Recently, I received this comment by one of my readers:
Can you make an article on how to be an action taker type of person instead of a reading type of person?
I read a lot of methods, but I am stuck. I don’t know what’s holding me back.
During this article, I want to share my thoughts about this topic with everyone.
I also used to be a „reading type of person“, so I know exactly how that feels like. Nowadays, I don’t have any problems to instantly start doing the things I want to do.
I think the main question here is about motivation. Why are some people motivated to instantly take action and others keep on saying “I’ll start tomorrow/next week/next year/in the next life”?
To answer these questions, we first have to think about what exactly motivation is.
Motivation is the “desire or willingness to do something”. It drives us to behave, act or do something in a certain way. Usually, we will be motivated to reach a certain goal, like making $500, dropping 30 pounds, running a marathon, finishing school etc.
This leads to the first thing I want you to think about. If you don’t have a goal, how could you be motivated to reach it? How could you start taking action when you don’t know why you should start in the first place?
The best way to set your goals
A big help in becoming an action taker was to set myself goals. Let me explain you how I do it and why it do it this way. Goals should be:
Realistic to reach
Making $10k dollar online in one month when you never made a single cent before is not a realistic goal. Instead, you need to define a goal that challenges but not overburdens you.
The goals need to be measureable, so it is easier for you to stay target-oriented. “I want to be rich” is not a measurable goal. Who is considered rich depends on factors that are not set in stone. A measurable goal is “I want to have $10k in my bank account by the end of this year”.
Broken down into smaller goals
Having very big, hard to reach goals will demotivate us fast when we fail or when things we cannot influence do not work out as planned. Therefore, I believe it’s better to set oneself smaller goals, but always with keeping the big goal in mind.
We can also trick our brain by doing that, because we will get a nice Dopamine reward every time we reach one of our smaller goals.
I’ll get a small dose of positive feelings after reaching every small goal and in the end, when the big goal is reached, a very euphoric feeling will arise.
I won’t have much positive feelings until the big goal is reached.
Limited by an aggressive time frame
This is very helpful to not get into the “I’ll start tomorrow” and on the next day “I’ll start tomorrow” mode.
I could get around this by setting myself a time frame to reach the goal. For example, my last goal was to build three adult autoblogs within three days.
The time frame should be as short as possible or otherwise this might happen: “Wow, I have so much time left. Let’s hang out a bit and start later.” This time will be wasted because it is very unproductive and at the same time not relaxing, as the pressure to reach the goal will stay present.
Question monetary goals
I don’t like to set myself monetary goals, like “I want to earn $1k within next week”. The reason is that there are too many factors I cannot influence.
Sometimes things work better and sometimes not so well, as they might are influenced by luck. Therefore, I think it’s better to set goals you can control as much possible.
For example, publishing four new blog articles by the end of the week. You might make $100 from the ads on this articles or not a single cent, but the influence you have on that is very limited. On the other hand, you can fully influence if you write the blog articles or not.
Okay, maybe your hands suddenly fall off your body, but how realistic is that? 😛
If I do want to set myself monetary goals, I make sure that the goal is long-term so the factor luck loses its influence a bit.
Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation – both are our friends
The money example from above is a typical example for extrinsic motivation, meaning something that does come from the outside, opposed to intrinsic motivation coming from oneself.
Typical factors for extrinsic motivation are money, societal status, attention from others and material objects.
Intrinsic motivation is driven by interest or enjoyment in the task itself and means to not care so much on how the outcome will be perceived by others or what external benefits might appear.
Many people go to work only for the money and if they would suddenly become financially independent, they would quit. This is a stressful and in the long-term unhealthy situation to be in.
On the other hand, you can find people that don’t make a single cent, like some artists, but they continue producing their art. Maybe because they hope to be successful one day (which would mean they are extrinsically motivated) or because they enjoy creating their art and don’t care so much what others think about it.
Of course the line between extrinsic and intrinsic motivation is blurred at times. In fact, I think that both are important, but that intrinsic motivation is a bit more important. This means you should first find what you enjoy doing and then look at what this can bring you in terms of money, approval from others etc.
Getting back to the question from the beginning; why don’t you skim through my methods, find the one you find most interesting and then start doing it?
Sometimes we should not think too much about things because it will hinder us from taking action. I’m writing you step-by-step what to do to earn money online and I support anyone that runs into issues, but the last steps still have to be done on your end.
Don’t wait for the wake-up-call
This section should share some of my personal story to act as word of warning about waiting too long before taking action. Before I really started taking action, some bad things had to happen to me.
My best friend died in a car accident, I fell into a depression, I suddenly was in debt and then I was diagnosed with a serious (although not life-threating) illness. This all happened within a short amount of time.
The crazy thing is that instead of these events destroying me, the exact opposite happened. I suddenly felt a powerful drive inside me to start doing the things I want to do. Not only regarding Internet marketing, but also regarding travelling, meeting new people, learning foreign languages, eating healthy etc.
I realized that my existence will end some day and if I keep on playing video games and day dreaming of a better life, valuable time might be wasted. It was like life took me by the shoulders, shook my whole body, screaming at me “Sgt. Kraut, you damn idiot, wake up! How much more time are you planning to waste?”.
I hope that you are smarter than me and don’t wait until you are as down as I was. Don’t wait for the wake-up-call. Start doing the things you want to do NOW. There is no perfect moment in the future (“I’ll start next week, that’ll be better”). The perfect moment might never come and therefore, waiting means wasting time.
To conclude this article, I want to show you a video that hopefully can help you the same way as it did help me. It’s about Arnold Schwarzenegger’s six rule of success.
This article could of course only feature my opinion. But what is yours? Do you agree, disagree or something in-between?