Who Says You Need To “Feel Like It?”

Hey there!

I just read an article over on the Harvard Business Review that is so packed with juicy stuff, I only have time to share a bit of it at a time. It was written by Heidi Grant back on Valentine’s Day in 2014, and it was titled How To Make Yourself Work When You Just Don’t Want To.

And this one item I want to share with you is the juiciest of the juicy.

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Hope this helps!


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hey there it’s David H Lawrence the 17th
and today we mark our second the
beginning of our second month of these
this is video number 32 you may be
seeing this out of order most likely you
are but I made a commitment to do a
video a day for the entire year and so
that’s what I’m doing today I want to
talk to you about motivation and more
importantly something that we fly right
by every single time we hear this phrase
you know I just don’t feel like it I
need to feel like it I read this article
at the Harvard Business Review by heidi
grant she wrote it back in 2014 and it’s
just awesome as I said in the blog post
where this video is on bo2 go go comm
it’s just so juicy and there’s this one
piece of it there’s lots of cool stuff
and I’m gonna share more stuff from the
article in future videos but in this
particular case I was just struck by how
oddly easy to understand this concept
was there’s a book called the war of art
it’s a take on the title the art of war
by Sun Tzu but it’s actually by Steven
Pressfield who is a writer he wrote The
Legend of Bagger Vance he looks at that
as one of his big accomplishments he
also wrote King Kong 3 and he’s
embarrassed to say that he did that so
he had some good and he had some bad and
he continues to do great but in the war
of art he talks about the Beast of
resistance the the monster that is
resistance to simply sitting down and
doing work
and sometimes we fall prey to this idea
that the only way we can get something
done is if we feel like getting
something done and we’ll use that as an
excuse well I need to be motivated I
need to feel like I need to do it now
look it’s great to feel motivated but
who is it that that I read in the oh um
she quotes Chuck Close who is an artist
and he observes inspiration is for
amateurs the rest of us
just show up and get to work you know
whatever your feelings about Woody Allen
he also said 90% of show business is
showing up lots of people have said you
know the hard part I think was James
Cagney that said the hard part is
showing up hitting your mark and doing
the work and that’s all you really need
to worry about but if you let the idea
that you know today I’m just not into it
if you let that get to you if you use
that as a reason for doing work you will
cut your work output by two-thirds
because let’s face it not everybody
feels great about the idea of doing
things now in this series of videos I’ve
done so far this is the 32nd one as I
said and I haven’t felt a single quit of
I don’t want to do this I’m dead sure
that at some point in the future really
why did I why did I do this why did I
you know and so I want you to ask
yourself when you find yourself kind of
resisting the idea of moving forward on
something or taking the next step or
even getting started with something or
or adjusting things or doing more work
on something you know a lot of these
things are big processes they have
little tiny steps that you take you get
to step 17 you go you know I just don’t
feel it yeah I know don’t feel it so
like she quotes a gentleman by the name
of Oliver Berkman he wrote a book called
the antidote happiness for people who
can’t stand positive thinking which i
think is an awesome title he said who
says you need to feel you need to wait
until you feel like doing something
in order to start doing who says that
and it is not a simple just do it what
it is is acknowledging that you feel
that way
sitting in that for a moment going yeah
I don’t feel like it but and I’m going
to talk about this in a future future
video using the concept that we talked
about before if then if this then what
to kind of get past that if I do this
then what’s my reward and if I don’t do
this then what will I have to deal with
what will be what will the consequences
of that choice be so when you find
yourself in a situation where you just
don’t feel like it just think about that
for a moment and see if that doesn’t
change your mind I’d love to hear from
you in the comments below if you’ve
encountered that before how you’ve dealt
with it whether it’s something that
rears its ugly head on a regular basis
you know it’s called resistance by
Steven Pressfield it’s called feelings
by Oliver Berkman
it’s called lack of inspiration that’s
for amateurs by Chuck Close whatever the
the thing is that you call it I’d love
to hear in in the comments please let me
know what this means to you in your life
and if this helps you I’d really love to
know that too if you want to know when
these videos come out if you want to be
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sort of thing I’m David H Lawrence the
17th I thank you so much for watching
and I will talk to you tomorrow



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  1. Wow, David, this… I really needed this encouragement today. January was very much a month like that for me; dealing with loss, discouragement, did not help. But I have experienced the opposite too, like when I really didn’t “feel like” getting out for a walk, but did it anyway, and felt really good afterward. So thank you for starting off this new month with a positive “push”.

  2. I definitely have a hard time getting going at times because I don’t feel like it. I like the idea of asking myself what my reward will be if I do it. Thanks for the video David.

  3. That’s an important concept.

    I had an acting coach a while back who told me 20% of my competition will eliminate themselves by not showing up. His name was Bob Fraser, and he wrote “You Must Act!” (as in, you must take action)

    I’d guess another bunch drop out by not being “inspired” or “motivated”.

    I feel it all the time. The answer is to do the work. Period. Just Act.

    1. Bob was a dear friend, and someone who I worked with quite often on his offerings. Sad that he’s now gone. The rest of you would know him as the flustered senator that Benson was the butler to. That is, if you’re over the age of 40.

  4. Wowsers. What a great way of looking at this attitude creep! Negative thoughts can pass through, but this is a reminder to let them go, rather than invite them to live on your sofa.

    Thanks, David, for your commitment, even when you’re not feeling it!

  5. Yes, this was helpful. I don’t find myself saying “I don’t feel like it,” but I do find myself delaying going into my studio … I need to today this room, I need another cup of coffee, my voice is a little phlegm-y today. Procrastination. Which ultimately leads to it being too late to get started and right into “I’ll get a good start tomorrow.”

    I see now that all of these things fall under the heading of “I don’t feel like it.” And that’s not okay! So, off to my little studio closet now.