Taking simple action strengthens mindset mastery and helps you get unstuck

I could sense my inner inertianista rapidly backpedaling as the IKEA agent scrolled through the pages of instruction for assembling the bookcase I was about to buy.   Did I really want to commit to this project?  Was my current bookshelf setup really so bad?  Is the price right?

Making decisions does not always come easy to me, even with something as simple as buying a bookcase.  But  keeping your options open can cause missed opportunities.  Stall your progress.  Keep you stuck with an old, ineffective situation on your hands.

The mindset habit of indecision keeps you stuck.  We forget that inaction is also a decision by default.

The inner stall went something like this:  What if  I can’t figure it out? What if it doesn’t look like I want it to?  What color should I get?  Should I measure it again?  Think about it and get it another time?  Do I really want to spend time putting it together?

It was the perfect size, shape, and degree of robustness I needed in a bookshelf.  Fair price.  Uncertain time investment required to put it together, as it came unassembled.  Yet the pros clearly outreached the possible negatives.   I had been shopping for a bookshelf to officially replace the old, quick-fix shelving we had thrown together years ago.   Clearly, this was one of those times when nudging myself to flex the mindset muscle of ‘just do it’ was in order.  I broke ranks with habit and pushed myself to buy.

What I had expected to take a full day – building the bookshelf – was done within two hours.  The joy of finding a new home for my reference books, the stack of which which I had been rifling my way through while writing the Fit Quickies book, was my reward.

Plus, I experienced the strength and confidence that comes with making a choice and taking action.  It’s a good feeling.  And it builds mindset mastery that transfers all over the place.

Bookshelf Before Bookshelf After

Taking action has a momentum of its own

Within a week of building the bookcase, I had cleaned out two shelves in my office closet, condensed 4 boxes of photos into one, given away two crates of clothes and appliances to the curbside donation pickup, booked two new speaking gigs, and ate better than I had in a week.

By practicing taking action in any one realm, you build the skill of just that – taking action.   You strengthen mastery over complacency mindset. It  becomes a stronger skill upon which you can draw.

2 steps to taking action and becoming unstoppable

Taking action strengthens mindset mastery and  helps you get unstuck.

1)  Make a quick list of things you’ve been meaning to do but couldn’t quite decide commit to action.  Maybe it’s cleaning out a closet, or replacing something in the kitchen that just doesn’t work well any more, organizing a drawer because you can’t decide what to keep or what to throw out.

2)  Move past the inertia of indecision and take action.  Feel the fear and do it anyway.

That’s it!

Then sit back and enjoy the lightness of being that comes with taking the box to Goodwill, enjoying a kitchen tool that actually works, or opening that drawer now only filled with things you use.  Build that bookcase so you can easily find a title or two.  And watch the ripple effect of action.

Watch out, it might even make it easier for you to implement  a ‘just do it’ attitude with your eating and exercise plan.  When you stop stopping yourself you become unstoppable

I’d love to hear what you plan to tackle – what action can you take today? Please share in replies below.

P.S.  Thanks to everyone on facebook who voted on the title for this article.  Between 1)  “How taking simple action strengthens mindset mastery and  helps you get unstuck” and 2) “When you stop stopping yourself you become unstoppable”.  Voting ran two to one for number 2 to title number two.

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