Don’t Feel Like It?
– Do It
By David Benzel
Tarah was 12, it was common to see her writing down specific water
skiing goals on colored paper with an artistic flair. Some goals
were short-term performance targets, while others looked much
further out at specific outcomes like making the U.S. Team. She was
competitive and determined to win a national title.
family awoke one particular Saturday morning to find the weather
windy, overcast and nasty. The lake was rough, but not too rough to
ski. Tarah’s father knew it wouldn’t be pleasant, but they were
planning on a good day of practice. He announced that he’d go down
to the lake and get the boat ready. Tarah replied, “Dad, I don’t
really feel like skiing today.” He said, “I understand. I’ll go get
the boat ready.” She looked surprised and said again, “It’s nasty
out there, and I really don’t feel like practicing.” To which he
again replied, “I know, you’re right. I’ll go get the boat ready.”
By then she was really frustrated. “Dad! Don’t you get it? I don’t
feel like it!” Finally it was time to make the point. “Tarah, it’s
perfectly fine that you don’t feel like skiing, but what does that
have to do with it? Let’s do it anyway.”
business and in life, you commonly state your goals and plot your
course for reaching them. However, there will be many days when you
don’t feel like doing the work, but go ahead and do it anyway …
“feeling like it” is not a pre-requisite. In Tarah’s case, it’s
theoretically possible to “not feel like” it all the way to a
national title, if she’s willing to do the work!
the hard things is often accompanied by “not feeling like it.”
However, true champions and those successful in the business world
are willing to do the hard things despite their feelings at the
moment. Digging down deep within yourself to do the things that
must be done is the essence of self-discipline. The alternative
looks easier, and therefore attractive, but actually includes a
heavier price in the long run. Author Jim Rohn wrote, “We must all
suffer from one of two pains: the pain of discipline or the pain of
regret. The difference is discipline weighs ounces while regret
you’re serious about taking your performance at work to the next
level, examine your average day or week and identify the situations
or opportunities that require you to do the hard things. What are
the uncomfortable items for you? Here are some possible examples.
paperwork following a sale or agreement.
“Cold” phone calls to
Speaking in front of a
group of your peers, or a group of any kind.
Meeting strangers and
engaging in small talk conversations.
over a behavioral issue.
Listening to feedback
about your work.
Writing a report.
Sticking to a budget.
secret to not feeling like it, yet doing it anyway, is to discover
the “psychic income” you receive when you overcome the urge to avoid
the unpleasant tasks. Those who are good at doing the painful,
distasteful tasks will tell you they experience an internal
pay-off. It is a satisfaction on a psychological level that feels
rewarding and fulfilling. Be prepared for the natural tug-of-war
that will rage within you as you face the hard things you’d rather
avoid. Part of you wants to find something easier to do, but the
part of you that says, “I don’t feel like it, but I still have to do
it” is the one worth listening to.
President John F. Kennedy gave a speech to the students at Rice
University on September 12, 1962. At the time, many people were
asking why it was important for the U.S. space program to go to the
moon. Kennedy answered his critics by posing another question the
students of the relatively small private school would understand:
“Why does Rice play Texas? Because it is the hard thing!” It is
also the reason he gave for our commitment to go to the moon;
because it’s the hard thing we must do.
steps to overcome the “don’t feel like it” sensation can best be
described as mental gymnastics:
Recognize you have a choice. You are at a
crossroads where you must choose between two alternatives; the
easy way that provides relief, or the hard way that includes
Take yourself out of the equation by asking
yourself three questions: “What choice would be made by someone
I greatly admire?” “Why would his choice impress me?” “What
would he gain by his choice?”
Reinstate yourself into the situation by
deciding if you would like to be that person. If so, the answer
becomes clear. The choice is yours and so are the rewards!
Take action immediately, without hesitation or
gains from the pain are positive sensations for having done the hard
thing, rather than hiding from it. Fear and discomfort have been
overcome. Your psychic income is earned, and with it a
reinforcement for doing it again. The long-term gains are best
described not by what you get, but by what you become
in the process.
Remember, it is more likely for you to act your way into a feeling
than it is to feel your way into an action! Will yourself to do the
things others won’t do and you’ll have the things others won’t have.
Read other articles and learn more
[This article is available at no-cost, on a non-exclusive basis.
Contact PR/PR at 407-299-6128 for details and