For years I would simply think or dream of what could be in my life, yet I would always let something get in the way of me actually DOING something about it. Sure I would have a problem with something and know I had to come up with a solution, but when it came time to working on it I'd get distracted and start doing something completely unproductive and once hours went by and I had absolutely nothing to show for it I'd get depressed and basically waste another day. After wasting a few days it's very easy to get discouraged and give up all together, but you can't let that happen. In my experience and from what I've seen from others, there are some commonalities as to why this happens to us.
Fear - Probably the single most common reason for not doing something right away is fear. We feel fear from so many things in life and can become paralyzed by it to such an extent that we don't even try something out of sheer terror. Some fear is understandable and can actually save your life by forcing you into action. If you feel fear when a giant bear is running towards you in a forest, thereby making you get the heck out of there as quickly as possible, that's a good thing! Otherwise, imagine just standing there and being like, “oh, look at that cute furry animal coming my way; I think I'll pet it. " I think you get my point.
Irrational fear on the other hand can be incredibly damaging if we let it control us. If we prevent ourselves from trying something based on the idea that we might fail then we lose the battle before it even started. The only way you can achieve success is to fail enough times and take something positive away from each and every one of those experiences. If you can learn from your failures and make adjustments, you'll be that much closer to success. Most ultra-successful ideas came from people that took risks; that weren't afraid to try out something new or difficult.
Now I'm not saying to jump head first into problems and just try the first thing that comes to mind. Instead, carefully think of solutions or different ways of looking at the problem and take calculated risks once you've evaluated your actions or have tested possible outcomes and go from there.
Another type of fear is the fear of not being accepted by your family, friends, or peers. If you happen to have an idea or ideal for your life that doesn't sit well with the people around you, you have to understand that it's your life and your decision only for what makes you truly happy. Many times others won't understand your intentions or will base their own values on whether or not you should do something, but that's the wrong way to think. You should always be able to step back from yourself and try to see something from another person's perspective so that you can gain a deeper understanding of what makes them tick. If people can't do that for you then feel free to try and explain your reasons, but stick to your guns and let them know it's something you really want to do. It's good to take others’ feelings into consideration, but when it drives our own decisions to be based less on what we want and more on outside forces, we never get to accomplish anything that we deserve to have happen for ourselves.
The last type of fear may sound strange at first, but really does exist for millions more people than you would think and that is the fear of success. Many times we grow up in our own personal version of the world around us and don't realize what success looks like or how successful people are like as humans. Take the story of my life for example. Growing up, I didn't have anyone around me that I could say was truly successful and so I had no clue what it would be like to never worry about money or how it would feel to concentrate more on making myself and my family happy rather than being filled with worry and doubt. No matter what has happened to you in your life or the people around you, feeling this way is a downward spiral that results in nothing but negativity.
When I started my first business as a computer consultant I remember getting that first call and going over to the customer's residence and quickly solving their problem. When they paid me for my services I actually felt strange. . . at first. I thought to myself that I fixed their problem so easily and that it was weird to take someone's money when it was a simple problem. But where I was false in this mindset was in the fact that I had specialized knowledge that they did not. I offered my services at a fair price and they had their problem solved quickly, so there was no reason for me to feel odd about the whole process. I got over those feelings, of course, but always kept that lesson in my mind. Anything that you can do well or have unique training/knowledge for should never be thought of as a handicap, but rather something you can share with the world and if you charge for those services there's nothing wrong with that. That's why there's millions of thriving businesses out there in the world that offer the rest of us something valuable and we're all willing to pay for it so why not join in the fun!
Laziness - Ok, people don't want to be called lazy, but let's be honest with ourselves here. From time to time we're all lazy and put off important tasks that should be done immediately. I know I've allowed myself to be lazy countless times when I was younger just to realize how much time I had wasted by doing so.
Some things in life are fun and some just plain aren't, but are so important in the grand scheme of things that if they're allowed to sit on the back burner too long will hurt you badly. Here's the problem: it's much easier to be lazy than to work at accomplishing something; plain and simple. We're all experts on relaxing, but much less of us know how to get things done in the most efficient way possible.
Whenever you have an idea for something, get it out of your head and into a more permanent form that can be referenced to when you need it. Most experts will always tell you to get a piece of paper and write it down, but for some reason I personally haven't always liked that approach, but that's just me. The point is to do something with that information whether it is to write it down, record your thoughts into a voice recorder, or type it out into a computer. There's something about getting the ideas out of your head and into a more permanent medium that allows you to work on them easier. It's as if you're making those thoughts a reality by recording them, which makes it more likely to do something productive with.
Don't be a “put-offer. " Every day we all have tons of things vying for our attention that can interrupt whatever we're doing at the time. What we end up doing is putting off important tasks because we make excuses by doing other things that could probably wait in the first place. When you sit down at your computer to work on something, don't let yourself get distracted by these things. We've created numerous distractions that get in our way constantly such as email, games, cell phones, etc. We find excuses to use these distractions all day long every day and if you added up the time spent with them, you'd be shocked how much more time you have to work with each day and be productive.
When there's something you're working on or want to get started, remove anything that could interrupt your focus. Don't check email all day long, but only at specific times. Refrain from playing little games here and there to waste time. Turn off cell phones/land lines and check messages at predetermined intervals. Let loved ones know you're going to be busy for a certain amount of time. Block off a couple hours here and there to specifically focus your attention on one problem at a time and don't move onto the next until the previous has been finished.
Just remember that the key to being productive and efficient with anything you do lies within your attitude toward starting those projects in the first place. If you always follow these steps you'll quickly become vastly faster at your work and will see that you get more done in less time than you've ever thought possible. Just making some small changes to how you begin your work can have dramatic results on how efficiently it gets finished.
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