Procrastination

ScioAgapeOmnis

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Here's an interesting piece about procrastination: _http://www.paulgraham.com/procrastination.html

The "program" he talks about (though he does not call it that) is not just procrastination, but how we fool ourselves into thinking we're not procrastinating at all - by doing a lot of other things to make ourselves feel like we're "busy" and "getting things done". The question is, why? As someone on this forum mentioned before, we develop a "selective laziness".

So he quotes these interesting questions someone else posed:
- What are the most important problems in your field?
- Are you working on one of them?
- Why not?
- What's the best thing you could be working on, and why aren't you?
Then he mentions people shying away from seriously contemplating this. Well yeah, there are tons of uncomfortable things people "shy away from" regarding their machine, or their circumstance in life.

So, procrastination - doing other things things and postponing what is "important" until the last moment, because for whatever reason you just don't feel like doing it now, maybe it seems boring, or you're not inspired, or something else (everything else?) looks way more enjoyable. But there seems to be a subtlety here that I would like to address and understand.

One possibility for this - undeveloped emotional center. Like, dislike, love, hate, want, don't want, boring, fun.. - all that is completely under the control of the many "i"'s in our default state. Today something is boring, tomorrow it is fun. Today you like it, tomorrow you don't. People want to do things when they are "inspired" to do them. But what triggers or activates inspiration, and should we have to wait for inspiration to just pop up or can we consciously create inspiration? Waiting for inspiration to hit seems to be equivalent to waiting for the right "i" to suddenly get switched on, the "i" that just happens to enjoy that particular activity - and only then do it. Is this an accurate definition of "inspiration"? If so, are we not then maneuvering within the constraints of our machine, trying to basically wait till our machine "feels like it"?

But another possibility is what Laura wrote in the education thread here: http://www.cassiopaea.org/forum/index.php?topic=7109.msg50128#msg50128

Laura said:
For children ages four to eight it would be better to spend two to three hours per day simply becoming familiar with the fundamentals of reading and numbers as play and then allowing their own natural curiosity to direct their imitative activities in an environment where there is someone and something worthy of imitation. For a child, play is learning and the importance of presenting education in this context is tragically underestimated. When a child is tired of a certain game, they should be permitted to initiate a different one. They know when their brain has maximized the experience at hand. It is crucial to their curiosity, the fundamental element of genius, that their attention be allowed to flow naturally from one subject to the next which draws their interest.
It seems like there is a subtle but crucial difference between these 2 explanations, and I'm kind of confused about just what that difference is and would appreciate any and all thoughts. What Laura described above as the "fundamental element of genius" I understood to be the act of allowing a mind to think and explore in any and all directions without restricting it, and be allowed to focus on whatever issue it is "inspired" to focus on, and not be forced to limit itself to a particular line of thinking or a subject more than it feels the need to at the time. Did I understand that right?

Then there is the multiple i's, combined with the undeveloped emotional center. This too can result in being inspired or uninspired for certain activities, having a "low attention span", but also holding contradictory beliefs and urges etc. So what is the difference between creativity/genius and many i's?

Perhaps the difference is that on the surface it looks the same, but really isn't. One person can be jumping from subject to subject because of a low attention span, another one might be doing the same because their mind is drawing the connections due to being allowed and encouraged to draw such connections as a child? Perhaps one way to put it - in one case jumping from one activity/subject to another a mechanical thing, and in another case it is a conscious thing?

So then, where would a child who does this fit in? Is it creativity or mechanicalness? The reason I ask is, I wouldn't want to accidentally encourage the child to embrace their machine, but to be sure that I'm helping the child develop a single "I" - and yet without stifling creativity or forcing the mind to submit to unnecessary restrictions etc. And not just a child, I mean anyone really, including myself.

In terms of procrastinating, that too is related because - when is procrastination just a program of our machine, where we "don't feel like" something because we're mechanical - and when is procrastination a result of the mind "maximizing" an experience and so would be a good thing? Is there a way to differentiate? People say that we should do what makes us happy, what makes us feel fulfilled. But on the other hand, if that happiness is just a mechanical happiness that satisfies just some "i" then it's bad advice - they're encouraging us to conform to our machine and just "go with the flow". On the other hand, CAN we *make* ourselves inspired? Or does that come from simply developing through the Work, and we simply find that our inspiration becomes less and less haphazard and more stable as a result? Is this not then where real genius is found - when inspiration is "stabilized" and we are driven towards a goal consistently without being "driven" towards another 2 minutes later?
 

