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How to Get Stuff Done When You're Just Not Feeling It

Use the 15-minute rule

You can accomplish quite a bit in just 15 minutes, and yet most of us fritter away that time on our phones in between meetings or during a commute. 

Commit to working on a put-off task for 15 minutes without interruption. Stop at 15 minutes. Don’t allow yourself to work any longer. Do this every day for a week and mark your progress.

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How to Get Stuff Done When You're Just Not Feeling It

How to Get Stuff Done When You're Just Not Feeling It

https://www.success.com/how-to-get-stuff-done-when-youre-just-not-feeling-it/

success.com

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Key Ideas

Attach reason to the task

Getting motivated about a task doesn’t mean you have to be happy or excited about it. 

Sometimes you must ask yourself: Why is this task important? What will it bring about in my life? The answer could be as simple as I won’t get fired.

Your unwillingness to get started

Have you ever had a looming deadline on a big project only to spend an inordinate amount of time cleaning out your refrigerator or detailing your car?

If you struggle to get started on a project until it’s crunch time, you might have an unhealthy relationship with stress. Research shows that people can be just as addicted to stress as they are to likes on their social media posts.

Use the 15-minute rule

You can accomplish quite a bit in just 15 minutes, and yet most of us fritter away that time on our phones in between meetings or during a commute. 

Commit to working on a put-off task for 15 minutes without interruption. Stop at 15 minutes. Don’t allow yourself to work any longer. Do this every day for a week and mark your progress.

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Overcome procrastination

If you're procrastinating on a task, don't force yourself to finish it. Just put it in a time box.

Setting a time for it will help you overcome your resistance towards the task and chances are that when the time is up you’ll have built enough momentum to continue working on it much longer.

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The Physics of productivity

Newton’s First Law applied to habit formation: Objects in motion tend to stay in motion. 

Once a task has begun, it is easier to continue moving it forward. In other words, it is often easier to finish a task than it was to start it in the first place.

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Get Motivated
  • Set SMALL AND SPECIFIC GOALS that will not make you feel anxious and overwhelmed.
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Think in Years, Not Days

Before jumping to a conclusion, think about the long-term consequences of your decision.

We may respect those able to fling themselves into a hard problem and make a quick choice with seemingly little thought, but making a meaningful decision needs to be done with care for the long-term effects.

Understand Decision Fatigue

It’s important to be aware of what state of mind you’re in before tackling a hard choice.

Decision fatigue happens when the mental energy required to weigh the tradeoffs of our decision becomes too much for us to handle. 

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Research shows that more than 50% of American workers feel disengaged at their jobs.

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Focus On The Meaning

We find motivation when something is meaningful. Meaning is much bigger than the enjoyment of a moment. It can include something we don't like. Soldiers risk being killed every day to serve their country. New parents handle poop daily for years.

Meaningful things give us purpose. This means doing something that serves a larger cause than yourself or, at least, making a contribution in your own world.

Tasks that do not seem meaningful

When a task you have to do doesn't seem meaningful, reframe your experience. You may not always be able to change what you have to do but you can change how you view it. When you look at it in light of how it helps others, you'll often find motivation.

You're not "filling out boring paperwork, you're helping people get the insurance that could save their life. You're not slaving over a hot stove, you're showing your family how much you love them.

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Internal motivation, the drive to achieve that comes from inside a person is the kind of motivation that can lead to life-changing improvements and well-being.

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Self-Efficacy

It means believing in your ability to perform a task and achieve goals. There are 3 ways to build self-efficacy:

  • Ensure early success. When first starting out, choose activities you're certain you can do successfully.
  • Watch others succeed in the activity you want to try.  This is particularly effective if the person you're observing is similar to you (friends, neighbors, co-workers).
  • Find a supportive voice. Personal trainers and coaches are skilled in giving appropriate encouragement, as are good friends (usually).
Fundamentally Independent Thinking (FIT)

A fundamentally independent thinker understands that nothing makes a person upset, angry, or depressed; rather, what a person thinks about the world determines how they feel

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If you choose to give away 80 percent of your attention to meetings, you will have 20 percent of your attention just for dealing with a few emails feeling overwhelmed.

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  • Proactive attention: you are fully focused and prepared for your most important decisions/ most complex tasks.
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Developing Resilience

Life isn’t what you enjoy when you get somewhere. It's about the journey, the highs and the lows, the victories, and defeats. Resilience keeps you going through all your good and bad times.

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No Goals

People find it difficult to predict the results today's actions will yield a few months from now. So, give them up. Do something because you enjoy it, not for what it will get you.

Exercise to become fit, not because you have a goal of losing 25 pounds in 4 months. If you do what you love, results will inevitably follow.

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The time-blocking method

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The most important task method (MIT)

Rather than writing out a massive to-do list and trying to get it all done, determine the 1-3 tasks that are absolutely essential and then relentlessly focus on those tasks during the day.

Once you determine your 1-3 most important tasks, they are scheduled first in your day. You then make progress on essential items before you get bombarded by distractions. 

The Pomodoro Technique

Is all about working in short, massively productive, intensely focused bursts, and then giving yourself a brief break:

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  • Work on the task until the timer ends
  • Take a short break (around 5 minutes)
  • Every 4 Pomodoro sessions, take a longer break (15-30 minutes).

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