If I placed you in a room, put a piece of broccoli and a cookie in front of you, and said “You can eat whichever you want and no one will know,” which would you choose? Right now, you might reply “The broccoli, of course! I care about my health.” That’s easy to say when this is a pure thought experiment. However, in the moment, your body may scream for that infusion of chocolate and sugar, and you might be unable to resist the temptation.
We make good, objective decisions when we have time and space to think. However, it’s under pressure that our principles are tested.
Given the choice between doing your uncomfortable creative work and doing something that might give you an immediate surge of pro- ductive energy, it’s tempting to choose the latter. (Let’s see, work on that marketing plan or achieve inbox zero? Inbox it is!)
The key in these moments is to not give yourself the choice. While you are thinking rationally, commit time to doing the things that need doing. Then, in the moment, treat it like a commitment to your manager or client. Don’t allow yourself out of the commitment.
Plan your work, then work your plan. Don’t make important deci- sions in a moment of weakness.
Don’t give yourself a choice about doing the hard work.
What is the “cookie” that often distracts you from your most wellrounded meal?