There’s a quote I’ve been thinking about lately:

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”

It’s a motivation for starting something, but I like it for a different reason. It also points out that you can’t dwell on what you’ve been missing out on because you haven’t started yet.

The best example I can think of is long-term investing. It’s easy to look at a stock that recently had a good run and think cynically about it. “It’s too bad I missed that, maybe I shouldn’t invest in this asset”. This line of thinking creates a negative loop. A Catch-22 that will force you to never start.

Breaking that loop can open up many pathways because this idea applies to anything that has a distant, long-term reward ahead of it.