How Frogs and Inertia Help You Get Sh*% Done

"If you want to build a ship, don't drum up people to collect wood and don't assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea."  -Antoine de Saint-Exuper

Sometimes I wonder if everyone has a brain like me, one that buzzes and whirs and keeps me up at night, striving for efficiency in everything, envisioning the ideal of every situation with no clucking clue how to get there, second guessing, insatiable, analytical...it can be exhausting.  But I love my brain, for within it is everything I've been, everything I am, everything I will be.  My brain is my greatest attribute and my greatest obstacle all in one gray, wormy, three lb mass.  

My brain does not let me rest, and I'm grateful for it.  I'm proud of the successes I've accomplished so far: kicking a seven year addiction to caffeine (this one's been on the New Year's rezzy list for five years or so); resting heart rate has gone from 75 bpm to 62 bpm; a smattering of new PR's at the gym after a year's plateau (snatch 110#, butterfly pullups, handstand push ups, etc).  Exciting!  But, enough?  Nope.  So where to go from here?  Here are the steps that help me get sh*# done.

1. (Re)establish Your Motivation

Human motivation (for a fascinating read on this topic click here) is driven by different things, but ultimately we are fired up by a meaningful "why."  If we are connected to the outcome, we are much more likely to fight for it.

I reread my first post in pursuit of the real WHY of all of this.  What was I after?  What was the distracting discomfort in my being that brought me to this journey?  The answer...I want to feel whole, content, and solid in myself.  I do not want to rely on substances or other distracting elements to "get through" life.  I want to face my demons, not ignore them.  I want to be a better human being, for myself and for the potential contribution I can make to this world.

2. Eat the Frog

My brilliant mama introduced me to this concept a year or two ago as a strategy to combat procrastination (a trait that runs rampant in the Skidmore genes, specially the genes in Skidmores whose first name is Tiffany).  In short, the frog is that task/goal/etc. that you keep meaning to do, but somehow remains undone and weighing heavily on your mind.  "Eating the frog" entails completing this daunting task as the very first thing you do each day.  Suddenly, the weight is gone and you can more easily accomplish the easier things on your list.  (Watch the video...it explains it better than I do!)

My life to-do list:  combat chronic knee pain that has been my constant companion for a year, paleo-zone (90% strict) till at ideal weight, learn to meditate, do more yoga, watch less T.V., spend more quality time with loved ones, sleep more, cook more, reach out to others in small and big ways, figure out how to contribute to overcoming hunger, poverty, homelessness, immigrant rights, and equity in education in Denver, more play time, search out a way to be more self-directed and less at the whim of "the man" in order to make money and live, read more, write more, get an article published somewhere, be open to a loving, so-wonderful-it-makes-spectators-wanna-puke relationship, travel as often as possible, be in the mountains as often as possible, learn to hunt and provide myself with proteins instead of buying faceless hunks of flesh at the store (it's so weird and unnatural when you think about it), I could keep going, but you get the idea.  

My chosen frog right now is diet which nicely coincides with training for the upcoming Crossfit season.  My goal is to have leaned out and prepared by the upcoming Turkey Challenge at MBS CrossFit on November 19th.  *I have to focus on one thing at a time or I get overwhelmed and go into power-off-shut-down-and-watch-reality-t.v.-mode.

3. Ride the Wave (of Human Inertia)

This dude/tte is getting sh*% done.
Patrick, a friend with an amazing vocabulary, brain, and way of speaking about the world and the human experience, once told me of a concept called "human inertia".  Yes, readers, science is everywhere.  The idea is the same as the ol' law of physics, except we apply it to humans in both a figurative and literal sense: a human in motion tends to stay in motion while a human at rest tends to stay at rest.  Start the day right by eating the frog, then be pleasantly surprised as you ride your human inertia to the end of the day.  And if you find yourself stuck, as in "at rest", don't be disheartened by the difficulty of getting moving.  Know that the first step is the hardest and once you've taken it, inertia will be on your side...so keep moving!

For me, my inertia is bolstered by eating the frog right away in the morning, by surrounding myself with supportive, like-minded, and inspiring people, by positive self-talk (affirmations), and regrounding myself in my purpose by journaling, reflecting, and interacting with those on a similar journey.

That's it for today...go forth and conquer!  

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