Advertising

My Secret for Overcoming Resistance and Transforming My Life

Advertising
My Secret for Overcoming Resistance and Transforming My Life

How you feel about your life right now is likely going to be how you will feel about it until your time on earth is over, unless: you either have a near death experience or you go through a time that’s dramatic enough to shock you into truly wanting to transform your life.

Most of the 500 or more entrepreneurs (male, female and of all ages) who have received transformational coaching from me, and subsequently seen their life transform to new heights, expressed that, before then, no matter how hard they worked to break out of it, they had a frustrating sense of ‘sameness’ about their life.

What It Takes to Transform Your Life

One client I coached recently was a property investor. He’d built up his business over 10 years to enable him to travel across South America.

Problem was, he always had something getting in the way that he had to handle to run the business. It was exhausting for him.

In receiving coaching from me he became aware of an event that happened when he was 7 years old. He was meeting his extended family in a restaurant in India for the first time. His mother guided him into the communal toilets and he asked, “Mom, where is the toilet?”

She then pointed at the cubicles that had no doors, holes in the ground instead of toilets and people taking their turn while in full view of everyone else and said, “That is the toilet!”

At the time he became scared and realized he was thinking, “I’m not safe.” And this was the way he interpreted the world. From that moment onwards the world was ‘I’m not safe’.

Advertising

Through his life and times in business, this caused him to choose ‘safety’ above all. As a result, he created stable investment opportunities that grew over 10 years and enabled him to own six large properties, but the problem was that this very interpretation (which became a way of being) was now the very thing that was also holding him back from growing his business or enjoying the fruits of his labour.

Once he awakened to see this interpretation, he got that he didn’t have to be ‘I’m not safe’ any longer and micromanage everything. With further coaching, he began answering the question, “What would it actually take for me to create my business to enable me to travel to South America?” So he systemized each business process. As a result, within a few months of the first session, he packed his bags and left to fulfil his dream ambition (that he’d had for over 10 years) of travelling across South America.

He’s since posted photographs of this trip on Facebook, and on returning to the UK, left again a few weeks later to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. Now he is back in the UK and looking at travelling across Japan. He’s since also managed to expand his business and is on track for greater profits than ever before from rental income. His life has transformed completely.

So what will it take for you to overcome your resistance to doing the deeper work? To see what interpretations you’ve made about yourself and the world around you? Also to see how they may be holding you back from taking those important actions?

If you want to access a new level of satisfaction through your work, elevate the quality of your life and find a deeper sense of freedom, doing this deeper transformational work is the only way.

Why the Resistance Is So Strong

You and any other entrepreneur out there are only going to succeed when you change how you are ‘being’, as this is where the actions that you take arise from. But why is it so difficult to change how we are being and in turn change the actions we take? The reason is that when we set out to realize an ambition, we are faced with a period of ‘latency’ before the results show.

In this period of latency we are faced with the unknown, and the reptilian part of our brain is wired to ensure that we never fail again. So it viciously reminds us of all the things we’ve failed at and ensures that we don’t take actions that may result in us experiencing those failures again. The result is, the resistance to change dominates us, we remain in (seemingly chosen) procrastination and we subconsciously avoid doing the deeper inner transformational work.

Advertising

This then results in many (and possibly you) spinning in a sense of ‘sameness’.

So how are we to conquer this? Firstly understand that your brain is wired to predominantly survive. Understand that your brain will consistently avoid you ever taking actions that could cause you to experience more moments of failure again.

Once you grasp this, you are then aware that your attention is usually on what could go wrong rather than on a new, possible and inspirational future.

Risk assessment need not be cast aside completely; however, we cannot have this as the primary driver because it’s a state of survival which causes our creative mind to shut down.

Once this happens, most people report entering a ‘Groundhog Day’ sensation- that every day feels the same and they can’t see a way out. Once we take our mind off ‘surviving’ and instead begin to practise seeing the tiny successes that we have every day, we then move from a state of survival and into a state of ‘creation’. This is a relaxed state of being that allows us to see opportunity, to think innovatively and become inspired as we begin to envision a whole new and inspirational future.

If you commit to this way of thinking, you’ll shift your mindset from one of looking for what you can ‘survive’ to one of looking for opportunities to ‘create’. Once you practise this, you’ll begin to notice the incremental successes every day. This will cause you to feel inspired about yourself and your abilities; you’ll then find it much easier to take those important actions and will begin awakening yourself to the wonders of what you are truly capable of again.

5 Transformational Steps

Here are 5 easy to follow yet powerfully transformational steps you can take to begin to break through the resistance required to transform your life.

