Just do it. Whatever you’re thinking about doing, do it now.
So many people have so many excuses for not doing amazing things. You’ve all heard it before, someone suggests they’d like to do something a little out there, then comes the “I would do it, but…”. “It’s raining”. “It’s too difficult”. “I just can’t right now”. The list goes on, you know the drill. And there you are, thinking that they should do it or shut up and stop complaining. Then you get home at 10pm and say to yourself “Oh, it’s 10pm, probably too late to go for a run. Might just watch some TV instead”. And somehow, in your mind, that’s justified. It shouldn’t be.
If you want to do something, just do it. Don’t ever hesitate. Don’t ever overthink it. Just do it. Want to visit a new country? Just pack up and go. The old you would still be “trying to decide” by the time you get back and put your life back together in better condition than when you left. Planned to go for a run but got home 3 hours late? Don’t sit there and think about whether you still have time, get out there and you’ll be back before you watched 2 episodes of Futurama. Wanted to do Steve Hopkins blog a day challenge in March but you’re 5 days late, it’s 1am and you need to be up at 7? You’ve already missed out. Might as well not do it all, right? Nice try, but you’re not getting away that easy.
Now, I know it’s easy to say just do whatever you want, but when it comes down to it, actually making that choice and performing an action without procrastination is still extremely difficult. For something like packing up and visiting a new country, ok, I understand, that’s not easy. But going for a run? Talking to someone new? Changing your career? Deciding to go to the gym? Why is it so hard to do things that for the most part have positives that massively outweigh the negatives? And what allows us to live with ourselves when we constantly miss out on great opportunities? Well, the answer probably isn’t far off what you’re thinking. Whatever it is you want to do, it’s easier not to do it, and that’s the cold hard fact. After all, we are creatures of habit, so the more often we procrastinate, the longer we do it for, and the more situations we apply it to. Until nearly every task is met with procrastination, and your mind is conditioned to not want to try new things. And after you’ve seen an opportunity, let the procrastination take over, and missed a chance, your mind tries justify the act of not doing it with excuse, “oh it was too late”. “oh the job probably wouldn’t have been that good”. “oh the gym costs too much anyway”. Fluff. Lies that make you feel better, but are still lies. Or at best mistruths, because you truly never know what you’ve missed out on.
What you have to consider is the potential cost of not doing something. I’m not just talking pure monetary value, but an overall cost of lifestyle, happiness, and opportunity. Take a hypothetical networking event where you could be talking to a big name in the industry. You’re comfortable where you are, with the people you know, so you don’t have to do it. The cost of doing it is perhaps anywhere from 5-30 minutes of your time. The potential cost of not doing it is missing out on one of the biggest contracts you have ever got for your business; the one that sets you off on your way to becoming a multi-million dollar company. Or lets take the simple example of going to the gym. The cost is ~$20 and 4 hours a week. The potential cost of not doing it is being unfit and unhealthy with a less-than-average body, not sleeping well, not being happy with yourself, and not meeting amazing people who are there to make the most out of their body and life.
For most situations a simple cost/benefit analysis will prove to yourself that most things you want to do in life — but constantly make excuses for — have far greater positive outcomes than negatives. You’ll even find that many situations don’t have any real negatives at all, just perceived negatives. This is something I might touch on in a later post. For now, stop procrastinating on all the things you want to do, remind yourself what you’re potentially missing out on, and get to it!