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Escaping Procrastination - Can I help you enjoy life just a little bit more right now?

21 September 2017

It is one of those days...  It hasn't been easy to get going. Energy is low and you are feeling rather delicate and lacking in direction. It feels like it wouldn't take much to make you abandon today's tasks.  Having your third cup of tea in less than an hour is telling. Procrastination is today's demon. I can feel him stalking me.

Like Steven Pressfield trying to "Do the Work", I find now that the enemy uses a devious method to distract me: “resistance”. I know that if I “… give [resistance] a nanosecond, [resistance] will start producing excuses, alibis, transparent self-justifications and millions of reasons why [I] can’t/shouldn’t/ won’t do what [I] need to do”.

Pressfield’s good advice is ringing in my ears. It helps me to confront “resistance”.  Pressfield simply says: “Start before you’re ready”. Good advice – but start with what?

Escaping to open space

You waver. “Time to take” a break (you say to yourself); or more accurately to make a break from the driving scripts and emasculating routines that you feel are trapping you. Time to start - but in a different way and place. Taking on the enemy on your own ground – away from the desk and in the open space.

So up you get, slam the door and off you go to give myself a really good talking to. I call it my OPWT - One Person Walk and Talk! Once out in the fresh air, it doesn't take long before “the questions yiu have been sitting with” come rushing forth. Leaving the confines of the building seems to clear the mind and oipen your ears to lsitening.

The rush of pesky questions

You immediately notice how “the questions” rush out to accost you. Many of them are not new, they have just been pushed firmly to the back of your mind. Smothered under the rush of day to day busy-ness.

Now they seem to have permission to speak. you give in and let them rush forth:

The first batch - What is troubling you: What should you do next? How do you avoid being rushed and driven? How do you turn yourself off and away from being anxious? Is it possible to turn your busy-ness off and still monitor what is going on? Is it actually technically possible to switch it off?

The second batch - How can you escape: If you stay connected, does your work simply not ignore your intentions and continue to buzz as if you are secretly keeping it on “Life Support”? If you refuse to stay connected might you not inadvertently and terminally damage it? Does it matter?

The third batch – What if: Why do you not let go? Is it possible to do so? What would you do if I did? How would you live? Would you lose your identity and connections? If you are not connected who will miss you? Will you stop to exist? Will anybody care?

The shift – Exploring possibilities: So should you push, and sell yourself harder and try to stay relevant? What happens when others do not see that relevance? What if you’re rejected? Does it matter? Should you be worrying about it? Is it not enough for you just to be, to offer yourself and in doing so discover and be re-discovered?

The turn – Finding new insight: Isn't your relevance driven primarily by being and by the questions and issues that being itself raises? Could it be that just by being, noticing and offering without striving the important connections, and their true purposes will naturally emerge?

The climb - Seeking encouragement: Is it possible that your being has within it the not just the questions, but also the purposes that others are facing in some way? Is it possible that as these questions are addressed, (particularly the most difficult ones) you will begin to help each other find yourselves? Might that not help you all live a little bit more comfortably right here right now?

The home stretch - Finding a resting place: Is it possible that your starting sense of anxiety is good and natural (driven out of a desire to connect and contribute)? May you actually be better able to address your own needs by offering to be yourself more and help others to be themselves more?

Would that not then enable us all to address the small (and eventually) those BIG life questions that visit any and all of us from time to time?

Home and resting: Discovering new resolve and energy: May it be that our purpose is to be and to offer through our being, the possibility that we might help each other live this life right now a bit more freely and a lot more joyfully?

Would that not be enough?

So for you personally, could your finishing (Compassionate) question, your insight for now simply be this: Can you help yourself to live and enjoy life just a little bit more right now?


Further reading:

Escaping Procrastination: Steve Pressfield - Do the Work ~

Being and seeing differently: Ben Okri – Wild ~

Walking: Frederic Gross – A Philosophy of Walking ~

Question’s: Peter Block – The Answer to How is Yes ~

Getting on with it in the right way and with the right thing(s) Gary Keller – The one Thing ~

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