Is there something you’ve been meaning to start, but you just haven’t pulled the trigger?

Is there a book you need to read, a habit you need to establish, or a practice you need to implement? Maybe you haven’t started because you aren’t absolutely certain that it is necessary.

A simple way to resolve that uncertainty is to commit the task to the five-day experiment. Give it five days of your focused, intentional attention. Put a short-term plan into place and see what happens.

Say, for instance, you purchased a book after a friend or mentor recommended you read it. However, since the day you bought it, it has been sitting on the shelf unread.

Haven’t we all been there?

Why not try a five-day experiment?

For the next five days, carry the book with you everywhere you go. Then, when given a small window of opportunity, dive into it. Maybe that window will open while you’re on hold or maybe it will be when a meeting starts a few minutes late. Whenever it is, take that extra time and give it to your unread book.

Probably at the end of the five days you won’t have finished the entire book. But there is a good chance you will know if it is worth continuing to read. If it is, wonderful! If it isn’t, it won’t be one of those nagging “to dos” pulling your attention anymore.

If you aren’t an active person, maybe you could give yourself a five-day fitness experiment. You won’t have achieved a full-body makeover in that short time, but see if you notice a difference in your mood, in your sleep habits, or in your energy level. Those five days might be all it takes to set you on a healthier course.

The purpose of the five-day experiment is not to finish the task. Instead, the five-day experiment will help you decipher whether it is a task you would like to finish. Setting aside five days means you’ve made a minimal commitment and have put forth a concerted effort to learn if it is worth more of your time.

So what do you say? Do you have five days to try something new?

What task has been on your “to do” list for quite some time? Can you spare a little time to figure out if it is something worth doing?

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