I’m currently reading a book called The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins. And it’s essentially about the importance of taking action as soon as you have the instinct to do so.
The basic philosophy is, “If you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must physically move within 5 seconds or your brain will kill it … If you do not take action on your instinct to change, you will stay stagnant. You will not change.”
It’s a concept that you can apply to any creative pursuit. Ever since starting the book, I’ve been applying it to my own life. And I’m finding the momentum it creates is helping me achieve more than usual.
Paralysis by analysis
When you think about something for too long, you often end up not doing it. Although I’ve always known this deep down, I’ve convinced myself that I always end up doing it in the end. But this book made me realise that’s simply not true.
On reflection, I’ve identified that while I’ve followed through on some of these actions, many have just fallen by the wayside, only to be “forgotten” from my to do lists.
Especially with those things that I don’t attempt because I think “Oh I won’t apply for that because I won’t get it anyway.” “I won’t ask that person for that because they’ll probably say no anyway.” You know what I mean, right?
Well, I’ve been applying the 5-second rule to those situations too. When you think about it for too long, you convince yourself not to move forward. But when you only have 5 seconds to take action, you take action! And the results are wonderful.
Do you ever find yourself pondering whether you should apply for that job? Or enrol into that course? Or talk to the person you’ve always wanted to talk to? And then six months later … you’re still wondering the same thing? The reality is that if you took action when you first had the instinct to do so, you would have already landed the job, completed the course or started a new friendship!
Your 5 seconds of courage
I encourage you to apply this approach to your life this week – and just see what kind of momentum it can bring to your life, especially your creative endeavours.
It could change your life. And it only takes five seconds…
By Valerie Khoo