I recently started sailing. Purchases my first boat a few months back and took it put, having never sailed, only reading about it. I read Chapman Piloting: Seamanship & Boat Handling front to back at least 5 or 6 times in the last 10 years, as well as a lot of other stuff.
Having never done it before, you cannot imagine how nervous I was the first time I pulled on the main halyard. A minute or two later, I cut the engine and raised the Genoa. Hearing that sail pop when it filled was more than enough to know I was finally doing something I needed.
This was the first step toward my dream of cruising. I still need to do as much crewing as possible, as well as take some certification classes, but this is year 1 of a 10 year plan.