Maybe This Will End Your Procrastination
As those who know me personally will tell you, I am a very creative person. At any one time I have a dozen projects active or dormant. Yet, I found myself being largely useless on my best days for getting things done. During the workweek I would be worn out in the evenings and had little time or energy for what needed doing.
On the weekends I would not feel like “working” on my projects. I felt like having some fun, but on the other hand, there were also the many things I could do to advance my life and ensure the fun would continue and get much better due to greater income and freedom. Often these would not get done, wise though it would be. And then late on Sundays I would feel some sort of relief because the weekend was over and I had again escaped the ‘pressure’ of accomplishing something with my life, of attaining my life goals and doing what a really wanted – what I came here to do. Yeah, just great.
Then one Sunday evening I was blessed to overhear my ego mind thinking, “Yay, I have escaped doing something that might bring criticism from others. They can’t blame me for anything.” I had overlooked the fact that I could be criticized for NOT accomplishing anything for myself or others, but when I though of this my ego dismissed that, stating, ‘Well then, they are just jerks.’ Yeah, good perspective. That solves everything.
Where did this come from? As a teen I got picked on a lot by my peers and criticized a lot by my father. It seems the solution I came up with was to try to be invisible – rather than be outstanding, it seems. So I hid in mediocrity. Maybe less than mediocrity. At the same time I knew I was capable of so much more. I just didn’t have courage – or the understanding that confident self-expression was better than hiding.
I was pretty shocked a hearing this within myself. With a little more thought I realized that while I had evaded making waves, I had also evaded doing any good for myself or others, evaded fulfilling my purpose in life, evaded creating new income and income streams that would give me greater financial freedom to do, have and go as I might please. I had evaded accomplishing anything that I could be proud of. I had evaded filling the competence void that had followed me all my life; my potential was still dormant. Yay. Only the dead have better excuses, and I didn’t want to join them.
But in a sense, I had. I was in a sense one of the living dead. I wasn’t being myself. I wasn’t actually living my life. I was just metabolizing. I wasn’t showing courage, spine, confidence, spirit, determination, free thinking, faith, independence, or any of those other good things everyone admires. And on top of that, I very much wanted to be admired, but there was a disconnect between wanting it and doing what was worthy of it. In that gap was my fear of opinions, my desire to be loved, my belief that I needed approval, my holding on to past pains of rejection and criticism, and thinking that playing helpless would get me sympathy and love.
I had to admit to the fact that if I were to meet someone who was doing what I was doing they would get no sympathy from me. I would tell him that if he wants to be respected he needs to do something that is respectable. What I was being was not what I would admire in another – not at all.
Have your own opinion and you won’t need to worry about others. Everyone has opinions, and their opinions are for themselves alone. We are individuals with our own minds, hearts ways and purposes. When others are critical of us, they are expressing their way, not a way that should necessarily be ours. If we made a genuine error, or have something to learn, then we need to look at that, but we must never abandon our own power of self-determination. We must never become spineless cowards, limp noodles in the face of the world, resenting it but obeying it.
I had nobody to blame but myself. Yes, I was never taught to stand up for myself, but that’s no excuse, only a problem for ME to solve. And that points out what a large part of my problem was: making others responsible instead of me creating solutions.
I also needed to let go of past experiences of rejection – and my ignorant failure to push past them. These were the reasons I was hiding. I was somehow still expecting criticism. And come to think of it, maybe I should always expect it, because there are always some people who will see things differently than I do. But that doesn’t mean I need to fear or obey their opinions. They aren’t going to be able to tell me how to be myself.
One also has to school oneself to be in the present, not that past where one experienced being judged. When I graduated from High School I felt like I had been let out of a prison full of thugs. No, there were plenty of good kids there, but I endured a lot of verbal abuse from some, and it took me, yes, decades to get High School out of me. For years, I still expected to be disliked by strangers, even though I made friends. I had to teach myself that I’m here now, not in High School. They are gone. And even if they were here, I now know better than to let their potential for judgment to hold me back from being myself.
In reality, you cannot expect everyone to like what you do or what you are, or be able to understand things your way. I had to completely let go of that. I had to be willing to let all my friends, family and others see me and hear what I had to say, and let them be who they are.
And that’s another important angle on being you. If you want to be accepted then you want others to be something they may not be – your fans. You have to let them be who they are in order to be who you are. And this is a wonderful example of that I call The Law, which is “What goes around, comes around.”
I could also feel that I very much wanted to give them this freedom, myself knowing how precious it is, and how it hurts to feel pressured to be something you are not, or to be pressured not to be something you are.