Today my work buddy and I were listing out the things we could work on as we build our respective businesses. After saying aloud my planned tasks, immediately thoughts of all my related, unfinished projects jumped to mind-- particularly a project that I'd been putting off for months.
I noticed that my heart began suddenly racing in a terribly illogical panic. It was a fairly straightforward task that I had let become a gigantic monster over a long course of procrastination. I kind of knew I'd been resisting this specific task, but it never seemed like the right time to work on it. I decided to look at my heart rate on my Apple Watch. It was 40 BPM above my last-measured (resting) heart rate.
Now I had concrete, objective evidence of how much resistance I'd fostered for this project. I could have presented yet another logical reason to put off the task, yet again, and work on the tasks I'd planned. And my work buddy wouldn't have know the difference.
But, armed with my hard, biological data, I knew what I really needed to do, and it was easier to make the tough choice to address this long neglected task. Especially knowing that high-avoidance tasks are why I have a work buddy, and that we have very limited time to work together.
I checked my heart rate again after we'd been working for about 20 minutes, and my heart rate was back to only 15 BPM above normal. I was now no more anxious about this project than most others related projects. I'd pushed past the hardest part and gotten a good foothold on a previously abandoned aspect of my business. And that's a serious victory. This very well might have been a fluke-- plenty of other things can cause heart rate to elevate, not just resistance or fear of a long-avoided task. But I will keep an eye out for similar observations to discover more about how my measurable biometrics correlate with both my health and productivity.
I know I'm a biology, tech, and data nerd, but I'm also a pragmatist. This data can aid our lives outside of our medical and traditional health care. It can be an indicator and can help us make the tough choices to plow ahead. This was not the first time this very old task raised my heart rate. However, this was both the first time that I had tangible proof of my task-avoidance and the first time that I took action to complete the dreaded task.