Commitment to myself

Today is Sunday, last night was hell. The night club that I share a party wall with was thumping music until 3 am. I could not sleep, not with earplugs, not with pillows over my head. I know I am responsible for living here. I can say it was not my choice, I did not know that there was a night club next door, I was new in town. I remember the state I was in when I was looking for a place to live here and I know that I attracted this flat.

Actually I want to write about something completely different. Today I’m officially three days behind my writing schedule, that is my thesis writing schedule. Everything looked well just last week until I hit the coding procedure section in chapter four. For about three days I sabotaged myself and I did not even know what was going on at the time. On the third day it dawned on me. I was afraid. I had conducted the qualitative analysis via analogue methods, I mean pen, paper, tape, scissors. I was immersed, there were quotes on the wall, all over my office. I like to work like this, with my entire body.  After all, my work is on embodied cognition and I proof it to myself by working in this way. However for writing up this was not a conducive form of creating a track record, bits of paper with pencil markings just don’t do very well in LaTex. During those lost three days I did not know what to do, this much I knew. But more than that I was afraid that I was failing, failing to reconstruct, failing to provide evidence – and trapped in my mind pondering the consequences. It cost me three days of my schedule. No more. I need to stop this behaviour, I need to work much more efficiently without drifting onto the internet to search for distractions. Moreover, I need to work free of fear. Any fear, fear of making mistakes, fear of not knowing, fear of the deadline. The first three months when I started writing up went alright, since last month there has been a steady decline.

For a moment I want to go back to art school, want to remember how I operated the last three months of my final project. I was a mess, I was fear ridden and every thing around my was falling apart. I forgot to pay bills, I lived on burritos, and I spent most of my energy worrying about whether or not I’d finish in time.

The way I see it is that now I have a chance to change this. I have exactly three months left to turn in my thesis. I don’t have to stress, I don’t have to concentrate on my dwindling finances, or whether my supervisors are going to be able to read my drafts and comment, or whether my drafts need to be completely re-written. I don’t need to worry whether or not I’ll have someone to proof-read them, or whether I’ll have more problems with LaTex and loose time, I don’t have to worry about my nightclub neighbour’s callous behaviour. All I have to do is stand, and direct my Self. I have x amount of hours each day, there is plenty of time to get at least a 8 hour day in, solid writing.

As I’m writing here I’m going to make a commitment to myself to stand by the hour, I will no longer allow my mind to have the best of me. I have worked for five years to get to this point, I will not let my programming interfere and give me hell. I will stand. Yes.

Point: fear of writing up my thesis

I forgive myself for allowing myself to be afraid of not finishing my thesis on time.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to be afraid of not being good enough to write a passing thesis.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to live in denial of my work by seeking distractions on the internet.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to identify with my emotions when I feel frustrated while writing up.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to think that I’m not good enough to complete this thesis successfully.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to work inefficiently not taking breaks when I need them and abusing myself.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to drift in thought to friends or other people and distract myself by recalling their presence and actions.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to be afraid that my current work is difficult. I recognise that this is a belief that is programmed into me and I don’t have to belief it. This work is not difficult, I don’t have to go through hell to get to the end. I can allow myself to enjoy the writing of my thesis.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to think that I am trapped by my current situation.

I forgive myself for allowing myself to be afraid that I have limitations on what I can produce on written pages per day. Throughout numerous situations I have shown myself that my limitation is my mental state. The only limitation that I have is the speed of my typing, and I type fast.

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