Why Is Taking Action So Difficult?

Why Is Taking Action So Difficult?

Photo by Talia Cohen

If you have issues with taking action, it’s hard to simply “will” yourself into it. Because there’s something deeper at play.

Continued, focused action — an ultimate success habit — is a product of your reality. Bear with me here, because this is important. We’re starting at the beginning:

You have no possible way to understand “objective reality”. There’s too much “data” in the world for us to process all of it. Our brains deal with this by constructing our reality based on a limited “data set”. And we filter out the rest.

(You can see your brain changing its filter when you get a new car, then start seeing that model of car everywhere on the road — when you never noticed it before.)

Now, if you don’t take action very much — and I mean this in the best possible way — your version of reality is probably far more inaccurate than those who do.

The reason is because nothing compares to the direct feedback you get when you take action.

That’s why — once you get into the habit of taking action — it becomes a positive feedback loop. An upward spiral.

You realize just how much you don’t know. And once you get a taste, you WANT to keep taking action.

And ANYONE can “set off” that upward spiral.

To Explain How,
Here’s A Parable:

(I don’t know the original author, or I’d cite them.)

Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up. It knows that it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be killed.

Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows that it must run faster than the slowest gazelle or it will starve.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a lion or a gazelle; when the sun comes up, you had better start running.

If you’re serious about making your life a meaningful journey, you better start feeling an inherent urgency to it.

You may say you KNOW about that urgency, but still can’t get yourself to take action.

I would argue that if you’re not taking action, you don’t know enough about the urgency!

You must FEEL that urgency in every bone of your body.

You must construct your entire reality around the urgency.

In today’s society, we’re disconnected from the fact that life is finite. You’ll never know when your finite supply will run out.

You’re tricked into thinking life isn’t about competition. The truth is — you’re always competing:

For a prospective spouse, for a place on an athletic team, for attention from others — you’re competing in ways you never even think about.

And if you don’t want your competition to leave you in the dust?

You can’t coast.

You’ve got to make progress every day of your life. Or you’ll be in the same place 3, 5, 10, 20 years from now.

The Problem:

When people cling to the excuse that the time isn’t quite right to start a business, or get out of a bad marriage, or work on the project they’ve thought about for years, or move to the city of their dreams… it’s often because they get caught up in the “how” of the situation.

But here’s the kicker: you have to DO IT in order to learn how.

There is literally no other way.

No one can foresee every problem and lay it out for you, no matter what they say when they’re trying to sell you something.

When Paul McCartney was asked how the Beatles got started, he said:

“Nobody knows how to do it. You just start a band.”

THAT is the importance of action, and why this is now…

Coming Full Circle:

Nothing is real UNTIL you take action on it.

No course, book, or “guru” on youtube can make you feel like you know what you’re doing before you do it. You have to FEEL the urgency of life so much that you just dive in.

The “how” is something that will become obvious ONLY after you take action.

Society has “built” your reality all wrong.

They made you load your brain up with information, then gave you only ONE SHOT to get it right:

One shot to take a test. One shot to pass a grade. One shot to get into grad school…

Real life is just the opposite:

You take a shot, THEN receive information you couldn’t have known without taking that shot.

School called that “failure” and punished you for it.

I call it “action” — and maintain that you can reprogram yourself to be rewarded by it.

Imperfect, Messy Action
Is The Very Essence Of Life.

So here’s how you start that “upward spiral”.

First, realize if you don’t feel urgency, you’ve got wool pulled over your eyes.

Remind yourself DAILY that life will be over before you know it. It’s a GOOD type of discomfort. And a more accurate reality.

Then, start taking action… under the assumption that the ONLY reason you’re doing it is to find out what your next step is.

The purpose of action is not to “succeed” or “fail”.

It’s to learn, get feedback, and take action again based on that feedback.

Once you get used to that, it becomes your second nature. But making the shift requires trust.

The German playwright Johann Wolfgang von Goethe said:

“Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.”

I can’t wait for you to see that genius, power and magic for yourself. Nothing compares.

But you HAVE to take the first step. TODAY.

Tomorrow is guaranteed to no one.

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