Miss Isness

Jedi Master
Thinking in astrological terms, I would say that discipline would be represented by Saturn, and spontaneity by Jupiter. Both are necessary. In the material world (Saturn) you have to work, be disciplined, and adhere to schedules, unless you're a child. Then you can play, follow your inspiration, and spontaneously expand your realm of activity. If you are allowed to do that as a child, you will also be able to approach life in that way as an adult - sometimes.

I wonder if sometimes the tendency to procrastinate indicates the need for a more playful approach. As far as I can see there's nothing wrong in itself with being spontaneous, feeling good, and having fun. The problem is when there's a lack of balance. The only place where grown ups can play all the time is 'never never land'. I certainly got the impression that Laura and the gang had fun during the C's sessions. Even the C's had a sense of humor. Of course, that was balanced with a lot of hard work, and suffering.
 

Cyre2067

The Living Force
Scio - i think the difference lies in the age of the individual @ hand. In Laura's example she's referring to a method of allowing kids to learn what they want @ their own pace. When we come to procrastination, that seems to be a learned or acquired behavior that appears later in life, or as one goes through the traditional "education" system.

Personally, I didn't learn the "art of procrastination" until High School. Where i also picked up a "this isn't worth my time" program. In fact, i think the later could have lead to the prior.

Procrastination is something I suffer from as well, but i seem to have a knack with timing, so i do get things done, just always... at the last minute.
 

ScioAgapeOmnis

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
And as for motivation, I find that approach can make all the difference in the world. You can make a child bored with a subject and earn to move on. Or you can, if you find the right approach, make the same child fascinated with that same subject, and spend hours on it. So I guess that makes me confused - has their mind "maximized" this experience, or maybe the approach or some other factor simply made them lose interest - but a different approach or set of factors might've kept the interest?

But I was thinking, perhaps it's not so much that we should force ourselves to do anything, but rather address the part of us that is "driving" the action. So say I'm bored with one thing, it doesn't mean I should force myself to do it anyway (well sometimes we have no choice), but perhaps the smarter thing would be to address WHY I'm bored, what is in me that "clicked off" and made me want to do something else?

The C's said *everything* is fun with the proper perspective. And please correct me if I'm wrong but by "proper perspective" I think they meant not necessarily the "objective perspective" but simply the perspective necessary for that particular activity to be fun. So with the "proper perspective" doing cartwheels all day can be fun, but it doesn't mean that it's a "healthy" or "objective" or "productive" perspective. And I guess our i's keep switching our perspective, and as such, what appears to be fun or boring at the moment. And so we should not necessarily force ourselves to do what currently is boring - we'll probably do a horrible job, and do it slowly. But perhaps we should first understand what is important to do and *why* it is important, and then find the "proper perspective" that makes us inspired and enjoy doing what we already determined to be important. And the determination of importance can also be done under the influence of subjective i's and their subjective and arbitrary perspectives, or it can be something that is objectively important.

So going back to motivating someone, a child or adult, the approach is important. So similarly, perhaps the approach is important with ourselves. If you already know that something is important, then SOME part of you has the proper perspective for it, you just have to tap into it. So whatever perspective makes us not want to do it, we gotta analyze it and see what's wrong with it. Why is it that, for example, starting a workout is usually more difficult than working out? Getting ourselves to drop what we're doing and actually go work out can be daunting and seem like boring work, but once we're already working out, we can actually enjoy it and have no more feeling that it is "boring" at all. So somehow our perspective changed after we began the activity that appeared boring before we started doing it. If we can access that perspective at will, by somehow putting ourselves into the right "mode" or "frame of mind" that is required to enjoy that activity, then we could always have fun doing it, and WANT to do it before we're doing it too.

I guess that's where the emotional center comes in? It doesn't just force us to do something while we hate it, it somehow changes our perspective to make us not want to do anything else, at least at the moment, while that emotional energy is still flowing. So how to develop this emotional center to be consciously used and always keep driving us and inspiring us to do what is important, without having it constantly turn off and we keep being bored and waiting for it to click on?

