The five-minute rule

ajj_perspeWHILE people get all giddy and excited whenever the new year comes, I feel nothing special. To me, it’s just another ordinary day—a continuation of the day before, which is last year. “New year, new me,”and New Year’s resolutions do not apply to me anymore. Besides, every day is a new day, a new chance to make things better.

Most of the time, promises made or items on your resolution list would just last for a few weeks or months—they’d be left out on one corner: dusty, unfinished, waiting for another year to end until they are made into promises again.

In my Facebook newsfeed, I would always see a significant amount of motivational and inspiring quotes about how one should deal with life. My friends who share these kinds of posts are usually from the University of Santo Tomas and our Faculty. However, I would see some of these people tweeting about how lazy they are to do their schoolworks or that they regret procrastinating yet still continue to do so. I would see some tweeting asking for motivation, with lines like, “Lord, pahinging motivation” or “saniban sana ako ng kasipagan,” along with their usual woes.

One morning, I stumbled upon this post on my feed that said “You don’t need motivation; you need discipline.” Like other motivational posts, it was shared by a number of my friends on Facebook—the same people who slack off and wait until the deadline before they get going. I have to admit: I was one of these people before until one day I decided to “just do it” instead of waiting or trying to get myself in that fitting mental state to do what I have to do.

Motivation, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is “the condition of being eager to act or to work.” In other words, it is something that these friends of mine look for: a state they need to be in before they need to start doing work.

According to a columnist from the Collegiate Times, millennials “lack self-motivation” and are “constantly searching for motivation.” Moreover, she goes on to tell how millennials are demanding, disrespectful, have a sense of entitlement, and more importantly, lazy.

With the stereotype of how we millennials are lazy and how we are always constantly looking for that mental state to carry on tasks, I think it is best to break the stereotype, change our habits, and live up to our said promises.

The five-minute rule is one small step to accomplishing what we have to do. It is quite overwhelming when you have a load of schoolwork to do that you think would take you hours, or days even. Tell yourself what task you can do within five minutes. Take a break for a minute or two then do another five-minute task. From there, you could increase your time span to 15, 25 minutes, and a five-minute break after these spans.

By training ourselves little by little in ways like this, we will be surprised to have accomplished so much in so litle time—soon enough, without the need to summon deities to bless us with the will to work. F

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