This idea came up again in a conversation with a friend, about getting started.
My friend was describing this great routine she wanted, she was excited about getting up, eating breakfast and immediately sitting at her computer to write.
She’d tried this a few times in the previous week, but when she looked back at what she had produced, was dissatisfied and then had found it difficult even to sit down at the computer again, always finding other things to do. This is of course, extremely common!
Heres something we came up with, which I first read about from personal trainers and sports motivational types…
The personal trainers example was someone wanting to start running. Their client seemed motivated, wanted to be healthy, actually enjoyed running once they started, but that act of putting on the shoes and getting out there just seemed like a prohibitive amount of effort! So, the trainer made that weeks discipline very simple.
EVERY MORNING, wake up, put on your trainers, leave bedroom.
Do it straight away, don’t think, don’t try and wake up, just do it.
Then if you want, take them straight off and get back into bed.
What happened? Well with the exception of the first morning, this young athlete (ahem) ends up going out for a run. But the task is simply put on the shoes.
After that, once that had become a habit (or a ritual as Tony Robbins calls it) then stack the next habit on top, put the shoes on, and run once around the block. Thats it, not 5k, not twenty mins, once around the block. As Jim Rohn says, ‘Easy to do, easy not to do!’
You get the idea.
With my writer friend, first weeks task is, have breakfast, open computer, load word processor.
Thats it. (We actually went a little further, we put it in twice a day, at 9.30am whatever happens she’s turning on the Mac, and at 13.30pm she does the same.) Now, if you’re inclined in the moment to write or do something connected, thats fine, but no checking facebook or twitter first!
THEN we added something to ease her brain into the writing mood, she was to review 2-3 bits of existing but unfinished work, and either add to or edit one of those, or to begin something new.
You’ve got to build the discipline of getting down to work. Realise its not as arduous as you think!
Try it now, what one discipline or activity do you want in your life that you could practice just getting over the initial ‘urgh’ feeling?
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