Lately, we’ve been talking about progress and how to strive for it (read my progress blog).
We’ve been talking about how to eliminate road blocks that prevent you from getting from the mediocrity and complacency phase to the driven and finishing what you started stage of life (read my eliminate blog).
We’ve been talking about the simplicity of what High Achievers do and how any one of us can do it and the power that comes from it when we do (read my achievers blog).
But the practicality and reality is so many people get motivated…
So many get inspired…
So many get fired up after a great motivational talk or sermon or experience…
But very few ever leave that contemplation stage and go full force into action mode to do something about it.
In today’s blog I’m going to share some things that I’ve personally learned and practiced in my own life to push myself to be someone that Does What I Say I’m Going To Do. Some are perspective changers and mindset shifts, and others are physical action steps. Again, these things will sound so simple but I’m telling you, they work. I haven’t always been like this. It’s taken me a lot of years of training to get here.
Whenever I read about any great mind that has achieved great things, these are the common characteristics and themes about their life that I discover.
Everyone has to work at it, constantly, for their entire life.
Everyone at some point has to slash old thought patterns before they pick up new ones, and continually practiced positive self-talk for their entire life.
Everyone knows that this is the true grind of being a gamer.
And the great news is everyone can do it.
We just have to be willing to be intentional and make time for it.
With that being said, here are the 4 Steps To Get From Inspired To Action Immediately:
#1: Sign Up For Something Immediately.
Let’s say you go to a fitness event to watch your friend or family member compete in a competition and you get inspired just from watching. You think about the long-term goal you’ve had to complete a race for your first time. You envision the feeling of accomplishment and how confident you would feel from running through that finish line. It will be such a great experience. You just know it. But then you also know the realities of life.
Before you let those self-defeating thoughts even have a chance to sink in, go sign up for a race immediately. I don’t care if you’ve never run a day in your life, be realistic of course on the time frame, but find a race and sign up now!
There is truth in the saying, “Fake it til you make it.” I agreed to a speech to 500 people when I never gave a speech in my life! I signed up for my first marathon when I never ran more than 6 miles in my life! I started a website before I even had a business! I’m telling you to this day, I still practice this life trick. For example, I still sign up for races that are four months away just because I know that even though they might not be anything fancy, it’s still the secret to staying motivated because it gives me a goal to work for.
I’m a firm believer in signing a commitment letter even if you don’t have all the plans yet, because it means there’s no turning back. You have to figure out the way because you just committed yourself to it.
If you sign up for a race, the excuses and exits will still pop up, but you’ll be quicker at diffusing them because you don’t have an option. You already signed up. Oh, sure you can go without the $35 race fee if you really wanted to. But psychologically, you feel committed and don’t want to let yourself down. Over the next few weeks or months or even year, you’ll find yourself motivated to get out on the road and train because you won’t let yourself perform less than you’re capable of. It’s just the way many of us are wired. You won’t go into a race unprepared!
These are mindset tactics that apply to all aspects of your life. The “sign-ups” are just different.
- If you leave a fitness conference and are motivated to try something new with your business, go sign up to follow someone’s blog who’s already doing it.
- If you want to write a book, sign up by ordering a book on how to write a book.
- If you want to change your careers, sign up to watch a seminar or youtube video to learn about the new career you want to pursue.
The reality is we all have the best of intentions but as soon as we leave a thought or experience that truly motivated and inspired us, life will get in the way and the motivated and inspired feelings will fade.
Well, I’m telling you from hundreds of personal experiences with this in fitness, business, and life, signing up for something will immediately keep those feelings alive because now you have a deadline. And deadlines are powerful.
#2. Find An Accountability Partner Immediately.
A secret success tip that I see time and time again with human beings is the power of accountability.
Recently we did a Team Wolf Pack challenge at our gym. The goal was to hit certain metrics each week regarding nutrition, recovery, fitness, personal and professional development, and faith. Certain points were awarded for each category and individual points were added into an overall team score. At the end of each week athletes had to turn in their scorecards so team coaches could see how they performed.
Everyone was super motivated. People were talking about things we never hear them talk about. Some people started running for the first time. Others started drinking more water. A lot of people forced themselves to get to bed earlier. The magic was they had a team that was with them and behind them. The magic was they had a coach to communicate with and submit their results too. The magic was accountability. “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17
I have accountability partners in my faith and my fitness. I have guys I meet with and communicate with regularly for faith check-ins. These guys help me with my marriage and my walk with Jesus. I have a really good friend who I constantly communicate with about nutrition. We set goals. We tell each other. We check each other. And heck, I wouldn’t be nearly as healthy if I didn’t have my wife as an accountability partner. She lives the same way I do, and she isn’t afraid to tell me when I’m messing up. I also have fitness guys in the industry who I can reach out to about anything related to running a fitness business.
