Well, this whole Summer of Me™ thing is off to an auspicious start. After doing a lot of background and planning for Midlife Crisis Averted, the next day I promptly woke up back in the same old summer doldrums that had defined my lack of productivity for years.
I. Just. Didn’t. Want. To. Do. Anything.
So I didn’t. Monday went by. Most of Tuesday went by. I spent time futzing around on the computer. Watching Netflix. Going to school and doing little things to fool myself into thinking that I was actually doing something productive.
Around noon on Tuesday, I looked at the clock only to find that it was 3:30 pm. I scolded myself. This has got to stop! So I did something worthwhile: I wandered around room to room looking at all the crap I didn’t want to do.
It was a beautiful day. Sunny, breezy, mid-70’s. Perfect! Why was I just hanging around inside? I went outside and got really productive! I was now wandering around the backyard looking at all the crap I didn’t want to do.
I mowed the front yard to feel like I had at least accomplished something. When I finished, I took the mower around back, and….
If you’ve stuck around this far, thank you. There is a point here.
For 7 years, I’ve been “gonna do” a retaining wall around a tree in our backyard. The yard is essentially a big hill and this wall was going to achieve a leveled, usable area. Being a big believer in laying good foundations, I laid part of a base for this retaining wall…7 summers ago. It was tedious work, and I hated it. Then for the next 7 summers, it became easier to talk myself out of finishing because it was too hot/wet/buggy/miserable/ stormy/dry/hard/windy/insert-excuse-here.
I mowed down the weeds that had surrounded my old foundation. I got out my level and checked those blocks I laid 7 summers ago (Still level! Woot!). I got out tools. I figured I’d lay just one more level block–again mostly just to fool myself into thinking I’d been productive.
Even so, I laid and leveled that one block. Then I laid another. Then I started building the wall from old pile of landscaping pavers that had been “decorating” my back yard for the last 7 years.
Now just two days later, the wall is finished. Two days! A seven-year hiatus of “I don’t wanna” broken, and the project finished in two days.
Finally, this evening I dragged my tired, old body up the hill one last time. I sat on the back patio and looked over my accomplishment. As I sat there, inspiration started flooding back in. Inspiration for this blog, for the next home project, for the next school year. Inspiration!
So are you stuck? Sitting on your butt — and your “but”s — knowing you should be doing….well, anything…but instead you’re just saying, “Nah.”
Break out that to-do list. Sure, knock out a couple of easy things to get your legs under you, but the point here is: Go big! Start attacking that “one big thing” that’s been taking up space in your life and in your brain for so long now. Make it a mission. Get it done. See if it doesn’t break down whatever has been damming up the flow of your inspiration.
Do you have a big “to-do” that is taking up space and stealing your inspiration? Or perhaps you’ve had a similar dam-breaking experience? Tell us about it in the comments.