When you get that new business idea, goal, or opportunity, you feel a lot of excitement. You eagerly begin to formulate your strategy, examine potential tasks, and plan the necessary steps. However, you will undoubtedly face numerous choices and a multitude of possibilities, causing an overloaded or over-analyzing brain. This analysis paralysis can leave you unable to take any action at all.
In the world we live in today, information is coming at you from a multitude of different media outlets and social media platforms. There are so much readily available on the Internet that it can sometimes feel overwhelming. It becomes difficult to decipher all the noise which then renders you incapable of taking the necessary steps to accomplish your goals.
When you have dreams, opportunities, and ideas, inaction is the silent killer. It makes you feel stagnant, stuck in your environment, and hinders your ability to act. Seeing someone else achieving what you had once dreamed of, you will feel a sense of regret and sorrow.
There is a specific process that is crucial to achieving your goals and feeling accomplished. It is, of course, essential to think before you act, but thinking can only get you so far. There comes a time when you need to take those first steps, even if you haven’t yet completed the entire plan. Thinking provides you with the ability to feel prepared, but it can also make you feel hesitant and doubtful when you start playing out worst-case scenarios.
Below are 13 power steps that can enable and motivate you to overcome analysis paralysis and take action.
1. Don’t wait for the perfect circumstances
If, before you take action, you are hoping for your circumstances and surroundings to be perfect, you are likely procrastinating. Telling yourself that you will get something done when the conditions are ideal becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy because your circumstances will, in all likelihood, never be perfect.
If you are waiting for the perfect circumstances, these thoughts and goals are just wishes. To use this power step to your advantage, you need to be honest with yourself and shift your perspective. Many high achieving and successful people did not wait for the perfect moment to act on their goals. They understood that there would be uncertainty and decided to go for it anyways. This type of courage is crucial for achieving goals and taking action.
2. Stop overthinking
When you overthink about ideas and thoughts, your negative self-talk will eventually step in and fill you with a sense of self-doubt and hesitation. These things can hold you back and prevent you from achieving what you want.
Shift your mindset into goal-setting and strategic planning. Begin to write down each task you need to take, even if the steps are not yet visible. You are more likely to take action on these steps when you can see it on paper. The important thing is that you get started.
3. Stop making excuses
You often make excuses when you are afraid to step out of your comfort zone, or you feel some form of self-doubt. Your negative self-talk overwhelms your minds, and you make up reasons not to go through with what you need to do. Sometimes, the reasons don’t even make any sense.
For example, you may say that you do not have time to get something done because of work, another commitment, or that you are too stressed out. However, if you truly examine your schedule, you can find gaps. You can reorganize your time more efficiently and put it towards getting your tasks completed.
When you stay committed to your goals and are specific about what you want, you will find that you make time for anything that you want to get accomplished. Letting go of excuses is one of the best ways to take action and start moving towards your goals.
One of life’s critical lessons is that, in the long run, your needless excuses will only prevent you from life experiences. In the twilight of your days, you will inevitably live your life with regret.
4. List your motivations
Writing out your motivations and the different things that inspire you is one of the best and most efficient ways to take action. When you list out everything that you want to accomplish, you will feel more stimulated to pursue your goals. There are countless researches around the effectiveness of journaling and how having a visual record will help you to clarify them in your mind.
No matter what goals you are trying to achieve or what your dreams may be, there will always be tough days or bumps in the road. These obstacles can leave us feeling lazy, unmotivated, and uninspired. Reading over your list will strengthen the resolve that you may be lacking.
5. Stop being stuck in dreams that never become reality
Everybody has dreams and wishes. As a child, you dream about the life you want to live and the career you want to have when you become an adult. You may dream about the mansion you want to live in, the sports car you want to drive, or even the person you want to marry. You dream about the perfect life.
Eventually, you mature into adulthood, and the “real world” disrupts all your aspirations, sacrificing your dream occupation to work a 9 to 5 “J.O.B.” (Just Over Broke) to pay the bills. You drive an old beater because “it gets you to where you want to go.” And you marry the first person who gives you the attention you crave, and the feeling of being wanted. Comfort becomes a priority in your current situation because you have what everything you think you need, and you’re “OK” with that. What you previously imagined your perfect life to be, stays stuck in the darkness, never to see the light of day.
It is never too late to reignite the flames of what you once desired. Instead of leaving it stuck in the darkness, you can decide to live your dream life. When you choose to accept nothing less, and you are determined to see it through, you will begin to devise a plan to get it done. It won’t happen overnight. But with consistent effort and unwavering spirit, you can accomplish almost anything.
6. Forget the past, don’t look to the future – focus on the present
One of the most common origins of limiting beliefs is staying stuck in the past or reliving past experiences. These past experiences can trigger fear and hesitation for the future and can keep you stuck in your comfort zone and lower your sense of self-worth. When you elect to let go of your past, you initiate the creation of a new chapter for yourself and transform your mindset to feel courageous and worthy. Forgetting the past will also allow you to let go of the self-doubt that may be preventing you from ever taking action.
