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Why You Can't Do The Work

Blog video by Sam Ovens

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Do you procrastinate? Problems with consistency and discipline? And... Do you have a hard time actually wanting to do the work? This video explains WHY gravity is pulling against your will and how to fix it (with practical instructions).

Does this sound familiar? 

You sit down at your desk to do the things you know you need to do, but your arm gets pulled by some mysterious force, your emotions are screaming inside, you want to open a new tab so badly, you resist, you give in, wormhole opens, day ends, you say you'll do it tomorrow, tomorrow becomes today, pattern repeats, self-resentment grows exponentially. 

To put it simply: You don't want to do the work, or you want to do something else instead. WHY? You don't love what you do, or you love doing something else more. 

LOVE: It's what you'd do even if you didn't get paid for it, your obsessed with it, you're always getting pulled towards it, you can't stop thinking about it, talking about it, dreaming about it, you have great difficulty doing anything that isn't it. 

If you struggle to do the work, you don't love it. This video shows you how to find what you love — and by doing so — do the work. 

Here's what we cover:

1. My audience's (you) biggest problem: Procrastinating, doing things consistently, self-discipline, and having a hard time actually wanting to do the work.

2. WHY do I do what I do? (the 100% truth). 

3. The secret method that allows me to work 12-hours a day, 6-days a week, for years on end (it's NOT what you think).

4. Why doing something for the result/outcome/money never works very well —and— why people who do it for the sake of doing it always win (and get rich). 

5. When you LOVE doing something, your problem becomes doing it too much, not too little (the problem inverts, this is my problem). 

6. Michael Jordan's answer to people who ask him: "What's the secret to becoming the best basketball player in the world". 

7. How to find out what you're in love with by observing your behavior patterns over time (practical exercises you can do now).

8. Hacks to understand yourself + what you're interested in: YouTube history, web browser history, bookmarks, movies, books you read in full, bank statements, things you don't shut up about.

9. How to turn what you love into an actual profitable business.

10. How to map your loves "ecosystem", identify inefficiencies, and come up with endless business ideas that will actually work.

Resources mentioned in this video: 

1. Last weeks YouTube video where people stated their problems: "What I've been doing recently (big change)".

2. Michael Jordan documentary: Michael Jordan To The Max. 

3. Psychometric/personality test: Myers Briggs Test (free).

If you're an entrepreneur (or want to become one) this video will show you how to LOVE what you do and never have problems with "doing the work" again.

Check it out and let me know what you think in the comments below?

To Your Success!

