Welcome to Emil's Emails!

Spirals that might be controlling you

Published 10 months ago • 1 min read

Hey everyone!

Positive and negative feedback loops can have enormous impacts on our lives. Today I was sitting at my desk, feeling sluggish, demotivated and procrastinating on all of the work I had to do.

I found that I was falling into a negative feedback spiral. This morning, I had slept in, spent the morning watching YouTube videos and had ignored all of the tasks I needed to do. The lack of progress fed into my feeling of laziness and made me want to procrastinate more. I watched more YouTube videos and felt myself getting swept away into this downwards spiral.

As you’re reading this newsletter now, I was able to break that downwards spiral - but how?

Just as we can spiral downwards, we can spiral upwards (like a tornado!). I often find that doing one productive thing to break the downwards spiral can completely change the trajectory of my day.

Keeping this in mind earlier today, I found myself motivated to do just one thing to get me closer to finishing my work. I made a terrible rough draft of a thumbnail and sent it to some friends for feedback. Ticking this one task off my to-do list made me feel much better and I went on to make another thumbnail, film some B-roll and write this newsletter.

My lesson from this is that making yourself do one hard thing when you’re in a downwards spiral can quickly spiral upwards. Just as spirals can destroy our plans, they can help us break out of them and achieve great things.

Let me know if this resonates with you!

- Emil

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