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Learning new things vs. taking ACTION

Are you in motion – or are you willing to take action?

I know,  these phrases might sound the same to you, they are quite different and chances are you still don’t know which one applies to you in any given area. Or better yet, what type of person you should be.  Is it ok to just learn something for the sake of learning it, or is this something that needs direct action?

The main difference between being in motion and taking action is that the motion represents a flow that circles around and goes back to the same place where it started, to start circling and circulating again. Whereas – taking action refers to a direction from which you can hardly go back – and one that moves forward.

Have you ever thought that the start of something new and exciting was just the beginning of a big circle that would end you back up where you started? I’m sure you’ve never experienced this shockingly rare phenomenon… BUT, if you have, read on…

Action Vs. Motion – Learning Vs. Doing

As you can see, both of the phases include a sense of movement, which is definitely good.

However, motion vs. action are NOT the same things! Motion is when you are busy doing something from which there will hardly be an outcome by itself. Action, on the other hand, is the behavior that gets you actionable results.

For example, if you take the time now and write 10 ideas for your next blog posts, that is motion. But if you actually write them as blog posts, that is action.  

Or, another example, you spend countless hours reading and discussing new diets and workout programs that become highly knowledgeable about all the options… then don’t do ANY of them!  Or, at best, pick one and do it religiously (except for that little 1500 calorie milk shake at the end of the day to “reward” yourself).

(Is there an “OH MY GOD!  THAT IS TOTALLY ME!!!!!!!!!!!” emoji that I can insert here?)

But, I know I know, I’m preaching to the choir, none of you have every done this or anything like it… Right?

Now, as much as being in motion is good because it allows you to prepare and visualize the entire plan – it never leads to the actual result you want to achieve. Just like the example we shared above – where it doesn’t matter how many ideas you write, but how many of them you will realize in your full potential.

So, How To Take Action – Motivated By Motion?

The subheading above pretty much sums up the entire idea of how action and motion should work together. It’s true that smart people find themselves to be in motion more than taking action. Just because of that, they hardly see any results.  Or at best, see results that are a far cry from what they envisioned.

The best way to take the inspiration from your motion where you learn new things – and take them to action – is to do the following things:

    • Create A Plan – Setting up a schedule about each of the things you learn and how to translate them to actions is by far the best way to produce something and get actionable results. However, a plan is only good when followed – so make sure to stick to the tasks you set.
    • Pick A Date & Time – The best way to go from motion to action is to know the exact time you should do things. Even if you take 3 hours of your free time and do not complete the task, at least you’ll know that you achieved something and stepped out of motion to action.


  • TELL PEOPLE WHAT YOU ARE DOING – Nothing will push you harder then the thought of 1.) Letting people down who are counting on you, or 2.) being thought a failure in the eyes of others. We are AMPLY good at viewing ourselves as failures, regardless of results (welcome to Intro to the Human Condition 101, this is a non-credit course.  Sorry!  I tried.)  However, when left to our own devices, we’ll rarely hold ourselves to our plans or timelines.  Get help!  Even if it’s in the form of (in my case) you best and most blunt friend who will call you on your crap!  Thanks Mike!  Or, a both lovingly and annoyingly pragmatic spouse.  Love you, Carrie!

In the end, you have to understand that learning new things is the backbone of taking action. There is no motion vs action – they should work in sync to produce results that are driven by the knowledge and courage you decided to combine. If you pitt these two bunk mates against each other, you’ll never see any forward momentum.

And just to give you a taste of the kind of motivation I needed to kick me into gear and get this site launched recently, click here!


Thanks for reading.  I appreciate you!


About the author, Jason Herzberger