Sam Ovens & the team at


Hey everyone, Sam Ovens here. And in today's video I'm going to explain why you can't do the work and why you can't do the things that you really want to do. Like you might sit down at your computer, at your desk, and you're like, "All right, today I'm going to get this thing done." And then you start doing it. And then very quickly it's like your arm is just getting pulled away to click on that next tab and open up social media, Netflix, YouTube, or anything that isn't the thing that you want to do. And it's like the thing that you're getting pulled towards is just so powerful that you have no chance. And this just keeps happening. You say you'll do it tomorrow, but then tomorrow becomes today, and then you put it off for tomorrow and then tomorrow becomes today, and it keeps going like this. And each day it gets worse. So why can't you do the work or why you can't do the work? So last week I created a video on YouTube and it was called What I've Been Doing Recently. And I'll include a link beneath this video to it if you haven't seen it. But towards the end of the video I got you guys and girls, the viewers, to tell me some of the problems that you're facing on a day to day basis in the comments section so that I could shape and mold my future content, like this video, to help solve those problems, right? And what I did is I read through the comments and they're very interesting. And what I did is I took some screenshots of really the common sentiment or the most common feelings or frustrations or problems that people have in the comment section. And I'll walk you through some of them. It's really quite interesting. So the first one by Guillermo Fleets, sorry if I said that wrong. But here's his and you can pause the video if you want to read it. But it says, "Biggest problem is procrastination and just having a hard time actually wanting to do the work. Please make a video on this," and it got a lot of likes and comments. And I think this guy, Guillermo, he speaks for a lot of people when he says this, right? Procrastinating, hard time doing the work. All right, what else have we got? Here's Zack Weiss and he says, "One, lack of ideas. Two, lack of direction. Three, how to manage depression and low moods, actionable methods, and how to stay consistent over a long period of time." Kind of similar. What else we got in here? Then David Broad, "Lack of discipline, not working as much as I should." And one more from Jacob Ovando. And he says, "Inconsistency and only having bursts of energy to do things. But, after that, laziness settles in and the cycle repeats." Right? Now, all of these are basically saying the same thing, I can't do the work or I have great difficulty doing the work, or even when I do do the work, I will stop doing the work before long and struggle to do the work again, right? And this is honestly a really common problem. Everyone in the world, first of all, has this, right? Until they figure it out. And it's actually quite interesting and no one really talks about it. With business advice, it's mostly about tactics and strategies or how to implement this method to get customers or how to use this technology or whatever. But no one really talks about the reason why someone wouldn't want to do the work or why they would rather do something else instead, which is quite interesting. And so a lot of the time people ask me, they're like, "Sam, how are you so disciplined and how do you work for 12 hours a day, six days a week, for years on end? How do you stay focused and how do you motivate yourself and how do you stay so disciplined and how do you do all of these things?" And they paint this picture as if I'm some superhero or something, right? And it might appear that way because I can do this, do the work consistently over a long period of time. But if I'm being completely honest with you, it's because I love doing it, right? And the thing is is when you love doing something, your problem is stopping doing it. Believe me, I have this problem. I have the inverse problem that what you guys are saying in these comments. You guys are like,... What was the first one? "Procrastination and just having a hard time actually wanting to do the work." I have a hard time wanting to not do the work. My wife has a hard time getting me away from the work and getting me to take a vacation or getting me to go outside or getting me to do anything that isn't the work, right? So I have the opposite problem. And so when you love the thing that you're doing, you would rather do that than anything else. So you don't have a problem with focus and discipline and all of this other stuff because you love doing it. It's what you would do even if you didn't get paid for it, honestly. You're obsessed about it and it's like you're always getting pulled towards this thing. You can't not do it or when you go to do something that isn't it, you do it with great difficulty, right? So really the secret to this is discipline and motivation and focus and all of this stuff, it doesn't really work. It works in small doses. You need to have some focus and some discipline and some productivity and time management. You need to have these things, right? But you can't rely on these things day in, day out, all the time. Because you need to love what you do to be able to do it consistently and to really succeed and do well at it. So the secret really is love. And what's interesting is in one of Michael Jordan's documentaries, which I highly recommend watching, it's called Michael Jordan to the Max. I'm pretty sure that's what it's called, or a similar title that has to the Max in it. But go check it out. It's an awesome documentary on one of the greatest sports people of all time. And in the documentary, right at the beginning, Michael Jordan is asked, "What's the secret to being the best basketball player in the world?" And I'm like, "Oh man, this is going to be interesting." And he says, "The secret is to fall in love with the game." Right? And he says that all the time parents of children, the parents want the children to be pro basketball players, they're always asking Michael Jordan for tactical advice and strategic advice. How many times should he train? What days should he train? How many hours a week should he train? What about stretching? What about this? What coach? All of this different stuff, very tactical, very strategic. But Michael Jordan would always say to them, "Look, stop trying to structure and control what your child is doing. The secret to him or her being the best basketball player in the world is for them to fall in love with the game. They have to develop a relationship with it where they love it. And if they do that, then everything else will just happen, right? No problem exists when you love something because you'll just figure it out. And so