Advertising

1. Imagine Living the Dream

Imagine you took every action you knew to take and that you made the most of every single opportunity that came your way and that you are now three years from today. Write (or type) a short story of living through a perfect ‘average’ day if you were ‘living the dream’.

Include where you wake up? Who with? What car do you drive? How many clients do you work with? How much are you earning? How do your clients feel receiving your products or services? What do you do in the afternoons? What do you do for fun? How do the people you know celebrate you? As you write this down, forget the world and let go, and have fun with it.

2. Bedtime Routine

Place this written piece of text next to your bed (possibly print and laminate it) and read it EVERY night before you go to sleep and every morning before you rise up out of bed.

You can also read more about bedtime routine here: Poor Sleep Quality Comes from All the Things You Do Since Morning

3. Powerful Action

In your diary, write down the three very most important actions that you are going to complete this week and when to begin powerfully moving you along your path to realizing this dream lifestyle.

Find out How Simply Jotting Down Ideas Can Make You Smarter.

4. Keep the Dream Alive

As you write these actions down, keep ‘alive’ the sensations you felt about what it will be like when you master this dream lifestyle and why you’re taking these actions each week. You MUST keep the reason ‘why’ you do what you do every day alive or you will lose motivation and go back to a sense of ‘sameness’ again.

Advertising

Read more to find out how to stay motivated when it’s difficult to reach your dreams: Pursuing Dreams is Like an Iceberg. Most People Only See the Tip of it.

5. Consistent Action

From now on and on a weekly basis – on Sunday evenings is great – write the next three very most important actions to take during the coming week.

The only way you will break out of a sense of ‘sameness’ and through the resistance to transform your life is if you work to become so inspired that you want to change. This exercise, if applied effectively, will enable this. All the people who have achieved great things did so by allowing themselves to dream really big yet then took consistent tiny, tiny daily actions.

Building habits is all about the small things you do consistently, here’s another article about How to Program Your Mind to Build the Habit You Want

If you apply this exercise, you will see results. You’ll see things beginning to shift, things beginning to move. This will empower you and before long you’ll begin to see your dream lifestyle begin to form before your eyes.

More by this author

Dan Warburton

Transformational Coach

My Secret for Overcoming Resistance and Transforming My Life

Trending in Productivity

1 Are You Addicted to Productivity? 2 Is Avoiding Difficult Tasks And Doing Easy Tasks First Less Productive? 3 How Remote Work Affects Your Productivity And Wellbeing (Backed By Data) 4 10 Best Productivity Planners To Get More Done in 2021 5 13 Steps to Build a Positive Habit Stacking Routine

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on October 7, 2021

Are You Addicted to Productivity?

Advertising
Are You Addicted to Productivity?

“It’s great to be productive. It really is. But sometimes, we chase productivity so much that it makes us, well, unproductive. It’s easy to read a lot about how to be more productive, but don’t forget that you have to make that time up.”

Matt Cutts wrote that back in 2013,[1]

“Today, search for ‘productivity’ and Google will come back with about 663,000,000 results. If you decide to go down this rabbit hole, you’ll be bombarded by a seemingly endless amount of content. I’m talking about books, blogs, videos, apps, podcasts, scientific studies, and subreddits all dedicated to productivity.”

Like so many other people, I’ve also fallen into this trap. For years I’ve been on the lookout for trends and hacks that will help me work faster and more efficiently — and also trends that help me help others to be faster. I’ve experimented with various strategies and tools . And, while some of these strategies and solutions have been extremely useful — without parsing out what you need quickly — it’s counterproductive.

Sometimes you end up spending more time focusing on how to be productive instead of actually being productive.

“The most productive people I know don’t read these books, they don’t watch these videos, they don’t try a new app every month,” James Bedell wrote in a Medium post.[2] “They are far too busy getting things done to read about Getting Things Done.”

This is my mantra:

I proudly say, “I am addicted to productivity — I want to be addicted to productivity — productivity is my life and my mission — and I also want to find the best way to lead others through productivity to their best selves.

But most of the time productivity means putting your head down and working until the job’s done.” –John Rampton

Addiction to Productivity is Real

Dr. Sandra Chapman, director of the University of Texas at Dallas Center for BrainHealth points out that the brain can get addicted to productivity just as it can to more common sources of addiction, such as drugs, gambling, eating, and shopping.

Advertising

“A person might crave the recognition their work gives them or the salary increases they get,” Chapman told the BBC.[3] “The problem is that just like all addictions, over time, a person needs more and more to be satisfied, and then it starts to work against you. Withdrawal symptoms include increased anxiety, depression, and fear.”

