What’s Your Barrier to Productivity?

Just back from a trip to New England to visit my disabled brother, I looked at the dimmer switch extension cord sitting on my counter. It had been there for about two weeks. I felt a surge of irritation. That’s what happens when something has negative energy. In this case that energy came from the fact that the cord was out of place and that I thought it might be broken.

I bit the bullet and walked over, grabbed the cord and plugged it into a lamp. I flipped the switch and it worked. Good news! Now all I had to do was figure out why it hadn’t worked with the lamp that needed it. That was easy after I’d taken that first step.

What had kept me from taking the first step for two whole weeks? Yes, even fairly anal retentive Debbie Bowie does procrastinate from time to time. As I reflected on the cause of my procrastination, I first realized that I had created an effective mental barrier that kept me from taking action. When I looked at that cord I shut myself down by thinking that it MIGHT be broken and by focusing on the fact that I didn’t know exactly what it would take to figure out if it still worked. The task SEEMED so huge, in my mind!

Truth be told, there was another barrier, perhaps the primary barrier, that kept me from jumping on that annoying task.  I was scheduled to go out of town to visit my brother, a long, potentially stressful trip. It took all the energy and time I had to get my ducks in a row to leave, especially since it was my first solo trip to visit Mark. Fixing the cord just didn’t rank up there with travel prep. 

Once the trip was done, however, it was easy for me to push through my mental resistance. I was able to muster adequate mental energy to problem-solve the situation because I wasn’t distracted and drained by a more pressing priority.

Wow! How often do you find yourself shut down by your inaccurate thoughts? What’s blocking you from completing tasks you really want to get done? Check out the barriers and remove them one by one. I promise that you’ll feel a real rush of pleasure and a surge of energy when you persevere, do battle with your mental and physical barriers, and get things done.

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