It is a cognitive behavioural therapy technique used to combat procrastination and it sponsored this blog post today :P
How does it work?
For any task you are dreading or putting off, set a goal of doing it for 5 minutes at least, then it is up to you if you want to continue or stop.
Some therapists recommend stopping as soon as you hit the 5 minute mark as it can insinuate you to feel more inclined to get at it the next day. However I personally use it as a lift off ramp. I find that once I start actually doing the task the momentum is there and it seems counter productive to stop at that point.
You want to do what works best for you though so my recommendation is to try it both ways!
Try stopping yourself after 5 minutes and then trying the task the next day.
Did you feel more inclined to want to do the task the next day?
Did your emotions towards the task change?
Next, try getting started and just going with the flow.
Same questions apply for taking on the task the next day.
Then choose which ever one works best. Or switch it up depending on the task.
To be honest, I had to use this technique today to complete this daily blog entry. I was struggling to figure out what topic to write about so I just kept procrastinating.
I looked up at the clock and WOW it was 1:30am! As the time continued to slip away I said to myself, "5 Minutes..You can do this!" Sat down at the computer, got started,. and now I am going to sleep well knowing I got it done. It is now 1:45am and here we are all thanks to The 5 Minute Rule.
If you want to increase your productivity for the day and fight procrastination even harder, I HIGHLY suggest adding the "5 Minute Journal" technique created by Four Hour Work Week author Tim Ferris to your Morning Routine.
I have included it in short form below:
Ask yourself these three simple questions every morning before you get on with your day:
What are you grateful for today? Try to think of at least 10
What would make today great?
What are your daily affirmations?
Happy and content people attribute a-lot to living in the moment as well as focusing on the beauty in the now. Asking yourself, "what would make today great?" can help keep you grounded and focusing on the silver linings. Having a positive mindset will also keep you motivated and productive through out the day.
Elon Musk is so productive he breaks his schedule down into 5 minute portions. Even his meals...
Now that is time management. Not a minute wasted!
All you need to remember for now though is, "5 Minutes. You Got This!"
Now go and get it.