and Co-CEO of Next Gen HQ, a business hub empowering the world’s greatest entrepreneurs with the tools and resources to overcome obstacles and chase their dreams.

Dylan has helped leading brands including Target, Capital One, and Dell access, engage with, and influence the next generation. He has been featured in Forbes, Inc, Adweek, Entrepreneur, and USA Today for his work leading a venture-backed, scaling a startup. A graduate of Duke University (‘17), Dylan has spoken in front of tens of thousands on global stages including TEDx.

Check out Next Gen HQ:

Website – https://nextgenhq.com/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/nextgenhq/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/NextGenHQ

Linkedin – https://www.linkedin.com/company/nextgenhq/

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Dylan’s Co-Founder of Next Gen HQ,  Justin Lafazan

Share This Podcast - Choose Your Platform!

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If you enjoy this episode I’d be grateful if you would leave a 5-star review on Apple Podcasts, if you believe I’ve earned it.  Thanks for listening!

Dylan Gambardella2020-11-01T13:07:18-04:00

The Bootstrappers Guide To Podcasting

just get started

Back in 2015 when I first began thinking of starting a podcast there were a lot of ideas in my head about what to do and how to go about it. After overthinking, making excuses, and ultimately failing at starting for two years, I finally took the leap and begun. Thus, the podcast name “Just Get Started” was born.

The reason, you might ask, as to why Just Get Started stuck with me is that I know there are a lot of people out there just like me. They have an idea and want to accomplish something bigger but for some reason, they have been pinned down by naysayers, fear of the unknown, and most of all, negative self-talk that buries your confidence and clouds your judgment. I want everyone to realize they have to take a different path than the norm to get more done then they have ever imagined. To do that, you must take the first step to overcome that fear and Just Get Started.

This won’t be a novel. This isn’t rocket science. There are a ton of great resources out there about monetizing podcasts, growing a following, and doing all sorts of crazy things with them. But, none of that matters until you start and I wanted to share one perspective on how you might go about it.

So, just like with what I struggled with, I wanted to give everyone some insight into what you might want to consider thinking about when beginning a podcast and some useful questions to ask yourself along the way. I’ll share a few tools I have used that have helped but in no way are the answer to every situation. A simple Google search would give you several options that may fit just as well and I’d encourage that. But don’t hamstring yourself with overthinking it. That’s what I did. Don’t make the mistake that you have to have everything figured out on Day 1 because you don’t.

This is not the end all be all guide to podcasting. I imagine, however, most people reading this are like me. They’ve listened to podcasts and enjoy the content and have always wanted to create their own but it seems like a ton of work and a lot of money that is needed to be spent to get started. I’m here to tell you that’s not the case at all and that you can create your own very quickly and with solid quality for minimal to no money.

You can do it BUT if you are going to do it then you have to give it everything. You have to commit to it. There are a lot of people that have started podcasts that do 6 episodes and quit. If you’re going to take the time to set this up and go through the motions then I suggest setting a minimum bar for yourself. Do at least 20 episodes and call it “Season One” or something like that. Then, sit and reassess and make sure this is something you want to commit to further. If you get past that, you’re golden!

I hope you enjoy some of my insight into podcasting and what I have learned through my experience of trial and error and figuring it out along the way. The views expressed in this ebook are my own and from over two years of being in the trenches and knocking out episodes almost weekly. I hope you get as much enjoyment out of reading as I did of writing and sharing.

Let’s get it started.

To get the full eBook please go here and download for free – The Bootstrapper’s Guide To Podcasting

The Bootstrappers Guide To Podcasting2021-03-19T10:41:53-04:00
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