Saturday, March 20, 2010

Avoidance, evasion, distraction ... fear

Welcome to Spring.  Really.  (Image is from my front yard after sponsee left this morning.)

I love that the 12x12 talks about me: "...our talents for procrastination, which is really sloth in five syllables..." (12x12 p. 67)

I've had ample opportunity the past few weeks to become clear about what "stuck" can look like - even with a bit of sobriety and spiritual insight and experience.

Just to be clear - I do this to me.

Today, I am warm.  I am well fed.  There is beauty and love in my life in abundance.  I am healthy.  I have more opportunities to be useful and of service than I can shake a stick at.

And, that's the problem.  For the past few weeks I've spent much more energy shaking sticks than I have at being productive and engaged in my life.

What that really looks like, on a real basis, is that I sit down at my computer and, rather than looking for opportunities to make progress on any one of the dozens (not an exaggeration) of things I might be doing to be useful, instead I find some bright fun thing to distract me for hours.  Or, I play Freecell.  Or, I follow one wild hare or another.  For days.

Until the last minute.

Then, with all the heroic efforts I can muster, I try like the devil to protect my image.  What that looks like is often: "So, I can't do what I'd intended to do - what's the minimum effort I can put forth and still look like a great guy."  You get the picture - we're not talking anything I'm proud of here...

As best I can figure, the basis for most of this non-activity which looks a lot like "sloth" is fear.  Fear that, if don't agree to "take on" what you'd like me to do, you'll think less of me.  Fear that my best effort won't give be enough to build or sustain the "image" that my ego think it has to have in order to survive.


So, now you have it.  My dirty little secret.  My primary purpose in admitting it here is probably something like a blogged 5th step.  (I've already been down this road with my sponsor as my '...another person...' per our program of recovery.)  It is truly my hope and prayer that this flaw in my character gets repaired before it kills me.



chitowngreg said...

Acknowledging it is probably a pretty good part of the battle. Just got to try to focus on it, put one foot in front of the other, and do better each day than you did the last. Something that works for me sometimes is to do some of the thing that I would otherwise be putting off before I let myself do what I want. Then it ends up being kind of a reward. Often I'll get so into the thing I had been putting off thatI never even get to the fun thing I been working toward. Good luck with it!

Pam said...

stop talking about my life on your blog.

Mary Christine said...

You just nailed it for me too. I laughed out loud at parts of this, just because it is so so me.

Syd said...

I think that it is a human trait to do those things that I like to do and to put off those things that I don't want to do. I hear you loud and clear.

Julianne said...

I adore your honesty and giggle just a little at how much we all think and act a lot alike. I have found my people!

Child of God, First Class said...

I used to do the same thing - turned out I have ADD. Meditation does wonders for it - now I focus and get right down to my task list.

Not trying to diagnose you Ed - it's just what happened to me.

Love your stuff.