Inertia

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Inertia

Postby engelein » Fri May 28, 2004 4:42 am

Sooooo... I could be doing lots more translation work. Or lots more singing practice. Or both. Or some Yoga. But what I'm actually doing is watching telly, housework (!) and surfing the internet. So there's little money coming in and I'm not moving on with what I want to do either. Why?
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Postby debraji » Fri May 28, 2004 5:25 am

Is it getting started that's hard? Or is it that the more you try to work, the more it feels like you're stuck? I often find that it's the getting started that trips me up. I avoid starting because sometimes starting is painful--I feel like I don't know what I'm doing, that I'm incompetent, that the work session is bound to fail. I imagine my fears are like guardian dogs at the gates of a temple. But once I get past the guardians, once I'm inside, all those feelings and fears fall away. So the trick is to find strategies to get me started. Here's what's helped me: (The work I describe here is writing fiction--but I think the techniques could be easily adapted for any number of projects, including yoga.) 1. Setting a time for writing - and making it a regular, daily part of my schedule. On good days I look forward to it. On bad days, I drag myself to my desk. (If there's something too good on tv to miss, I record it for later. The less tv I watch, the less I want to watch.) 2. When I'm feeling that I can't do any good work, thinking, Do just 15 minutes' worth and see what happens. Often that's enough to get me past the barrier, and I'm off and running. 3. Planning the day's work session ahead of time. It gets my mind ready to work, and lowers the barriers. 4. Setting a monthly goal, and knowing how much I need to do each day to reach that goal. Keeping track of my progress each day--either # of pages written, or # of hours editing. 5. If my mind feels like sludge, writing a letter to myself on paper about how I feel and what the problem might be. This seems to loosen me up, and then I can go on writing. Sometimes with this technique I've identified a problem with the way I was working, and a solution. 6. Giving myself the occasional guilt-free night off. Sometimes I'm just too tired and need a break. No more than two nights off in a week, though! 7. The internet & computer solitaire are two temptations that trip me up sometimes. You can use a 15 minute rule, but I find it's more effective to say no internet or games until after I've done my work. If I can work on hardcopy and keep the computer off, so much the better. 8. Train yourself to get back to work after interruptions. You may let your phone go to the answering machine during a working session, but there still may be interruptions. I used to feel unable to resume working after my concentration was broken. But you can train yourself to shrug your shoulders and get back to work. It does get easier with practice. engelein, you may do all of these things, and more. Forgive me if I'm off the mark. I guess I found it helpful to remind myself of the different things I can do when I'm feeling inertia--the getting started kind.
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Postby GiniDee » Fri May 28, 2004 6:11 am

Hey engelein - You're having a little 'post-event letdown' after getting accepted into your summer school program. Look at how much work and preparation you had to do for that. Not to mention all the translations and writing you were doing, and other performances not related to the summer school. You've been a very VERY busy gal. And you know you're about to be very VERY busy in the summer program. So your inner brat is saying \"I'm TIRED!!! I need a rest before we go off and do this tremendous thing this summer.\" At least that's what MY inner brat does, and she can't be any smarter than yours...:D So consciously declare a break for a few days, then look around for whatever money-making work you can do that won't drive you nuts. It's time to be good to yourself. You earned it BIGTIME!!!! Many hugs -
GiniDee :mrgreen: My idea of a balanced diet is a cookie in each hand. :mrgreen: GiniDee :mrgreen:
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Postby szb » Fri May 28, 2004 10:24 am

I agree with GiniDee -- it sounds like a post-audition hangover. I just went through this after a concert -- I always underestimate the toll of the adrenalin. Used to seem like a few days that I was "lazy" afterward -- now it seems like it takes about two weeks to get myself up and running mentally. Good luck, and hopefully you'll get recharged again soon.
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hmmmmmmmm

Postby engelein » Fri May 28, 2004 12:24 pm

hmmmmmmm, you know, you culd just be right - just it's coming quite a while after the audition / acceptance notice. I have been feeling tired lately. So, when can I take some time "off"...
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Postby PracticalMagic » Fri May 28, 2004 5:00 pm