Despite the harmful consequences, addiction is considered by some experts as a brain disease that affects the brain’s reward system and ends in compulsive behavior. Regardless, society tends to reward productivity — or at least to treat it positively. As a result, this makes the problem even worse.

“It’s seen like a good thing: the more you work, the better,” adds Chapman. “Many people don’t realize the harm it causes until a divorce occurs and a family is broken apart, or the toll it takes on mental health.”

Because of the occasional negative issues with productivity, it’s no surprise that it is considered a “mixed-blessing addiction.”

“A workaholic might be earning a lot of money, just as an exercise addict is very fit,” explains Dr. Mark Griffiths, distinguished professor of behavioral addiction at Nottingham Trent University. “But the thing about any addiction is that in the long run, the detrimental effects outweigh any short-term benefits.”

“There may be an initial period where the individual who is developing a work addiction is more productive than someone who isn’t addicted to work, but it will get to a point when they are no longer productive, and their health and relationships are affected,” Griffiths writes in Psychology Today.[4] “It could be after one year or more, but if the individual doesn’t do anything about it, they could end up having serious health consequences.”

“For instance, I speculated that the consequences of work addiction may be reclassified as something else: If someone ends up dying of a work-related heart attack, it isn’t necessarily seen as having anything to do with an addiction per se – it might be attributed to something like burnout,” he adds.

There Are Three “Distinct Extreme Productivity Types

Cyril Peupion, a Sydney-based productivity expert, has observed extreme productivity among clients at both large and medium-sized companies. “Most people who come to me are high performers and very successful. But often, the word they use to describe their work style is ‘unsustainable,’ and they need help getting it back on track.”

By changing their work habits, Peupion assists teams and individuals improve their performance and ensure that their efforts are aligned with the overarching strategy of the business, rather than focusing on work as a means to an end. He has distinguished three types of extreme productivity in his classification: efficiency obsessive, selfishly productive, and quantity-obsessed.

Efficiency obsessive. “Their desks are super tidy and their pens are probably color-coded. They are the master of ‘inbox zero.’ But they have lost sight of the big picture, and don’t know the difference between efficiency and effectiveness.”

Advertising

Selfishly productive. “They are so focused on their own world that if they are asked to do something outside of it, they aren’t interested. They do have the big picture in mind, but the picture is too much about them.”

Quantity-obsessed. “They think; ‘The more emails I respond to, the more meetings I attend, the more tasks I do, the higher my performance.’ As a result, they face a real risk of burnout.”

Peupion believes that “quantity obsessed” individuals are the most common type “because there is a pervasive belief that ‘more’ means ‘better’ at work.”

The Warning Signs of Productivity Addiction

Here are a few questions you should ask yourself if you think you may be succumbing to productivity addiction. After all, most of us aren’t aware of this until it’s too late.

  • Can you tell when you’re “wasting” time? If so, have you ever felt guilty about it?
  • Does technology play a big part in optimizing your time management?
  • Do you talk about how busy you are most of the time? In your opinion, is hustling better than doing less?
  • What is your relationship with your email inbox? Are you constantly checking it or experience phantom notifications?
  • When you only check one item off your list, do you feel guilty?
  • Does stress from work interfere with your sleep?
  • Have you been putting things off, like a vacation or side project, because you’re “too swamped?

The first step toward turning around your productivity obsession is to recognize it. If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, then it’s time to make a plan to overcome your addiction to productivity.

Overcoming Your Productivity Addiction

Thankfully, there are ways to curb your productivity addiction. And, here are 9 such ways to achieve that goal.

1. Set Limits

Just because you’re hooked on productivity doesn’t mean you have to completely abstain from it. Instead, you need to establish boundaries.

For example, there are a lot of amazing productivity podcasts out there. But, that doesn’t mean you have to listen to them all in the course of a day. Instead, you could listen to one or two podcasts, like The Productivity Podcast or Before Breakfast, during your commute. And, that would be your only time of the day to get your productivity fix.

2. Create a Not-to-Do List

Essentially, the idea of a not-to-do list is to eliminate the need to practice self-discipline. Getting rid of low-value tasks and bad habits will allow you to focus on what you really want to do as opposed to weighing the pros and cons or declining time requests. More importantly, this prevents you from feeling guilty about not crossing everything off an unrealistic to-do list.

3. Be Vulnerable

By this, I mean admitting where you could improve. For example, if you’re new to remote work and are struggling with thi s, you would only focus on topics in this area. Suggestions would be how to create a workspace at home, not getting distracted when the kids aren’t in school, or improving remote communication and collaboration with others.

Advertising

4. Understand Why You Procrastinate

Often, we procrastinate to minimize negative emotions like boredom or stress. Other times it could be because it’s a learned trait, underestimating how long it takes you to complete something or having a bias towards a task.

