Real vs. False- The Battle Royale

Sep 9, 2023

I don’t know about you…

But I have a love/ hate relationship with urgency.  Urgency can be a good thing when you are hurt and need to get medical attention.  It can be a good thing when you have a deadline as it keeps you from procrastinating.  Urgency is effective when we are driving and a distracted driver veers into our lane and we have to take action.

The urgency that drives me crazy is the other kind- the kind that doesn’t let us sit still.  The kind that I call the False Sense Of Urgency.

So what is the false sense of urgency?

The false sense of urgency is the low-grade angst that we carry around.  It is the voice inside us that says there is always more to do.  Yet at the same time it paralyzes us to inaction and tells that we should just pick up our phone and zone out.  That we should just grab a quick dopamine hit until we feel better and the urgency goes away.

Ahhhh… that feels better, right?

Except that it doesn’t.  We try to escape this urgency by binge-watching Netflix, getting lost in a video rabbit hole on TikTok or your favorite social media site.  We do anything we can to avoid the feeling of urgency.  It is uncomfortable.   It steals our peace and our joy. We are reminded that we can’t rest.  We can’t recharge, slow-down, Sabbath, or be still.

There is simply too much to do…

So what do we do about it?  Urgency is always going to be there.  There will always be things we can do.  Always things we can get lost in.  But today, I want to offer two tools you can use to push urgency back a little bit and slow that spinning mind.

#1- The Brain Dump

Super easy concept.  Get out a piece of paper or a journal.  And write down everything that is in your mind.  EVERYTHING.  All the things that are spinning around.  All the urgencies that are grabbing for your attention.  Write them all down.  Ok.  Now pick three or four.  Highlight them or circle them.  That’s your new list.  Now see what you can do to make progress on one of those.

Simple, right? But think of it this way- you now have fewer thoughts in your head because they are out on paper. And you are less likely to be distracted by all the thoughts that lead to a choice to zone out instead.  Try it.  And let me know what you think. The brain dump has brought me tremendous clarity on what’s next many times.

#2- Set Yourself Up For Success

Simple as well, but takes repetition and practice.  Ask yourself this question- what can I do today to set myself up for success tomorrow?  Can you make your lunch for tomorrow so you can grab it in the morning?  How about meal planning and getting groceries for the week ahead.  What about laying out clothes the night before so that you have one less decision to make in the morning?  Think of your pressure points coming up tomorrow and what you might do today to make those pressure points a little less snug.

If you want to dive deeper in this concept- here is a great blog with some high-level suggestions for you to level-up.

Always be asking this question- how can I make tomorrow better today?

Urgency hates a plan.

Urgency hates structure.  So how do we battle the false sense of urgency?  We have a plan.  We get clear on what is important and attack those items.  And we set ourselves up for success tomorrow.  A little sacrifice today leads to a better tomorrow.  Almost invariably.  Let’s see if we can give urgency a big kick in the shorts this week and focus on what is important!

Since I have battled it most of my life, I feel called to help others in their battle with urgency.  Real or false.  If you feel like you are losing the battle, let’s set up a time for a conversation so you can believe that #gooddaysareahead.


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