Take Action with The 5 Second Rule
I was a bit concerned when I heard Mel had turned the rule into a book, how could something so small be enough for a book? But I was so wrong.
Here I’m going to share my view on how to put this awesome rule into action.
While I loved the book, one of my main struggles with a personal development book is remembering it and applying it to my life.
After the week or so it takes to read it, I start to forget and weeks later I remember how much I wanted to apply it, but just don’t have the time to reread and learn it all.
Day 1: How Can You Use The Rule?
There are literally hundreds, if not thousands of ways the rule has already used by people all over the world. Just search #5secondrule on Instagram or Twitter, you’ll see Mel has an army of readers loving her creation.
But what about you?
Instruction: Write a list of at least 20 ways you can start using the rule. List all of the instances where you should do something in a better way, or where you should take 5 seconds to think first.
Here are many other ways you can use the rule, in my previous post about using it.
Day 2: Put 5 Second Rule Reminders Everywhere!
Yesterday we learned there are a lot of ways to implement the 5 Second Rule, so today we’ll talk about one of the major issues I had in doing that: Remembering!
While, yes, it could just be me, reminders help all of us.
Instruction: Try at least 2 of these reminders:
- Schedule yourself an email when you know you’ll be in a meeting and should use the rule.
- Put up a post-it note at work that says Use the Rule. MOVE it every time you see it, so you don’t ignore it.
- Name your alarm Use The Rule and set it various times throughout the day.
- Tell Siri or Alexa to remind you to use the rule every day at 4PM for the next week. Change this time weekly.
- Take 5 Post-Its and Write USE THE RULE on them, put them in different places around the house, like inside the refrigerator, on the front of the television, on your computer screen, even as a bookmark as you read more books.
Additionally, today I want you to pick 1 thing from that list you made yesterday and make it a point to use the rule on it.
Day 3: It’s A 5x 5 Second Rule Day
Using this rule and improving your courage and confidence really depends on habits. We have to turn your initiative into action.
“Confidence is a skill you build through action.”
We are going to work on using the rule over and over to push ourselves into making small progressions every day.
Instruction: Today you are committing to using the rule 5x. I don’t care what it is on. But you have to use it 5x today.
You can look at your list from Day 1 to come up with ideas.
Send yourself an email that you don’t open so that every time you check your mail today you have a reminder.
Or pick from the following areas to use the rule in your life:
- Home – relationships, friends and family
- Health – how you exercise, eat, or sleep
- Happiness – Commit to being happy no matter what today
- Productivity – stop getting distracted, no mindless reading, moving apps off your home screen
- Professionally – speak up at a meeting, approach your boss for a raise
- Procrastination – Just say No to procrastination and every time you feel like blowing something off, just get started
Day 4: Are You Getting Out of Bed Yet?
I am NOT a fan of getting out of bed to an alarm. In fact, I usually go to bed so late that an alarm is laughable at best, but Mel suggests really trying to use getting out of bed to your alarm, on the first try, as the best way to launch your day, and who am I to argue with her?
From experience, I think we can all say that getting out of bed, getting dressed, and moving puts us in the right state of mind to conquer the day. And we could all use a little more conquering of the day, couldn’t we.
There was one piece of science that Mel mentions about how staying in bed after the alarm goes off actually causes us to be sleepier during the day, so don’t skip this day’s exercise.
Instruction: Charge your phone away from your bed, so you can’t reach it, and get up when the alarm goes off. And, while you are at it, use the rule at least twice today.
Day 5: Track Your Success with The 5 Second Rule
So far we’ve covered getting you moving with the rule. Now, we want to show some progress that should encourage you and take more action every day.
Instruction: Start a journal where you write down when you’ve used the 5 Second Rule. In the future, I’ll have you share things like this in group discussion to help each other come up with more ideas.
The goal is to use the rule 3x a day from now on out.
Tip: It’s time to move around those reminders, put them in new places that you’ll take notice of when you see them. Try to use the rule quickly after you’ve seen them.
Days 6 & 7: Our First 5 Second Rule Weekend
Whatever could this mean? Weekends at BookProf are about getting caught up and getting some inspiration with motivational quotes from your favorite books (in this case 5 Second Rule).
Mel does a lot of awesome videos, and I hope you’ve signed up for her free 30 days of videos for book buyers. She covers so many awesome life hacks around having the life you want.
She also puts out a lot of video on Youtube and I love this gem from her channel. Check it OUT!
Instruction: Watch the video – The Reason You Procrastinate (It’s Not What You Think!).
Day 8: 5 Seconds To Peace At Home
As I stated before it’s hard to remember all of the small instances where you can use the 5-second rule, so for today let’s focus on getting some peace and calm at home.
What frustrates you at home?
- Is it the kids clamoring for attention after you get home from work or while you are cooking dinner?