that's what he recommends to them. And one of the secrets to really falling in love with the thing is not to put too many rules and structure and discipline around the thing, right? Because that's not what love is like. And that's really the key to it. So it's all very well me saying, "Well, the secret is to fall in love with what you're doing." Well, how do you do that? Or how do you find out what you actually love, right? Because I can tell you that everyone really enjoys something and there's a secret way to really finding out what this thing is. And what you want to do is you want to look at your behavior and your patterns and things like that. This is a really great way to find out what you're obsessed about and interested in and curious about. And what you can do is just go to your YouTube search history or your YouTube watch history, right? Go there and I'll write these things down. One, YouTube history. Two, locate your search history or search/browser history. What sites have you been looking at, right? Look at your bookmarks that you have on your browser, right? The fourth one would be to think about your favorite movie, like your favorite movie of all time. So I'll just write favorite movie. Now, what's interesting about your favorite movie is you... And make sure that you pause this video now if you haven't already seen what your favorite movie is because I'm about to ruin it. Because you can't go back after I tell you this thing I'm about to say, it'll taint your ability to choose your favorite movie. So warning, pause it now. All right, so with your favorite movie, people, human beings, choose their favorite movie because they see themselves as the main character, right? That is the reason why people have favorite movies. Ask anyone what their favorite movie is and then look at the main character of that movie and look at the character traits of that character in that movie. And it will tell you more about somebody then they could probably tell you themselves, right? And then you'll start to draw all of these patterns over this whole person's life about everything they've done that is kind of in relation to this movie, right? It's a very powerful way to understand yourself or understand somebody else. Now you want to look at, and I'll put in brackets here, main character. Then the fifth one is books you read. Now everybody has books, right? But not all books are equal. Some people have books and some of them they've never read. Some of them they've picked up and read a little bit of them and never picked up again. And some books, people have tried to read again and again and again, and they can never actually read the whole thing, right? But then there are some books that people have read cover to cover, full front to back. Those are the books that I'm talking about. You want to make a list of those books. And if you've ever read a book more than once, that goes at the top of the list, right? Books you read. Now, what else you can do is if you have a boyfriend or a girlfriend or even best friends, parents, right? People that spend a lot of time with you, maybe even coworkers, just someone who is in close proximity to you a lot, right? You want to ask them, "What do I not shut up about?" That's the question. So I'm going to write just BF/GF, what do I talk about? Alright? And then number seven would be bank statements. All right? Now bank statements, you want to look at these and then you want to look at where your money goes, right? So here we're looking at where our attention goes. So our YouTube history is what videos are we watching and what sorts of things are we searching for, right? This is where our attention is going. And then browser history is attention. Bookmarks is attention and what things we think are important. And then favorite movie is what character do we see ourselves as or similar to, right? This can teach us a lot about ourselves. Books you read, attention. What do I talk about? That's obviously what you are interested in and have going through your mind all the time. But then bank statements shows where your money flows, right? And money is kind of like attention, right? It's a resource and we don't just put it into things that are meaningless to us. Typically we spend money like we spend attention, on things that we love or interested in, right? And so look at where the money flows, what sorts of things is your money being spent on. Now, once you've done all of this, you want to take some time to honestly do this, it'll be very light, it'll teach you a lot about yourself. And that's really the purpose of this exercise is to know yourself. Because until you know yourself, and I'll just draw a picture of you. Sorry if that looks like a man for girls that are watching. I just don't know how to draw a stick figure any better than that. So just imagine that's a unisex stick figure. But you want to know yourself, and to do that you need to go and look at these sorts of things. Because where your time, attention, energy and your mind goes and your money goes, these are things that you love. And why it all kind of revolves around what you love is because of the way that our brain is structured, the brain's architecture, right? And in the brain there's different systems in the brain, right? At the core of it you have your limbic system, right? And your limbic system is the primal kind of brain that you have. And the limbic system really creates emotion and it's also what creates survival instincts and these core kind of human, primal desires and drivers that we have as humans. And the limbic system, the logic, rational kind of conscious mind that we have, it is booted on top of the limbic system, right? So if you took out the limbic system, the conscious system, it wouldn't operate properly. A human being wouldn't operate properly. And if you took out the limbic system, you wouldn't have any emotion. So not only would you not dislike anything but you wouldn't like anything either. Because the same kind of system that makes you really love something is the same system that makes you really hate something, right? And the same thing that makes you motivated is the same thing that makes you de-motivated. It just has attachments to different things. And the key to this is is to find out what you love or, more scientifically, what things your limbic system has developed an attachment to, right? Because because our conscious mind sits, it's like booted on top of the limbic system, then no matter how much logic or reason or planning or any type of human conscious effort that we put in, no matter how hard we try, our limbic system is just going to dominate, right? Because it sits, our conscious sits on top of that. So you're really screwed if your limbic system tells you to do one thing and your conscious, logical, rational mind tells you to do the