There's a whole host of reasons I haven't updated the site or the podcast for a bit, but one of the biggest things is that I've been feeling a lot of mental friction. That's not a bad thing necessarily, but given the privileged position I'm in where my work doesn't directly correlate to whether my family eats or not, friction can bring the whole thing to a standstill.
How can I keep things rolling?
Well there's basically two options: increase momentum, or reduce friction. (Or both)
In the analogy here, more momentum would have to mean either pushing harder, or raising the stakes. Those two things are both certainly options, but not especially pleasant ones. Meanwhile, friction is anything that is standing between the two of us. The fewer steps and blockades between getting the thoughts out of my head and onto the internet, the more likely they'll actually end up there.
Podcasting requires a certain amount of friction. There's no getting around it. Even after recording, files have to get uploaded and edited and descriptions and transcripts must be written and edited, etc... Even with templates, it's still a lot. Here's something frustrating: I wrote (and rewrote - and even recorded!) the podcast about different kinds of flow states months ago. And I still haven't been able to get it up on the site.
But writing really doesn't need to be that complicated. I'm already writing out my thoughts. That's one of the main things I do. I just need to make it easier to get those thoughts online.
Enter the Digital Garden.
This is something I've wanted to do for a while, and it will allow me to get notes I'm already writing anyway online in just a few clicks.
The newsletter friction can also be reduced! I've automated a few things that collect updates for me, so sign up so that you don't have to watch this space. Or if you use an RSS reader, you can find updates at https://www.chaoticorganized.com/feed.xml
How can you keep things rolling?
What can you do to reduce friction in your own life: at work, at home, or in your own personal sphere?
Here's a few ideas:
- Automation - but be careful, it can be a double-edged sword. You don't want to be so hands-off you don't even remember the point.
- Routines - routines are basically manual automation (let me finish...) The process itself may be done manually, but if you write down your routine, then the thinking is automated by the list. Offloading that ever-repeating "what do I do now?" question to a piece of paper, or an app checklist, can make it a lot smoother to keep rolling along
- Minimize - pare the job back to the essentials. Just like I'm doing with the website, making a project smaller makes it easier to finish.
- Set a timer - I've said it before, but one way to make something feel less daunting is to commit to doing only a tiny amount of it. Work for 5-10 minutes and then STOP
- Practice imperfection - if you go into it assuming your work will be mediocre at best, it takes some of the pressure off. Not everything is meant to be your best work all the time. Building some discomfort tolerance helps with this too!
- Take a break. Not everything is meant to continue forever. If the project in question isn't supporting your livelihood, or otherwise something absolutely necessary (like the the move I'm preparing for), really think about why you're doing it and ask if it's time to accept that it's just not a priority for you and decide to quit on purpose. (Do I really talk about giving up that much? Good! I don't want to waste time on things that don't matter)
What do you do to keep that forward momentum going?