Follow on YouTube Follow on Instagram

Why not follow me on Twitter for more motivation and ideas!
Ugh No!
Would you like to subscribe to my newsletter for some extra free episodes and some relaxing hypnosis tracks?
Already have!

Episode 160: Anything Is Better Than Nothing

Is there something you want to achieve that you know is going to take a while? Maybe something that has many steps, such as getting fitter or writing a dissertation? If so then you need to be aware that doing anything that brings you closer to the end result is better than doing nothing at all.
That might seem obvious, but it’s not uncommon for people to be really hard on ourselves for not putting in maximum effort. It’s likely that sometimes you could have done more to help yourself move to where you want to be. But if you did something, then it’s better than nothing.
Comparing ourselves to the achievements of others doesn’t help. We shouldn’t be comparing someone else’s best with our worst. There are personal trainers all over Instagram who are super fit, and are advertising their business by showing people how to do certain exercises to get fitter themselves and clients will sometimes say to me that rather than being inspired by Joe Wicks or Tom Daley, it’s too easy to look at what they’ve achieved themselves and think “What’s the point in trying, I could never look like that.”
Well probably not, I’ll go as far as to say that almost 100% of anyone who is unfit and either overweight or underweight is not going to look like Tom Daley or Joe Wicks if they follow their exercises. Tom Daley is literally an olympian and Joe Wicks did not get that 6 pack from simply doing star jumps and burpees.

Doing anything is better than nothing. And this isn’t just about physical health, this is about everything. Clients will come to me for help because they feel unable to either move away from something that they are doing, or move towards something that they’re not. They need to know that any movement is better than no movement. If someone has severe depression and it’s not unusual for them to be in bed all weekend, to feel unable to leave the room, their goal isn’t to suddenly wake up one morning and be so happy they could jump up and down laughing. It’s unrealistic. If that’s their goal then they won’t even notice any improvement that they DO make, because they’re still not who they feel they SHOULD be. It’s OK in that situation to set a small goal of simply being able to make a cup of tea. Or maybe even that is a step too far, fine. That’s OK, don’t add more stress to your life by telling yourself how crap you because you can’t even make a cup of tea. If neurons are misfiring, if our mind is foggy and dulled by anxiety and depression, its OK to shift our goal posts. Or even take them down for a bit and just play it by ear. If we can accept that something is hard for us, even if it’s something that could be easy to someone else, accept that it’s hard to you and that’s OK. Accept that because it’s hard it’s going to take you a while but whatever you do that moves you towards where you want to be is a step in the right direction, even if it sometimes looks as if you’re moving backwards.
In most situations in life, whether that’s decorating your house, revising for an exam or overcoming anxiety and depression, there’s usually more that could be done to move you further ahead. But that doesn’t mean you have to DO more, sometimes doing just enough is actually enough because anything is better than nothing.
I’ll ask my clients sometimesW”hat has happened since I saw you last that brings you closer to your goal?” People will see me for all sorts of reasons and some of them do have goals require specific steps. Such as losing weight or finding a new job. But if they tell me that they’ve done nothing since I saw them last we look a little closer and sometimes they are doing plenty, they just don’t recognise it, because it didn’t come with any sense of achievement. But they still worked towards their goal.
Sometimes we don’t have anything to show for our efforts, sometimes we’ve done what looks like the very minimum but it feels like the best we could do, and that’s ok.
Even in relationships, people will sometimes feel as if their relationship is stagnating because they don’t see love from their partner, they don’t see respect or attention. Yet sometimes, those things ARE there it’s just for whatever reason they stopped seeing them, familiarity maybe. But any respect is better than no respect, any love is better than no love providing it’s a healthy relationship. Any date night is better than no date night even if it’s nothing more than a pint and a packet of crisps because you’ve only got a childminder for an hour, it’s better than nothing.
It’s the same with our finances. Be grateful for what you do have, even if your goal is to be earning more. What you do have is still better than nothing, especially here in the UK. It might sometimes look like the country’s falling apart but we’re still one of the wealthiest countries on the world. Yes, people have to use food banks because the system needs fixing, but the fact that we have people with enough spare cash to help fund those food banks means we’re doing alright on the whole.
For ever packet of sanitary towels you take to the food bank (because we often forget about things like that and believe me that would be appreciated) you can make a difference.
Maybe not a massive difference, maybe just a drop in the ocean, but anything is better than nothing!

Episode List

Episode 138: Keeping Up With The Joneses
Episode 137: The Likeable You
Episode 136: Why It's OK To Be A Loser
Episode 135: The Psychology Of Extremism
Episode 134: Are You A Lobster?
Episode 133: Critical Thinking
Episode 132: There Is Nothing Either Good Or Bad
Episode 131: The For And Against Of Imagination
Episode 130: Loneliness & Social Networks
Episode 129: Letting Go Of The Past
Episode 128: What Is Love?
Episode 127: Procrastination
Ep. 126: Who Were You Before The World Changed You?
Episode 125: Stop Saying "Sorry"
Episode 124: Emotional Contagion
Episode 123: Patience
Episode 122: Building On Your Foundations
Episode 121: Dealing With The Critics
Episode 120: Being Assertive. Just Say No!
Episode 119: Inactivity
Episode 118: Social Functioning & Evolution
Episode 117: Unleash Your Inner Superhero
Episode 116: Goals, Values and Priorities
Episode 115: 10 Tips To A Happier Life
Episode 114: Lies And Confabulation
Episode 113: Confirmation Bias
Episode 112: Are You An Imposter?
Episode 111: What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger
Episode 110: Are New Years Resolutions a good idea?
Episode 109: The African Violet Queen Of Milwaukee
Episode 108: Reframing
Episode 107: Spiders And Behaviourism
Episode 106: Practise Makes Perfect
Episode 105: Fear Of Flying
Episode 100 - 104: Happiness
Episode 99: Body Image And The Media
Episode 98: Evolution and Adaptation
Episode 97: Reflections And Regrets.
Episode 96: Dealing With Fear
Episode 95: Confidence
Episode 94: Enthusiasm
Episode 93: Tips To Relieve Christmas Stress
Episode 92: Dealing With Change
Episode 87 - 91: Self Esteem
Episode 86: Correlation Does Not Imply Causation
Episode 85: The Importance Of Being Lazy
Episode 84: Elephant Chains
Episode 83: Eating Bananas And Setting Goals
Episode 82: Ignoring The Media And Listening To Music
Episode 81: Awakening The Instincts
Episode 80: The Fine Line Between Love And Hate
Episode 79: The Best Medicine
Episode 78: A New Start
Episode 77: Time Distortion
Episode 76: Making Decisions
Episode 75: What's In A Name?
Episode 74: Pushing Ourselves Further
Episode 73: Conformity
Episode 72: Purpose
Episode 71: Perspective
Episode 70: Expectation
Episode 69: The Mind / Body Link
Episode 68: Overcoming Shyness
Episode 67: Mood Boosting
Episode 66: Sabotaging your goals
Episode 65: Self Talk
Episode 64: Money Makes The World Go Round
Episode 63: First Impressions Count
Episode 62: False Belief
Episode 61: Absolutes
Episode 60: The Psychology of feeling calm
Episode 59: Belief
Episode 58: Anchoring Emotions
Episode 57: Negativity and Perspective
Episode 56: Health And Happiness
Episode 55: Imagination vs Reality
Episode 54: Change