Day 15 — Activation Energy & Inertia

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December 2020

In chemistry, activation energy is the minimum energy required to start a reaction. In physics, inertia is the resistance an object has to a change in motion (or lack of).

What I find interesting is that principles from science can be applied to different contexts. This essay will apply activation energy & inertia to work. If you overcome the initial hurdle to start a project (the activation energy), you can build enough momentum and use inertia to your advantage. Inertia makes it easy to continue working once you’ve started.

Momentum deals with mass and velocity. So to increase momentum while working, you can either focus on a massive project or move with immense speed.

Everyone has a different motivation system that incites action. If you want to write an essay, some people will find it easier to start after seeing other people post their essays (social motivation & competition). Others might feel motivated after reading a captivating article (inspiration). It’s highly dependent, so it helps when you understand what motivates you.

If a project is too big, we tend to procrastinate getting started (high activation energy). One solution is to break the problem down into pieces. Smaller projects need less activation energy to start because they aren’t as complicated and are more achievable.

Leverage these principles to help you be more productive and stay focused.

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by Amaan