Last night, I got wrapped up on being in action to create a financially secure future for Naomi and me, something that we have put off for a while. I find it interesting that I’m generally more proactive about our finances when I’m not worried about checking our bank balance/credit card bill versus when money was tighter and each item, no matter how small, mattered that much more.
While I was focused on uni-tasking and an aspect of our future, I nevertheless missed my stats date, and there’s an impact on me for it. The upside to it, however, is to awaken me to how far I’ve drifted from my stated goals. I started this PSPLife cycle pretty gungho despite having goals that were less defined to me than in the past, for example, one past goal was to learn a specific skill, whereas this time a goal was to be in integrity.
Tonight’s small group meeting highlighted a few things for me, the best of which were questions that J uses for K when she wants to skip a creative session. J cues K into the future ‘pain’ of her current resistant/avoidant actions by asking:
1. What will it feel like tomorrow if you skip this?
2. What will it feel like tomorrow if you do this?
I think those questions are brilliantly beautiful in their simplicity and ability to highlight the stark contrast between 2 possibilities and courses of action. It isn’t always clear to us what the utility of any one action might be (“have that call,” “practice guitar,” “follow up with that person,” etc.) as I may not see the benefit – even afterward – of having followed through on an intention.
What these questions do, however, isn’t to say that I know I’ll be a better guitar player or have the job I want, but rather to highlight how I’ll feel about myself having done what I said I would. And that is something that’s much easier to predict accurately, and something that, if aware of in the moment, can offer the motivation to follow through in the moment.
When referring to how outsized anxieties, stresses and worries about the future can impact our lives, Liz W uses a phrase like ‘allowing tomorrow’s storm clouds to cover today’s sunshine.’ While that is so accurate about how it’s possible to be sad during a happy moment, bringing the potential future to the present can also be incredibly motivating, especially when that present is a result of current actions taken or not taken.
What does that mean for me? I plan to use these questions to motivate me not only for a strong finish to PSPLife, but also on an ongoing basis – get back to you!