First Law: Things Stay the Same without External Forces

An object either remains at rest or continues to move at a constant velocity unless acted upon by a force.

In other words, a body at rest tends to stay at rest, a body in motion tends to stay in motion. The first law states that the velocity of an object is constant if the net force applied to it is zero. Velocity is a quantity that expresses both the speed and the direction of an object. In other words, the speed and direction of an object will remain the same without any external force applied to it.

Newton's First Law of Motion

Putting Newton’s First Law in the context of productivity, things will only progress and get done when external effort and input are applied.

Your to-do list will stay undone if you’re not doing anything about it. On the other hand, destructive beliefs and bad habits will continue to drag you down if you’re not doing anything about them.

It’s obvious—probably sounds dumb—when you read it. But many of us expect ourselves to be more productive and better off, without doing anything. We want to get things done by procrastinating, we want to live healthier without changing our diet, and we want to get richer without taking any risk.

There are endless real-world examples:

  • Writers hang out with other writers, read, toss around ideas, and never do the one thing they need to do the most: write.
  • Artists stare at a blank canvas, browse the Internet for inspirations, tell themselves how good they are in their head, and wonder why they can’t create.
  • Entrepreneurs spend all their time coming up with ideas, printing business cards for their seventh startup, tell their family and friends about the idea, but have no clue who and where their target audiences are.


the fundamentals right.
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