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love the last paragraph of this article - thinking of value of positive language & active choice: "Instead of saying "I don't have time" try saying "it's not a priority," and see how that feels.... Changing our language reminds us that time is a choice." wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052

...and on that note I'm off to practise for 30 mins (setting timer) because it is a priority. :)

@lauraritchie Too bad--I can't access article w/o subscription. But I think I'm getting the point: think of being busy as saying what your priorities are and then decide if those should be your priorities. Yes?

@clhendricksbc that's it! sorry the link doesn't work... it just clicked through for me.

It is amazing how using certain words/phrases can have an impact on outlook & motivation. I love that stuff. I live by 'there is no try' & when ss question it I ask them to show me 'trying' to do something: either do it or not. May not finish/be successful- either actively doing or not

Always fascinated me what ppl think, & so much ambiguity & vagueness in everyday talk. I love the possibility of clarity

@lauraritchie We joke in our house about "there is no try," just playing off of Yoda. But I can see that it is definitely true.

What do you call the process of getting to "do," then? Before you "do" (or "do not")?

@clhendricksbc I think there are lots of stages of doing... seldom just 'not'. Key for me is the meta: understanding, categorising, analysing hierarchical stages & goals. might not be doing 'the thing' but doing something v important in prep. It helps (me) with recognising progress and process. -& to grab hold of my time, when I look at what AM I doing? -and sometimes being still & enjoying a moment of not doing is just what is needed too. ...ever striving for balance...

@lauraritchie @clhendricksbc love this thought! How do you think about "laying around the house" then?

For me, it can't be exclused from having a priority, as it is a vital part of being productive.

@jeroensmeets @clhendricksbc that hiatus time is so important for me. I use it when I have to write big things- think before I can write - will mull things over for days and then write like a rainfall, but ideas take time to consolidate and form - otherwise come out all jumbled.

@lauraritchie @clhendricksbc great how you name it hiatus time, while I was trying to avoid the word time ;-)

it's that time of day (or night) where I solve my toughest programming issues -- or rather: just after.

Giving priority to it is therefore essential, yet doing that seems contradictory.

@jeroensmeets @lauraritchie @clhendricksbc For me this hiatus time in relation to writing is when ideas are becoming shapes. I can't be near a screen at this time.

My daughter is a breadmaker. It's natural to her to prioritise rising time, even though she's not doing something. But the dough is rising. Without this, no bread.

Writing feels that way to me.

@katebowles @lauraritchie @clhendricksbc i'm moved by your observations about breadmaking and the rising of dough.

It applies to other types of work, certainly mine.

@jeroensmeets @clhendricksbc @katebowles Know what you mean about seeming contradictory! I struggle with giving myself permission to do things. -will happily stop what I'm doing to attend to something for someone else, but feel selfish doing something for me.

...I'm learning though! I like to cycle to work & that is excellent thinking time - blows the cobwebs out too :)

@lauraritchie @katebowles @clhendricksbc speaking of contradictory -- if i plan to use my hiatus time (e.g. while walking the dog) for thinking about a problem it doesn't work! totally nothing comes up.

So time that is not spent on priorities can only help getting priorities done when it is used on non-priorities. (from chapter 17 of my yet to publish book "Laws of contradictions")

@jeroensmeets @lauraritchie @clhendricksbc I think this element of surprise is crucial, that you can't plan for. I find ideas sort themselves out when I'm concretely doing something else, especially garden work. If I'm weeding, my brain starts to straighten out its sentences fairly naturally. Also walking.

The key is to protect hiatus time as a time of possibility, knowing that you can't plan for productivity in that time.

@jeroensmeets @lauraritchie @katebowles This makes a lot of sense to me. As someone who too easily gives in to "I have to work most or all of the time because I have so much to do," I find that if I actually do that then things go much worse than if I take an hour off and do something else.

Even if I don't solve whatever needs to be solved during that time of not trying to solve it, I come at it feeling differently, less stressed, and that opens things up.

@lauraritchie @katebowles @clhendricksbc this whole conversation reminds me of a quote from an episode of (the definitive sitcom) Frasier:

Frasier:
Us? We haven't done anything.
Niles:
Exactly. "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."
Frasier:
Edmund Burke.
Niles:
I have that quotation in a frame. I keep meaning to put it up in my office but I never seem to get around to it.

@lauraritchie @jeroensmeets @katebowles I go for long walks (don't have a dog to walk), which is fantastic hiatus time. Sometimes I'm listening to audio books (I'm in a book club and that's the only time I have to "read"), but sometimes I'm just taking in the beauty of Vancouver, even in the cloud and rain.

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