I’m sure someone has raised this question to you, “What do you think is the most difficult thing to do?” People might say, to stop smoking, to stop drinking, avoiding the use of social media during exams, and many more.
Those are the notable concerns, but I don’t think they are the biggest problem, Getting started is.
Why is it that the moment you decide to change something in your life, all of a sudden things seem so difficult? Do you have trouble starting a task even if it’s really important? You are not alone.
The things that will most improve your lives will, at first, scare the hell of you.
There are a few reasons why:
- Starting is always scary. Change is not only difficult, but it’s also scary. So, there is a natural human tendency to delay the beginning for as long as possible.
- Fear of failure. No one wants to fail. The easiest way not to fail is to never start any task (especially anything new). Perhaps even worse than failing is looking silly. Many times you may feel that you are not capable of achieving that task, so you don’t want to start. Interestingly, this mainly happens with those tasks which are really important for us.
- Sometimes you convince yourself that you don’t have sufficient time, resources, money or staff to start something new. So you delay it unnecessarily.
- Feeling overwhelmed. Many a time the tasks feel too overwhelming and you don’t know from where to start. So you don’t.
The best way to deal with such situations is to break down the entire task into tiny ones. Make a checklist of those tiny tasks and write them down in a piece of paper. As soon as one tiny task is completed, check off that item from the list and move further. This gives you a sense of accomplishment and motivation to continue.
- Life gets in the way, we all are busy and our “to-do” lists keep on getting too long. Remember, telling yourself that you don’t have time is like telling yourself that you don’t have time to pump in fuel in your car because you are busy driving.
What to do about it…?
Poor time management skills, everybody has a hard time starting things.
- You are probably piling up small things
Most of the times you may feel that the task is too easy and can be completed quickly, thus making mistakes of letting the task pile up.
Once they pile up, you start procrastinating. You might be working on something more important, but these are the small tasks that are still on the back of your mind distracting you from your current activity.
- Link small tasks to achieve bigger goals
As we have discussed earlier the importance of breaking up the bigger task into smaller ones. Divide the small tasks in such a way that when completion of those small ones will lead you to success as a whole. Thus lowering your fears and motivating you for the next challenge.
- Reward yourself
If you are struggling to start with a new task then there is a good chance that you aren’t motivated enough. One way to keep up the motivation is to reward yourself with something when you have finished the task. For instance, when you have finished a small task, reward yourself with, let’s say, your favourite meal, or a movie or spend time with your friend. This will have a huge impact on your productivity.
- You are taking too many big tasks
Limit yourself to 2 or 3 big tasks per day. Limiting yourself is a key aspect when it comes to wanting to be more productive. That’s because it is very easy to add new tasks to your list, without even wondering that if they are necessary enough or how they might affect the big picture.
If you feel the tasks are too big to start, then you can use it’s small 2 Minute version of it to help you get started.
- Set challenges for yourself
Challenges are a sign that you are going the right way.
Challenge prepares and strengthens you. No one knows you better than yourself. You know your limits, so decide the tasks accordingly. Don’t just stay where you are. Dare to take the decisions which will eventually change your lifestyle.
Action: If you want to live a life you’ve never lived, you have to do things you’ve never done. Next time, if you have a task and have trouble getting started, identify what is stopping you and apply these tips!