The immediate significance for me was related to physical fitness and training — the original intent of the sign. (And great sub-text to expand on Nike’s now infamous “just do it!” mantra.) It hit me that I waste time thinking about working out, convincing myself to work out, and finally conceding that I need to work out. Then I just do it. Imagine the time I could saved by just working out in the first place. It HAS to be done (in my case) and I’ll end up doing it regardless, so why not “just do it”? Much less painful, no? (I’ve decreased my thinking and deliberation time from a day, to an hour, to about ten minutes.)
The penny dropped when I was on the treadmill that day — I saw all the other applications this sign has in my life. I’m not talking about your run-of-the-mill procrastination. I’m talking about inevitable things we need to do that we could be spending time doing instead of thinking about not doing them. All the things that don’t get done while we’re thinking about not doing something else. Things like cleaning, returning phone calls, booking appointments, calling service providers about issues we have with cable TV or Internet, cooking dinner, shopping for presents, cleaning out closets, and the very timely and relevant assembling of receipts to celebrate income tax filing season!
We have enough constraints on our time these days. And time spent thinking about doing something is time spent not doing that very thing that could bring you relief, satisfaction or pure joy.
Go on. Get out of your head and into your body. Do it. You’ll be glad you did!