We all have a tendency to make mountains out of molehills sometimes. The biggest killers of productivity are, at their core, really simple, such as noise, interruptions, and temptations of the Internet. It’s tempting to ask “how to I become more motivated” or “why am I so lazy?” They’re big, abstract, complex questions with no clear answer. Though they’re good questions to start with, they can quickly become misdirects that siphon your attention away from more specific issues.
Think of one simple thing that kills your motivation to accomplish one goal. Just one thing for one goal.
I like to cook my own meals, because it’s healthier and cheaper. However, cooking can be a time-intensive task. With a full-time job and a side business, standing at the stove for two hours to make something is a really unattractive prospect. The solution for me was simple: spend $20 on a crockpot.
If you’re trying to create a game, but the noisiness of your home stops you from fully realizing your creative talents, don’t train yourself to work with noise. Close the door instead.
Sometimes the “small obstacle” that you need to remove is the fear of starting. It’s intimidating to look at a blank page, with no clear idea of what to write. If that’s the case, just start. Write one sentence.
Removing small obstacles won’t rocket you to greatness, but it will get you started. Getting started is the most important thing. The things that hold us back from getting started are usually very simple. We create narratives around our heads that make our obstacles seem complex. The tiniest removed obstacle can start you on the right path.
Once you get one small obstacle removed, you’ll feel good about it. Then you might just get your goal accomplished. You’ll feel good about that, too. You’ll be more likely to remove another small obstacle, and then accomplish another goal. Step by step, you’re building a habit. You’re creating a positive feedback loop. It’s almost like a hack for your mind. It’s freaky how well it works.
Remove one tiny obstacle today. You’ll be glad you did.