Regardless of the exact reason, we end up doing busy work, scrolling social media, or just watching one more episode of our favorite TV series. And, even though we know that it’s not for the best, we do things that make us feel better than the work we should do to restore our mood.[5]

There are a lot of ways to overcome procrastination. But, the first step is to be aware of it so that you can take action. For example, if you’re dreading a difficult task, don’t just watch Netflix. Instead, procrastinate more efficiently,y like returning a phone call or working on a client pitch.

5. Don’t Be a Copycat

Let’s keep this short and sweet. When you find a productivity app or technique that works for you, stick with it.

That’s not to say that you can’t make adjustments along the way or try new tools or hacks. However, the main takeaway should be that just because someone swears by the Pomodoro Technique doesn’t mean it’s a good fit for you.

6. Say Yes to Less

Across the board, your philosophy should be less is more.

That means only download the apps you actually use and want to keep (after you try them out) and uninstall the ones you don’t use. For example, are you currently reading a book on productivity? Don’t buy your next book until you’ve finished the one you’re currently reading (or permit yourself to toss a book that isn’t doing you any good). — and if you really want to finish a book more quickly, listen to the book on your way to work and back.

Already have plans this weekend? Don’t commit to a birthday party. And, if you’re day is booked, decline that last-minute meeting request.

7. Stop Focusing on What’s Next

“In the age when purchasing a thing from overseas is just one click and talking to another person is one swipe right, acquiring new objects or experiences can be addictive like anything else,” writes Patrick Banks for Lifehack .

“That doesn’t need to be you,” he adds. “You can stop your addition to ‘the next thing’ starting today.” After all, “there will always be this next thing if you don’t make a conscious decision to get your life back together and be the one in charge.”

Advertising

  • Think about your current lifestyle and the person you’re at this stage to help you identify what you aren’t satisfied with.
  • By setting clear goals for yourself in the future, you will be able to overcome your addiction.
  • Establish realistic goals.
  • To combat addiction, you must be aware of what is going on around you, as well as inside your head, at any given time.
  • Don’t spend time with people who have unhealthy behaviors.
  • Hold yourself accountable.
  • Keep a journal and write out what you want to overcome.
  • Appreciate no longer being addicted to what’s next.

8. Simplify

Each day, pick one priority task. That’s it. As long as you concentrate on one task at a time, you will be less likely to get distracted or overwhelmed by an endless list of tasks. A simple mantra to live by is: work smarter, not harder.

The same is also accurate with productivity hacks and tools. Bullet journaling is a great example. Unfortunately, for many, a bullet journal is way more time-consuming and overwhelming than a traditional planner.

9. Learn How to Relax

“Sure, we need to produce sometimes, especially if we have to pay the bills, but, banning obsession with productivity is unhealthy,” writes Leo Babauta. “When you can’t get yourself to be productive, relax.” Don’t worry about being hyper-efficient. And, don’t beat yourself up about having fun.

“But what if you can’t motivate yourself … ever?” he asks. “Sure, that can be a problem. But if you relax and enjoy yourself, you’ll be happier.”

“And if you work when you get excited, on things you’re excited about, and create amazing things, that’s motivation,” Leo states. “Not forcing yourself to work when you don’t want to, on things you don’t want to work on — motivation is doing things you love when you get excited.”

But, how exactly can you relax? Here are some tips from Leo;

  • Spend 5 minutes walking outside and breathe in the fresh air.
  • Give yourself more time to accomplish things. Less rushing means less stress.
  • If you can, get outside after work to enjoy nature.
  • Play like a child. Even better? Play with your kids. And, have fun at work — maybe give gamification a try .
  • Take the day off, rest, and do something non-work-related.
  • Allow yourself an hour of time off. Try not to be productive during that time. Just relax.
  • You should work with someone who is exciting. Make your project exciting.
  • Don’t work in the evenings. Seriously.
  • Visit a massage therapist.
  • Just breathe.

“Step by step, learn to relax,” he suggests. “Learn that productivity isn’t everything.” For that statement, sorry Leo, I say productivity isn’t everything — it’s the only thing.” However, if you can’t cut loose, relax, do fun things, and do the living part of your life — you’ll crack in a big way — you really will.

It’s great to create and push forward — just remember it doesn’t mean that every minute must be spent working or obsessing over productivity issues. Instead, invest your time in meaningful, high-impact work, get into it, focus, put in big time and then relax.

Are You Addicted to Productivity? was originally published on Calendar by John Rampton.

Featured photo credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com via unsplash.com

Advertising

Reference

Read Next