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The Heretic is a free dispatch delivering insights into what it takes to lead into & in the unknown. For entrepreneurs, corporate irritants and change makers. Raw, unfiltered and opinionated.

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Feb 3rd, 2022 Share: Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn

How Do I Begin?

The English novelist Arnold Bennett was once asked the one question which seems to reverberate through the ages, and is as relevant to the artist than it is to the businesswoman: “How do I begin?”

I know for fact that I asked that question many, many times of myself, as have I heard that question being posed to me by entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, people at the beginning, as well as the end of their career, and everyone in-between.

Bennett’s response, not surprisingly, is precise, concise, and — quite frankly — all there is to say about the subject:

“Dear sir, you simply begin. There is no magic method of beginning.”

And Bennett wouldn’t be Bennett if he wouldn’t give his readers an illustrative example to bring his point home:

If a man standing on the edge of a swimming-bath and wanting to jump into the cold water should ask you, “How do I begin to jump?” you would merely reply, “Just jump. Take hold of your nerves, and jump.”

There you have it, fellow Heretic: Take hold of your nerves, and jump. As jumping (and therefore beginning) is what the world wants and needs of you.

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