In A Shot Of Optimism, Discover Your Passion, Uncategorized

Have you ever done something over and over again even though it wasn’t good for you?  I know I have.

I’m not talking alcohol, drugs, gambling or sex.

I’m talking about my relationship to computer games.  I didn’t do them all day, but I could waste 15 – 30 minutes every day on them (sometimes twice a day) and that adds up.  Every computer has games installed on it.  My favorite was Spider Solitaire.  Eventually I took that off my machine, then started playing Hearts – I don’t even like Hearts!  I didn’t pay attention to the score.  I just kept mindlessly dealing.

Then I faced the hard truth and took them all off.  The games were stopping me from getting other things done.

Do you have something like that in your life?  Facebook, Sudoku, mindless celebrity gossip columns?  Does it stop you from getting other things done?

The answer is probably yes.

We find all kinds of reasons to justify mind-numbing activity:

  • I just finished the proposal and there isn’t time to really get anything done before my call with a client
  • I’m just keeping in touch with my friends
  • My brain needs a break, something that’s a relief from the stress, concentration, boredom.

We tell ourselves, it gives us a chance to relax, take a break, restore ourselves.

My wise coach Cindy (yes I do have one) suggested I be curious about when I was playing the game.

What I discovered was, I used the games:

  • During transitions from one big task to another
  • When I felt anxious, confused, or overwhelmed
  • When I wasn’t sure what to do next
  • When I knew what to do but didn’t want to do it

In order to reconnect to myself, I reminded myself what was important to me.  I reconnected to my passion in life, my drive, my commitment to make things happen.

And then I made a list of small, easy, even mindless things I could do in 15 to 30 minutes that would soothe me AND move me forward:

  • Do a stretching exercise or a yoga pose or two
  • Read an article or a chapter in a business book
  • Meditate
  • Turn on some music and sort a stack of papers on my desk
  • Write a hand-written note to a client or colleague
  • Drink water
  • Walk around the block
  • Brainstorm:
    • New blog topics
    • Potential allies for upcoming projects
    • A list of books to read in the next month
    • The people I’ve been meaning to see/call – then put dates on my calendar for when I’ll contact them
    • Volunteer projects and causes I’d like to support
    • My Christmas list

I’d love to hear from you!!

  • What are YOUR time wasters?
  • Under what circumstances do you “use” them?
  • What are some of the goals or outcomes you want to achieve (professionally or personally?)
  • Why are these outcomes important to you?
  • What are all YOUR small things you can do to positively move your forward?

As you do this exercise, I’ll be doing it right along with you.  Why?  I just discovered Ancient Jewels – an online game.   Looks like it’s time to “eat my own dog food.”

Can’t wait to hear from you.  Until next Tuesday.



Showing 4 comments
  • Eden Scott Cross-

    YES YES Y-E-SSSS!!! I’m so glad to see that it’s not only me who gets mired in the mindless quicksand. FOr me, perhaps it’s more difficult — with the ADHD issues that I battle daily! I have so much work to be doing, and especially since I have two businesses to run and to work. Either I choose some unnecessary task to do, rather than what really needs to be done — or, I choose to answer emails or go on Facebook to check my pages. Once I’m on Facebook, I find that if I am moved to respond to something someone has said or asked, I will and it takes up much of my time. From Now ON…I will work diligently, TO BE FULLY AWARE / CONSCIOUS OF WHAT MY CHOICES ARE, WHICH ARE BETTER FOR WHAT REASONS…AND T-H-E-N, I will make a conscious choice for my own betterment!!! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!

    • elizabeth

      Thanks Eden. Half the battle is recognizing the pattern. Let me know how it goes.

  • Eden Scott Cross-

    Thanks Elizabeth. Tonight, first time I’m avoiding and NOW and suddenly the *Awareness* kicked in, and I’m reminded that I ought to be researching some business things, AND doing some Animal Communication readings that I’m behind on! Thank you again, for doing what you’re doing! Yes you’re right – I”m half way there, so here is where I begin slugging it out with myself ;-)!!

    • elizabeth

      YIPPEE! Thanks for letting me know. You’re awareness with inspire others, including me to stay on track with what is truly important in our lives and when we start doing “the thing”, ask ourselves what am I avoiding? What can I do that is useful until I’m ready.

      Thanks and stay in touch.

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