The Wandering Mind Series
- Part 1 – Just What is a ”Wandering Mind”?
- Part 2 – The Myopia of a Wandering Mind
- Part 3 – On Time-Attention
- Part 4 – The Cascade Begins
- Part 5 – Finding “Relief” in Procrastination
- Part 6 – The Incomplete Decision
The Drain of Incomplete Decisions
- Why procrastinate until a deadline?
- Why lose things regularly?
- Why fight your focus?
These are only a few issues of the wandering mind. In our series, we began with the idea that:
A wandering mind can stem from a myopia of time-attention.
We examined how that simple start can lead to so many troubles.
While, of course, there is no lens in the brain and, certainly, the metaphor doesn’t describe everyone’s experience, we can now consider:
How does it help us guide a wandering mind?
Between the constant pursuit of danger and the regular self-berating attacks, it’s easy to lose sight of one of the biggest stumbling blocks that begin the cascade of problems – the Incomplete Decision.
Decisions are objects of time-attention. Too often, we can drop one thing in the middle, moving on to the next “most important thing”, leaving a wake of incomplete ideas, projects, and tasks.
It’s no wonder. With a constricted view, we can easily lose track of things, again, even forgetting that there was something to keep track of. Decisions can be very difficult. When left incomplete, they can be one of the most chronic drains on energy, leading to anger and a worsening spiral of lost confidence.
But we cannot force ourselves to complete something. That hardly works. Instead, it starts with how we set up ourselves up by making our decisions both easier and more meaningful.
For example, the difference between “I’ll do it later” and “I know exactly where and how I’ll get to it and be reminded of it in a way that favors me actually taking action” is night and day.
In learning how to set ourselves up with realistic and workable expectations, we can begin to not only get to where we want to go, but also grow a sense of confidence in the process. We can even use the intensity and power of our native vision to engage what we want to in depth, with a creative mind that is ready to work and play.
By setting ourselves up, we can not only improve our focus, but we can:
- Reduce the tendency towards distractions and following rabbit trails
- Reduce the pulls of procrastination
- Break out of the Dark Side of Flow, where you are too focused and forget other important matters
- Write more engaging tasks
- Write tasks so they don’t get lost in the chaos
- Engage things that you find important, but somehow repel you
- Engage longer projects in such a way as to not be exhausted
- Maintain responsibilities over the multiple things that go on in life so you can get to where you want to go
And that concludes the series. I do hope you’ve enjoyed it, and I’d love to hear your thoughts.
PS. Building the muscles to engage ourselves and our decisions, gently and gradually, is a practice. I’ve even built a set of exercises around them.
If you’re interested in learning a set of solid exercises to engage your vision and start making the decisions that can get you past the wake of chaos, consider Waves of Focus – Guiding the Wandering Mind.
The course’s maiden voyage was a wonderful success. As we wrapped up, the wide variety of students from all walks of life and from all around the world, expressed a wonderful feeling of hope. The benefits they’d found in course continue to carry them forward.
The second cohort is scheduled to set sail January 31st, 2022.