“Thinking will not overcome fear, but action will.

 – W. Clement Stone

Our last series of blogs addressed momentum and defeating procrastination and the importance of this transition to life and work.  Momentum is essential in interviewing and eliminating procrastination is imperative in auditing and investigations to maximize success. We are now going to do a series of three blogs on taking action.  This is a natural progression from eliminating procrastination to building momentum and being an action taker. In this first blog we will examine three ways to take action now.

Some people are just better at taking action than others. At least, that’s how it can often seem when you want to take action but can’t figure out how you should go about it. The truth is, you can transform yourself from a thinker to a doer using the following three secrets.

  • Stop Waiting For The Perfect Time

The most obvious difference between a thinker and someone who is a doer is that doers don’t worry about waiting for the perfect time. This is because perfection is a myth. There is no such thing as the perfect time. You will always have a full schedule; you will always have other things to do. It is time to accept that there is no time like the present for whatever you wish to accomplish. So stop waiting, and start doing instead.

Now this doesn’t mean heading into it with no planning and doing it the way I hate when interviewers tell me they are “winging it”.  We need to use our resources to plan and strategize, but not to use these as an excuse not to move ahead into execution. We know in interviewing only one in ten interviews have adequate planning associated with them.  The work we do upfront will maximize our success and make it easier to take action in the future.

  • Write Your Plan Down

Many people don’t take action now because they aren’t sure where to start. If your plan is quite large, like a career change, it can be difficult to know exactly where to start. What helps with this is to sit down and make an outline of your plan or goal. Break it down into smaller, more manageable pieces. Then, start with the first manageable piece that you can do. For the career example listed above, the first step would be to update your resume to apply for new jobs. Seems much more approachable than just thinking you want a new career, right?

Part of the planning referred to above is to strategize and assess how to make the entire project more manageable.  I am currently renovating a bathroom and when I look at the whole project it is overwhelming, but if I take segments of the job and complete them, I have the opportunity to have those repeated windows of success.  Those windows then motivate us to keep acting and to continue to accomplish. 

  • Overcome Your Fear

Are you afraid to take action now because you don’t think you will be successful? Or maybe you are afraid that you will make mistakes along the way? You aren’t alone. Most people who aren’t doers don’t take action because they are afraid of what could happen. Either way, it’s time to overcome these fears so that you can take action now. And the best way to do this is by recognizing that you are human and that making mistakes is part of life. Don’t worry about thinking you may fail; this is okay too. Remember that all successful people have had failures too. This doesn’t mean they didn’t eventually achieve their dreams or exceed them!

We talk in classes all the time about keeping fear paramount in our minds when we are conducting interviews.  Fear is a huge issue to be cognizant of in our interviewees but is equally important to be aware of in ourselves.  It affects our actions and is observable by those around us.  Our planning will motivate success and mitigate fear.  We need to be self-aware of these issues in every aspect of our lives.

Taking action now can seem like a tall order, but when you have these three secrets in your tool belt, you may find that taking action is easier than you originally thought. So, if you have big plans for your life, don’t sit around waiting for them to happen on their own. Take action today and make your dream a reality.

Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.

– John Wooden

Focus on those three secrets but consider this list of a dozen tips to motivate action in your life.  These are imperative in taking action but have applicability across the board in your personal and work life:

  1. Set Clear Goals: Define specific, achievable goals. Knowing what you want to accomplish gives you a clear direction and purpose.
  2. Break it Down: Divide your larger goals into smaller, manageable tasks. This makes the overall objective less overwhelming and more achievable.
  3. Create a Plan: Develop a step-by-step plan to reach your goals. Having a roadmap can make the journey seem more feasible.
  4. Prioritize Tasks: Determine which tasks are most important and tackle those first. Prioritizing helps you focus on what matters most.
  5. Visualize Success: Imagine the positive outcomes of achieving your goals. Visualization can be a powerful motivator.
  6. Celebrate Progress: Acknowledge and celebrate your achievements, no matter how small. This positive reinforcement can boost motivation.
  7. Stay Positive: Maintain a positive mindset. Focus on what you can control and learn from setbacks rather than dwelling on them.
  8. Find Accountability: Share your goals with someone who can provide support and hold you accountable. This could be a friend, family member, or a mentor.
  9. Eliminate Distractions: Identify and minimize distractions that might hinder your progress. Create a conducive environment for concentration.
  10. Take Breaks: Give yourself time to recharge. Taking short breaks can improve focus and prevent burnout.
  11. Stay Healthy: Physical well-being is connected to mental well-being. Ensure you get enough sleep, exercise regularly, and maintain a balanced diet.
  12. Stay Flexible: Be open to adjusting your plans as needed. Life is unpredictable, and being flexible can help you adapt to changing circumstances.

Is worry taking a forward seat in your life?  Do you need to push it to the back? Take a look at today’s list and consider which can be implemented this week as a start to putting worry in its place.  Are there some paralyzing worries that you may need to talk to others about.  Those worries will steal joy and fulfillment from your life as long as they live there.  Let’s look to make some changes. Fixing several of these will make a huge change in your production and results. 

Anderson Investigative Associates is positioned to custom-tailor training to your specific needs.  If you have any questions or would like to discuss the above issues of turning your worry into excitement for continued momentum and success or any training need, please reach out.  Additional issues pertaining to interviewing, auditing, and investigations can be found in other blogs and videos that we have produced and are contained in most blocks of instruction that our company presents.

If you have additional questions, comments, or have an interviewing topic you would like me to address, give me a shout.  In the meantime, be well, stay safe out there, and get focused on identifying those worries and transforming them into excitement to maximize momentum, perseverance, and success….it will change many aspects of your life.

Mark A. Anderson

Director of Training and Development

Anderson Investigative Associates, llc

114 Loucks Avenue

Scottdale, PA 15683