I had a beautiful birthday.
I worked from home, finished off an article I’ve been procrastinating on, sent it off to the editor and it is done.
A sigh of relief, of gratitude for getting it done, of satisfaction for a task completed, moves joyfully through my body.
That’s the thing about things that sit on ‘the pile’ waiting to get done. They don’t actually go away until I transform the energy I waste avoiding them, into the action of doing them.
Avoidance strengthens fear.
Avoidance not only adds to stress levels, it also creates a chemical reaction that, with every time we avoid a particular thing, sends tiny little messages to the brain that says, “See! Avoiding it actually felt good. Let’s get better at avoiding it so we keep getting that tiny fissure of relief in the immediacy of our avoidance!”
In actual fact, while that tiny fissure of relief is momentary, it can create giant waves of discord when activated too often.
Those waves of discord are created from the worry, shame, fear, excuses, blame… whatever emotions we encounter when avoiding doing something we know is good for us, or we need to do, or we have to do because…
In the case of the article I finished editing yesterday, it was a commitment made in the summer to a magazine for an article on the challenges of housing formerly homeless individuals in community. My former boss had asked if I would do it, and it seemed like a good idea at the time.
And it was. It’s just, between the original draft and the final, there have been many revisions, and many other items, (not to mention excuses) that got in the path of completing the article.
Yesterday, I worked from home and got it done. It is gone. Off my desk. Finished. Final.
And while the fissure of relief from avoiding it repeatedly was kind of intoxicating in a sick and cyclical way, the relief from having it finished, never to be thought of again, never to be shoved aside or discounted or procrastinated over, is even greater!
Once done, I had time to review a document I need to work on this week — and the benefit is, I can work on it without thoughts of what I ‘should’ be finishing clouding my thinking.
It is easy to convince ourselves that not doing what needs doing is okay – at least until tomorrow.
Challenge is, tomorrow will arrive and the not doing will begin to take up more and more of our mindspace as we spend more and more time rationalizing why we’re avoiding doing what is there to do.
If avoidance strengthens fear, doing it creates peace.
And I like peace of mind and heart. I like the peace of knowing that I am right with my world and all is right within me.
I finished a task yesterday I’ve been putting off for awhile. Now that it’s done, I wonder what I was putting off for so long. Perhaps it truly was just the addiction to those tiny fissures of relief that were getting in the way of my seeing how easy it was to strengthen what I want more of in my life, just by doing what I feared!
And thank you for the Birthday wishes! It was a grand day.