The keys to action are chunking things down, making time for things, focusing on outcomes over activities, and testing your results.
Action is at the heart of results. For many people, a lack of action is what holds them back from great results. They have great ideas that they’ll never test. They have results they want, but they’ll never take action to get them. Action is actually a competitive advantage.
Your ability to take action, produce results, and change your approach based on feedback is a powerful loop for achieving whatever you want in your life.
Here are some solutions at a glance for action:
How to get started on something
Plan, then execute. Make a list of actions, and then execute your actions. Scrimmage your results.
By taking action and testing your results as quickly as possible, you’ll find out what you know, don’t know and need to know next.
If it seems like risk is holding you back, chunk it down to limit or constrain your risk. Small tests plus feedback go a long way.
If you’re in unfamiliar territory, ask somebody who has paved the path.
How to take action more often
Chunk things down. Start with something simple. Focus on hitting windows of opportunity.
Focus on good enough for now versus perfection.
If you’re finding that you never get enough time to take action, you might be over-planning, over-engineering, or making things too big.
How to avoid analysis paralysis
Set time limits.
Flip from spending 80 percent of your time on the problem and 20 percent on the solution to spending 80 percent of your time on the solution and 20 percent on the problem.
Another simple way is to find three small things you can do.
How to improve your ability to take action
One way is to get clarity on your results.
If you know what you want to accomplish, it’s easier to find the motivation.
Another way is to start thinking in terms of action items. When you’re at a meeting, ask for the next steps.
When you’re in training, look for three things you can start doing. Another way is to use timeboxes. Test how much you can get done within a short time frame.
Another thing that helps is simply counting your actions.
Focus on rewarding yourself for taking action, in addition to rewarding your results.
If you have a bias for action, you can tune your results.