Like right now - I have to write an essay for my little brother for college (I told him I'd do it), but I'm procrastinating. But I KNOW that once I start writing I'll get into it and I'll enjoy writing it. So why can't I just put myself into that perspective ahead of time, before I begin writing? Isn't that kinda like self remembering - putting ourselves into the shoes of our "future self" and simply doing NOW what we would've otherwise only thought about doing in retrospect? I think this is similar - putting ourselves into our "future self" when we're having fun and enjoying an activity, and so making ourselves enjoy and want to do that activity NOW, which makes us gladly begin the activity without any more delay. And if we can self-remember and do the "right thing" in the moment instead of waiting till we're looking back at the event and wondering what we should've done, why can't we do the same thing with this, to do the "right thing" by accessing the "right perspective"?

You could even say that these 2 things are intertwined. If you're not doing what you perceive to be important now, and later you'll sit there guilty regretting wasting time on things you KNOW are a waste of time, then isn't finding the right perspective basically similar to self-remembering, as it helps you do the right thing? Although the difference might be that self-remembering maybe has to do with a particular situation and how we "react to it", but the perspective thing has to do with what we do when there is no "situation", when we're just sitting there and wondering what we should be doing. That's when we need the "right perspective".
 

nf3

Padawan Learner
I think the confusion might arise from the fact that a lot of people are denied that stage that Laura describes, where they get to try everything and let their own curiosity guide them. So as adults they've become accustomed to just doing whatever is immediately gratifying (i.e. provides material rewards or narcissistic supply) and stop looking for what is truly within them to do.

My current understanding is that in developing our emotional centers, part of the work is getting back in touch with that part of ourselves that knows what it wants to do and does it well regardless of how difficult or externally ungratifying. I guess that would involve in some ways catching up on what was missed in childhood by trying your hand at many different things and allowing that curiosity to resurface. Boredom and procrastination don't even really enter the picture when we're doing what comes naturally, rather than what we've been programmed to do.
 

Tarri

Jedi Master
I can remember when I was in school, there were some class's that I really enjoyed, (writing, english, etc.) and others that, looking back now, could have been enjoyable but weren't, and I think that it mostly had to do with how the teacher approached the lesson. Then again, once home, we HAD to sit down at a certain time each evening and STUDY for several hours. The class's were mostly boring, it took no imagination when doing the studies, it was all roat. Remembering "things" by memory instead of looking at it as a challenge and subjects that had you use your "mind" instead of taking pieces of it and sticking in memory so you would be able to answer the test questions.

To this day, I hate going to class. I rather get the books and info myself and learn it on my own. That way I can delve as deep into it as I want, experiment on what I have learned, take aspects of what I have learned and go in different directions to learn more of something and then go back to the original core topic. Also, I find that if I give myself a break, let my mind refresh itself on something else, my interest in the main topic remains fresh and desire to keep learning remains intact.

This is not to say that I don't procrastinate. Remember that book I'm writting? I have never written a book before and it seems that the knowledge that what it is that I want to write seems so daunting, that I find it difficult to even sit at the computer to get started. I have tried breaking it down in sections, but there seems to be an "I" in me that can't get past this point. So, somewhere there is an "I" that was there and is there that originally felt the idea of writting a book exciting. Where is that "I", and how do I bring it forward once again?

It's very frustrating. Tarri
 

Miss Isness

Jedi Master
Hi Tarri,

Just wanted to say that getting your creative writing 'I' to take the stage again could be as simple as confronting your fears. What will happen if you invest a really lot of time and energy and you or someone important to you isn't happy with the final product? (that can be painful if you are too end product oriented and not process oriented) What will happen if you discover that there is a whole network of seemingly unrelated events that inevitably kick in to keep you from realizing your potential when you're in the creative flow? (for me some serious anger comes up that has to be dealt with) What will happen if writing the book makes you grow so fast that you outgrow your current environment, and relationships?

I have discovered that all of these things can be issues for me, regarding creativity. I also find it useful to remind myself that it will come when the time is right. If you set aside a small amount of time each day or a certain number of days a week to dedicate to your book, you can simply sit down at your computer and do whatever comes naturally. This could be a way to communicate to your subconscious that you are indeed ready to start the project. So, your first goal would simply be to communicate that.

There are lots of things that you can do to stimulate your imagination as well, like collecting images and bits and pieces of information that are useful either as content or as examples of how you want to approach the presentation of information.
 

