Sometimes it is simply your own stubbornness and stuck thinking that are holding you back.
This exercise asks you to be completely frank with yourself — asking some tough questions in a kindly voice to help you break through some of those nasty internal barrier success.
So grab a pen and, working swiftly, answer the following 10 questions for yourself with as much blazing honesty as you can muster:
What has stopped you from succeeding before this?
What’s your most likely form of self-sabotage?
If you found yourself engaging in that self-sabotage, how might you handle that?
What are you afraid might happen if you fail at this project?
How might you address the situation if that failure actually occurred?
What are you afraid might happen if you succeed at this project?
How might you address the situation if that success actually occurred?
What qualities do you possess that can help you move through this project?
What question has not been asked that you need
What is the truth? (Start by writing, “The truth is…”) You may notice that imagining the worst of both failure and success, and then imagining how those eventualities, helps you feel a bit more in the driver’s seat.
Fear paralyzes;curiosity cures.
Writing down the answers to these questions encourages you to give voice to the monsters under the bed, disarming them once and for all.
Here’s Reason #6 in the “Why Procrastination Is Genius In Disguise” series:
Go HERE to get your recording of this information (it’s waaaaaaaaaay down at the bottom of the page): http://www.getitdoneteleclass.com/fall/
So far we’ve covered:
1) Procrastination is Genius because underneath the pain of it (the hunger pain), it reminds you of your true desire.
2) The nonstop nagging isn’t working (never does).
3) You haven’t moved forward yet because – for whatever reason – it just hasn’t been the right time. And maybe you’ve been a bit scared, which is OK, but we’re not going to let our fear make our decisions for us.
4) You need to get unstuck from the past, bless it correct, forgive yourself (easier said than done, I know) move on in the only way we can: from right here, right now.
5) Allotting some time and money each day to your project allows for incremental progress (baby steps!) and feels GREAT.
The Most Fun, Wackadoodle, Creative, Intuitive, Ingenious 5-Minute Breakthrough Exercise That The Get It Done Workshop Has Ever Invented (so far)
Now – the fun part!
This is a fairly new exercise, so I’d love to hear about your experience with it.
It is designed to help you access your intuition and your inner wisdom, and to help you think about both your project and your procrastination in a new way.
Once again: there are no rules. You can’t screw this exercise up. There is no “right” way to do it.
It’s also designed to be completed in less than 5 minutes.
So take a deep breath, get centered, and allow your imagination to play for a minute or two.
Work right off the top of your head. No pondering allowed.
Imagine A Piece Of Paper
Or, if you feel like drawing, grab yourself an actual sheet of paper.
Now, we’re going to create a little one-frame Fairy Tale about you and your project.
(And if you know anything about the power of myth in our lives, you know that this exercise is not quite as frivolous as it seems.)
1) In one of the right-hand corners of the paper, draw an image, symbol or word that represents your project. This is the “princess locked in the tower.”
Again – don’t ponder – whatever idea rises to your mind first is the right one. If it turns out to be not-quite-right later on, you can always revise it. But for now, stick with your FIRST idea.
Maybe you’ve drawn a book cover, or maybe it’s a heart. Maybe it’s an actual princess wearing a nametag that says, “My Happiness.” Whatever you’ve drawn – hooray! Good start.
2) In front of the princess I want you to draw the dragon that stands in the way. This is the dragon of your procrastination.
Give the dragon a name and a shape. Maybe the dragon is a big ball of fire, or a brick wall. Maybe the dragon is a clock or a pile of clutter. Maybe it’s an actual dragon named, “Fear.”
Whatever occurs to you first is just perfect – just sketch it out quickly and don’t evaluate.
3) Now in front of the dragon, in about the middle of the page or so, draw you. You are the hero of this story. Draw an image or word that represents you – don’t be afraid to have fun and be silly with this.
4) Draw your weapon. This is the sword you will use to fight the dragon. So maybe it’s a sword named, “Good Taste” or it’s a light saber labled “TALENT.” Maybe it’s a smoke-screen or a bow and arrow or a pen or a camera or a flower. Allow yourself to imagine how this weapon is going to help you slay this dragon.
5) Standing beside or behind you, draw your sidekick. Your sidekick is the person, organization or quality that you know you can count on, no matter what. Maybe it’s a friend or partner, or maybe it’s your sense of humor or your Inner Wisdom. Maybe it’s an angel or spiritual entity, or maybe it’s your MacBook. Just go with your first idea – one that makes you smile – and draw the image, word or shape that represents your trusty sidekick on this journey.
Your Loyal Fans
6) Excellent – almost done. Somewhere else on the page – wherever you like – I want you to draw an image or word that represents me and the participants of the Get It Done Teleclass. Whether you are enrolled in the class or not, I want you to know that we are with you, we are on your side and we have your back.
We believe in you. So if your faith in yourself ever falters, please borrow confidence from us – we know you can do it!
So you can draw us as another sidekick, or as an international army of artists marching over the hill to help you. Maybe we’re the stars in the sky shining down on you, or maybe we’re sound of applause. Whatever makes you feel supported, loved and cared for – draw that image or word.
Fabulous! You’re done! (The End.)
Make whatever finishing touches you like, and then take a moment to notice what this drawing has to teach you.
What are you taking away from this exercise?
What surprised you?
Did anything strike you emotionally?
Are you inspired to take any new action based on this drawing?
Has there been any shift in your attitude about your project or your procrastination? If so, what?
Feel free to use this exercise anytime you want to get unstuck from some old thinking and show your imagination a good time 🙂
If you want to get the recording of this information, go to www.GetItDoneTeleclass.com/fall and there’s also some more information about the upcoming 6-week Get It Done Teleclass (we start TOMORROW!) at http://sambennett.wpengine.com/workshops/get-it-done-workshop/
Here’s reason #1 why Procrastination Is Genius In Disguise:
Procrastination is genius because it hurts.
Procrastination causes you pain.
It would be one thing if you could put stuff off and then just la-di-da around all carefree and happy. But you don’t – you put it off and it hurts and it’s a weight on your mind and on your heart.
Why is that genius?
Because the pain procrastination causes serves to REMIND you that your projects are important to you.
Procrastination is your friend, tapping you on the shoulder and saying, “Hey, remember how much you care about this?”
And really, it’s not just tapping – it’s nagging. Loudly.
Newsflash: nagging doesn’t work. It doesn’t work with your spouse, it doesn’t work with your kids and even YOU can’t nag you into doing the projects that really matter to you. So if you catch yourself nagging a lot, you might want to try another strategy.
So here’s my little quiz:
I want you to think about one particular project you are procrastinating – you might have lots, but let’s just pick one – whichever one comes to the top of your head first.
OK? Got a project picked out?
Now – working quickly and without pondering – answer YES or NO to these 5 questions:
1. Is this project important to you?
2. Will completing this project make a difference in your life?
3. Will completing this project make a difference in the world?
4. Does your soul ache to do it?
5. Ten years from now, will it matter whether you have done this or not?
Take a minute to make a note about what you notice about your answers.
And if you discovered that the project you were thinking about really doesn’t matter to you, then maybe think of another project that does. (And for crying out loud – cross that first one off your list or delegate it or something! Why torture yourself about something you don’t even care about!)