How to Get Unstuck #2
Do a 180.
Last week I had to admit defeat.
My email service kept messing up — going off and on for months.
I was done.
It was time to switch to another server that would also match up better with all my devices: computer, tablet, phone. The stumbling block that I had been avoiding was that I had to send an individual message to everyone on my email list asking them to change their records.
Let me explain one of my weaknesses. I am not a process person. It’s more embarrassing than that — I don’t really think I should have to do boring, repetitive tasks. My magical thinking goes something like: Someone else should do this for me. I don’t have time, the world is not right because there is not a simple way to accomplish this switch. I had to just buck up and do it.
So I started on the “A’s” in my list. Drafted the first email, kept at it, eventually switching the email content to at least say hello to these folks before telling them the email address change. And as I worked through those early letters in the alphabet, I kept thinking: This is boring, I can’t stand it, I should not have to do this, there has to be a more efficient way. BLAH, BLAH, BLAH.
And then it occurred to me. The “Do a 180” action itself does not solve anything. Quit running into the wall and hitting your forehead, backing up, and running into the wall again. The egg-sized knot on your forehead is big and purple enough. Stop it already, turn around and do the opposite. Doing a 180 is turning around and going in the opposite direction to see what happens. You are eating a bowl of chocolate ice cream every night and you think this might not be a good idea so you switch to eating a bowl of broccoli every night.
The collage needs many more layers, colors, visual pieces to make it interesting. It has a long way to go. And the opposite choice of arrow over circle was helpful in getting me going.
Another example: Maybe you are fighting with your 13 year old teenager every day after school, disagreeing about doing her homework or chores (fill in the blank) when she gets home from school. You do a 180 and invite her to go with you to get a cup of tea at your local cool coffee shop. You tell her about your day and describe what was frustrating for you. You don’t ask her any questions and you just see what happens.
You cannot change a person. You can activate your curiosity in trying some new thing. It helps you quit being so predictable, which impacts the other person in the equation to not act so predictably.
Do a 180 — it’s a great unsticker.
See what you notice and check back in for Step Three.