Showing posts with label procrastination. Show all posts
Showing posts with label procrastination. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Giving Up Resistance Isn’t Easy


Ice Dec. 23 by the front door. Lethal driveway.

Pink, our pink flamingo in the arbor. Pink was last year's Christmas present from Daughter number 2 to me.The pink flamingo is our mascot for our Real Estate Brokerage which is called Vibrance Real Estate LLC. Oh, his little leg is drooping, but then, he's tired after holding it up for a year.


Resistance is the block that comes when you avoid something or bump into a wall. Steven Pressfield uses the word Resistance. I thought he was talking about Procrastination, but that’s not quite it.


Pressfield said that for years he had been avoiding his true calling. That was writing. However, finally, he sat down at his typewriter and wrote for an hour. “It was crap,” he said, but he got up and immediately washed the dishes that had been accumulating in the sink for a week. He had broken his resistance.


Let’s say you dream of starting a business. It’s a beautiful dream. You focus and plan, and it’s a fun adventure—the dreaming part. And then your business manifests. You have a business to set up, but now there is much to do. You have fees and dues and worry about how much it will cost. You have people to speak with and to hire. You need to market and get together materials. You become a doer. And you push and struggle, and it isn’t fun anymore. You say, “Well, it isn’t all fun, and it is necessary to work. And so, you push, you stay up nights, and that business occupies most of your waking hours.


Abraham, a teacher I listen to, says, “You have turned upstream.”


The dream, the planning, was downstream. You were going with the flow, and then you got into a struggle and turned upstream where the water was tumultuous, and rowing was tough.


But that’s the way it is, you say. It’s not all fun and games. It is necessary to do the work. Yep, that’s what schools, parents, and society teach us. 


And Boy, Howdy, that belief in hard work is hard to give up. There are monuments for people who have struggled, which tells us those people were important.


I’m not saying that overcoming a challenge isn’t satisfying. However, I agree with Abraham, who said, “Nothing you want is upstream.” (I think that College degree was. I wanted it. I did it. It was upstream.” I wonder, though, if there is a way to go with the flow while entangled in a system set up to make it hard?) 


That business analogy isn’t exactly my situation, but there is a ring of truth to it. I have struggled for the past month and got a simple website for our Real Estate Brokerage —that was the easy part. However, I’m still dealing with transferring domains, and with two people’s emails involved, and codes and all that. I think I got caught in a whirlpool.


It happens.


A few days ago, I picked up Aldous Huxley’s book, The Art of Seeing. Perhaps you remember I blogged about Vision Training in the blog post, Hello Beautiful, Check Your Eyeballs. Huxley commented that the eyes and the brain both like relaxation. 


The harder you scrunch down your brain, you try to remember something that has slipped away or find a lost object.


But eventually, you surrender. You let the severe concentration go—especially the anger at yourself for having lost or forgotten something. And, you sort of forget about it. You’ve turned downstream, and Viola’, it appears.


The eyes, like the brain, operate better when relaxed. You can feel it when you finally let go and allow the eyes to see and the brain to think.


There is much to learn in this life. I need to live another 1,000 years.


Wait, another 1,000? I haven’t lived the first 1,000 yet.

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Why do we Resist Doing the Very Thing that Would Help Us?

 "In the eyes of a Buddha, everyone is a Buddha. In the eyes of a pig, everyone is a pig."—Haemin Sunim, The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down.


Why do we resist doing the very thing that would help us?


I don't know.


Steven Pressfield has written a book on the subject of Resistance (aka procrastination) titled The War of Art. 


And motivated by Pressfield's quote, "The highest treason a crab can commit is to make a leap from the rim of the bucket," I wrote a blog post titled "Take a Leap." (March 18, 2019), and then, what did I do?


I resisted the one thing known to make life better—Meditation. 


Fifteen minutes a day. Big Deal. 


I'm too busy.




Judging from the comments on, the Take a Leap blog resonates with many people. 


And yep, the crab quote is accurate. I looked up. "A bucketful of crabs," says that if one crab tries to climb out of a bucket filled with crabs, the others will try to pull the one on the rim back in.


With humans, I don't think—with few exceptions—that it's the "others" who try to pull us back into the bucket, aka our "comfort zones". Instead, it's our habits and brains.


And let's face it when we first begin to meditate, it isn't fun. Our minds fight us. Our to-do lists grow exponentially, and hunger and thirst kick roars in with a vengeance. It's like trying to put a toddler to bed.


(Thanks to those who commented yesterday on Take a Leap, for it reminded me to leap.) Here's an excerpt:


Have you ever decided to start a diet or spiritual practice, maybe you would like to sponsor a child in some far-off land, or perhaps you wanted to run for office. Maybe you wanted to get married, have a child, or campaign for world peace.


You didn't do it, and the whole idea quickly drifted away.


Are you a writer who doesn't write, a painter that doesn't paint, or an entrepreneur who doesn't begin a venture?


Then you know what Resistance is.


In The War of Art, Pressfield says that Resistance means not doing the work you were meant to do.


And here I am today, doing my oracle by opening a book to a random page, and what did I find"


How to meditate.


Hee hee.


The book was Ask, and it is Given, the Teachings of Abraham by Ester and Jerry Hicks. 


I have followed the teacher Abraham whose speaker is Ester Hicks. I've taken a few of Ms. Hick's workshops and, even by some quirk of fate, ran into Ms. Hicks in a restaurant in Del Mar, California, when we lived in Temecula, California. My daughter had only the week before begun listening to Abraham on tapes. When I pointed out that there was Abraham, she said, "Why did that happen?" My answer was, "To tell us it's working." 


Is it working now, dear one? Have we lost the faith? Have we become so discouraged as to leave behind the very thing that would raise us up?


I am speaking for myself.

Imagine a moment of calm. Imagine a few moments when your mind isn't replaying the same thoughts it thought yesterday. Imagine, rather than fighting your mind, you let the thoughts run through without grabbing one and ruminating with it.

And here is the clinker; you don't have to sit in a lotus position. You don't even have to sit. You can do a walking meditation. (Try not to run into anybody, but then, chances are they weren't meditating, and running into them might wake them up.) I was right years ago when I considered feeding the horses, cleaning the barn, and raking the yard a meditation. But you need the calm presence of a horse munching hay to add to the ambiance.

I suggest that instead of running out to clean somebody's barn, you condition your body to know what it's supposed to do. Like, stop thinking. (I have heard that prayer is Talking to God. Meditation is God talking to you.)

Sit comfortably, and place your thoughts on something simple, like breathing, counting, or listening to the faucet drip.

 I began with the word "sing."