What are you avoiding?
I seem to get things done. I've pushed myself out of my comfort zone a lot. On paper I've done quite a few things over the pandemic, the latest being a best man's speech... so what's the problem?
Well, I seem to be putting things off. I see the pattern. I am waiting till it’s too late to get some things done. It’s not all things, but there are definitely some that I put off, and then wake up in the night worrying about. Then, my judge kicks in... you know that voice.. and says something like this...
“You are so stupid! You’ve had all this time to do <Avoided Activity> and now you are worried about it. What’s wrong with you?”
Luckily have access to some practices to help me deal with this. To start with, I have a daily Mental Fitness gym, which gives me challenges. That's how I've really started to build up my mental muscles so that I can start to engage with my Avoider.
Ok, so ideally you could catch this much earlier. You know, you could stop saying yes to things. You could look deeply into something before you get involved. But even then, we don't always notice the motivational pitfalls at the outset. So even if we begin with the best intentions, even a tiny hurdle can start to put us off.
I thought I'd share a little tip to tackle my Avoider and get me out of the rut.
Connect to self...
First things first. I need to connect with myself. I do not need this unhelpful chatter, so a quick glimpse of a photo of myself as a child helps me remember that I am only going to hurt myself. I wouldn't talk to a young child like that, so why would I talk to myself like that? My picture reminds me of my essence, my vulnerability, and above all, who I am.
Just one small thing...
As I notice my Avoider coming up (the voice that talks me out of doing something because its too [difficult/uncomfortable/no interesting]) I note down all the things I am putting off. Then I make a commitment to just address at least one of them each day. I may need to break them up into even smaller things, but that's ok. Something small enough to think... 'Yeah, I can do that'.
Within days, the Avoider has lessened, and I'm starting to see some momentum. Am I actually starting to enjoy this thing again?!
Do you recognise a strong Avoider streak?
Does the idea of an Avoider resonate or make you curious?
Is your Avoider starting to bring unnecessary stress to your life?
If you'd like to do some work on it, I am offering a Mental Fitness cohort. Mental fitness is about gently building up your resilience, improve your happiness, and increase your performance. If you would like to do some work on it, you can join me on my next Mental Fitness Cohort here