change,  create your life

How can I know if I’m ready?

If you’re having a goal you’re trying to accomplish and you’re also interested in personal development you’ve probably heard that saying: “Don’t wait till you are ready. You’ll never be ready so just start!”

I really have problems with that saying. In large parts I disagree. It almost makes me angry. 

When I hear someone saying that my stomach immediately tightens. You know, I’m a type of person who likes to think stuff through. Who needs to let things sink in. Not that spontaneous, but hey 🙂

So when someone says: “Just start” I feel pressured. All of a sudden I feel behind and too slow, like I should be way further ahead. I want to answer: “There is problem X right around the corner, how could I start without knowing how to handle it?” or “I feel like I’ve got some thoughtwork to do around this topic. I want to feel clear about things before I start taking action.”

From personal experience I can say that I indeed was not ready for certain things in the past whereas I was some point later. And the only things happening in between were honest thoughtwork and maybe conversations about the topic with suitable people. If I had started to take action before I felt mentally ready I’m sure it would have ended in a horrible mess. 

Yes, for sure you can overthink things – I certainly do this a lot – and also you can easily get lost in perfectionism – also me in a lot of ways. You can stand in your own way and slow yourself down so that you might reach your goals later than necessary or – in the worst case – even never because you don’t even start. Of course this is not what we want.

But I also highly disagree in taking headless action towards something when not yet ready for it mentally. 

Especially if the idea you’re going after comes with big changes I think walking with it for a while is important. Pondering on what it really means to bring this idea to life. The changes that might be required. Consequences it might bring. Challenges that might come up. Asking yourself if this is really what you want. Issues that might need to be solved before taking action.   

Yes, I think you can be more ready.

What helps me if something feels too big and overwhelming

Connecting with myself is my key: asking myself what exactly my worries are and writing down everything that comes to mind. This already is very relieving.

Then I try to leave everything that is not me out for a moment. “The experts say XYZ” – out. “Person X could be mad at me if I do this” – out. “Person Y has this opinion on the topic” – out. You get the idea? I try to focus on what I think or more precisely what I feel. I found that my head often gets lost in dramatic thoughts which are not too helpful. But my body pretty reliably knows what to do, what the next suitable step is.  

So I try to find a quiet place, close my eyes, take a moment and ask my body the question I’m pondering on: “Should I do this?” “Do I want to do this?” “Am I ready for this?” And usually a feeling arises that feels more like a yes or a no. I personally feel it in my chest or stomach. You might feel it somewhere else. It could feel warm or cold, vibrant, tight or tingling. It might also take some time to connect to your body if you’re not used to it. This kind of connection is such a valuable resource to me.

What I find also very helpful when feeling overwhelmed or not ready is asking myself: “What would I need to feel more secure in terms of this topic? What would help me right now?” This is a nice way of self-care to reduce overwhelm and make it as easy as possible to take that next step. 

Another approach is turning the question around and asking the opposite. So instead of “Am I ready?” you could ask yourself “Should I still wait?”. I often had revealing insights using this method. 

Also the question “What would I regret more: doing it or not doing it?” can provide clarity. 

I ask my body these questions or think about them with my brain. The most important thing for me is to get somewhere quiet and be able to connect with myself.

And yes, sometimes I come to the clue that I’m not ready yet and something else is required beforehand. Other times I find that I might still be scared but the time has come to take that next step. 

I’ve done everything to prepare myself mentally. I’ve cleared unsolved urging issues related to the topic. I am more or less aware of the consequences and challenges and mapped out some ideas on how to handle those. I can’t do more. The remaining fear is what feels like a “normal”, manageable kind of fear because what comes ahead might be something I haven’t done before. A “normal” fear of the unknown. Which I know will only go away when facing the situation.     

So, take your time, do what is needed and go at your own pace!

Cheers to you,


If you’d like to get in touch about this topic feel free to leave a comment below or write me an e-mail ( and let’s ponder on things together!

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