Tarri

Jedi Master
Isness,

I've thought about what you have written. And I guess, what I feel, may be part of something you have mentioned. What if someone important to me isn't happy with the final project. Thats kind of tossing out the eggs before they are even laid and found broken. ( Seems kind of stupid to think that way now that I see it.)

I had thought that maybe Laura could go over the work when it was done, (if she would) and that I realize does scare the shit out of me. (Laugh) But first perhaps I am getting ahead of myself and sabataging the work right off. And then, Laura is a teacher really, and all she would actually do is help give me advice on how to improve what is essentially a learning experience. How often is something right the first time anyway.

Also, I had not thought of using images to help with my imagination. That is a great idea.

So, after reading what I have written I have taken an idea that sounded exciting and seemed an excellent adventure, and allowed a SERIOUS "I" to take over and turned it into something that is work, something that I need to try and get right, and another "I" that is VERY critical of the work ahead. And yet another "I" that was feeling guilty. Good grief!!!

That really does bring up some issues that I was not aware of. This idea of having all these "I's" is an eye opener to be sure. ( I made a pun!)

ScioAgapeOmnis, thanks for bringing this topic up.

I love this forum. Thanks everyone. Tarri
 

Tigersoap

The Living Force
I have been pondering this a lot and some light was shed by reading this little excerpt from "Trapped in the mirror" p .156,
maybe this would help :

Procrastination is a common shortcoming of one whose performance has been attacked. Low in self-esteem, many of us think we should put off action until we feel sufficiently confident.
It is an error to believe that we must love ourselves before undertaking a difficult project or relationship.
We postpone what we think is beyond our grasp, giving ourselves no opportunity to learn from error. Raised to magnify our limitations, inferiority feelings keep us from the world. We fail at school, job, marriage, work, child rearing, and so on. We fulfill our predicted destiny.
What is interesting is that I have seen how unconscious this pattern can be, where suddenly something will pop up that would require all my attention and divert me from what I should be doing instead.


I tried to look closely at how my inspiration is coming or going and it has proved quite difficult to understand

A few things I have noticed though :

There are high and low times where inspiration comes and go but I can't pinpoint a set of events that would cause one or the other exactly.

Inspiration alone is void if not put into concrete creation, I have to do it otherwise it's lost.

I think that I can see if the idea is coming from the intellectual center only (thus lacking a "spark") or emotional only (thus lacking focus and direction) but if both are somehow connected, it works better.
In this respect, inspiration can be forced (whichever many I's is there at the moment) but there will be a jarring feeling of running like a headless chicken or a complete emotional detachment.

I am terribly confused at how creativity and inspiration works for me after all.

It is necessary to have outside impressions to feed the machine so to speak and at the same time this feels like feeding the mechanicalness in some ways. Where is my true-self amongst all of this ?
I am unable to see true inspiration (if ever) from inspiration that comes from the absorption of outside impressions.
Although I hope that true inspiration coming through my real self is sometimes shining through (maybe it's just wishfull thinking.).

I apologize if this looks too much like rambling but I typed and re-typed and it does not become clearer in my head.

Edit : I want to delete what I just typed but maybe that would deny other people of a good example of a machine losing it.
Yes you can call me Bender.
 

ScioAgapeOmnis

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I think it's possible to tell when Inspiration comes from the real self. You know, when you feel and see and understand the terror if the situation, and nothing in the world seems more important to you than to contribute to the greatest efforts to wake people up and wake yourself up. At that point you may find yourself doing what you *know* truly matters, because at that moment you understand it is the only thing that matters. But this is usually a passing state, because after all, we are all machines. So probably most of the time we will find ourselves inspired for distractions and mindless entertainment and things that we KNOW are a waste of our time.

So it seems the problem is, we wait for the "higher inspiration" to turn on before we do what is of vital imprortance. So it seems we have some options:

A) Just do what you're currently inspired to do, even if that means wasting time because one of many i's is in the lead at the moment making you do what it feels like doing.

B) Force yourself to do what you know is important, even if you're totally uninspired to do it at this moment. So that would mean you've already experienced, if only for a moment, that "higher inspiration" and understood what is important, and so you simply ignore all other inspirations and simply DO what you know is important, even if you're totally uninspired and don't "feel like" doing it at the moment when some little "i" is in control. This would take willpower since you're consciously going against what your "inspiration" is telling you to do.

