The Five-Second Rule for Productivity – Academy Lessons

This lesson is just like one of those awesome ninja tricks to think about, and then try it on and see how it fits. It’s a very simple concept, and here it is. You know what to do until your mind gets in the way. True or false? Let me give you the classic example: Exercise. You know that you’re supposed to exercise until your mind starts telling you, “I’m tired. I don’t feel well. I have a headache. I can always exercise tomorrow.” Don’t let the excuses lead you to inaction.

Procrastination and Laziness

In reality, what’s happening is that your mind is talking you out of the thing that you know that you should be doing. How do you know that’s happening? Because afterward, later in the evening or the next day, you feel guilty about it and you realize, “Darn it, I should have done this.” Don’t feel bad about this, by the way. We all have this problem. You can call it procrastination or laziness or whatever; the fact is that the good angel is sitting on this shoulder and the devil is sitting on this shoulder, and they’re both talking in your ear. One’s saying, “Exercise,” and the other’s saying, “No, you don’t have to exercise.” There are a million other examples of this, in school, in life, at home, but what if that never happened? What if you can press time and got everything done because you didn’t let that voice get in the way?

How the Five-Second Rule Works

Here’s what psychologists have learned; it’s ridiculously simple, but aren’t the most important things super simple? Not always easy, but simple. It’s called the Five-Second Rule. Here’s how it works: When the thing you should be doing enters your mind, you say out loud, “Five, four, three, two, one.” After you’ve said one, you get into physical motion to do that thing. All the parts to this are really important. The thing comes in your mind; then you start the countdown instantly so that all the thoughts about why you shouldn’t do it are drowned out by The Five-Second Rule. Then the key is at one, you just don’t think about it, you get up, get into physical motion, and you get going. What you’re going to find once you train yourself to do this is that the number of important things that can get done, and your degree of success, is going to go up dramatically because you’re going to be training your brain it’s not OK to come up with excuses. Five, four, three, two, one.

Incredibly simple, but incredibly powerful. Get out of your own way, get out of your own head, and just act on the things you know you should be doing. It’ll change your life. Get going with the Five-Second Rule. Start a Five-Second Rule Club at your school. Boom. See how everything changes.

Tell us what you think: