One More Avoidance Technique

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Sorry I've been incommunicado lately.... It's not for lack of interest in blogging, or good intentions. A bunch of things have happened and I've written notes on my to-do list, instructing myself to "blog about items A, B, C & D." And then I just don't.

I haven't even been all that busy. Instead, I've been unfocused, undisciplined, and worried. I'm done envisioning worst-case scenarios for the outcome of the election, and done being exhausted by what actually did happen. I am all freaked out about the economy and so forth, but who isn't?

So I've got my portion of collective concern about the future to nurse, but I've also being dealing with another bout of whatever afflicted me last January (is the January bit important?) when I found it really difficult to make myself start and finish a writing project I actually wanted to write. I recently started a new project and I like it, I have high hopes for it, but I just don't want to write it.

Earlier this week I cleared a day so I could work on this project, and then I wrote in my journal, "I wish I had a bunch of errands to run right now so I'd be justified in NOT working on this project." I didn't have errands, but I did discover that if I perused the friends of my friends on Facebook, I could find a couple dozen people to send friend requests to. That killed a few hours nicely, let me tell you.

The reason I'm writing this blog entry, finally, is that it's a way to not work on that OTHER project, which I ABSOLUTELY MUST DO TODAY. But writing this puts it off for a few minutes more, and I'll take any legitimate delay I can get.

OK. Time to make a pot of coffee, and then I've got to do you-know-what.

4 Comments

I wonder if it's a reaction to New Year's Resolutions - like, everyone's trying to do all this stuff and make a new start, and you're subconsciously rebelling against being like everyone else by putting everything off. Maybe not - but I know that's totally what I do. On the other hand, with the cheerful prospect of moving someplace I might actually WANT to be, all of the sudden I'm getting actual IDEAS about things to write (something that hasn't happened much in about 3 years). Do you keep an actual journal, or do you keep it on your computer? Do you find journaling (sp?) helpful? I'm interested - I kept a journal for 10 years, but I often felt like it was pointless because it just made me dwell on the negative. I always had the feeling I was just doing it wrong.

Hopefully February will be better for you, when everyone else is letting their resolutions swirl down the drain.

You have not truly put off writing until you have cleaned the oven.

I posted this on my blog, but it bears repeating:

"New Year's Day: Now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions. Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual." ~Mark Twain

I actually did start and finish some writing projects that I have been meaning to do for some time. Now it is on to the next ones.

Hi Rebecca--

I have half a dozen journals, which I write in for different reasons. I keep two on my computer and four by hand. My main journal is something I've been keeping on the computer for 12 years, but I always print it out and stick it in a binder, along with other important documents--
letters I receive (and send)
, programs from events I've attended, ticket stubs to movies, etc. It's sorta scrapbook-y, except not cute.

I guess I would say that I writing my journal on the computer the same as keeping an actual journal. It feels the same, frankly. Here's something I wrote, by the way, on why I keep a journal, and here's something from the journal I keep on my computer.

I do think keeping a journal helps, but it's also something I just do.

And I hope you're right about February. I'm going to work on it.

Hi Mary Ellen--

I'm totally down with housekeeping as writing-avoidance. That's what I did Monday, including getting down on my hands and knees to scrub away calcium deposits behind the toilet that you can only see when you're in the bathtub and that obviously didn't bother the last few tenants of my apartment. As for oven-cleaning, I have a self-cleaning oven right now, so that won't help much as an avoidance technique, but I've used it in the past. I also once painted my basement--that was the worst job I ever did instead of writing.

I think the ultimate writing-avoidance that women can engage in is to have a baby. I knew one woman who said right out that she got pregnant so she wouldn't have to finish her dissertation. I think that probably wasn't the ONLY reason--she and her husband had always wanted a family--but the timing was definitely a relief to her.

Hi Mr. Nighttime--

Twain nailed it. I will be happy if I meet half the goals I set for the first few months of 2009.

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This page contains a single entry by Holly published on January 11, 2009 8:55 AM.

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