While it is helpful to be motivated and get into the right mindset to, say, exercise, it’s far easier to just show up at the gym and get started on a small quest, even when you don’t really feel like doing it. You’re likely to habituate to new behaviors in a way that circumvents your innate resistance to change.
Minor adjustments can add up and make a big difference. As Harvard psychologist Susan David writes in Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life (2016,)
Traditional self-help tends to see change in terms of lofty goals and total transformation, but research actually supports the opposite view—that small, deliberate tweaks infused with your values can make a huge difference in your life. This is especially true when we tweak the routine and habitual parts of life, which then afford tremendous leverage for change.
Idea for Impact: Waiting for the right mindset to “show up” can be a losing strategy. Taking action is often easier than controlling your mental state. Don’t overly focus on the very thing that’s harder to control. Take the next baby step forward.
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