C) Try to find a way to bring back this "higher inspiration", and if you manage to consciously bring it back, then you'll simply again start doing what you know needs to be done, and love every moment of it because you're inspired. How to do that? I'm not sure.

D) Balance between doing all 3 of the above. I think the bottom line is, when we do the Work on self, the "higher inspiration" driven by our higher emotinal center and complemented by our intellectual center will show up more and more often. Ultimately, the goal of the Work is that the real "I" is in control at all times - so you'd always be inspired to do the most important work.

But until that time we're machines, and will be inspired for nonsense much of the time. So how to balance A, B, and C, without harming ourselves or going astray? Well one thing I could think of is - when it comes to "A", we do have to throw a piece of meat to the predator every now and then. When it comes to "B", that too probably should be done with care because the C's said not to force it, but simply to do what feels natural, or else we risk going astray. However, the problem is, what feels "natural" very often is precisely that which leads us astray, because our mechanical state is natural to us, distractions and mindless entertainment often feels very "natural".

We can't do all "A" because we'd not accomplish anything important if we're just flying where the wind blows. We can't do all "B" because we'd have extreme difficulty sticking to the game plan and completely ignoring the predator / many i's. So it seems a little bit of "A" and "B" is necessary, but also "C" and doing the Work as much as we can.

So often we'd have to simply ignore our mechanical urges and DO what we know (even if we don't feel it at the moment) to be the right thing to do. Occasionally we'd succumb to the urges and take a break. And meanwhile we network and develop our emotional center so that the "higher inspiration" naturally comes more and more often, stick around longer, and is more and more objective when it does come. And the more we develop the less we have to do of "A" and "B" because what is "natural" will start to merge with what is "important".

But this does take willpower, it does mean we have to simply DO what needs to be done even when it's "against ourselves" at the moment, and if it's really just too much then we can "recharge". At least this is what makes sense to me right now, and what I'm trying to do. I find myself falling into "A" (feeding the predator/mechanical urges) much too often though, and that's a problem. It's not so easy to simply WILL yourself to do something when your mind is "against it". And that's why the Work is a constant battle against yourself - your real "I" trying to develop and take control while everything else is kicking and screaming. And as G said, consciousness cannot develop unconsciously. It won't just happen if we just do "A" all the time, that's what everybody does by default. We have to consciously will ourselves to Work, there seems to be no other way, and it IS difficult, it was never meant to be easy and always fun, and we can't always wait till we "feel like it" or when it seems fun before we do it, that may never happen.

But as we develop, it becomes easier and more fun - because our "I" becomes more active and is easier to access, inspiration for real Work comes easier and more often. But initially it won't, and maybe for a long time it won't, but fire is not easy to start when you're spinning a stick on the ground, you gotta put in some serious effort to spin it before you get some smoke, a spark, and eventually/ultimately perpetual "inner fire" (perpetual only when consciously maintained tho, cuz all fire burns out if not maintained).
 

Tigersoap

The Living Force
ScioAgapeOmnis said:
We can't do all "A" because we'd not accomplish anything important if we're just flying where the wind blows. We can't do all "B" because we'd have extreme difficulty sticking to the game plan and completely ignoring the predator / many i's. So it seems a little bit of "A" and "B" is necessary, but also "C" and doing the Work as much as we can.
I agree that it is a difficult balancing act because there is no point forcing it because this would be mechanical as well.


ScioAgapeOmnis said:
But this does take willpower, it does mean we have to simply DO what needs to be done even when it's "against ourselves" at the moment, and if it's really just too much then we can "recharge". At least this is what makes sense to me right now, and what I'm trying to do. I find myself falling into "A" (feeding the predator/mechanical urges) much too often though, and that's a problem. It's not so easy to simply WILL yourself to do something when your mind is "against it". And that's why the Work is a constant battle against yourself - your real "I" trying to develop and take control while everything else is kicking and screaming.
I totally understand that.
I think there are times when you have to give yourself a break and by that I do not mean indulging every whims and pleasures, but be more gentle with ourselves because it's too easy to fall into masochistic mode which is another facet of the predator, well at least for me it is.

