For the last 3+ months, I’ve been subsisting on six pairs of panties.
Three are travel-practical–they dry super quickly; two are light in color for under light colored clothes; and the sixth is the make-me-feel-like-a-woman pair.
Why am I telling you about my, uh, undergarments? Because this base layer of clothing represents one of the first decisions I make in the morning. And that decision has ramifications.
If I only have dark pairs left then my bottom half clothing options have just narrowed considerably. If I’m going out, or want a little confidence boost, you know which ones I’ll choose to wear. If I’m going to yoga or biking and know I’ll sweat, I’ll reach for the quick drying. In other words, there’s alignment between activity and that first layer.
Where the real power lies.
One of the blessings/curses of being your own boss is that no one tells you what projects to work on or which panties to wear. You get to decide which and when. Power!
Except when… important projects start slipping away.
Following are 4 Big Reasons for neglecting a project (or goal), and the next article will cover setting up supports for sticking with them.
1. It’s not the right fit for your Soul’s Desire.
Avoidance signs include: Lack of enthusiasm; feeling that something just isn’t right.
Is the goal really yours?
First thing to check is whether it’s actually a good goal or not. Did you choose it out of obligation, habit, or comparison with other people?
Maybe you were influenced by what you saw other people doing and came up with a project that fits you like a pair of undies 3 sizes too small (not a good scenario.)
Say you know you want to leverage your knowledge base with info products. Did you decide to do an eBook because so-and-so had a super successful experience with theirs, even though you’re more of a video star than a writer?
Your best products are those aligned with your Self in both content and delivery method.
Panty parallel: You want panties that fit well, look good, and make you feel like a million bucks.
If this is the culprit: Do a dissection exercise. What feels right/what feels off about the goal. What changes can you make to turn the “offs” on?
2. Trying to wear outdated styles.
Avoidance signs include: Numerous rework sessions, none of them feeling complete.
Say you’re having a helluva time finishing the sales copy for your services page. Could it be that the nature of your service offering was a good fit for you last year but you’ve evolved since then (and your services haven’t)?
Panty parallel: Last year you were all about briefs. This year you’re all about boy shorts. Of course it’s going to be hard selling the briefs when deep down, all you can think about are your boy shorts.
If this is the culprit: Dig deeper. Go to the source. Clarify and confirm the vision. Not only will you dig up the motivation to get back on track, you’ll get to enjoy a tasty little Heart-to-Soul chat in the process.
3. Conflicting options.
Avoidance signs include: Guilt; regret; frustration.
This one starts out with Good Goals. You know you want them. You want them so badly that maybe you’ve conveniently skipped over some practicalities, namely, that right now, one of them isn’t a possibility.
My latest experience with this one was wanting both:
1) Bike Trip! and
2) to develop Big momentum in my biz.
One thing I’ve learned in my first year of being location independent is that traveling and intensive focus on biz are mutually exclusive.
This primarily points to a timing issue.
This forces me to consider these two goals:
Question: Which is most important right now.
Answer: Biz momentum.
Solution: I’m best served by parking my butt in one city through the next program launch. The bike trip will be a celebratory adventure Post-Launch.
This hopefully sounds completely obvious—and it is, that is, once you’ve identified the conflicting priorities. Until I realized what was going on, I was feeling bummed that Project: Bike Trip kept taking 2nd seat.
Panty parallel: you just aren’t going to wear the g-string and the boy shorts simultaneously.
If this is the culprit: Consult your timelines. Prioritize accordingly.
4. “It’s not the right time.”
Avoidance signs include: Procrastination; self-sabotage behavior; “legitimate” reasons for avoidance
First thing to remember is that the closer an endeavor is to your Heart, the bigger the resistance that can appear.
Until these are pulled out into the light of day, they can be dishearteningly successful at helping you create distraction situations.
Working on a book? Staying up super late “to catch up on email” three nights in a row (or helping a random neighbor with something “important” or drinking heavily) leaves you feeling crappy in the morning—-and you blow off your writing session.
And… if you don’t finish your book, then you won’t be vulnerable in exposing yourself to the world.
The truth is, there’s very little in your inbox that justifies bailing on your morning writing session. Set your boundaries, people. You’ve got Soul work to do.
Panty parallel: You know how you get these sweet little sexy lace thingy and you think, “I’m saving this for a special occasion!” But then years go by and no occasion is special enough. Finally you decide to pull ’em out only to find that the elastic stretched out over time? Yah. That.
If this is the culprit: Clarify your boundaries. Honor your scheduled times. Set dates that you cannot/will not renegotiate. Create accountability systems.
The signs are there, waiting for you to notice
What patterns do you see with your own behavior around neglected projects? Suggested activities:
- Have a private chat with your Inner Self.
- Journal about it.
- Contemplate what you are sacrificing.
- Be in a space of understanding and courage
(to be honest with yourself).
If a solution pops up, great. If not, that’s fine too. Your awareness of the situation may need a little percolation time. If so, give it space and be sure to catch the next article on creating support structures.
As with all this inner work, remember to practice self-compassion. There’s no time like the present to be your own best friend.