You’ve heard the countdown before. Perhaps it was when you warn your kids that if they don’t do as you say right now, they’ll be put on a timeout. Then you count down 5..4..3..to let them know you are serious. We’ve all watched the spaceships prepare for takeoff and the final moments of countdown before blast off. 5..4..3…
"The 5 second rule" by Mel Robbins has come on my radar more than once. But I couldn’t imagine how 5 seconds in any other context could possibly matter in my life. Boy, was I wrong!
I’m just a little more than 1/2 way through this book and already I’ve put stickie notes on dozens of pages. Passages I want to go back and re-read. Notes I want to take to reference later. The author promises she can help improve my life in 5 seconds. I was skeptical when I read this on the back cover that she could make my life better. But now I’m beginning to think she is right.
I can understand how counting to 5 in certain circumstances can be a good thing. Like when you’re angry and want to scream at your 5 year child who just wrote all over the wall with magic markers. As he stands there with a grin on his face because he’s so happy with his creation. After all, you were the one who encouraged him to color instead of spending another hour in front of the television. Take a deep breath. Breathe. And count to 5. All seems like good advice before saying something you’ll regret.
But Mel Robbins talks about the 5 second rule in other contexts, situations I would never have thought of. The one thing that struck me the most was how everything we do is motivated by our feelings. Want to wake up early and get a workout in before going to work? You set the alarm the night before fully intending to do just that, but when the alarm goes off you make every excuse why you’ll start tomorrow instead. Too tired. It’s raining out. It’s too dark. Excuses. All of it. What you really want is to get back in shape after having a baby. But you let your feelings take over and you talk yourself out of it. If you countdown to 5 before hitting the off button on the alarm clock and in the words of Nike, “Just do it” you will get that workout in. No, it’s not easy. But it works.
I know that because there are so many things I have done in my life where I made that decision to not listen to my feelings - my fears, my anxiety, my nervousness. And I usually don’t regret it. I’ve been writing down the same goals for months, even years now that I haven’t made happen. Each time I re-write it, I tell myself it’s going to be different this time. But here I sit with some of those same goals written in this year’s planner. It’s time to make some of them happen because I know they will get me closer to making some of my dreams come true. Which includes creating a successful photography business. So, 5 seconds to a better life? You bet! I can’t wait to finish this book and start putting this into practice!
Have you read this book? Did it change your life? Do you want to read it now that I’ve written about it? Share your thoughts in the comments below! Let’s have a dialogue and help each other take 5 seconds to creating a better life for ourselves!
Thanks for reading!