One of those obstacles is having to do something else first, or for conditions to be just right before we train. I know that I've been guilty of this. You come home from work late, so you blow off training instead of training later. You have to be somewhere, so rather than shortening your workout, you blow it off altogether. You're "tired" or "not in the mood" or whatever.
Just shut up and train. The Lenten Challenge has been a great exercise in getting over this twisted thinking. Below is an excerpt from the article. The whole thing may be read here. Enjoy.
By Steven Pressfield | Published: May 26, 2010This is an important post. I say that because this piece addresses (after procrastination, which is the #1 champ), the single greatest excuse/reason/cop-out that prevents aspiring writers, artists and entrepreneurs from taking action to pursue their dreams.
That excuse is, “First I have to _____________.”
“___________” can be anything from “finish my research” to “pay the rent” to “get rid of my slacker boyfriend.” I’m not saying such excuses can’t be real or serious. “Stop drinking,” “get out of rehab,” “recover from suicide attempt.” They can be absolutely valid and true. But they’re still Resistance. They’re still bullshit.
Here’s the counter-mantra: “Do it anyway.”
Am I being overly hard-core to assert this? No. I’m being kind.
The surest antidote to the state of misery and paralysis that we find ourselves in when we’re under the spell of “First I have to _________” is to sit down and do our work anyway.
Tales from the trenches
This past year hasn’t been the worst of my life—but it’s right up there. I’ll skip the personal details because of the pain it might cause to people dear to me, but suffice it to say that my head, my heart and my butt have been swimming for their lives this past year. My artistic self-confidence, which has been bedrock for me for years, took a major hit about six months ago. I’m still not out of the woods. At the same time, outside commitments (most of which, to be honest, are voluntary and positive), family emergencies and other imperatives have whacked the hell out of my working time.
But here’s the weird part: my work has never been better. I’ve got three projects going, and they’re all hitting
on eight cylinders. Yeah, it’s slow. Yes, it’s hard. But the stuff is good.
It’s saving my life. Certainly it has preserved my sanity.
In other words . . .
In other words: Do it anyway.
We don’t have to do anything else first. We don’t need to cure our neuroses, conquer our fears, overcome our bad habits. We don’t have to be sane; we don’t have to be solvent. We can be totally screwed up. None of these real-world troubles has anything to do with our creative selves.
The part of our psyches that we write from, or paint from, or conceive new entrepreneurial or philanthropic ventures from . . . that part exists in a wholly different dimension from the part of us that is mucking up our personal lives. There’s no connection. The twain don’t meet. No matter how balled-up we may be in our outer world, our internal fortress of solitude remains waterproof, soundproof, bulletproof.