Procrastination is the silent killer of dreams.
When you feel stuck, it is hard to motivate yourself to do something. Motivating yourself when you feel stuck is the trickiest thing to do. You may have heard this voice in your head: it suggests that you give up on the things you want.
“Downsize your dreams.”
It says “Don’t aim too high… You will be disappointed”.
You are not to blame for feeling doubts every now and then. The good news is that you can take immediate action to overcome these feelings. This method does not involve trying to artificially motivate yourself, but rather getting back into your flow.
1. Find your natural flow
Ever had those moments when everything seems so easy? You can bounce from one thing to another with ease. Time flies, your productivity increases, and everything is fun.
Do you understand what I am saying? This is when you are working in your natural flow.
When you are not in your flow, you will feel stuck. It seems like everything takes forever and that each task becomes more and more difficult. You feel as if your energy is being sapped. You have probably had similar experiences, am I right?
Do not worry, there is a solution that is much easier than setting goals. This does not require you to discover your life’s purpose or rely solely on willpower and determination.
The solution is two simple lists.
2. Understanding the cause of your pain
You will feel pain and frustration when you do things that take you out of flow. We are all wired differently. Some people are elated by the sight of an audience while others find giving a presentation to be the most stressful thing they have ever done.
Some people enjoy talking on the phone and networking. Others thrive with the details of a spreadsheet, or a map.
There are certain things we all enjoy doing, which are in our natural flow. And then there are other things that cause us to feel stuck.
To get back into flow, and overcome being stuck, you simply need to spend more time on tasks within your flow. You will thrive to the extent that you are able to do this.
We need to define flow and being stuck.
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3. Make a story of two lists
Anyone who is an expert in anything will be aware on some level as they go through their day. You can start now by adopting the same method.
Step 1: Take a piece of paper and a pen and divide it in two columns. Write “Things I Do When I Am Stuck” at the top of the column. In the second column write: “Things I Do When I Am in Flow”.
Step 2: Write down all the times that you have been stuck and the tasks you did in the first column.
Step 3: Think of all those things you have put off or avoided. These should be added to the “stuck column”.
Step 4: Enter all of the times that you were in flow into the second column.
Step 5: As you guessed, now you have to list all the things you are looking forward to accomplishing and add them to the second column.
You have now created a Flow List as well as a Stuck List. These can be used to guide your decision-making about where you want to focus your attention.
You want to spend as much time as possible on the items on your flow list and a minimal amount of time with those on your stuck list.
You will find that if you do this, either by choosing your projects carefully or outsourcing your work to other people or reallocating your tasks within your own team, being stuck becomes a distant memory!
You are in control!
Now it is your turn.
This knowledge will not change your way of doing things. But making these lists is a good start. You can make better decisions if you know what keeps you moving and what makes you feel stuck.
The easiest and most productive way to get things done right now is not to add more.
Let us make those lists now, before you click away.
Grab a pen and a piece of paper and start making your lists. You will be surprised at how quickly your life will start to change.
To your inevitable success!