What if I were to tell you there is one thing that drives all human actions? Would you believe me?
Think about it.
- Why do people smoke cigarettes when they know it will kill them?
- Why do people eat fast food when they know it will make them fat?
- Why do people spend $80,000 on a car when a $10,000 car gets you from point A to point B?
Emotions drive every decision we make. If something makes us feel good, we do more of it. If something makes us feel bad, we do less of it.
Most people have given no thought to why they do what they do. They are on auto-pilot through most of life.
For those of us that set goals, create action plans and focus on executing, we still face challenges.
If you’re actions are sabotaging your goals, then you need to dig a little deeper.
Ask yourself why am I doing what I’m doing?
What is my motivation for doing it?
Let’s run through some examples:
How do you feel about this?
If you view it as sexy, relief from stress, freedom, tasty, then you will continue to do it.
If you view at as death, gross, unhealthy, coughing, sickness, then you will do less of it.
What do you think about when you see this?
If you view it as boring, disgusting, restrictive, sacrifice, then odds are you won’t eat it.
If you view it as healthy, skinny, exciting to reach your goals, feeling confident about your body, then you will eat it.
What about this?
We all know that if you don’t show up to work, you’ll get fired.
But if you view this as dead-end, counting down the days til you retire, prison, stress, then odds are you will show up to work and do the bare minimum. Or worse, you’ll do less and eventually lose your job.
If you view it as a place to help people, make an impact, improve yourself, have a meaningful career, a place to make money, then you will show up more motivated to do work and be productive.
By now, you should be starting to get the picture.
If you’re not doing something you know you need to, you need to change the way you view it.
Which in turn will change the emotion you have around it.
And that will determine what actions you take.
Figure out a way to turn the things you don’t do but need to into something enjoyable, pleasurable or positive.
The things you want to stop doing, start associating them with painful, terrible things.
Create pictures in your mind to reinforce that feeling you associate with it.
Become a detective and start investigating why you take the actions you do.
Once you start evaluating the way you view things and how they make you feel, then you will be able to have better control over what you do.