Some people struggle with “A Wall of Awful”. This brilliant turn of phrase captures the compounding nature of failed attempts, particularly for those with wandering minds.
As a person fails at sometimes simple tasks, a growing sense of dread and pain forms around those tasks. Things that appear easy are increasingly not. What’s worse is that it can become hard to explain why the task is so difficult to take on. It’s even hard to explain it to one’s self, often leading to an angry, self-berating, “Why can’t I just do it?!”
Paying a bill, for example, which otherwise looks like a click of a button, can be onerous. Procrastination and upset lead to confusion.
What’s worse is that these failure feelings can spread. Now it’s not just paying the bills that evokes these feelings. It can become about most anything that has to do with getting something done. The mind increasingly seems stubborn, not listening to anything other than an inherent interest or a screaming deadline.
Still, a wandering mind is often a powerful mind. You know it when those seemingly magical conditions line up and you’re doing more work in an hour than most do all day.
When trapped in a cycle of procrastination, one often tries to be “good to themselves”, but how to do that well is elusive. Watching shows all day may seem like a kindness, but it is often also a prolongation of hard times.
Instead, caring about one’s Future Self is a practice. It is also not about sacrificing Present Self.
To rebuild, to lay the foundations and build a working strategy, requires learning where and how to guide that powerful mind. It’s not a simple task, but the basics can be. It’s about learning :
– How and where you can decide what to take on
– How to gently puzzle your way into a task you’re avoiding rather than wait for a deadline
– How to engage and re-engage something that evokes negative feelings
– How to create supportive surroundings
Knowing that these are separate allows you to start practicing any one component.
PS – : Thank you, Christine, for introducing me to the video!