Do It Now!
Procrastinating keeps your life and career at a standstill. By overcoming the habit of putting things off, you will see yourself moving one step closer to having a brighter future. Do not let the feelings of fear, lack of self-confidence or laziness hold you back from having a successful life and career. Learn how to build the courage to engage, and what steps you should take to get yourself from, “I’ll do it tomorrow,” to, “I’ll do it today.”
Do It Now! By Herman Dixon
Stop putting things off and you will move one step closer to a brighter future.
Too often, it becomes apparent that procrastination has taken an unfortunate place in our lives. Even with technology at our fingertips, too many of us fail to implement those “great ideas” we have in a timely manner.
Delay, even after affirmation of needed action, seems to be prevalent. Could it be fear, lack of self-confi dence, or “laziness” that is preventing us from acting? Whatever the issue, it can cause us to sit idly by. Hoping won’t make something happen, so do something now.
How do we build the “courage” to engage? The following steps should help you “just do it.”
1. Believe in yourself and your abilities. This must occur before any action can be taken. Too often, we hold ourselves back from demonstrating our strengths and talents and allow our minds to paint false pictures. As cofounder of Amway, Richard M. De Vos, said, “The only thing that stands between a man and what he wants from life is often merely the will to try it and the faith to believe that it is possible.” Taking the fi rst step in believing in ourselves and our abilities will ensure that action becomes a daily part of our lives.
2. Discipline yourself with a plan. Discipline helps us get better. Without it, we fall short. A plan provides the reason to do what we do and keeps us going in the right direction. It is that unique force that allows the eye to see and the mind to control what we must focus upon not only in the moment, but in the future as well. Build the plan and visualize its payoff in your mind. When you see the result in your mind’s eye, the plan will become a part of you. Combined with discipline, the plan then lets you do things to reach your goal or satisfy your heart’s desire. By disciplining ourselves with a plan of action, we enhance the confi dence in our decision to act.
3. Find a commitment partner. Achieving what you desire often demands extra attention. Even though you have a strong personal belief and a sound plan, it can be invaluable to share your goals with someone who will hold you to your commitment. Having someone who will not bend under pressure but will tell you what you need to hear—not what you want to hear—will enhance your ability to complete your task. A commitment partner will not do the work for you but will see to it that you do the work and act to move your promise to reality. Choose someone who can understand your needs, be empathetic, and direct attention to the task at hand. Though the interaction may be tense at times, the outcome will ensure that you remain steady in your original decision.
4. Prepare yourself to confront challenges. Most efforts of engagement are often haunted by adversity and by fear—the fear of falling short or the fear of succeeding. Preparation and a mental or even physical role-play of how to overcome the negatives that arise can enable progress to move onward. Stay motivated. Seek solutions when challenges arise and stop making excuses. As Florence Nightingale once said, “I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took an excuse.” If you prepare and perform, challenges should never be an obstacle.
5. Make it happen. Remember that nothing is accomplished on the sidelines. As someone once said, “Action-oriented people realize that they who want milk should not sit in the middle of a field and wait for the cow to back up to them.”
Here is a story that addresses action perhaps more vividly than others: “There once were four people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody, and Nobody. An important job had to be done, and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it. Somebody got angry about that, because it was Everybody’s job. Everybody thought Anybody could do it and that Somebody would do it. But Nobody realized that Everybody thought Somebody would do it. It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have done.”
In reality, things needed to happen but nothing was done.
“Just Do It” is more than a slogan—it is the lifeblood of the next great idea or the end of a complex situation. You never win the lottery unless you buy a ticket. You catch no fi sh unless you put hook and line in the water. You never achieve your dreams or goals unless you take the action to begin.
As former Chrysler CEO Lee Iacocca once proclaimed, “Apply yourself. Get all the education you can, but then, by God, do something. Don’t just stand there, make it happen.”
Herman L. Dixon is president and CEO of Think BIG! Coaching and Training. Contact him at
This article appeared in Advisor Today.
Topics: Time Management