Joy is not an ever present thing. We encourage its presence when we follow what our soul is telling us, when we take action to inhabit that space. For me, the promise of joy is found through consistent prayer, and the hope that provides me. Specifically, conversations with God, about the good, the bad, and the things I don’t understand.
At the moment I’m drifting through cycles in my life. Sometimes I feel like I have motivation grasped in the palm of my hand and can easily settle into any task I put my mind to. Other times I feel like procrastination is unavoidable by any means I have at my disposal. Both feelings are probably true at the times I feel them, but the cycles don’t seem to have definitive reasons for showing up and disappearing again. This makes it difficult to manage my wellbeing when I feel productive, and to engage the right strategies to break away from active lethargy.
Something I have been working on is letting go of the perceived control I have of these feelings of productivity or lack thereof. Because the reality is, we have far less control than we believe we do. We can spend time planning for as many possible outcomes as we can think of, or we can do a reasonable amount of preparation but leave time for action. Without hard work we will find it very difficult to accomplish our goals.
Thanks to how well New Zealand is doing in terms of managing the coronavirus, this past weekend my sister and her partner had a birthday gathering which had been postponed last year. This involved a number of people coming over to share gin and tacos. Seeing people is a good thing, however, sound in our apartment travels relatively well between the main living area and the downstairs bedrooms. Not so great, as it can be difficult to focus on a particular conversation or activity. I’m also not an alcohol drinker and crowds can be tough for me, especially when I’ve had a tiring week. Hence, I spent much of the evening in my room trying to be productive and edit my book.
What this meant in reality was watching a lot of football, ultimate frisbee, and skits on YouTube because they require less focus – easier to process with all the noise going on. Not the picture of productivity. Very little editing, or writing, or research, went on at all. I own headphones which isolate sound relatively well, so could have put them in to help my mind focus better. I could have found the social group I felt most comfortable in upstairs and spent time in conversation, rather than feeling guilty about what I wasn’t doing. I could have pulled out a journal and had a conversation with God. But, I did none of these things.
Unfortunately this lack of productivity carried through to Sunday.
What I chose not to carry with me, was that feeling of guilt. I saw the need my body, mind, and spirit had to spend time away from the creative ventures that require lots of energy. I scheduled time this week (i.e. now) to write, read and respond to blogs, and dive back into editing my book.
Cycles happen in our lives. Some of them don’t even have wheels.😂 As I mentioned a few weeks ago, lean into productive procrastination if you have to.
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Remember to listen when your inner voice says you need to rest.
Keep on keeping on being awesome.
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