Intention without Action is Useless

To state the obvious, if nothing changes nothing changes.

As you look back on 2022 what changed? Did you take action to improve your relationships, health or your finances? Did you take the time to dig down to find out what really fuels you, what really brings you meaning? Or did falling back into the comfort of routine, familiarity and predictability win the day and claim more of your unmined potential? (By the way, if you are happy and content ‘as is’ this note isn’t for you. When you find your sweet spot and you can look in the mirror and be truly happy and content with where you are, the last thing you want to do is mess with that zone.)

No, these thoughts are for the rest of us that somehow get caught up in the sticky web of good intentions. Those of us that committed last January that this year was going to be different. I’m not talking about New Year’s resolutions, I’m talking about that still small voice that keeps asking “if not now, when?”. The keen and uncomfortable awareness that we might be starting to lose the fight against mediocrity, gravity and time. We promise ourselves we will get back on track but somehow life (excuses) keep getting in the way. And of course we take great comfort in that handy phrase ‘relative performance’ In other words compared to everyone else you are doing just fine, maybe even a little bit better, so why worry? You shouldn’t worry but here’s a reason to get more than a little annoyed. Someone else’s life has absolutely nothing to do with yours. Someone else’s story has no bearing whatsoever on what you do with your life, your dreams and ultimately your potential. Again, this isn’t about New Year’s resolutions which generally last as long as a hot bath. Fad diets, new gym memberships and taking the trip you’ve always wanted won’t change a thing.

The only thing that will make you feel like you are in control of your life is consistent daily ACTION.

When you figure out whatever it is that is important to you, it’s time to execute…immediately. Want to get up earlier? Set the alarm now, when it goes off, get up! Want to be closer to your spouse? set a date night now, put it in the calendar under ‘non-negotiable’. Want to build more wealth? commit a monthly amount to a quality investment now. Want to get in better shape? Sign up and pay the registration fee for a run, bike trip, triathlon or challenging hike now, it will force you to train (or you might die). Intention without immediate action is sure to lead to failure. Our habits and routines are deeply engrained and a fleeting thought designed to change those deep ruts don’t have much of a chance of getting any traction. Immediate action however without thought or debate is empowering. It proves you can and the more you repeat the more likely you will be on the road to real change.

If you really want the future to be different, if you really want to grow in some area of your life, don’t let ten  minutes go by after reading this before you sign up for something that will get you closer to who you really want to be.

Harry James