Written by: Maggie Perotin, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise
Have you ever found yourself overwhelmed to that point that you were unable to take any action? I sure did. Especially at a time a few years ago, when I had so much work to do, I felt like I was set up to fail. No matter how many hours a day and how many days a week I worked, I still couldn't keep up. I felt boxed in. And this feeling completely paralyzed me. On some days, I could just stare at my laptop screen for a long time, unable to do anything. Getting out of that time, and reflecting on it was one of the reasons I'm a business coach today. Many clients that I work with hire me because they're going through a similar inability to act.
Why does it happen to us? Why sometimes do we find ourselves unable to act?
I can think of three main reasons:
Sometimes the fear of failure is bread by perfectionism that many achievers fall into.
- "I want to create an online course, but I keep spinning in circles doubting that anyone will buy it."
- "I want to start a YouTube channel, but there's so much to think about. I want to be as good as Gary V. now, but I don't know where to start."
Those thoughts are a perfect example of our primitive brain at work. The one whose job is to "keep us safe and alive." That's why it'll help us come up with multiple reasons why we shouldn't be taking action.
This is especially true when we're trying to implement a brand new idea that our creative brain just came up with. But what if that idea was the one that opened the doors to our dream life?
2. Lack of Confidence
This sometimes can manifest itself through analysis paralysis. To make an informed decision, we gather information to analyze it first. And yes, with significant decisions, such thoroughness is often needed.
However, with mountains of data, we can entangle ourselves in too much analysis, delay the decision-making, or not take any action at all. As a result, we find ourselves in a self-fulfilling prophecy situation: the less we act, the less confidence we have, which leads us to take even less action.
3. Lack of Clarity
Just like it happened to me, when we take on too much without a clear direction in our minds, we get overwhelmed. It's hard to prioritize things when we don't know what's important and what's not. Such overwhelm usually leads to paralysis and procrastination.
OK, so now that we know the reasons why paralysis happens, let's move on to the tips on what you can do to overcome them.
Here are 5 simple steps that can help you:
1. Be clear on your business Vision, Values, and Mission.
Such clarity will give you direction. It'll allow you to be strategic and create SMART goals. Then you'll be able to identify the tasks you need to do to achieve them.
2. Understand what motivates you.