Categories: Self-Development

What I’ve learned from the ‘5 second rule’ (it’s life-changing)

Knowing is never enough. That’s it. That’s what I’ve learned from the 5 second rule.

Let me be honest. I’ve never read the book The 5 second rule. Never researched much about it. So I’m in no position to write about it. But still, I’ve learned a lesson from this rule that is actually life-changing. I’ve never even implemented this rule in my life yet and I don’t think I ever will but it has taught me an important lesson and I’m forever grateful for that.

Let me tell you what the 5 second rule is if you don’t already know. “If you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must physically move within 5 seconds or your brain will kill it”. It’s really as simple as that.

This sounds too theoretical, though. I bet none of us would do that. The point I’m trying to make in this blog post is completely different. Let me explain.

You know I’m trying to lose weight, don’t you? *awkward smile* I’ve been researching about how to lose weight for over two years now. I’ve watched millions of videos of people who have done it. I’ve watched millions of videos of people explaining how to do it. I probably know everything there is to know about calories, macros, BMI, BMR, blah, blah, blah. I know exactly what to do and what not to do.

But have I lost ANY weight in the past two years? NOOOOO. You would have told me if I had. And why didn’t I lose any weight? Because I didn’t DO what I said I was going to do. I’m still not doing it. Knowing is never enough, man! Unless and until I DO what is required, I’m not going to lose any weight no matter how much I learn about it.

Now, do you get me? Let me give you another example. So one day, I have an “instinct” to go to the gym. But I don’t. Why? Because I’m too lazy to actually get off my couch and get ready and get out of the house. It’s not going to the gym that’s the problem. In fact, I feel like a total badass when I’m at the gym. It’s getting there that’s the problem.

Once I think about going to the gym, I will immediately start to contemplate and think about every possible reason not to go to the gym. And that is why Mel Robbins invented the 5 second rule. If you don’t physically move within 5 seconds, your brain will start contemplating. That is so true but that’s not the point I’m trying to make.

The bottom line is to just DO it, even if it takes you 8967465741 seconds to act upon it. If I decide to go to the gym today, I will DO it no matter how much I contemplate because DOING is important. Just knowing what to do is not going to make me thin.

Why am I stressing peculiarly on the physical aspect, you ask?

Because that is when you get work done. You literally live inside your body. You have to literally move your body to get to place B from place A. You have to get up and walk a few steps just to switch on the fan (unless you have some crazy technology in your house).

Execution is just as important as the content, maybe even more. There will NEVER, ever, ever, ever be a perfect time to do something. Do you want to do something? DO it. Why are you procrastinating? And what for? The mind is a messed up thing. Don’t listen to it. Don’t give in. DO what needs to be done first. ACT upon your goals.


Take out the emotional aspect out of anything you decide to do. Because doing is important. Doing will lead to results. Not thinking about it.

Have you heard of the ‘Do something’ principle mentioned in the book The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fuck? “Action trumps motivation”. Nothing will motivate you as much as simply doing.

You will never always have the motivation to do something. It’s what you do in times when you have the least amount of motivation, that matters. Start by doing something- anything, and the motivation will ensue. Just act.

“There’s a secret that real writers know that wannabe writers don’t, and the secret is this: It’s not the writing part that’s hard. What’s hard is sitting down to write. What keeps us from sitting down is Resistance.” (From The War of Art)

It’s true. It is the beginning that’s the hardest. The act of just starting is the hardest.

Let’s say you want to read. Take a really, really small step. Decide that you will read only one sentence. Just one. There is no way that you will stop after just reading one sentence. You will read the second and third and then the whole page. But getting yourself to read the first sentence IS the hardest task. That’s what we need to overcome.

If you really think about it, there is nothing a person can’t do that he sets his mind to. The difference between a person who does it and a person who doesn’t is the first step. Take that first step and the rest will follow.

Once you get in the groove, it will be hard to stop. Once the momentum is built, there will be no resistance.

You are what you create, not what you consume. You are not the freaking movies you watch, the songs you listen to, or the celebrities you drool over. You are what you put out into the world, that is, what you physically create. At the end of the day, no one is going to live your life for you because it’s yours to live. 

Honestly, nobody even cares about what you do in your life. So take control and DO what you said you were going to do. Wait for nobody.

Read the book The 5 second rule by Mel Robbins if you want to know more about how the 5 second rule works.

Do read the article CREATE MORE. CONSUME LESS to get more insights into why doing is more important than simply planning on doing something and how consuming moves us into inaction and affects our lives badly.

Sanjal K

Hello, I'm Sanjal, an advertising student. I love to read and write about things I learn and discover in the journey of life and have a goal of sharing it with other people who love to do the same.

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Sanjal K

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