I agree with the theory that you are resting, as needed. Sometimes the stress of saying \"I should be doing...\" makes you even more tired. Can you give yourself a full, 5 day vacation, guilt free, to just relax and play? Can you make an agenda for when you get back of things to do, list them, put the list in your calendar, and then have a refreshed point that is ready to launch back in? NOT a long list. Just organized enough to keep from worrying it over and over in your mind while taking a time out. As far as telly is concerned: try figuring out your best energy time for work, and least productive time, and schedule your work agenda for the first and telly for the last. I am really strong on the computer, writing, research, designing, answering business mail, very early in the morning. Literally with my morning coffee. I turn into a pumpkin right after dinner, and never miss my 6:30- 8:00PM shows with my Mother and my bunny. It feels like getting out of work and relaxing at home, even if I never left the house. If you have shows you really like, VCR timers will tape them for you, and you can pop it in as a reward time for your work time. Tempting video/internet games? Put them in a hard to reach folder, rather than right there in front of you, or delete them from your favorites. If you have to go looking, you will not jump into them quite so easily. Or, just come and chat with us. :lol:
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Postby docsue » Sat May 29, 2004 3:42 pm

I vote for the resting theory. You'll get busy when you're ready. Meanwhile, you deserve this! Alan Lakein, who made a fortune writing and speaking about time management, says that the best cure for procrastination is to force yourself to do nothing at all. After a while, you can't stand it and get back to your projects. George Osborne, who invented (I think) synectics a great creative problem solving models employs something he calls incubation - you take a break and let your brain keep working without any help from you. So who are we to disagree?
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Postby Tituba » Sat May 29, 2004 4:09 pm

Hmmmm....engelein - you've posted such great baby (and not-so-baby) steps in the past few weeks. Now inertia. Resistance monster takes on the guise of "I'm going to protect you by making you rest." See page 198 of Wishcraft - "Know Your Enemy" *An overwhelming need to sleep: You are suddenly tired *An overwhelming need to eat *An overwhelming need to read (or surf) *Soothing thoughts "I have plenty of time. It can wait until tomorrow" *A sudden blank mind *Ideas about 18 plans you'd rather do instead of this one *A sudden loss of interest in your goal *A conviction that you don't have what it takes
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Postby PracticalMagic » Sun May 30, 2004 7:03 am

Tituba, I remember that list. What I can't remember is her advice on how to combat the Resistance Monster. Would you reference us, please? My copy of the book is on line now. Thank you.
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Postby Tituba » Sun May 30, 2004 7:37 am

http://www.wishcraft.com/wishcraft_ch9.pdf Go top page 3 in this document In the book - it is page 198
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Postby MoreMagic » Sun May 30, 2004 7:41 am

I'm not Tituba, but Ido have my hard copy of Wishcraft near to hand. In that section, Barbara says resistance stems from one of two types of fear, stage fright and survival fears. The first can be overcome with support and enouragement and some Hard Times sessions. The second requires more in-depth attention, because it means that at some emotional level you really feel you can't survive the next step. When you are paralyzed, despite encouragement and support, she recommends decoding the survival message by respecting and paying attention to the fear. She then goes on to explain different "decodes" and how to address them. Boy it was helpful to re-read this!!
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Postby engelein » Sun May 30, 2004 10:04 am

Tituba wrote:*An overwhelming need to sleep: You are suddenly tired *An overwhelming need to eat *An overwhelming need to read (or surf) *Soothing thoughts "I have plenty of time. It can wait until tomorrow" *A sudden blank mind *Ideas about 18 plans you'd rather do instead of this one *A sudden loss of interest in your goal *A conviction that you don't have what it takes
:lol: Chuckle :lol: That about covers it! Time to re-read that chapter, methinks. Thanks for the pointer.
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Postby engelein » Sun May 30, 2004 10:41 am

p206: \"The fact is however, that no matter how prepared you are, each time you move to a higher level of performance or a more exacting audience, you're going to get scared all over again - like a diver who's gotten very comfortable on the three-foot board, but feels sick the first time he has to go off the ten-footer.\" Ha! Does the woman mind-read :twisted: ?? Guess that about covers it.
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Postby PracticalMagic » Tue Jun 01, 2004 7:15 am

:shock: I'll say she reads minds! I feel like I have a nose full of chlorine just from job hunting! Great quotes and reminders. It helps to hear Barbara's voice directly addressing our concerns here, on occasion. (In quote or in person.) Thanks, also, for the direct link, Tituba. :oops:
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Postby GiniDee » Thu Jun 03, 2004 3:13 am

Very cool, y'all! engelein, I'm having the symptoms too, from having finished that major seascape that took eight months of my life. This was excellent for me to re-read too. Thanks for sharing! Many hugs -
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