There is something though that gives me pause for reflection because I am in a phase where I am not sure I am doing any progress and everything I do (especially artistically speaking) is tainted by this duality between mechanicalness and the thirst for higher purposes.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the subject
 

ArdVan

Jedi
ScioAgapeOmnis said:
A) Just do what you're currently inspired to do, even if that means wasting time because one of many i's is in the lead at the moment making you do what it feels like doing.

B) Force yourself to do what you know is important, even if you're totally uninspired to do it at this moment. So that would mean you've already experienced, if only for a moment, that "higher inspiration" and understood what is important, and so you simply ignore all other inspirations and simply DO what you know is important, even if you're totally uninspired and don't "feel like" doing it at the moment when some little "i" is in control. This would take willpower since you're consciously going against what your "inspiration" is telling you to do.

C) Try to find a way to bring back this "higher inspiration", and if you manage to consciously bring it back, then you'll simply again start doing what you know needs to be done, and love every moment of it because you're inspired. How to do that? I'm not sure.
It's not that easy IMO. I think to know what motivates you is very important.

Imagine that you were brought up in such a way, that you were only "loved" by your parents or caretakers if you did what they wanted you to do.

So you learned to do things that weren't necessarily fun or interesting, only because you wanted to be loved and not because you have learned that some things are part of every day life and have to be done. Now many years later you are on your own and an adult person. There is no longer someone there that will scold you, but also no one who will love you if you have done a great job.

Under such conditions the three points will work like that:

A) you will only do what is fun or if you feel loved. As long your job is fun or you're in love, your lucky.

B) If its not fun or your not loved, important will only be what's painful (like not wanting to lose a job). So time schedules at the office will push you to to do something. And there will be not satisfaction, because your not loved. Ok, maybe there can be a little satisfaction if you have internalized your parents (who will love you now in your imagination, but then this may backfire because they/you will also scold you).

C) Works, if you find "higher inspiration", but this sounds like people who got enlightened :). But what is higher inspiration? In this case the inspiration has to feel that you are loved, otherwise it won't work because you can't circumvent your program.

So in this case IMO the goal is to learn how to inspire yourself in a loving way.
 

beetlemaniac

The Living Force
This thread has articulated my haphazard thoughts about this subject so very well, I'm extremely grateful.

Procrastination has probably been a program that has plagued me for a big part of my life, the habit of doing things last minute, and knowing and feeling the regret because I could have done much better if I had started it earlier. I feel that the handling of stress plays a huge part in the program of procrastination. For me at least, when I have deadlines to meet, the stress has to mount to a really critical level before I actually start getting things done. When I say critical I mean really critical, because the procrastination program acts as a buffer to mask the stress with the usual rationalisations or just pure disassociation. So I guess it depends on really listening to our true stress levels very carefully and intently, without letting the I's who "just wanna have fun" obscure the real situation at hand. Then we will know how much the work-to-be-done is compressing us more and more through stress, hopefully before we explode into a manic rush to complete everything. This beautiful post by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes thanks to Laura on Facebook really does describe it very well:

Dr. Estes said:
Dear Brave Souls: There's something you're not doing; it's nagging at you. Why not get it done today, worked on two steps more today. There's a painting in the Chicago Art Institute by Ivan Albreight. It's at least 8 feet tall and at least 3 feet wide. It is of a door with a funeral wreath on it. A lace gloved hand is reaching to knock on the door. THe title of the painting is: That which I should have done, I did not do.

My point is this: not a guilt trip, but this: there is something in the psyche that 'counts', keeps track of all stressors. You may not, but I can assure you your body does have all the matters, from critical to pleasurable, that ought or must be done... and these are tattooed all throughout the body's musculature and energy flow valves in its circulatory systems.

You know how relieved and free you felt when you finally took care of x, no matter if x was some skut work job in the cellar, or sorting receipts finally, or really recycling the firewall of magazines without sitting down to read each one, or getting that mammogram, or sigh, going to the dentist, or finishing that paperwork, or starting that painting project, or finishing it...

Two things: take two steps today toward 'that thing', and do it out of mercy for your body and mercy for your mind.

It's a strange thing with the body that counts all stressors, it also counts release of worry, and values such highly, for then the body gets to breath better, have a little spring in its step, as we say, feels the burden fall away.

