I have a problem. Yes, I do. I have a problem, how about you?
Just caught myself in the beginning motions of my problem. Luckily, I was able to deflect it’s tricky schemes for my attention. If only just barely. Just a general bother, this jerk has been the bane of anything and everything I attempt to do. It is my nemesis and I loathe it. Makes my skin crawl, it is moving in the corner of my eye, buzzing in the background. It is in what I do, what I wish to do. I am (often…) a slave to it and while I know there are ways to fix this problem, good habits I could try to build over it. I’m still stumped. It is a sneaky, crafty thing. Just slips in innocent like and there I go, following it down the bunny trails. And boy, do I follow, oh so willingly… Ugh…
But, “what is my problem”, you may ask? Don’t mind I if do share! My problem is, 1. I am a great starter. (gasp!) A great starter, yes. I am. “Oh, okay then… Why is that a problem?” Well, sure, I am a great starter, start things quick. I get really into it too. Make some plans, do a lot of research, read all the articles, write plenty of information down, open tab after tab, save links, etc. Starting things is fun, exciting, eye-opening! I enjoy finding new things to get into, love little hobbies, and learning random, little bits of this and that. 😎 Oh yeah, I love to start new things and do it well.
BUT! But, but, but, oh but. Then part two of my pesky problem begins. 1. I am a great starter, but 2. a terrible finisher. 😳 Finishing anything is like a crazy, mental fight for my time and attention, takes all the strength and wills I’ve got in me. It is a battle, no, a war inside my brain. It’s like… I get so into something, I really run with it, and then the next thing I know, almost as if I’ve just blinked. Days have gone by, weeks, months, even years sometimes, and I haven’t touched whatever it was that I was into. All of a sudden I see all the dust that has settled on it after abandoning what I thought was the bee’s knees at the time.
In fact, this blog is a great example of my inability to finish things, because they time stamp everything. I am (low-key) ashamed to say I don’t even know how many posts I have started and have yet to finish. I’m pretty sure I have actually, only posted… twice? Maybe? But wait! There’s plenty more, and this may just be the tip of the iceberg…
- I’ll start reading a book, and if for whatever reason I’ve got to put it down, before I finish it, I may not touch it for… honestly, I still haven’t picked up the book I started over 5 months ago… maybe? (Update 4.11.2019 : Still haven’t finished it…)
- I now also have dozens of books of flashcards that I made for studying kanji, on my kitchen table, that have been there untouched, for over a year.
- I need to study, I want to study, I even like to study, so of course I begin, make some progress, get in the groove, and BAM! Haven’t touched my grammar book in about two weeks…
- I play 3DS games in Japanese, particularly 動物の森 ( doubutsu no mori – aka~ Animal Crossing! ❤ ) because there are a lot of relatively practical words and grammar that pop up. Plus, it’s adorable, fun, and I’ve been obsessed since I first played the game on GameCube, way back in the day. Haven’t played in months, of course, turned it on and all my animal people are gone! 😭 Mailbox full of, “hey, haven’t seen you but wanted to let you know I’m moving” letters because they’ve bailed on me, since I haven’t played IN MONTHS!!!
- Even something as simple as the Memrise app. (great app by the way, totally recommend it ~thanks for waking me back up to that Onjel ❤ ), It’s on my phone that I always have on me, doggone it, and I’ve started it back up again. Making some head way, feeling good, and poof. Played it today finally after… I’m sure a couple, maybe even few, weeks.
I sit on the train and or bus for at least an hour daily, (viva la ~ Tokyo public transportation!) I have mad time to do some review, learn new vocab, read a book, or play some 動物の森. Soooo, what am I even doing? How long did I blink? Where does the time go? What am I even doing, if not what I’m able to be doing?
“That’s a lot of unfinished projects and side quests you got going on there,” you may say. And to that I say, yes. Yes, it is. I know my problem. I battle with it on the daily, my dear nemesis. To finish anything, with this jerk of a problem smacking you upside the head, is madness. I never thought I fell so easily to it’s wiles and yet, days have turned into months, and months are beginning to speed up into years of not getting much done. And, it has only gotten worse recently with my motivation sinking so low, it’s almost burning into the Earth’s core.
“So what is it really? Why don’t you finish anything? WHAT CREATES THIS STARTING, NOT FINISHING PROBLEM?!”, you may ask. Ok. It begins with distraction. Plain and simple, distraction. It comes in so many forms, faces, shapes, and sizes though. So… then again, maybe not so plain and simple. More difficult to pin point what are the triggers, making it difficult to fight. Slipping under my defenses, dividing and spreading my attention so thinly that I get next to nothing finished. Nothing fully completed. No satisfaction. Just disappointment at the end of yet another day. Time wasted away. Endless possibilities squandered.
It is maddening, and I’ve been reading a lot of “how to finish things” articles, blogs, and advice from different professional, career-type folks. I watch all the youtube, news, and data videos. They address many different reasons for not finishing things, like this distraction or that, mental blocks, and what have you. They give great tips, like make to-do lists, pick one thing for the day, do a little each day, or start the day by making your bed so you’re already winning. And honestly, I’m beginning to think all this “how to finish things” research is just another one of those things I am starting and not finishing…
So, I’m writing this now, not because it is informational or I’m sharing much, but because I want to finish something. Start something and actually see it done, finished, and feel accomplished. See my thoughts and feelings written down so I can look at them again later for a reminder, if, or better yet when I start to wander down the trails again…
I want to start finishing things. Crossing things off my to-do lists feels wonderful, and not just adding more things to them until I’ve finished what is already there. I want to focus more on the things I want to be doing, and cut down on the distractions. I definitely don’t want to keep blinking and time has flown by. I don’t have many goals, but as a result of my distractedness I have yet to reach the few I’ve got. And they will never be reached if I keep on, keeping on, as I am. I don’t like this pesky, crafty cling-on dancing on my peripheral, egging me on to go this way or that way. Following it down on one bunny trail after another.
No more distractions. K. Thanks! Bye!
I will START doing my best to continue and FINISH walking this ONE trail, and every other trail from here on out, ONE AT A TIME, thank you very much. But, shout out to future me (Love you girlllll! WOO! You amazing beast, you!), if you do happen to start to get swindled by our nemesis, no more stressing and then running off in that direction either. Just shake ’em off and hurry back to the finishing trail, okay?