To Achieve, You Need Less Info, More Action.
The above is a realisation I came to when listening to the Tim Ferriss podcast episode featuring Derek Sivers (there’s a link to it below). Intention is important, but action is king.
The actual line was something like “if all we needed was more info the world would be full of billionaires with six-packs” – essentially it was saying all the information we need is out there.
We need action and effort to turn information into substance. It really struck a chord with me, because I work in a field where people often want to change, but they don’t take the necessary steps to change their behaviours.
Think of this post as your little reminder….
You don’t need more information, you need more action.
It’s so true. I know because I’m guilty of this.
I want to expand my website next year, grow the blog further and move into online personal training. To help me do this, I have read a lot of articles, listened to a lot of podcasts and asked a lot of questions.
Great in theory, but you know what I need to do now?
I need to take action.
All of the reading and listening in the world won’t help me start an online fitness business.
I just need to get started.
Here’s an example that is more relevant to fitness.
I have a client who employs a number of people. One of his employees has wanted to lose weight as long as I’ve known her (4 years). She buys healthy cook books, asks me for advice, buys exercise DVD’s, takes tours around gyms she wants to become a member of.
But then doesn’t do anything. It’s been 4 years and she still hasn’t taken even the first step.
She still complains about her weight. She still hasn’t joined a gym. She still talks about how she “should eat healthier”. Not a week goes by where her wish to exercise and eat better isn’t a topic of conversation between us.
She has access to all the information in the world. She probably even instinctively knows what to do as well.
The missing ingredient?
Taking the first step and getting herself into some sort of healthier habit.
We can have all of the information we need, all of the tools in the toolkit but unless we take any form of action, we’re wasting our time.
Sitting and reading about how to be healthier is useless unless it’s paired with action. Take a walk, ride a bike, go to the gym, take a yoga class, eat a healthy meal, drink a glass of water. Just take action.
Many years ago a personal training client gave me a Tony Robbins series called ‘Awaken the Giant Within’ on tape (that’s how long ago it was!) One of the messages Tony shared was this…
Never leave the site of a goal without doing something towards its achievement.
Where possible, I try to act on this. Say I have an idea for a new blog article, I’ll come to my website and write even a handful of key words to trigger my memory next time I need to write.
If I don’t have my computer handy, I’ll make a note in my phone. Even if it’s something small, I like to make a start.
Tony Robbins is all about MASSIVE action and that works for some people. Here are a couple of examples…
Goal: You’ve decided to start eating healthily.
Massive Action: You throw all of your junk food in the bin.
Goal: You’ve decided to exercise.
Massive Action: You leave the house immediately, join a gym and hire a personal trainer.
In some ways this goes against the opposite approach of start small. I think they both have their merits and each one is applicable in a different scenario. The commonality? They require taking action. Action helps create momentum. The more momentum we have on a project, a task, a quest then the more difficult it is to stop it.
As I said, there are different approaches. Pick the one that works for you, go ahead and do it.
How do you find the approach that works for you?
Well, it’s the polar opposite of what you’ve been doing so far. If your current approach was working, you’d already be exercising and/or living healthier.
There’s a good chance that you’re going to overindulge at Christmas. That’s a behaviour cycle that won’t be easy to break, so start by practicing now. Get used to taking action now and it’ll make life a whole load easier when it comes to a main event type scenario.
Less info, more action.
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