THE POWER OF THE FIRST STEP
“The first step does not take you where you want to go, but takes you away from where you are”. This powerful quote by Alejandro Jodorowski has proven useful to me so many times in both my personal and professional life.
Being “Stuck” happens and it certainly did happen to me more than once, being a “thinker” borderline “overthinker”.
My favorite anecdote dates back more than twenty years, when a young aeronautical engineer got his first real job at his first real company. I remember my supervisor assigning me the task to write an approval testing procedure for an underwing cooling pod he had designed. He left me in front on an A0 sized, functional drawing of “The thing”, mumbling. I have to say I stared at it for about fifteen minutes or maybe more, trying to approach it from a theoretical point of view. At some point I felt clearly, well, frozen in front of the cooler. It took me what seemed to be an incredible amount of time to finally put a pen on paper and look at it with a more practical approach. This guided me with more practical questions: “What the purpose of this device?” “How do the systems go together?” or “What can and cannot be measured in a practical way?” and there it was: a couple of hours later the first draft of the document was ready. I feel so lucky to remember the exact moment I transitioned from being a graduate in engineering to be a real (rookie) engineer. It obviously wasn’t perfect, but I also felt incredibly energized by fact of actually progressing away from the starting point.