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Any thoughts on rebellion?

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  • Any thoughts on rebellion?

    Like many who turn to methods like GTD, I am a procrastinator.

    My procrastination stems from all the usual sources, but my main enemies have been perfectionism and rebellion.

    Over the past year, I've been doing very well with the perfectionism -
    identifying it, and using various techniques to combat it.

    Rebellion, on the other hand, is a tough issue for me! Whenever I get reasonably on track with what I have to (need to, want to) do, it will inevitably appear, tempting me to just let go, leave that silly system, don't follow any stupid rules, go with the flow, have another cup of coffee, deal with all that stuff later.

    Please, if anyone has overcome this, or has any advice to offer, I'm most grateful.

    Tess

  • #2
    Neil Fiore's "The Now Habit" famously deals with this tendency.

    Dave

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Any thoughts on rebellion?

      Originally posted by LazyRebel
      My procrastination stems from all the usual sources, but my main enemies have been perfectionism and rebellion.
      Tess,

      I have two problems with planning systems that can trigger a rebellion response in me. The first is that planning systems constantly remind me of things that I don't want to do. The second is that I tend to get carried away with "accomplishing things" and don't set up next actions for rest, relaxation, and fun.

      In the first case, the rebellion is against the thing I don't want to do. In the second, the rebellion is against my own self betrayal.

      When you start feeling rebellion, stop and examine where the feelings are coming from. Do you want to go with the flow and have another cup of coffee when a task you detest is sitting right at the top of a next action list? If so, you may be rebelling against doing that action, and your rebellion against the system is just a way to shoot the messenger.

      On the other hand, do your feelings of rebellion arise after you have been working for a while and are just tired or bored? Check your system. Are there any projects, appointments, or next actions related to things you love to do and are you actually doing them? If not, then your rebellion against the system is just a way to shoot yourself - and deservedly so since you are using the system as an instrument for running yourself into the ground.

      There are tons of techniques for getting to work on things that you don't want to do. A lot of them can be found in various threads here. Using your system to live the kind of life you want to live, however, is only something that you can do for yourself.

      Comment


      • #4
        There are tons of techniques for getting to work on things that you don't want to do. A lot of them can be found in various threads here.
        Care to point out some good ones on this topic?

        Thanks,
        --Josh

        Comment


        • #5
          Rebels, see the post by andersons in this thread
          http://www.davidco.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1599

          I am a major putter-offer and put autonomy high on my list of must-haves (which is another way of saying I don't wanna haveta do it if I don't wanna do it). What andersons says in the post about consciously choosing to do the thing you've been avoiding makes a lot of sense as a way to overcome the rebel aspect of the problem. It's worked with me, as long as I'm cooperative enough with myself to do it. This afternoon I've been avoiding paying bills for no good reason (I have the money, it's only a few bills, etc.) but I decided I'm going to do them because it's just such a boring drag to have them hanging over my head for the holidays (I'm in the US), so out they go, no big deal. Maybe it helps that I've also taken one of the other suggestions to heart, which is rewards/fun. I'm finally working on a hobby I've dreamt of for decades, so I have something to look forward to doing when my work-work is done. I won't play til my tasks are out of the way, and I find I'm enjoying it much more than I have the unearned breaks I've taken in the past.

          I believe that "guilty pleasure" is an oxymoron, but maybe that's my Calvinist upbringing showing thru.

          Comment


          • #6
            Thank you all!

            Be a Rebel with a Cause!
            Just a matter of finding my Cause, I guess...


            The first is that planning systems constantly remind me of things that I don't want to do. The second is that I tend to get carried away with "accomplishing things" and don't set up next actions for rest, relaxation, and fun.
            Great analysis! I'll try to pay attention to this distinction in the future. Usually, I have no big problems with each NA, it's the big gray mass of them that gets me down.

            What andersons says in the post about consciously choosing to do the thing you've been avoiding makes a lot of sense as a way to overcome the rebel aspect of the problem.
            This does make sense. I think I'll put some post-its here and there to remind me.

            It's worked with me, as long as I'm cooperative enough with myself to do it.
            Well, that's the problem isn't it - I don't cooperate with myself! Maybe I'm a simply being a poor manager, and no-one likes working for a bad boss, even if it's yourself.

            So, here's the new deal: Boss-me will do better by allowing time for rest and recreation. I think frequent short breaks is a good idea in my situation. Worker-me will vow to not play until I've earned it!

            Thanks again for your insights on this issue.

            Tess

            Comment


            • #7
              Cooperate with yourself!

