Blog

Lara's blog is full of great ideas, straight from real coaching appointments!

How to get big things done

12 October

Confession: I’ve been making a whole lot of excuses for not exercising lately.

I have some back problems. I’m tired. The gym is too far away. There just aren’t enough hours in the day. I like my body just fine. I don’t have childcare…. yadda yadda yadda. And the whole “getting in shape” thing just seems too overwhelming. I just don’t have the energy to consider getting into a regular, daily, hour-long workout schedule. Argh.

Yesterday I was resisting doing something I was committed to for work. It’s a huge project that requires a ton of brain cells, focus and energy to get it done. I’ve been feeling overwhelmed and really frustrated over the fact that I know I am committed to getting it done, but I just couldn’t. I simply couldn’t figure out how to get started with a project that seemed enormous, insurmountable, undoable.

I called one of the gals on my Personal Board of Advisers (who is also a coach) and asked for some accountability. She said: “Why don’t you just give yourself 30 minutes and see what you can get done? Just 30 minutes.”

30 minutes? Well, I guess I could do 30 minutes. That’s not so bad.

I set the timer, pulled up the site on my computer, and got started. The next time I looked at the clock, an hour had passed and I had completed three of my milestones! In just an hour! And I had been agonizing over this work for weeks.

So here’s how I’m going to apply that to getting in shape (Didn’t think I was going to leave you hanging, did you?).

Everyday at 10 am, I’m going to do a set of 10 reps of one sort or another: push-ups, crunches, lifting weights, climbing the stairs, lunges, or 10 minutes of jogging or walking.

Just 10 minutes.

I’m not setting up some complex workout routine, signing gym contracts, rearranging my entire life to make sure I can fit in an hour-long workout (plus drive time back and forth to the gym, plus arranging for childcare…).

I can do 10 of anything.

What about you? Is there some enormous project or goal you’ve been resisting like I have? Can you break it down into a tiny step or two that you can do? Please share below.

* Photo courtesy of flickr Creative Commons
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!

Tags: , , , ,

11 Responses to “How to get big things done”

  1. Anonymous October 12, 2010 at 7:36 pm #

    As always, words of wisdom Lara!

    I have been procrastinating for months on getting this particular task done. Unlike you, I haven’t even taken the time to find the reason (excuses more likely) why I haven’t done it! {sigh}

    Something I have found about myself recently is that being “present” takes a bit of energy for me. Most of the things I am better off not spending time on, are things that I end up doing (like eating a whole bag of pretzels in front of the TV, or using the car to take my daughter to school, 2 1/2 blocks away!) if I am not “present”. If I am not in my body, awake and aware. Kind of like what you do when you drive for 30 minutes in the “zone” and have no idea how you got there?

    So I’ve realized that this “zone” is where procrastination lives for me. When I allow myself to slip into that zone, much of nothing gets done. But when I am engaged, connected and present, is when I feel alive and like I can take on the world.. and no task is too big, too boring, too tedious!

    I guess it’s time to get myself to that “in the moment” place so I can tackle this long-overdue task.

    Thanks for the wonderful post and the reminder for those of us who straddle the “present” and the “unconscious-is-too-much-work-I-dont-feel-like-doing-that” zones on a daily basis!

    Sandra

  2. Anonymous October 12, 2010 at 7:36 pm #

    As always, words of wisdom Lara!

    I have been procrastinating for months on getting this particular task done. Unlike you, I haven’t even taken the time to find the reason (excuses more likely) why I haven’t done it! {sigh}

    Something I have found about myself recently is that being “present” takes a bit of energy for me. Most of the things I am better off not spending time on, are things that I end up doing (like eating a whole bag of pretzels in front of the TV, or using the car to take my daughter to school, 2 1/2 blocks away!) if I am not “present”. If I am not in my body, awake and aware. Kind of like what you do when you drive for 30 minutes in the “zone” and have no idea how you got there?

    So I’ve realized that this “zone” is where procrastination lives for me. When I allow myself to slip into that zone, much of nothing gets done. But when I am engaged, connected and present, is when I feel alive and like I can take on the world.. and no task is too big, too boring, too tedious!

    I guess it’s time to get myself to that “in the moment” place so I can tackle this long-overdue task.

    Thanks for the wonderful post and the reminder for those of us who straddle the “present” and the “unconscious-is-too-much-work-I-dont-feel-like-doing-that” zones on a daily basis!

    Sandra

  3. Lara Galloway October 12, 2010 at 7:57 pm #

    Talk about wise, Sandra…

    What you’re saying about “being present” or not makes total sense. I can see
    me doing the same things.

    Thanks for YOUR wisdom!!

  4. Amy Harrison October 12, 2010 at 8:39 pm #

    Breaking it down into bite-sized pieces is a great way to get things done – I love it!

    In fact, a really good technique is to tell yourself you’re specifically NOT going to do any more than the tiny chunk you’ve set yourself. It makes it look small, and do-able. Way to go Lara!

  5. Lara Galloway October 12, 2010 at 9:04 pm #

    Thanks for dropping by, Amy! That’s exactly what I had to tell myself
    yesterday. And as my friend Melissa Lierman (@timeoutmom) pointed out to me,
    if she takes all that time to get on her running gear, she always wants to
    run longer than the 10 minutes she told herself she would. Same for me. The
    hardest part is just getting started sometimes!

  6. Christy October 13, 2010 at 8:04 pm #

    When I can’t make it to the gym, my trainer told me to go to the park (a block away) and run sprints. She said to do 20 seconds on with 90 seconds rest between for 8 – 10 intervals. Thought I’d share that … Now to stop my avoidance issues and go back to work. ;)

  7. Lara Galloway October 13, 2010 at 8:30 pm #

    That sounds totally doable! Maybe I need you to be my virtual trainer!
    Thanks, Christy.

  8. MyCollegesandCareers October 13, 2010 at 10:06 pm #

    Great insights. Recently I was having a conversation with a business owner friend of mine and he spends 10 or 15 minutes in the morning doing workouts based off of online exercise videos he follows. He says it makes the biggest difference. I want to do this as well, it’s just a matter of making the time.

  9. Anita Woo December 21, 2011 at 9:24 am #

    I am so glad that I am not the only one that struggles with big tasks at times!  I know that when I focus and get going, I can accomplish anything I set my mind to but sometimes I feel too overwhelmed to start.  I have a number of big projects that I have been meaning to tackle for a long time, and I have promised myself to start in the new year.  If I tackle a small chunk every week, over time the project will be done – stress free!  It’s nice to know that other successful women have challenges at times too!

  10. Lara Galloway December 21, 2011 at 9:34 am #

    I think it can be so hard to even get started with a big project when it’s so big. And I’ll admit, I get a sick sense of pleasure from planning things out from beginning to end. When I’m breaking things down into smaller chunks and scheduling them into my calendar, I already feel like I have more control over what’s going to happen. But it sounds like you’re well on your way, Anita! I look forward to hearing what you accomplish…Are your projects and plans for your photography business? See you on twitter!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Tweets that mention How to get big things done | Mom Biz Coach Business Coach for Mom Entrepreneurs -- Topsy.com - October 12, 2010

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Melissa Dawn Lierman and Lee Anne Orange, Katherine Styne Type. Katherine Styne Type said: RT @MomBizCoach How to get big things done: Confession: I’ve been making a whole lot of excuses for not… http://bit.ly/d0kygB [blog post] [...]

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge