One Simple Rule That's Better Than Motivation
In my last article, I mentioned that motivation doesn’t work. If it did, you would be halfway toward accomplishing all your New Year’s resolutions, right?! The only thing that really endures is discipline—discipline to do what we know we need to do when we don’t feel like doing it. The challenge is that discipline sounds hard. Discipline sounds painful. But discipline can be easy. Discipline can actually be virtually mindless.
There is one simple rule that can make discipline easy, mindless and enduring.
It’s called the 5 Second Rule. The concept was developed by Mel Robbins, and is explained in her amazing book, “The 5 Second Rule: Transform your Life, Work, and Confidence with Everyday Courage.” Mel’s story is that basically her world was falling apart. She and her husband had a business that failed. Their future was in jeopardy. Their relationship was in jeopardy. She even struggled to get out of bed in the morning.
Then one day, while she was struggling to get up and get going, she watched the television from her bed as a NASA rocket was taking off. She listened to the familiar countdown.
5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1: liftoff.
She decided at that moment she needed to be like that NASA rocket and liftoff in the many areas of her life where she was struggling. So she developed the 5 Second Rule to take action, even when she didn’t want to.
Here’s how it works. When you realize you need to do something simply count down: 5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1, and liftoff to go do it. Mel turned her life around with this rule. She has become a famous author, speaker and television host. If you’ve never heard of Mel Robbins, I encourage you to look her up. You will see the success she has become, commanding more than $35,000 for speaking engagements and her schedule is sold out for 2017.
After researching why her 5 Second Rule worked so well, Mel discovered lots of complicated, detailed explanations from psychologists and other specialists. You can read all about them in her book. However, simply stated, the 5 Second Rule works because it doesn’t give you time to think. You know how it is when you have time to think about the activities required to reach your goals. If your goal is to lose weight, you know you need to go to the gym. But with enough time you will find a reason why right now is not a good time to go to the gym. With the 5 second rule, its 5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1: Go to the gym. That’s it.
If your goal is more sales, then you know you need to make more appointments. You know you need to pick up that 500-pound phone and make some calls. But with enough time to think about it, you will find reasons why right now is not a good time to make those calls. With the 5 Second Rule, its 5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1: Pick up the phone and start dialing.
Motivation doesn’t work. Discipline is the key to enduring success. The 5 Second Rule can make discipline and success easy for you.
Thank you, Mel Robbins.
5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1: Back to work, Greg!