We all have tasks we don’t want to do, from getting out of bed to an inordinate amount of paperwork. One way to force yourself to do the deed is to set up a mental trigger: count to five and do it.
Picture: tup wanders/Flickr
I count to 5. This is a secret rule I have for myself. Whenever I don’t want to do something (something small like getting out of bed, to something bigger, like asking a girl out), I count to 5 in my head. Whenever I reach 5, I have to do it. I have never failed to do what I set out to do once I hit 5, so it always works for me, in a weird sort of way. I know that if I didn’t do it, the “rule of 5” would cease to exist, and since I need it to exist, I have to do what I said I would do. It’s a weird paradox, but it works.
The trick here is that you have to do it every time you count to five, to form a chain of success that you can’t break. There are lots of ways to tackle dreaded tasks, but the productivity system that works best is often the one that requires the least effort. And that’s what the “Count to Five” rule is — simple and effortless to maintain.