Archive for the ‘the paralysis of analysis’ Category

Overcoming Procrastination: avoiding the “paralysis of analysis”

Procrastination is not only a formidable enemy to reaching one’s goals, but also to one’s self confidence. Learning to recognize the various forms that procrastination can take and develop winning strategies will help you not only achieve your goals, but to also feel better about yourself while you do it.

A few weeks ago, I was listening to a course on information marketing, and the instructor, Eben Pagen, who went from a $0 business to a $20 million business in less than five years, made a reference to something called the “paralysis of analysis.”

I laughed, thinking it was a great term, but I didn’t really think too much about it. I most certainly didn’t think about how it might apply to me!

Now, the reason why Mr. Pagen advised avoiding the “paralysis of analysis”, is that getting stuck there prevents you from achieving your goals! It also undermines your self-confidence and forward trajectory. And when you undermine your self-confidence and forward trajectory, you no longer attract other self-confident and forward moving people into you life.

Obviously, when you avoid the “paralysis of analysis”, you achieve your goals (partly because you’re learning from your mistakes), you increase your self-confidence, you gain forward momentum, and you attract like-minded people into your sphere of influence. Sounds familiar?

You may be wondering why I’m giving you a little mini-marketing recap in a blog about losing the last ten pounds and keeping them off forever. Am I right?

Well, the other day, I realized that I, too, had fallen into the trap of “the paralysis of analysis.” Essentially, I realized that I was spending more time arguing with myself about whether I should exercise than I actually did exercising! It was particularly ironic, when it would take me 20 minutes to convince myself that it was worth exercising when I only had 30 minutes to begin with!

When all was said and done, of course, if I’d just gotten up and done it, I could have had a full 50 minute session (with a 400+ calorie burn to brun)!

There are plenty of other examples, but I’m sure you get the general idea.

Now that I have recognized the “paralysis for analysis” for what it is – a highly sophisticated, yet undermining – means of procrastination, I have developed a better system for for getting around it.

How I get around “the paralysis of analysis” is that I exercise immediately upon getting out of bed; else, I schedule it in the day, as I would any other appointment. And this applies not only to exercise, but to work, writing, calling friends and family, etc. So, now that I recognize this for what it is, whenever I catch myself arguing with myself about if I should do something – especially if one of the key the arguments against doing it is not having enough time – I just do it.

If you are a procrastinator or someone who just likes to analyze (or, one could say, over-analyze), I challenge you to simply do the things that you’re trying to talk yourself out of actually doing. You’ll feel better and I guarantee, you’ll get a heck of a lot more accomplished!

Let me know how it goes!