              Cooperate with yourself!
              Great quote
              TesTeq

              Comment


              • #8
                Looks like it's only us Europeans here today Tes!!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Europeans

                  Originally posted by Busydave
                  Looks like it's only us Europeans here today Tes!!
                  Do you think we, Europeans, are bigger procrastinators than Americans?
                  Are we perfectionsts, rebels or simply lazy people?
                  I would prefer the first two options - unpragmatic dreamers/perfectionists or individualistic rebels.
                  Very often Americans are doing before thinking and Europeans are thinking instead of doing.
                  TesTeq

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Busydave
                    Looks like it's only us Europeans here today Tes!!
                    Most Americans are in a tryptophane coma our getting ready for the big sales on Friday . Thursday is Thanksgiving and Friday is usually a holiday (except for us expats who won't get any turkey until Christmas )

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Europeans

                      Originally posted by TesTeq
                      Very often Americans are doing before thinking and Europeans are thinking instead of doing.
                      TesTeq
                      I have been an avid reader of Tom Peters, Tony Robbins, Peter Drucker, and more recently David Allen, Fastcompany, The CEO Refresher and even ThinkTQ for the past ten years. This had led me to many other business related articles on U.S. based websites.

                      My overriding feeling about the American way is that it is based solidly on action. The biggest problem that America seems to face is how to coordinate and motivate action across huge organisations.

                      I find that I have lost a lot of my European outlook as a result. I think there is a thread of Marxist cynicism running through a lot of what we try to do in Europe – even when big initiatives and organisations are excellently planned and set up, there is always a background murmur of “What’s really going on here? Who is using who? Who is behind it all? Who are the Fat Cats who stand to make a fortune for this? Why should I help pad their wallets and pay for their private jets?”

                      This attitude is destructive and counter-progressive, and poisons initiative.

                      I find that I am now looking at my European influences like an outsider, and I am able to pick and choose which ones suite me and which ones I will drop.

                      Dave

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Europeans

                        Originally posted by Busydave
                        I think there is a thread of Marxist cynicism running through a lot of what we try to do in Europe – even when big initiatives and organisations are excellently planned and set up, there is always a background murmur of “What’s really going on here? Who is using who? Who is behind it all? Who are the Fat Cats who stand to make a fortune for this? Why should I help pad their wallets and pay for their private jets?”
                        Dave
                        1) The "thinking instead of doing" is not always for finding "who is behind it all". Sometimes it is endless discussion of possible options of doing something and trying to find 1% better solution when the current solution is good (perfectionism).

                        2) But maybe somebody is really behind it all and maybe Americans simply don't see it. Or maybe Americans are behind it all to slow us, Europeans .

                        TesTeq

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Europeans

                          Originally posted by TesTeq
                          1) The "thinking instead of doing" is not always for finding "who is behind it all". Sometimes it is endless discussion of possible options of doing something and trying to find 1% better solution when the current solution is good (perfectionism).
                          Once the decision is made, then it’s all over bar the shouting. There will always be those who are dissatisfied with the result of large scale projects, and in a society of mixed political structures they have ample opportunity to speak out while the planning is going on, therefore slowing down the process. (Oops! Starting to sound a bit right-wing here!! )

                          Originally posted by TesTeq
                          2) But maybe somebody is really behind it all and maybe Americans simply don't see it. Or maybe Americans are behind it all to slow us, Europeans .TesTeq
                          NOW we're getting somewhere … I think …

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Glad to see some intellectual discourse while all the Americans are away shopping (guess the first ones are getting in line for the early-bird sales as I'm typing)! Here, it's almost 1 PM and I'm having another cup of coffe...

                            My overriding feeling about the American way is that it is based solidly on action
                            As a European who has spent several years living and working in the States, this is my feeling to. I'ts also my feeling that this is the very thing that is costing us the leadership of the world, in a sense. In moderate doses, esp. on a personal level, the American way is very refreshing! As a nation, though, one might wish they had a slightly more advanced thought process to balance all this action....

                            I think there is a thread of Marxist cynicism running through a lot of what we try to do in Europe
                            I agree, and I also agree that it's destructive and poisonous.

                            I have a personal history with cynicism. I used to think it was smart, sort of a cool attitude, never to be impressed, never get carried away, always looking through everything. Then my manager, best boss I ever had (and a European!) pointed out that it's just another way to hide, and do nothing. People who stand to the side making cynical remarks will never be accused of being naïve, or making bad desicions, or having poor judgement - but they won't ever accomplish much, either. This really hit me hard, and now I always try to fight cynicism both in myself and others.

                            But come to think of it - this cynicism is closely related to rebellion, isn't it?

                            Tess

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Cynic and Moralist

                              Originally posted by LazyRebel
                              But come to think of it - this cynicism is closely related to rebellion, isn't it?
                              Tess,

                              I'd say: Cynism is frustrated and disappointed moralization, a cynic is a frustrated moralist. And moralization might be a kind of neglection of (rebellion against?) our human nature, which is neither bad nor good.

                              Rainer

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