- Is it the evening chaos as everyone needs rides for after-school activities?
- How about bedtime when the kids do NOT want to go to sleep?
- Or maybe it’s your spouse/partner turning up the television when you are reading a book?
Instruction: Not only do I want you to use the Rule at least 2x at home today, remember you are using it at least 3x a day altogether, but I want you to forecast when you’ll use it.
When you take the time to foresee the frustrating moment when you’ll need help, you’ll trigger yourself at the moment to remember and use the rule. So, when do you see yourself needing the rule at home?
Day 9: Tackling Fears
Fears suck. Sure, sometimes they are necessary for survival, avoiding pain, etc. But a lot of times they prevent us from taking action and getting outside our comfort zones.
One of the quotes that I found most helpful when it comes to fear was this: “The longer that you think about something, the lower your urge to act becomes.”
This is why using the rule is so important. So for today, before you have the time to think up any excuses, you need to take action.
Instruction: What fears are you avoiding? What conversations do you need to have? What situation keeps presenting itself that you are avoiding taking action on?
List these things out and choose the easiest one to confront then commit to taking action the very next time it comes up.
By starting with the easiest fears you’ll build confidence as things that are a bit more of a struggle over time.
Day 10: The Rule At Work
One of the BIGGEST opportunities for using the rule is at work. There are so many circumstances where it makes sense to use it to take action.
At this point, you know what you should be doing differently at work, or you at least have the fears that are holding you back. It’s time to move out of the comfort zone of mediocrity and embrace your courage professionally.
Instruction: Write down the 5-10 ways you can grow by taking action at work. Choose the biggest one on the list and do it TODAY!
- Ask for a raise
- Discuss the direction of your career
- Create content you were too scared to before
- Approach an expert you’ve always wanted to talk to
- Schedule yourself to speak at an event
- Apply for a promotion
Once you follow through on one of these the rest will seem so much easier and doable and suddenly work feels a lot more daunting.
In the full version of this course we will have celebration days like this where we discuss what actions you took in a group setting, to give you the congratulations you deserve for taking action on who you are.
Day 11: You’ll Never Feel Like It
This quote from Mel Robbins “You’ll Never Feel Like It” was probably the most life-changing line in The 5 Second Rule. It makes sense because we are all thinking “I don’t feel like it” when we are supposed to do something.
But, we don’t Need to feel like it, and we will probably never feel like it. We just have to do it, whatever it is… getting up at the alarm, going to the gym, having the tough conversation, quitting a job, etc.
There’s more though. We have to parent ourselves. Instead of just thinking about what we want, or feel like doing, we have to realize that when we became adults we became our own parents. And that’s a perspective we should take more often.
Instruction: Write down the things that you don’t “feel” like doing. Add these things to your list of opportunities to use the rule, and keep working on it at least 3x a day.
Additionally, write down the situations where you would/should parent yourself differently, just becoming aware of the things you’d like to change can help on your journey to living the life you want to live.
Day 12: What Do You Do After The Rule?
Once you decide to take action and use the rule, you’ll start to notice you are making different choices – YAY!
But, sometimes you need to take more action. For instance, say you want to eat a cookie but you decide 5-4-3-2-1 Go, you are going to walk away.
The cookie is still there though and for some just walking away isn’t enough. You might need to throw it away so that it is no longer an option. Or drink a glass of water so you don’t feel hungry or maybe you grab a piece of candy instead to help your sweet tooth.
See, I think there is more to using the rule than simply making the better decision. We have to take action by doing what is right for us. And sometimes, it’s not just starting that’s enough to give us the strength to keep going.
For instance, going to the gym is a lot easier if you have a plan for what you are going to do once you get there.
Instruction: Look back at some of the situations you have in your journal. For those that you’ve overcome what was difficult to handle even though you made the better decision? How can you fix it in the future?
For those, you haven’t encountered yet what is the ‘right’ way to handle and plan the situation for when you do?
Days 13 & 14: Weekend – Check Out That Journal
I usually like to make weekends about motivation but I wanted to mention the journal again before we take a break.
Instruction: You’ve been journaling your usage of the rule and by now you should be able to see notice some consistencies. Consider these questions (they would normally be used by our coaches to help you assess your progress with using the 5 Second Rule):
Where am I using the rule?
- What do a lot of the situations have to do with?
- How is the Rule helping your resolve to take more action?
- Where else can you use the rule to get positive results?
Thanks for reading the first two weeks of The 5 Second Rule.
Future installments will cover:
- Anchor Thoughts
- Habit Starters For Sustained Results
- Getting Healthy 5 Seconds At A TIME
- Gratitude & Happiness
- Super Helpful Routine
- Mind Hacks That Help
- Depression & Anxiety
And more. Join our email list to find out when the next installment is available.
Thanks for reading. I look forward to your comments below. What tips can you offer others who are trying to implement the rule?