If we really named things right, we would not have 'to do' lists, we would have 'body stressor lists' and 'body-ultra-relaxer' lists.

It is definitely worth asking oneself today: what actions, completions, starts would bring my body most peace today.

Seriously; let us know.

For me, it will be more giving away of another small mountain of good books, and completing a deadline I'm up against for four 'done-done' book manuscripts, meaning all endnotes matching citations, all front and back matter, all tiny details that go into a book's 'finish' that definitely make you need to go to the next higher version of reading glasses. lol

Two steps today. Just two. And you're on your way.

with love,
dr.e

Another thing about getting ourselves up and working on the important things, I had read somewhere that the formula for Intent was Will + Focus. This seems to fit quite with what Tigersoap said:

Tigersoap said:
I think that I can see if the idea is coming from the intellectual center only (thus lacking a "spark") or emotional only (thus lacking focus and direction) but if both are somehow connected, it works better.

Thus will comes from the emotional (and moving?) center and is focused and aided by the intellectual center? Am I getting this right?

What I'd also like to add is about interest. This would probably apply to studies and 'career' related work, where a person had a certain ambition of view of themselves before taking on that work (for me it was becoming an engineer, which seems to be just self-aggrandizement in the end), and this ambition is what fueled their interest. Let's say that during the course of this work our subject had some new realizations about the state of affairs of our world and what not, seeing through the system or Matrix, seeing how a lot of work we do seems to have no real purpose. Disillusionment, I guess! So, my point being, how should interest be directed or ambition be changed or modified to suit the purpose of attaining the higher self? I think I may be mixing up interest and ambition but bear with me here!

Well, one way of "making things better" and looking at it in a more positive perspective is to see our position in the world currently as a lesson to be learnt, and also to assess other options and see if moving to other fields of interest is feasible. Although I'm still very hazy about how our current conflicting interests from those conflicting I's are going to be transcended to a higher aim and purpose, but I guess they all are lessons in the end. Also, the lessons probably won't be learned if we do not have the real Work being done concurrently.

Although by having interest still fueled by some sort of ambition, would that just be giving some "I" too much credit?

Maybe I'm just rationalising and jumping to the wrong conclusions. I'm such a machine, the I's and their differing opinions are giving me a headache! My first (badly constructed) constructive post! Thanks.
 
N

nwigal

Guest
beetlemaniac said:
This thread has articulated my haphazard thoughts about this subject so very well, I'm extremely grateful.

Procrastination has probably been a program that has plagued me for a big part of my life, the habit of doing things last minute, and knowing and feeling the regret because I could have done much better if I had started it earlier. I feel that the handling of stress plays a huge part in the program of procrastination. For me at least, when I have deadlines to meet, the stress has to mount to a really critical level before I actually start getting things done. When I say critical I mean really critical, because the procrastination program acts as a buffer to mask the stress with the usual rationalisations or just pure disassociation. So I guess it depends on really listening to our true stress levels very carefully and intently, without letting the I's who "just wanna have fun" obscure the real situation at hand. Then we will know how much the work-to-be-done is compressing us more and more through stress, hopefully before we explode into a manic rush to complete everything. This beautiful post by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes thanks to Laura on Facebook really does describe it very well:

Dr. Estes said:
Dear Brave Souls: There's something you're not doing; it's nagging at you. Why not get it done today, worked on two steps more today. There's a painting in the Chicago Art Institute by Ivan Albreight. It's at least 8 feet tall and at least 3 feet wide. It is of a door with a funeral wreath on it. A lace gloved hand is reaching to knock on the door. THe title of the painting is: That which I should have done, I did not do.

My point is this: not a guilt trip, but this: there is something in the psyche that 'counts', keeps track of all stressors. You may not, but I can assure you your body does have all the matters, from critical to pleasurable, that ought or must be done... and these are tattooed all throughout the body's musculature and energy flow valves in its circulatory systems.

You know how relieved and free you felt when you finally took care of x, no matter if x was some skut work job in the cellar, or sorting receipts finally, or really recycling the firewall of magazines without sitting down to read each one, or getting that mammogram, or sigh, going to the dentist, or finishing that paperwork, or starting that painting project, or finishing it...

Two things: take two steps today toward 'that thing', and do it out of mercy for your body and mercy for your mind.