other thing. That is why you can't do the work. That is why when you sit down at your computer and try to do the work, there is just this massive pull. It's like there's this massive, gravitational force just pulling you away. Your arm is just moving and then clicks on new tab. Bam, you're out. And it's because of this love. And how do you find out what you love? This. And why do you do this? So that you can know yourself. Why do we want to know ourselves? Well, it's really this is where it all begins. A business is kind of like... Or anything in life, not even business, it's kind of like growing a plant, right? And to grow a plant you need, first of all, a seed. Now let's call this the seed. Without a seed, a plant can't grow. And the seed of your business and whatever it is that you're going to do in life is really your passion or the thing that you are in love with. Michael Jordan loved basketball, everything about it. That is why he was the best in the world. And people that love what they do do extremely well at it, not because they're superhuman disciplined or anything like that. They just love doing it. And so that I think is something that a lot of people get wrong about me when they think why do I work so hard? Don't I already have enough money or something? Or when is enough enough? I hear these sorts of things people say. And it's not about that. I just love building stuff. If you want the honest answer, why do I do what I do? Well, I love building things. And when I was a kid I used to build computers. And here's actually a photo of me when I was a kid with a computer that I built. Now, you can see that I've got my arm around this computer as if it is a human, right? This is a sign that I love this, right? Because people don't usually hug machines, but I am in this photo. And I've always had a relationship like this to my work and to what I do. You'll notice that a lot of the videos or photos that I have, it's generally me at a desk with a damn computer on it, right? I have the desk. I am always proud of my desk. I love my desk. I love sitting there and working there. That's my space. And I always love my machine, my computer, right? And I have different desks over the years. They're generally in different locations, and different computers. But these things are all constant. I've always loved building things and I love using computers and the internet and learning things, right? And so it took me a long time to really figure out this pattern from doing these things. But once you find that thing, it changes everything. That is when you'll make the massive, exponential jumps in life and in business is really when you find that thing. There's two most important moments of your life. One, when you're born and, two, when you find your purpose or your thing, right? Which is what you love. And once you do that, life gets a whole lot better. And the reason why you're doing it isn't to make money. It isn't to do any of those things. It's because you love doing it and you're having a ton of fun while you're doing it. I honestly would prefer to play around with numbers and spreadsheets and algorithms and metrics and to try different experiments and build different things. I'd much rather do that than travel around the world any day of the week or go to a theme park or do anything, or go to some concert, go to Coachella. Fuck, I'd rather be sitting at my computer looking at some numbers, honestly. Right? That is why I have been able to do well at what I do because I love doing it. I love building things. And then that really is the seed that grows into the plant or the tree, whatever you want to call it, right? But if you don't have a good seed, then the plant will never grow. But it's not just about having a seed, right? You need to know the seed. It is the most important thing because without it, nothing can happen. And I see a lot of people all the time, they don't seek to understand themselves. They don't try to understand what they love. They mostly get into business or they want to start a business because they want a byproduct of the business. They want money. And why do they want money? So that they can buy something, right? And so that can make things complicated because then you don't like what you're doing. You just like the result, right? And that can get difficult because you're never going to enjoy doing it, which means you're not going to be able to do it very well, which means you're not going to be able to get the result either, right? The secret to it really is to love the doing of it so much that the result just happens. And the people who love what they do, they get the biggest results out of anybody, not because they're trying to get them but because they love doing the work. Because it's the work that creates the result. So the people that love the work always get the best result. The people that love the result, they can never really get it because it requires work to get it, right? And so you need to understand yourself. And this can take some time. You want to, first of all, make an active effort to do this and start writing it down. Start having a Google doc of you. You can title it, who am I? And then you can start to build a file of this thing, right? There's some other things that will help you with this. One of them is the Myers Briggs test. I'll put a link to it beneath this video. It is a free psychometric test that you can do and it will tell you what your personality type is, right? And I can tell you that me, I am an INTJ that likes building things. And INTJ means I'm introverted, intuitive thinking and judgment. So I'm not very extroverted or outgoing. I'm more introverted, right? And I am thinking over feeling. And planning and structure and things over just going with the flow, right? So that is my personality type. And I know what I love, and so my business in life really revolves around this core thing. And that's why I've been able to do it. Now, there's some other things that you need if you already know what you love and you know who you are and all of this, and you've got your seed, then how do you actually turn this into a business? This is a good question. Well, once you know what you love, let's say that you love golf, right? Because sometimes you'll get an answer like this. And I know this because I asked my friend, [inaudible 00:25:08]. He's a lawyer and he doesn't really like what he's doing. And I just kept asking him, "Well, look at your YouTube history. Look at your browser history. Where do you spend your money? What do you do?" I was asking him all of these questions. And it just came, the result that we got from this was golf, right? And that doesn't really tell you much about how do you start a business, golf, right? He immediately thought, "Well, does that mean that I should be a professional golf player