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Causes of Difficulty Getting Things Done

Updated on February 11, 2011

Though "getting things done" may seem like a very general topic for an article, the fact is that some common factors affect a person's ability to get things done. A person cannot reach goals without being able to get things done. Some people may struggle with getting things done due to mental blocks towards success or failure, depression, fatigue, or a lack of effective time management.

A fear of failure can negatively impact a person's ability to get things done. Subconsciously, the fear of failure can block the person's drive to work towards accomplishments because if the person doesn't try to succeed there is no chance of failure. The fear of success may seem strange to some people. The fear of success is a state of being comfortable with how things are and being fearful of change.

Working towards goals cause requires changes and can lead to even more changes as the person achieves the goals. Visualization of success may help with the fear of failure and the fear of success. When using visualization, imagine the way success would feel. What would change? What is uncomfortable about that change? What makes those changes worthwhile? The potential for failure is part of working towards goals. Changing the attitude towards failure is important if the fear of failure is jeopardizing the person's ability to achieve goals.

A failure does not mean that the person is a failure. It only means that the person failed at what was attempted. Consider failure as a learning experience. A failure is a chance to learn from the experience. If the person learns from failures and mistakes, the chance for success in future attempts increases dramatically.

Depression, fatigue, illness, medication side effects, and many other factors can limit a person's ability to get things done. If these problems are interfering with getting things done, the person should discuss this with the physician. If the lack of energy or difficulty concentrating cannot be helped, the person should try to schedule short periods of time to work on goals. Often even with illness that causes a lack of energy, the person can still achieve much in very short periods of time like fifteen minutes intervals. Also, it may be easier for the person to focus during a certain time of day.

Sometimes the only cause of not being able to get things done is a lack of motivation. Maybe the goal the person is working towards has become less important. In that case, the person should take some time to reevaluate the goal plan. If the goal or task is important but the person is struggling with a lack of motivation, the promise of a reward after completing the task may be enough to help boost motivation.

I hope this article helped if you had trouble identifying the cause of difficulty getting things done. Don't be afraid to consult a physician or therapist if you have trouble with this issue. Though people are often quick to label inactivity as laziness, there are many psychological or physical causes that could be contributing to this problem. Many causes are treatable, so please seek professional guidance if necessary.


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    • K9keystrokes profile image

      India Arnold 7 years ago from Northern, California

      Procrastination is a demond for certain. Being aware of your flaws is the key here I think. Staying in motion and taking a few pauses would seem to be the best balance. You make good points here. Nice read.

    • MPG Narratives profile image

      Marie Giunta 7 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      I think we all struggle with "getting things done" at times Sheila, the problem is when it happens all the time. There's nothing wrong with having a 'day off' at times, the trick is not to let it become a habit. Some good points in this hub.