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Don’t Trust Your Feelings

Don’t Trust Your Feelings

I hear a lot of people talking about what they “feel” like doing. Following your feelings can be a frustrating path into a black hole.  How about if you tap into your “activation energy” to accomplish those exciting things you’ve been dreaming about?

Some general principles:

1. Your brain views anything different as dangerous.  It’s always going to resist change.  You have to outsmart your own brain by taking action that may be new and uncomfortable.  But it only takes 21 days to create a new habit.

2. Here’s an example.   Some of you probably use an alarm clock – and every morning you reach out and hit that snooze button.  What if you changed that 1st decision of your day – tomorrow morning?  What if instead of hitting the snooze button you jumped out of bed – stretched and began your day.  Now your brain is going to resist that – tomorrow morning.  But if you do that for 21 days you’ll retrain that stubborn brain of yours and it will build your confidence to do something else even greater.  Darren Hardy (Success magazine) says we have those “miracle moments” when we have just an instant to make the right decision.  If you don’t take right action in 5 seconds, the opportunity will disappear forever.  Doing something different – as simple as not hitting the snooze button will begin to create a new pathway in your brain – and you can use the same process to start any success journey you want.

3. Don’t wait until you “feel” like it.  We are so stinking spoiled today – we don’t want to do anything that doesn’t feel good.  But you can have your feelings catch up to right actions.  Here’s an example.  I used to teach Psychology at Western Kentucky University.  I would have college freshmen who showed up for class with their chin on their chest, eyes cast down and sighing with fatigue at 8:00 in the morning.  And trust me, by 10:00 everyone around them knew they got up on the wrong side of bed, were feeling down, or thought they were coming down with a cold – whatever.  Here was my challenge.  Why don’t you go back, crawl back in bed and start the process over.  Jump out of bed, sing in the shower, hold your head high, shoulders back and walk faster than you normally would to that first class.  Guess what – by 10:00 you actually feel better and everyone around you senses your contagious energy.  Your feelings catch up with your actions. Don’t ever wait on your feelings to determine right actions.

In this example you are going to experience what neuroscientists call “activation energy.”  It’s an extra emotional force that will cause you to stick to that diet, complete that manuscript or make that call – and it will push you toward greatness in any area of your life where you want increased success.

Have you tapped into your “activation energy?”

 Dan Miller is today's leading authority and personality on careers and 'Work You LoveTM'. As bestselling author of 48 Days To The Work You Love, and now No More Mondays, Dan reaches over a million people every month in his newsletter, podcast, and blog with the best trends and opportunities in the workplace and small business. For more information, visit