30 Seconds That Will Change Your Life

What if I gave you a secret that would allow you to do the things that you really want to (and really need to) do but always put off until later?

I will. It is a simple little time management trick…and you can start doing it right now!

time management image

Regardless how successful, accomplished, disciplined or focused we are, there are always a handful of actions that we dread doing—and usually don’t do, even though we can. Sometimes, these actions limit our progress in our lives and in our leadership. It could be our taxes, organizing our office, writing an important letter, or drafting your company’s strategic plan. You know, those tasks that we end up doing at the very last minute, only to avoid major disaster.

Personally, these few items are also a source of pain because they make me feel like a failure. They taunt me…“you are not disciplined enough to take care of this.” Can you think of anything right now that you wish you could get yourself to do?

I want to show you a simple but powerful time-management technique that helps me overcome this annoying human tendency. Here is what you do:

  • Get out your favorite stopwatch. (I use the one on my iPhone.)
  • Set it for 30 seconds.
  • Tell yourself, “I will make myself do this task I am dreading for only 30 seconds.”
  • Start the action that you are dreading and putting off.
  • Most of the time, after 30 seconds of doing it your discomfort and hesitation are decreased by at least 50%—enough to finish the job!

I use this technique several times per week, sometimes several times per day. I use it for mundane tasks and sometimes for important ones.

In Chemistry we learn about “activation energy.” It is the rate-limiting step for a chemical reaction. Chemists use different tricks and techniques to get a chemical reaction to move beyond that hump because it is downhill from there. This first 30 seconds is usually the hump we need to get past so we are able to push forward and complete the one task or project we have been putting off.

Give it a go…and let me know if it works for you. You can do ANYTHING for 30 seconds!

Your Friend,
Wes Saade MD Signature

PS – If you know someone who may benefit from this blog, please consider sharing!

Reading: This week I am reading the book Working Without a Net, by Morris R. Shechtman.

 

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