It's a strange thing with the body that counts all stressors, it also counts release of worry, and values such highly, for then the body gets to breath better, have a little spring in its step, as we say, feels the burden fall away.

If we really named things right, we would not have 'to do' lists, we would have 'body stressor lists' and 'body-ultra-relaxer' lists.

It is definitely worth asking oneself today: what actions, completions, starts would bring my body most peace today.

Seriously; let us know.

For me, it will be more giving away of another small mountain of good books, and completing a deadline I'm up against for four 'done-done' book manuscripts, meaning all endnotes matching citations, all front and back matter, all tiny details that go into a book's 'finish' that definitely make you need to go to the next higher version of reading glasses. lol

Two steps today. Just two. And you're on your way.

with love,
dr.e

Another thing about getting ourselves up and working on the important things, I had read somewhere that the formula for Intent was Will + Focus. This seems to fit quite with what Tigersoap said:

Tigersoap said:
I think that I can see if the idea is coming from the intellectual center only (thus lacking a "spark") or emotional only (thus lacking focus and direction) but if both are somehow connected, it works better.

Thus will comes from the emotional (and moving?) center and is focused and aided by the intellectual center? Am I getting this right?

What I'd also like to add is about interest. This would probably apply to studies and 'career' related work, where a person had a certain ambition of view of themselves before taking on that work (for me it was becoming an engineer, which seems to be just self-aggrandizement in the end), and this ambition is what fueled their interest. Let's say that during the course of this work our subject had some new realizations about the state of affairs of our world and what not, seeing through the system or Matrix, seeing how a lot of work we do seems to have no real purpose. Disillusionment, I guess! So, my point being, how should interest be directed or ambition be changed or modified to suit the purpose of attaining the higher self? I think I may be mixing up interest and ambition but bear with me here!

Well, one way of "making things better" and looking at it in a more positive perspective is to see our position in the world currently as a lesson to be learnt, and also to assess other options and see if moving to other fields of interest is feasible. Although I'm still very hazy about how our current conflicting interests from those conflicting I's are going to be transcended to a higher aim and purpose, but I guess they all are lessons in the end. Also, the lessons probably won't be learned if we do not have the real Work being done concurrently.

Although by having interest still fueled by some sort of ambition, would that just be giving some "I" too much credit?

Maybe I'm just rationalising and jumping to the wrong conclusions. I'm such a machine, the I's and their differing opinions are giving me a headache! My first (badly constructed) constructive post! Thanks.


Maybe interest fueled by ambition can be a conduit into something else...
#960714
Quote
A: "Passion" does not set one "free," quite the opposite!
Q: (L) But what if your passion is for knowledge?
A: That is not passion, it is soul questing.
Q: (L) What is it that gives some people this drive, this steamroller effect that they are determined to get to the absolute bottom of everything and strip away every lie until there is nothing left but the naked truth? What is the source of this desire?
A: Wrong concept. It is simply that one is at that point on the learning cycle. At that point, no drive is needed.
 

beetlemaniac

The Living Force
nwigal said:
Maybe interest fueled by ambition can be a conduit into something else...

Ah, so ambition is basically an STS motivation, it does seem very plausible, considering that it is all about attaching false names and titles to oneself, and to create yourself in an image of a 'perfect/dream self', much like a psychopath. It would be better to do away with such dreams. But it seems like such an easy way to get interest rolling in and to start on the job, and enjoying it too (to some extent). Is it possible to just have an interest in a job without really having any reason for that interest, to do the job for the sake of doing it? It could be an exercise in Will, it sounds like Intentional Labour as Gurdjieff had taught. I realise my post has become more about overcoming procrastination, than a neutral discussion on procrastination per se, I apologise for that.

#960714
Quote
A: "Passion" does not set one "free," quite the opposite!
Q: (L) But what if your passion is for knowledge?
A: That is not passion, it is soul questing.
Q: (L) What is it that gives some people this drive, this steamroller effect that they are determined to get to the absolute bottom of everything and strip away every lie until there is nothing left but the naked truth? What is the source of this desire?
A: Wrong concept. It is simply that one is at that point on the learning cycle. At that point, no drive is needed.

About the quote above, what could count as soul questing in our day to day lives? Is it absolutely anything and everything we encounter and respond to? And the learning cycle is where we have a higher or lower affinity for knowledge depending on our position on it?
 
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