because it's probably too late in life to become like Tiger Woods or whatever now?" And I was like, "No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Don't read into it like that. Golf is just this topic, right? Just anything to do with golf, you're going to be interested in, right?" And I said, "You want to start just understanding the golf ecosystem, because golf is really an ecosystem. There's players, there's tournament's, there's fields or whatever the hell they call those things. I'm pretty sure they call them golf fields. They probably don't. But then there is the viewers and the audience, right? And then there's equipment and there's clubs and there's balls and there's magazines. And then there's probably YouTube channels and websites and there's all sorts of things that revolve around golf. There is an ecosystem, basically a collection of different objects that are interrelated with each other that come together to form this thing called golf, right? And you want to first of all just really understand the golf ecosystem and start mapping it, start drawing up the different things and how they relate to each other and what the flows are both ways and really start to understand it. And also look at the history of it and how it's evolved and where these vectors are pointing into the future. And you can really start to understand this golf thing as a universe that's evolving over time. And once you can do that, now you're starting to think like the golf ecosystem, right? And when you can do that, then you can start spotting its inefficiencies. And you want to start thinking what are the problems that these different operators and participants have in this golf ecosystem thing? What do the audience want that they're not getting? And there's always tons of things, so don't tell me they're fully satisfied. No human is fully satisfied ever. So what does this audience want that they're not getting, right? What are the players want that they're not getting? What do the tournament's want that they're not getting? And what do the golf fields want that they're not getting? What do the golf newspapers or magazines want that they're not getting? Look at all of the different objects and players and things inside this ecosystem and what they're not getting that they want. Now you're starting to identify problems within an ecosystem, right? And then once you can do that, you are able to start thinking about solutions because solutions derive from problems. You don't start with ideas, you start with problems. And you get problems by talking to people and looking at the ecosystem and spotting inefficiencies, right? But how do you know which ecosystem to look at? What do you love, right? So if you like horses, that doesn't mean that you should be a horse or to train horses or to be a horse rider. Don't think so linear. Whatever the result is from this knowing yourself exercise, think of it as an ecosystem, a universe of things, right? Now, anything within here, you're going to be interested in. So when you do research or when you talk to the people, you're going to enjoy it because it's about golf or it's about horses or it's about whatever, right? Now with me, I like computers, I like the internet, And I also like learning things, right? When I was a kid I used to read [inaudible] on my computer. And then when the internet came, I used to love going around and trying to find different websites. And then when Google came, that's really when my brain exploded and I was able to just learn whatever I wanted all the time. And that's where it really began. And then that turned into me showing other people how to do this thing. And the reason why I knew how to do this thing was because I had an obsessive interest in it, right? And the reason I had that obsessive interest is because I loved doing it. Not because I sat down and was like, "All right, I'm going to spend five years of my life, 12 hours a day, six days a week, learning and obsessing about something I really don't like doing." That is impossible to do, right? Even if you're at gun point, you probably couldn't pull that one off. So I think the answer, circling back around, the answer to this question, "Biggest problem is procrastination and just having a hard time actually wanting to do the work," it's because you're probably trying to do something that you don't want to do. You probably don't love it. And the thing that's probably distracting you from the thing that you're trying to do is probably the thing that you love, right? And this is really where it all begins. It's the seed. And if you don't know yourself, here's how you can start. You always want to be observant of this. Knowing yourself isn't a query that you can ask yourself consciously. You can't go, "Conscious, tell me who I am and what I like and what I love." It doesn't return anything because that library of information is in the limbic system and the conscious can't access the limbic system. These two systems do not have a conduit between them that passes information, right? So you're trying to query a library that is offline, right? So how do we query this library that's offline with an air lock between it, right? You really need to look at your behavior, behavior over time, behavior patterns over time, right? That's the key to your limbic system and the key to finding out who you are and what you love. Because that, your limbic system, will control what you do, absolutely. But your conscious can't access it so it can only be done this way. And once you find this, honestly, your whole world will change. And nothing will ever be the same again. And your life will be a whole lot better. So that's it for this video. Hopefully this helps a lot of you. And if you asked a question or you stated a problem that wasn't this one, well I'm going to keep making more videos. I looked at all of the different comments and problems people are facing and I can't solve them all, or attempt to solve them all, in one single video. So don't worry. I will have heard you and I would have looked at your problem and your suggestions. And over the next few videos and maybe videos for the rest of the year, we're going to be covering a lot of these topics that you guys and girls are facing. So that's it for this video. If you liked it, click that like button. And if you want more videos like this, then subscribe, click that subscribe button. And then let me know what you thought of this in the comment section below. Tell me whether you liked it and tell me if you want more videos like this. Or if you've got other suggestions that you want, put them in those comments. Because as you can see, I read them. Sometimes I print them. Sometimes I even hold them up in a video, and then sometimes I make videos about them. So they matter. So thanks for watching. See you in the next one soon.