How to Kick Your Self-Sabotaging Ways with Dr Jason Fox

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Motivation designed for you.

Recently, author and creative thinker Dr Jason Fox hosted a Collective101 Masterclass titled “Motivation Design”. If you missed it, fret not – we jotted some hot tips for you.

1. Get out of your own way

We let ourselves get pulled away by an email that pops up, or we choose distracting circumstances, like a friend of mine who chose to work at a co-working space, which is great for collaborating and networking, but not so great when you need to write a book. Then there’s physiological self-sabotage, where you’re in that terrible cycle of staying up late, not eating well and drinking too much coffee when you know better, preventing you from doing your best work. Stop it.

2. See through the lies you’re making up

We tell ourselves, ‘I can’t start work until I clear these emails,’ or ‘I won’t be able to focus unless my desk is tidy.’ But these are just stories you’re feeding yourself to put something off. Another classic is, ‘I work better under pressure,’ and you leave things to the last minute. Then when you get a migraine or your computer crashes right when you’re trying to finish things, you have an alibi for not producing your best product because you ‘ran out of time’. Don’t believe your own lies.

3. Do less

You pretend you’re ‘too busy’ and there aren’t enough hours in the day. ‘I mean, what can you expect? I’m volunteering on this thing, I have the family stuff to do and all these other committees that I’m involved with.’ Let go of the commitments that don’t really matter and only say yes to things that do – then focus on only them.

4. Think small, not big

Make it hard to make it hard for yourself by breaking projects down into bite-sized goals. Instead of focusing on the large, distant target, divide it into small wins along the way. These will keep you accountable for making meaningful progress.

5. Perfect isn’t progress

Stop spending so much time on details like a font or a logo. You’re just fooling your brain into thinking you’re making progress by stopping to make each step unnecessarily perfect.

For more from Dr Jason Fox, sign up to his Museletter at drjasonfox.com/ahoy

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