You will let yourself find a way out if it’s just you on the journey alone. Your accountability partner won’t let you. Give them permission to call you out and speak truth into your life. Be vulnerable and willing to share your faults, mess-ups, and weaknesses. Sometimes just a simple “vent” text alone to your accountability partner clears up your mind, slashes your pride, and allows you to see clear again.
#3: Discover Your Energy Blocks And Use Them Immediately.
I cannot create blogs or workout programs at night. By that point my mind is shut down and exhausted and I cannot force my brain to create new ideas. I know that now. But I used to not understand this about myself nor did I realize this was a real thing. Therefore, I used to force myself to sit down and try to push out thoughts from an empty capsule and found myself wasting a lot of valuable time in the process.
After time inventories, reflection, and a lot of frustrated experiences, I discovered my most productive times of the day (energy blocks) and learned how to manage my time around these blocks and tap into them more. I have the most energy in the morning. That’s why I prefer to workout in the mornings. I can create best between 8-11am and for some reason on Wednesday, Friday, and Sundays the most ideas come to me. I know I need to get things done during these energy blocks and if I don’t get them done, they won’t get done until the next energy block. And I won’t let my mind get frustrated anymore thinking about them. “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matthew 6:34)
Chances are you’re probably already aware of when you work best. The only step you need to take now is to write down those energy blocks and utilize them better. If you know you do dishes and laundry better at night, then don’t try to force yourself to do those household responsibilities in the morning. If you know you’re in a better mood to respond to email communications in the morning, then don’t try to open your email box mid-afternoon when you’re tired and cranky.
Again, if you’re inspired to take action on something, you may have the best of intentions, but trying to force energy to take action at inopportune times will leave you feeling defeated and deflated. You need to learn how to flow better. Peak performers learn how to flow throughout each day most effectively and efficiently. And learning how to flow with your day first starts with identifying your energy blocks and then taking full advantage of them.
#4. Fear the Lord Immediately.
Step four should take precedence over the other three. It’s the biggest perspective changer. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding.” (Psalm 111:10)
But I’m not going to dive into full details here about this step. I’m making a separate blog with my good friend Pastor John Jacobs to talk about this concept more. It’s not easy to talk about in a few sentences and I remember the first time I heard this, I was pushed away. Plus, I still don’t have it all right. I just know that everything in my day must start with this.
Fearing the Lord isn’t about being afraid of a rage-filled God who will smack you across the face if you don’t do something He says. For me, it’s about the fear of disappointing Him and not wanting to let Him down. You all remember when your dad or mom said “I’m mad at you.” And it didn’t really hurt that much. But then if they said, “I’m disappointed in you.” Wow, that stung.
Fearing the Lord has to be my main fear every day because guess what? That takes the pressure off every other decision. You can’t fear others’ opinions if you fear the Lord first. Because His opinion is the only one that matters. You can’t fear failure if you fear the Lord first. Because if He said to do it, then you do it no matter the outcome, because the good news is He loves you just the same and He’s proud of you for obeying. You can’t fear stressors if you fear the Lord first. Because you know it’s all part of God’s plan and His plan will ultimately bring you joy, contentment, and fulfillment in life, after your trials and struggles are all said and done.
Fearing the Lord is motivating, not debilitating. It’s liberating, not restricting. It’s propelling, not halting. It makes you get off your butt and do something because living your best life is no longer a choice. It’s an obligation you feel, based on gratitude towards God, for the life you’ve been given.
I’ll stop here. Look out soon for our upcoming blog covering more of this concept.
Finally, if you only take one step from this blog, I would say take step one. Even if you don’t understand the other three concepts enough yet, they will come to make sense over time and through experiences. Signing up for something is one of the biggest game-changers because even if you don’t know what you’re doing, you’re at least starting to psyche yourself into thinking you do.
And then after practicing these four steps you’ll then have to apply one more thing….
The 3 R’s.
Recover. Re-ignite. Repeat.
After all, the journey never stops. Neither does being inspired and taking action. And the only way to keep being inspired and taking action in life is to keep recovering, re-igniting, and repeating.
But we’ll talk about that more in the next blog…