Friday, October 29, 2010

Joy 33/82: All Our Selves

One of my favorite sources of inspiration and information is Bob Genn's twice-weekly newsletter.  Theoretically, it's about art ... and it is a rich source of information about art, art processes, and the business of art ... but it is also about life.  This morning he is talking about procrastination and states that it might not be a character flaw as much as it is a "war of selves," one self wanting to make art while another wants to organize the spice rack.  Knowing our selves and who's running the show can be helpful in our efforts to be more effective.

Here's what Bob says:
Recent studies tell us we need to get to know all our different selves. We need to make a list. FYI, here's mine: Responsible Bob. Loves-painting Bob. Hates-business Bob. Daydreaming Bob. Irresponsible Bob. Strategic Bob. Fooling-around Bob. Birdwatching Bob. Imposter Bob. Loves-writing Bob. Old-car Bob. Analytical-guru Bob. Doesn't-like-to-be-taken-advantage-of Bob. Helpful, loving Bob. Philatelic Bob. Lazy Bob. Leave-me-alone Bob.
Knowing these Bobs helps Bob see when one Bob is caving in to another Bob or pushing another Bob around.
It seems like an interesting exercise in self-acceptance, so I'm going to do it this morning and, if it interests you, invite you to do the same and comment about any insights you have.  I'll post mine tomorrow.

One of the most interesting sections of Bob's newsletters comes in the P.S. and with what he calls "esoterica."  About this topic of procrastination, he states:
PS: "You can't build a reputation on what you are going to do." (Henry Ford) 
Esoterica: The Greeks called it akrasia--"Doing something against one's better judgment." The condition is of great interest and puzzlement to motivators because of its irrationality. Surely we should all be getting positive things done in a steady, rational manner. I've gone blue in the face telling artists to "steadily chip away at your statue." But chipping isn't always steady. There's sweeping up to do. And birdwatching. And cleaning the lake.
About this image:  Why do we expect our lives to run in straight lines?

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed reading this. The Ford quote is one to remember.