I attended an event recently that brought home to me how easy it is to keep talking about a problem without moving forward to take action on a solution.
It’s not that we don’t want to move forward, it’s just that we either:
- Find the problem too complex
- Are worried about taking the wrong action
- Or are not sure what the right thing to do is
Ultimately, we procrastinate and don’t focus and commit in the way we’d really like to.
Change-makers don’t believe in years of planning, but in trial and error. They start immediately even if they don’t know what it will look like, this flexibility makes it possible to adapt and to change. This is of course, easier said than done.
So, if you’re stuck in a space of inaction, here are some tips on how to become the doer you’ve always wanted to be:
1: If the problem feels too complicated that you don’t know where to start, then breaking daunting tasks into manageable pieces will help.
I had a coaching client who felt so overwhelmed by the large complex projects that she was managing, she would want to book a week out in her diary to focus on them, but this wasn’t possible and so she became increasingly anxious and frustrated.
Together we decided to try another approach to break these large complex projects into a series of more straightforward tasks. Such as data gathering, conversations, analysis and schedule them with allocated time in her diary.
She felt much better, as she was making progress and by breaking it down, it no longer felt so complex.
2: Don’t look at decisions as outcomes, see them as part of a process.
Sometimes we can by paralysed by analysis. We are so worried about making the wrong decision, that we make no decision at all.
Rather than thinking of decisions as outcomes, try to see them as part of the process. Don’t expect your decisions to be the be all end all. Every decision you make is a step along the process of your life. There is no such thing as a destination.
However you should start with some self-reflection, so that you know ‘what you really want’, or ‘what you are trying to achieve’ and also be aware of your biases.
For example, if winning is really important to you, are you making decisions that mean you ‘win’ but ultimately they don’t make you happy? Try to make decisions that make YOU happy. If you get it wrong, you’ll learn, if you do nothing, you definitely won’t grow.
3: There’s a saying ‘better done, than perfect’
Getting something done is tremendously satisfying, while perfection may keep us tweaking something forever. Remember done is not over, you can still develop your craft, your idea, and your project.
Perfectionism can keep us stuck doing nothing, so give yourself permission to be imperfect or make a mistake. Relieve the pressure of needing to achieve perfection in every task on the first time. Promise yourself you’ll go back and fix any problems later and then you’ll share any positive intentions, so people will understand where your motivations lie in working in this way.
A final tip from Edmund Lee
“Surround yourself with the dreamers and the doers, the believers and thinkers, but most of all, surround yourself with those who see the greatness within you, even when you don’t see it yourself.”
Further resources to help you overcome procrastination and get things done:
WEBINAR: Overcoming Procrastination [35 mins]
Online Programmes: Three procrastination beating programmes. This 12 part course is for women who want to create the life they’ve dreamed of, their way. It will help you to grow and develop your skills and challenge you to step outside your comfort zone and take action. You simply need to commit 10 minutes a day or an hour a week and have an open mind. Steps One, Step Two, Step Three.
EVENT: Dare to Dream Retreat 8-9th Feb 2020
RESOURCE: Capture your successes in the Happenista Journal
BOOK: The Power of Now by Ekhart Tolle
BOOK: Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-free Productivity David Allen
ARTICLE: How to Train Your Brain to Focus [2 mins]
VIDEO: TED Talk – Flow, The Secret of Happiness [18 mins]
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