June 20, 2013, 6:00 am

Wake Up Call : We Need to Stop Reacting

by: MD    Category: Other Financial Articles
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Check Twitter. Did anyone RT my latest post? Did you anyone DM me?

Time to check email. Did that friend finally get back to me? Did anyone cool email me? I wonder what’s happening.

Now it’s on to the blog comments. Ah nothing good. Just a few comments. I should probably take the time to reply right now. Oh a new reader. I should see their blog.

I wonder what Jack is up to? Let’s check out Facebook. There has to be something interesting happening. That guy always posts funny videos. I should check it out. It could make my day.

And it goes on and on.

It’s time for a wake up call. We need to stop reacting.

I shared the truth about Twitter last year. Now I want us to wake up and stop reacting!

While Twitter and social media can be amazing for your business, chances are that you’re not using any platform for the right reasons. You’re just killing time and putting off the important. You’re inventing things to do so that you can avoid the important work and the work that scares you.

Why do we need to stop reacting?

We can’t always be waiting for something to happen. We have to make things happen.

I get caught in this trap far too often. I go on Twitter hoping for something to happen. I’m waiting for huge news to break. I want to be the first one to find out what’s happening. I want to know everything. I want more information.

In reality, I’m just wasting time and avoiding the important work.

If we’re always reacting, we won’t ever accomplish anything. Nobody will ever care about our work and we won’t get anywhere in life. That sucks. There’s so much to do out there and here we are waiting for something to happen on Facebook.

What can we do instead?

What are better options instead of always reacting?

Create. Do something. Be conscious of our actions. Stop making excuses. Stop waiting for something to happen that we can react to or share on Facebook.

Some articles I can pump out in a matter of minutes. Others take me hours, days, and even weeks. Why? Because I lose focus. I go from creating to reacting. I hate it. I imagine that this will be a constant struggle for the rest of my life. A struggle that I’m ready to conquer (most of the time)!

It’s so tough to create. Reacting is easy and requires no effort.

What if we want to watch tv, check Twitter, and hang out?

That’s cool because I love all of those things. A few weeks ago I found out about Sons of Anarchy and I became instantly hooked. I’m very compulsive. I had to watch every single episode. I had to know what happened next. I couldn’t stop watching. I went through the whole series in a few weeks. I finally found out what all of the hype about the show was about.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t watch our favorite shows or zone out in front of Twitter or laugh at friends on Facebook.

We just need to set conditions. The following conditions have helped me out:

  1. Do something important first. Get that item off your to-do list ASAP.
  2. Never start the day off with wasting time. Try not to directly go on Facebook or on email. Grab a coffee, do some pushups, and see what you can do.
  3. Delete the distractions when needed. I’m temporarily off Facebook. It was just causing me too much of a distraction. Now I haven’t gone on in a few weeks and have literally missed nothing!
  4. Get your friends involved. It’s much more fun when you can slack off with your friends.
  5. Plan for it. You can’t feel guilty about slacking off if you plan for it. I’ve already told myself that the next rainy day will be spent watching SOA with my brothers.

That’s how I slack off now without feeling guilty. There will always be days where you get nothing done. The trick is to limit those. Perfection isn’t the goal. The goal is to be a little better every day. If we can create a little more today than we did yesterday, we will be ahead.

What do you think about all of this stuff? Do you react far too much?

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I am a planner by nature and tend to be proactive for all the big things. I have to raise something to identify it as big in order to do something about it. I usually do it well, but it comes down to priorities just like everyone else. What are your priorities?

Agreed doing something productive on your to-do list can be a great way to start the day. Hit the ground running and you’ll coast the rest of the day.