Do you often find yourself crossing small, unimportant off your to-do list but not getting traction on the bigger, high-impact tasks that will move the needle for you in your business?

This one’s for you.

I can’t count the number of times that someone has told me, “But it’s just so satisfying to cross things off my to-do list!”

When I hear someone say this, I always pause for dramatic effect and respond:

“You know what’s really satisfying? Finishing your projects, achieving your wildest dreams, and reaching your full potential.” 😳

Think about it: Every time that you give yourself a tiny hit of pleasure from checking something unimportant off your to-do list, you’re robbing yourself of the real pleasure of getting traction on what’s actually important to you.

(Let that sink in.)

But the solution isn’t to grit your teeth and willpower your way through a big task, delaying any ounce of gratification until you finally finish.

It’s to derive satisfaction from the act of doing your most important work, not just being done with your work.

And deriving satisfaction from the process, not just the end result? It’s a decision that you can make at any time.

Here’s how to do it in three simple steps:

  • Notice when you’re defaulting to doing trivial busy work just to get a hit of satisfaction
  • Direct yourself back to your highest-impact work
  • Learn to increase the amount of satisfaction that you feel while working on those important things

Learning to increase your level of satisfaction starts with asking yourself questions like these, and answering them:

  • How could it be true that doing the hard, complex work is more gratifying than doing the easy, urgent work?
  • How can I be more engaged with the work that’s in front of me?
  • How can I do this work in a more interesting and creative way than usual?
  • How can I double the amount of satisfaction that I feel while doing this work?

As a result, you’ll get the deep satisfaction of knowing that you’re moving your most important business projects forward. (The projects that will increase your impact; reach more potential clients; allow you to scale more efficiently; save you time; and generate more revenue for you.)

P.S. If you’d like help reconciling your internal conflict, the best place to be is Half-Finished to Done, LIVE, the meeting place for soon-to-be former procrastinators.