Yesterday, I finished reading Mel Robbins' book, "The 5 Second Rule."
No, it has nothing to do with dropped food.
It has everything to do with improving your life.
The premise is this: Any time your gut tries to move in the right direction, your brain talks you out of it after 5 seconds. If you don't take action within those first 5 seconds, you miss your window of opportunity.
Example: You feel the urge to sign up for a class you've been interested in. You don't act on the urge because you start thinking about all the reasons you shouldn't do it or why you should do it later (aka procrastinating). It'll be hard. You don't have time. Maybe in the future when things slow down.
But what you need to do recognize that urge to sign up and start counting down 5-4-3-2-1...and then TAKE ACTION. Get on your computer and sign up already! Or get in your car and drive to the university. Whatever it takes. Just take action in 5 seconds or less.
I love the idea that we all instinctively know what we should be doing. We know we should get out of bed right away and not hit the snooze button. We know we shouldn't eat donuts and we should exercise every day. We know we need to reach out to loved ones to foster relationships. We all know what actions we need to take to enrich our lives. But how often do you we actually do them?
And why do we put them off if we know they are going to improve our lives?
Because our brains are full of the reasons (aka excuses) about why we shouldn't act.
You have to beat your brain to the punch.
Act within 5 seconds. Literally count down in your head and take action before you get to 0 (or blast off...whichever you prefer).
There are literally endless ways you could apply this rule to your life. From getting out of bed in the morning, to getting off of Facebook, to working on your home business...there is almost nothing you couldn't use the rule for. The book itself is full of testimonials and stories of people who have found ways to apply the rule and change their lives.
One of my favorites and most useful ways to apply the rule is to beat procrastination. Mel explains that the reason most of us procrastinate is because we don't want to deal with the negative feelings that work may bring up for us. For many, "procrastination is not a form of laziness at all. It's a coping mechanism for stress."
In my life, I've found the rule to be helpful in multiple ways already. Yes, it works to get me out of bed. It works to get me off of Facebook when I'm zoned out and lost in the newsfeed. It has worked for me to express difficult feelings (such as apologizing). I've also used to redirect poor nutrition choices. If I'm reaching for something not-so-healthy to satisfy a craving, I can 5-4-3-2-1 grab some water or a healthy alternative.
I also love the idea using the rule to get rid of extra clutter. How often do we overthink getting rid of something when we know darn well that we haven't used said item in years? 5-4-3-2-1 trash or donation pile... no looking back!
And as Mel points out, every time you make a decision in the right direction, your confidence grows. You start realizing that you've had the power to change your life all along. And THAT feels amazing!
If you want to know more or if you find yourself hesitating and constantly blocking yourself from taking actions that you know you should take, you definitely need this is in your life. 5-4-3-2-1, you got this!