Blog Post #526 Overcoming Inertia

Overcoming Inertia

(Note – this is mostly for ME!!!)

Today’s article states: “The law of inertia states that it is the tendency of an object to resist a change in motion. That is, an object at rest will stay at rest unless it is acted on by an external force.”

So, I find myself sitting at my computer (probably like now – writing my blogs).  Going through my head are thoughts like: I should get a nice walk in, I should go to the gym, I should do <something>.

But, I find another email to read, another Facebook posting, another Twitter post, and <boom> another half-hour goes by – and I’m still at my computer.

This article suggests a three-step process (pretty much the same that we talked about in Systems Analysis and Design):

  1. SHOCK – some impetus to get going – the “thawing” of the current status quo.  Maybe you can set all of your clocks and cell phones to go off at a particular time.  
  2. Change – because of the disruption – get going, get out the door
  3. Refreeze the new system.

Others have suggested the shock maybe pain or pleasure.  The current status quo becomes painful (maybe you have added a few pounds and your clothes don’t fit).  Then think of the pleasure of losing that weight and buying a new dress or a new video game.

Find quick wins. The article suggests getting some successes.  Maybe you get to the gym – give yourself a reward (probably not a huge dish of ice cream if you are intending to lose weight.  Maybe for each day you ‘win’ you can put money into a special account for that new car, a new dress, a new bike, whatever. (For for days you don’t win, you take money out of that account and give it to a charity).

Dangle a Carrot.  Find an appropriate reward for you – if you win enough, you can do something special, go to a concert or take a trip.

Use a Stick  Like if you don’t reach your goal on a particular day, you have to skip your morning coffee!! (Some slight ‘pain point’)

Fill your gas tank (that is, take a nap, have a snack, drink some water)

Have a vision of where you want to go.  Like, set up SMART goals for losing weight or for procrastinating.  

Get started.  Get out the door, go, go, go.

Conclusion:  Most people fail because they really never start.  Why is January the best month for advertising fitness centers or diet plans on TV?  Because people want to lose the weight they put on over the holidays. And, all too frequently, after a month of good intentions people slack off and don’t go to the gym or don’t stick to the diet.

So, how are you going to overcome your inertia?


Posted by Bruce White

Leave a Reply