Monday, September 19, 2016

How to Get Going

How to Get Going

Ok, I pulled the “Why do I commit?” card today. I am so in love with this question these days. I tend to pair it with “What am I committed to?” because the two together are so darn powerful.

One of the most insidious blocks to us living the life we think we want is habit. I am smack dab in the middle of this right now because I had to totally revamp my routines while I was playing chemo-surgery-radiation. Now that I am in recovery mode, I find that I often fall into doing those routines, a lot of not doing much that gets me not very anywhere. They were great when I had little energy and almost no attention span, but they are no longer of much use to me. Just habit.

Did you notice that I said, “the life we think we want”? Do you know why I said that? Cuz whether we like it or not, we are living the life we are choosing. It’s those thousand tiny choices we make every day. The choice not to think about “that thing.” The choice to eat this. The choice to ignore our longings for all sorts of reasons, often unconscious reasons at that!

The point is that we are committed to the life we are currently living regardless of how we feel about it.


So what do I do about that?

I like lists. Thing is, my ToDo list is about three miles long and I am lucky if I get a thing or two done on it a day. I’ve been working on it for decades and mostly I have found that it just makes me feel guilty. Now, there is stuff that I get done pretty much every day. There are deadlines that I meet, goals I achieve. How do I do that?

It’s not the list.

I get stuff done when I make time for it. Doesn’t matter if it is on a list. Before my adventures in wonderland started, before my emergency surgery, I had some pretty slick routines going. I got stuff done. I felt productive. I was accomplishing stuff I wanted to accomplish. It was easy and fun.

I kinda feel all balky about starting them up again or even making new ones. So then what?

Why am I inspired? What makes me feel motivated? How am I so creative?

When I am needing a nice kick in the starter, I ask myself, “What am I committed to?” Frankly, despite what feels like evidence to the contrary, I’m not really committed to watching all of Netflix. When I ask that question, I remind myself of what is actually important to me; fluffing up my living space, physical culture, learning, emo growth, social interaction, self-care, art and craft.

One of the kinds of lists I do like is a Be-Do-Have list. I’ve been using these forever. Take your time to think about and write down 100 things you want to be, 100 things you want to do, 100 things you want to have. It’s surprisingly challenging, but keeping that list around helps me remember to make time for that stuff.

How have I changed from living habits left over from old circumstances to committing to the life I really want?

(c) Pam Guthrie 2016 all rights reserved 09192016