Forgetting the past requires that you be very honest with yourself and do inner work to analyze past experiences. Some of these may trigger traumatic experiences that you had, and you may need to seek professional support to get through the negativity rather than just brushing them off. You would be surprised that the subconscious mind uses these past experiences to fuel your fears and shift your mindset.
When you are brave and learn to let go of these past experiences, you will not feel as hesitant towards your future life and will finally be able to live to your fullest potential. On the other hand, it is vital not to look too far ahead into the future and not overanalyze potential future situations because this can also be detrimental to your mental health.
Being fearful of uncertain outcomes based on decisions you may make can also leave you to dwell in your self-doubt and hold you back in many other ways. This fear can cause anxiety that hinders your ability to perform at your highest potential. You will often play out the worst possible scenarios, which will result in lower productivity.
Being fully present in the moment allows you to think clearer. You will discover that you will be less afraid of what might happen, and the constant worry will dissipate. Your confidence will increase; you will work harder and will feel more motivated and committed to taking action. Most of all, you will begin to appreciate the experiences of the moment.
7. Face and identify your fears
Fear holds you back in many ways. Sometimes you may not even notice how much of a role fear is playing in your life because it often happens subconsciously and is based on past negative experiences that you may not even remember.
Suffering through unfortunate and stressful experiences, you may unknowingly seek safer and more familiar situations instead of exploring new ventures. You remain in your comfort zone and live a sedentary but safe lifestyle. You are very quick to make excuses for yourself and never realize your potential.
Fear is not something you hide from; instead, you need to accept and identify them. Put in the effort to notice how fear attempts to control your emotions and how much it tries to influence your decisions.
8. Limit the planning time
Where most failures occur is in the planning stage. Planning before taking action on your goals is essential. Giving yourself a specific plan allows you to stay on course and hold yourself accountable during challenging times. However, planning for all contingencies is impossible. There comes a time when taking action is required.
Once you’ve organized your plan, it is crucial to stop the continuous tweaking, trying to make it perfect. You cannot predict the outcome of each step. Issues and resolutions will arise, and the blueprint will alter accordingly.
9. Combat fears by taking action
When referring to resilience, courage, and bravery, it often indicates stepping into your fears and not letting your mind get in the way. Your subconscious mind can be very compelling in keeping you in a state of self-doubt, hesitation, or anxiety. Past experiences and traumatic events can hinder your ability to feel excited and optimistic about the future and can hold you back in so many different ways.
Fears can keep you in a state of procrastination and prevent you from ever taking action on your goals and dreams. By remaining in your comfort zone, you will never feel truly accomplished, happy, or confident. It is through fear and obstacles that you learn your true capabilities and your self-worth, which enables you to prosper and become the best version of yourselves. Face your fears and keep moving forward despite it. As you continue to persevere, you will become less fearful.
10. Consider the outcome of failure
It is common to hesitate when you are about to take any unfamiliar steps, most notably, risky ones. The most common thought in your anxious mind is “what if you fail…” and the consequences if things go incredibly wrong. You begin to over-analyze all the possible failures and misfortunes in your mind as your mind tries to convince you not to forge ahead.
On the other hand, if you consider it from an optimistic and realistic perspective, then putting in hard work and effort will eventually lead to some form of success. Considering the outcome of failure but not letting it stop you, you will be able to fully take control of your mind and let go of the negative self-talk that continuously restrains you during life’s most defining moments. Next time you are thinking about failure, welcome your thoughts but do not react upon them or allow them to control your emotions.
11. Let go of expectations
Expectations are often a result of anxious thinking and trying to control uncertainty. When you set up all these expectations for yourself and are over-analyzing what will happen in the future, you will likely become very disappointed when things do not go your way. When you embrace the uncertainty and view events with anticipation, you will have the confidence to handle any situation that arises.
Letting go of expectations allows you to be more open-minded and flexible and more solution-oriented rather than letting obstacles prevent you from becoming the best version of yourself. Letting go of expectations can also allow you to have faith in your ability to overcome any problems and understand that you may not have all of the answers figured out just yet. You may be required to rethink the way that you set goals or the way that you plan for your future, but you will feel assured and less worried about the way things will play out.
12. Focus only on the process
Rather than trying to imagine and control all of the different possible scenarios, you can trust the process and have confidence that, with the planning you’ve done, you will have the contingency to overcome any obstacles you experience. Your focus in the process will remove any distractions and will reveal solutions you’ve not considered.
13. Make taking action a habit
People are creatures of habit. People thrive on daily routines throughout the day. As you repeat a specific activity continuously, eventually, that activity no longer requires any conscious thought to accomplish. When you make taking action a habit, you no longer have to think about whether to move forward or not. Instead, once you’ve decided to, you will “just do it,” as the Nike slogan goes.
Taking action fills you with a sense of productivity and achievement that is very rewarding and essential to your satisfaction with life, your overall well-being, and your happiness. Taking action allows you to step out of your comfort zone and finally stop the complaining and begin the doing. It is the best way to realize your full potential and truly become the best version of yourself.
You will, undoubtedly, hit obstacles along the way. That is the way of life. With these steps, you can assess and find solutions to any situation. The important thing is to keep moving forward. Each step gets you closer to your goals. You have the power to decide, to act on your plans, and get things done.