My husband delivered a keynote one time to an audience of startups and technology nerds. His advice to them was “stop talking about it and just f*cking do it”. Everyone laughed and nodded. This happens a lot in technology and business. People spend a huge amount of time talking about what they are going to do; pontificating, planning, researching, and discussing – but then fall down on execution. So things either never get off the ground or they lose steam shortly after they launch.
The exact same thing happens in our lives when it comes to creating change, starting something new, or embarking on a personal goal attempt. We often build things up in our minds and make them appear way bigger or more complicated than they actually are. If I would have thought about running for 30 minutes without stopping before I began running on day one, I would have given up or possibly not even started running. But here I am 9 weeks later and running has stuck for me. First I had to be okay with 3 minutes, then 5 minutes, then 10 and 20 and so on. It was a gradual build up that all began with me just f*cking doing it. Every day that I run, I don’t think about anything other than what is in front of me at that moment. I put my shoes on and head out the door thinking only about putting one foot in front of the other, that’s it. And I do my best to apply this same logic to pretty much everything I work on. It helps tremendously. I am the type of person who gets completely overwhelmed if I think about everything at once, so for my own sanity I have to break it down. And just doing it helps because you take the first step, and then the second, and then the third and before you know it you’ve accomplished something.
Not all things work out just because we start doing them, but at least you can say that you actually did something. Talking about doing something and actually doing it are two very different things. So just f*cking do it no matter what that thing is for you.
I sit down filled with hope, my mug of tea and the motivation to accomplish the days writing. I click MS Word open and greet the blinking cursor with resolve and a smile. I take a deep breath in and begin thinking about how I want to start this section off. Then I see an alert in the corner of my screen from apple mail. I click it. Oops I didn’t mean to do that, I am supposed to be writing. But oh look it’s Fab and it’s Foodie Friday. Oh my god are those gourmet chocolate covered bananas? Okay I just have to go see those. I would really love to eat something sweet right now. Mmm chocolate. I follow the link from the email and go to the page that Fab hopes I will go to. I am a marketer keep in mind and I fall for all of the tricks of the trade. In looking at chocolate bananas I am reminded of the Warhol banana and then begin wondering if Fab is still selling Warhol stuff. I click over to the art section and start looking at art completely forgetting why I am there and what I am looking for but stumbling upon a dizzying array of beautiful art that I would love to have on my walls. In looking at the art I remember that I have been wanting to go to the AGO in Toronto because it’s been a while. I am just gonna go see what’s happening there right now. Oh my god look at that exhibit. We HAVE to go check that out. I excitedly hurry up the stairs to tell Dean about the exhibit. I stop on the way up and play with Yeti. He looks so cute. I am gonna grab my phone and take a photo of him because he looks so cute right now. While upstairs I walk through the kitchen and begin to feel hungry. I forgot to eat breakfast. I should eat something. I begin to look through the cupboards for something to eat. But I forgot my tea downstairs. I go down to get my tea and sit down in front of my computer. I grab my tea and begin to take slow sips. Oh shit! I am supposed to be writing right now! I click over to MS Word again to see my cursor blinking at me in a mocking way. I finish my tea and forget that I was hungry. Okay time to get serious now. I have to write. What am I writing about? Yes consciousness. Oh I better look at that research report I have open in my tabs. There is some good information there. I click over to the research report that has been open in Google Chrome for the last seven days because I haven’t turned off my computer in that long. It is one of fourteen open tabs. I start reading it and get about three paragraphs in when I notice that I have 12 unread alerts in Facebook (which is also open in another tab). I click and open Facebook and am enamoured by photographs, YouTube videos, angry rants, drama and funny comments until I realize I have to close Facebook. It’s really fucking with my productivity. But then I remember I am hungry. So I go upstairs in search of food. I feel mild panic when in the kitchen because I don’t have time to make lunch. I am writing and I have shit to do! I opt for a granola bar and some almonds instead and head back downstairs. It’s almost time for the girls to come home from school and I am seriously starting to panic. Where has time gone? What did I do all morning? I decide that I have to focus. I open MS Word and just start writing. I am afraid to look at the research report again in case I am distracted by something else on the Internet, which I know is a very plausible possibility. I start writing. Halla-fuckin-lujah! I get about two pages written and am on a roll until I hear the bing of my email alert again and not even thinking about it I click my email program open and oh look it’s an email from so and so. I had better email her back. I wonder how she is doing? I haven’t talked to her in three weeks. I start typing an email to her, but then have to respond to several text messages, and a few phone calls. Oh and I really wanted to research flights to Nepal to see if there’s a cheaper way to fly there. It seems crazy to spend $2500 on airfare.
Ladies and gentleman that is an inside view into the train wreck that is my mind. Isn’t it a fucking glorious wonder that I can get anything accomplished? To me that is ultimate validation that I am doing what I am supposed to be doing. The mere fact that I can still succeed in despite of that says a lot.
Oh look a kitty.
I don’t have anything overly interesting to say. As I sit here and write this I am procrastinating… I should have been at the gym an hour ago. But here I am slowly working up to going to the gym. I hate how it becomes such “a thing” the longer I procrastinate, it almost gets stressful.
I wonder if other people have this relationship with the gym. It’s a miracle that I ever get there with the way I procrastinate. I hate doing domestic stuff, but I just cleaned my daughters room and put a load of laundry in, I’m thinking because both of those things are more attactive than going to the gym. I think it’s a game I play with myself. I start doing all sorts of other things so that eventually I can say “well it’s too late now, I can’t go. I have to make dinner” or “I have too much work to do” or “I’ll go tomorrow”.
It’s funny because my gym is an all women’s circuit training gym, so I only really need 45 mins and I get an awesome work out. It really is a great work out. Some of the women that go to my gym are 50+ and have fantastic muscular development. They put me to shame. I am always happy when I leave the gym and think “I’m glad I came” yet it’s my feelings of not wanting to go that overpower those memories when I am trying to build up motivation to get out the door. The negative beats down the positive leaving it lying in a happy little pool of blood on the floor.
Will I go? I honestly don’t know. I guess I’ll let you know later tonight. I’m gona “try” (whatever that means)