7 Mind Traps of Procrastination

I hear it all the time in our gym – “I have been wanting to stop in here for over a year.” “I have been following you on FB for over a year.” “I pass by here all the time and have been wanting to check you out since you opened.”
When I think about the progress some of these above-mentioned examples could have made over the time they spent thinking about what they want to do instead of actually moving forward in that direction and DOING IT – (to better their health and overall quality of life) I cringe . BUT my next thought is well they are here now, let’s keep this momentum going!
Do you ever wonder what stops people from starting?
I am reading a book by Dan Lok and in one of the chapters he warns the reader of what he calls the, “7 Demons of Procrastination.” As he explains each “demon” he uses the example of performing a pushup as the task. As I was listening to the author I could not help but get fired up. I can relate personally but also professionally as we hear these, ” 7 Mind Traps ,” frequently in our gym whether from current members or from those who want to move forward in their health and wellness journey. Unfortunately, these cause people to be stuck instead.
Lets review these 7 traps so that we can recognize them as they start to surface. Because we know what they are, we can eliminate them more easily and get unstuck!!

1. The Perfectionist

Ok we are about to do the pushup! Wait, wait, I don’t think the spacing in between my hands are right and my arm angle is right. Also I shouldn’t get too close to the floor because that’s cheating. Actually, you know what, I’m not even wearing the proper clothing. Let’s do this later and then I’ll be ready. The Perfectionist Mind Trap is so concerned with doing the perfect pushup they don’t even get started doing one . Instead they are waiting for the perfect conditions or perfect season of life. How long does that take? Who do you think gets further ahead: the person who waits one month to do one perfect pushup or the person who does 5-10 pushups everyday for a month working on their form, knowledge, and habit? The Perfectionist is too concerned with perfection when what is needed is progress, not perfection. Progress OVER perfection.
2. The Sluggard

Ok we are about to do the pushup! It seems difficult. Looks hard. Is there an easier version? Maybe there is a pushup machine that can to do this for me. The Sluggard Mindset hates doing work. They hate anything that makes them feel slightly uncomfortable. They want the results but not the work it takes to get the results. They don’t want to feel uncomfortable. What they don’t realize is anything worth achieving is going to take some work. Nothing you want to achieve is inside your comfort zone.

3. The Measurer or Scrutinizer

Ok we are about to do the pushup! Well I can only do 10 pushups right now but look at her–she can probably do 20. There is this girl I follow on Instagram and she does 50 pushups daily. I just cant do that. I suck. I’m weak. I’m old. I should just stop doing pushups. They like to compare themselves to everyone else. If there is someone else out there doing it better they get discouraged even though they know they’re just learning or a beginner. They won’t do something unless it feels better. Who cares! It’s not about you or them–its about the progress YOU are making towards your goal. There will always be someone better than you. Don’t compare yourself to others–compete or measure against yourself. If you let others’ success stop you from acting, you will be stuck for a long time.

4. The Futurist

Ok we are about to do the pushup! If I do a pushup won’t my triceps get too big? Are pushups going to make me look too manly, or will my triceps get bigger than my biceps? If I look disproportionate no one will date me. I don’t want that. Let’s not do pushups. The futurist thinks SO far ahead into the future they create problems that don’t even exist. If you are a futurist you overthinking everything. You probably make things a bigger deal than they are. It’s just a pushup. No need to think so far into the future. Take it one step at a time. Don’t overthink it and think to far into the future–you create imaginary problems.

5. The Over Analyzer

Ok we are about to do the pushup! Let me think about it some more (when you know they’ve already been thinking about it for 5 years). I don’t know how to do a pushup–do you have any books or YouTube videos I can watch? The Over Analyzer overcomplicates the simplest task. It’s just a pushup–you go down and push yourself up. They need to read 500 books, watch 200 videos before acting while someone else is doing 5-10 pushups a day, learning, building their strength, their endurance and building their foundation. Can you do any advanced pushups if you can’t do the basic 5-10 regular pushups? Stop wasting your time pretending you don’t know how and just do it (like NIKE says).

6. The People Pleaser

Ok we are about to do the pushup! They listen to their friends and family. Alright I am going to do some pushups. Why are you doing pushups man? Have you read the recent research or article that says pushups are bad for you? You should do cardio instead. Oh really? OK I’ll do cardio, but I still feel weak… Oh man don’t do cardio anymore! You need to try this supplement or pill instead. The people pleaser has the shiny object syndrome– falling for whatever sounds good instead of just doing the darn pushup and committing to doing their pushups and making progress. They will listen to others and change their minds so many times and never FOCUS . F ollow O ne C ourse U ntil S uccessful. Success can be acquired by committing to one idea over time.

7. The Excuse Maker
I can’t do a pushup because the floor is dirty. There are germs and bacteria. What if I get sick? Well I don’t want my friend to get mad at me for starting without her so I am going to wait. What if my bones aren’t strong enough? I don’t want to fracture something! They’ll come up with or find a reason not to do the pushup even if what they are saying is not logical. It might even be untrue . Some are so irrational that it stops them from ever taking action and doing what they know they should do.
Think of these 7 Mind Traps as a pack of hungry wolves waiting to feed. If you feed them they will continue to grow and growl louder. However, if you resist the temptation to feed them they will weaken. So whenever you recognize these 7 take ACTION. We typically don’t experience procrastination when we start doing something because procrastination shows up strongest BEFORE we take action.
This is what you can do when you see these 7 Mind Traps surfacing whether you are about to do a pushup, make a choice or move forward towards your goals —-TAKE ACTION; because Action drives out thoughts– Action stops procrastination. Develop the habit of shortening the time between thought and action. The longer the gap between thought and habit the longer procrastination comes. The less time it takes for you to start the weaker the procrastination becomes. Think it and do it.
Beware of these 7 Mind Traps or thoughts that will stop you from moving forward in your health and wellness journey or any goals of life:
Exercise is easy–its the mind that takes convincing and changing. But a renewed mind is a powerful tool.
Music from https://www.zapsplat.com