The less you want to do something, the more you need to do it.

That sounds counterintuitive, but the world often works counterintuitively.

You tear your muscles down to build them back up. You spend money to make money. You love something so you set it free.

Personal growth is no different — the task that seems the worst is probably what’s best.

We’re taught to trust our instincts and follow our gut. And we should.

But too often we conflate our instincts and gut with our misleading inner voice.

That’s the voice that tells you to eat cake instead of kale; to stay under the covers instead of the bench press; to focus on that Kardashians marathon instead of your writing.

It has the best of intentions: To shield you from the unknown by keeping you safe and comfortable in a familiar place.

But progress is seldom made by standing still.

This voice is human, and it will always be there. But once you’re clued into its game, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Whenever it speaks up, listen to what it says — then do the opposite.

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This article originally appeared on 100 Naked Words.

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