“Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.” – David Allen
I want to take a moment to document my struggles committing to my blog. In hearing others’ stories about their own experiences, I don’t think I’m alone. Though I’m writing about my blog, I encounter this frequently in my life and I want to improve.
I enjoy writing, and I love my job. I thought writing an instructional design blog would be easy and fun. I have a great support team. I have followers. Work and life throw some roadblocks, but none are insurmountable, and certainly none have been so terrible that they’ve gotten in the way of writing a blog post.
Nearly every day, I find at least three or four things to write about. I always pause, and in my head I think of how I will write this amazing blog post which will help solve all of instructional design’s tremendously challenging or tremendously frustrating problems. When I do have a chance to write, those ideas are gone, and I have some other distraction in front of me comforting me – making feel like I was just too busy or too overwhelmed or too whatever to complete my goals.
I tried combating this by starting drafts of blogs. Now I have three or four drafts which I could finish easily, but I got stuck in one paragraph and have become more afraid to finish. I spend more time thinking about distractions than the five minutes it would have taken to problem solve and complete an article.
What’s worse, I’m a terribly guilty person. Once I’ve identified that I am stuck and get past the distractions, I can’t quiet the final distraction – my mind pestering me that I didn’t complete a task and just feeling bad about it.
I’ve decided that I need to focus on how to motivate myself to complete tasks. One colleague recommended I look into a concept called “Mind Like Water”. This is detailed on a site called Getting Things Done, and that is where I got the quote from at the top of this post. I will be learning more about the five steps listed on their site and will share all the goodies I can:
I may throw in a couple blog posts here and there to provide a progress report for myself, but ultimately, I want to commit more to my personal-professional presence more than I have. I know motivation is a factor, and I don’t know how much Mind Like Water will help that, but I’m going to find out.
I encourage you to find what motivates you to complete a project or fulfill a role you were determined to be in at some point. I encourage you to feel good about the small steps you make towards satisfying your goals, and I hope you find yourself excited to finish. While I do that for you, I will do that for myself!
As always, please share any thoughts you have on ways to motivate yourself and finish projects which you think may help myself and others out there.
… and special thanks to my colleague Hector for hearing me out and offering some ideas to try and get my brain back in the right place!