Don’t Stay in the Land of Mañana too Long — Benefits of the Examined Thought, Life and Mind for Keepin on Truckin
Over the past few weeks I’ve been working to get back on track with some good habits that I’d been developing — meditation, taking time early in the morning to be with myself, my early 3–6 mile walks ect.
I’ve allowed myself to get taken off those habits. Projects competing for time and space mostly. The terrible thing is there is both time and space for the good habits and the projects. And I know it full and well.
So why have I allowed the stress of those projects (really one project) to invade the time and space set aside for those good rituals?
One remedy to figuring it out could be to allow myself to do what I’m starting to see my son doing when he makes an error — the “woo is me” where we just start admitting to the world that we’re a bad person (bad kid for him) or whatever. That’s pretty useless. All that beating yourself up does is beat yourself up. The world gives no sympathy for it and you can be assured that there is no empathy coming your way. It does not have the affect of snapping you out of it. Drags you further down. Sets no clear plan. It also gives people and situations an opportunity for manipulation of you because you’re in a weakened state mentally and emotionally.
Another is to overhaul and try and get a whole new plan together. Yep. Another plan. Spend a heap of time in more analysis and work and reading and courses and homework. Sure it’s good to go seek some new stuff. Let a new voice in and inform your thoughts and ideas. Some new tips and tricks. But really, how is blindly walking down another road going to help? Just adds a distraction to take you away from both the habits and projects. Of course maybe the habits weren’t good, and a little project stimulus knocked you off them, so how good were they, or how well did they take hold anyway? You may just be revising history and thinking they worked, when maybe they had not. Still, constantly rebuilding is exhausting and does not get you where you want to go — likely puts you further away it and adds clutter.
Counseling? Professional help?
Ask for some help from a friend? Maybe they know a quick way to help you reset and get back on track?
I don’t know the answer. I’ve tried most of this stuff written here in some fashion in the past few weeks.
What I’ve not done is to simply, without judgment sit and put myself in a position to try and examine my thoughts, life and mind. Not self psychiatry. But just being more intentional in thinking about what I’m doing and why. I’ve gone off in a somewhat mindless direction. Not had an evolved plan to work from or toward. Those plans can only occur when you take time with yourself to think and then actually write them out.
I recently heard Sam Harris talk about the examined life. Working to see the lies we tell ourselves, the intentions, motivations that are behind how we live and do what we do.
That was a powerful idea to me. Powerful enough to immediately write this post.
Powerful enough that it highlighted 3 recent things that I’ve not done that I believe would have some massive positive multipliers for me professionally, personally, and with my family.
These things, had I’d been a little more in the moment, versus allowing myself to be sloppin around in the same shit I have for a few months now on a certain project, would have happened. Easy to feel so assured looking backwards, but I feel I have good reason to believe they would have happened.
Can’t blame the project though. The player not the game. Not the projects fault. That’s too easy of a way to let myself off the hook. That being said, it’s not been put in its proper place. Scope creep, time creep, budget creep, risks coming to life on that one has also bleed into other areas of life.
My reality is that I’m not doing those examinations I need to.
I’m also not following a favorite motto I pitch to others. “This shit will be here tomorrow.” That motto is not to say, put it off. Or treat everything with a land of Mañana attitude. It means that sometimes you have to put things down for a time and work on something else. You have to give things some space to allow solutions to come versus forcing them. However, put them down for too long, the issues just fester and bleed. Everything needs a parameter or 2. You have to come back to it. It won’t resolve itself.
The world will not stop if you politely turn your back just enough to hear the voice of your child, or realize that there is a few hours today that can capitalized on (that won’t come back to you so easily). Need to seize the moment.
Beyond just paying attention to moments. We also need to give our worlds office hours. Let it be known that you’re not 711. You’re not on-call. You’re there for it in a reasonable time and space — not at its whim. Too often we allow others to hand us their problems. Don’t discount the fact that people are not proactive. For the most part we are all reactive. We live in the land of Mañana. Yet we expect others to not live there and serve us on their time. And they expect us to fix their mistakes and bad decisions.
Fear of what could happen is also a massive distraction that takes us off our mark. We need more FOMO in our lives. Or at least I do. And less of worrying about what might happen. With solid intent, motivation and a plan, the good will happen. Some things will go wrong as well. And some things will break. But it’s not likely to be as severe as if we fear an unknown consequence that may not be consequential at all; may just be a little headache that goes away with a glass of water and an hour.
This notion of taking time to examine what’s really going on is powerful. Part of “mindfulness”.
But more important it’s a straight forward skill. And it appears to be an evolution of what I do (or try) anyway versus a new thing I have to build.
Take a step further, its part of the idea that Gary Keller talks about in his book the One Thing. Decide what is, and everything that’s not the One Thing or that can’t be delegated, is just a distraction, and needs to be eliminated.
In writing this, it’s evident to myself that I’ve over complicated a few things recently. Poor examination. And through that less decisive action.
Will I be back here again? Time will tell. If I am? Okay. Just now I feel I have some good ideas in how to not stay long at all in the land of Mañana. Nice for a vacation, but not a permanent address.