“A little note about grammar. I know it and I love it, but I haven’t always followed it in this book. I start sentences with ands and buts. I end sentences with prepositions. I use the plural they in contexts that require the singular he or she. I’ve done this for informality and immediacy, and I hope the sticklers will forgive me.”
Mindset: How you can fulfil your potential by Dr Carol S Dweck
The ‘growth mindset’ approach says that:
1. I don’t have to stay the way I am (which in fact echoes beautifully with my theology as well).
2. I can improve, through hard work and practise, in an area that I value.
3. I have no idea what my potential (ceiling) really is.
Sorry to bang on about this one, but I find this hugely encouraging and motivating and no-one has ever really told me this before.
Even all the love and encouragement in the world from parents and friends and the well-meaning: “you can do anything you want to” advice, have only managed to encourage me for a time… until it became hard, or (comparing myself to others) I thought I might not have the talent (don’t get Dweck started on that foul word), or the obstacles became too great, or the fear of failure became overwhelming. In my case, I have always managed to find a million other things to do instead. I have perfected the art of busyness, cleaning and doing household tasks!
Incidentally, I’ve always been quite proud of my innate talent (cue Dweck) for practical tasks and organising, but now I see that what may well have begun as a burgeoning talent as a little girl, became a skill I valued, practiced and perfected over hours and years (Yes, sadly, I do enjoy cleaning and organising at home – I blame my mother who has always been my coach in that arena). Hard work and attention to detail has resulted in my being at the top of my game (she laughs ironically).
Now, however, it has also become a very successful avoidance tactic.
Today, as my (few) readers are my witnesses, I pledge to assign more effort and practise to my freelance work which I’m supposed to be doing at home 2-3 days a week. Perhaps then I will have more than just a margin of success in my writing and photography which are two things I absolutely love and dream of developing further.
My 10 highly effective habits (in the making) of at freelancer:
- Start the day properly – tea (thank you dearest Hubby), reflection and prayer.
- Be at my desk by 9-9:30am (with another cup of tea if necessary).
- Make a list of what needs to be done in the day (this works for me – it may not work for you).
- Prioritise what’s most important.
- Make a start – starting is always the hardest part.
- Finish one thing at a time (I’m beginning to wonder if multi-tasking is really all that productive? Any thoughts?).
- Take regular breaks from my computer screen.
- Be inspired – read, watch or listen to something in one of my breaks that will encourage and inspire my work.
- Breathe…. and expect that it won’t always be easy … expect to be challenged and that challenge is good.
- Admit that sometimes, like Joseph’s reaction to Pottifer’s wife, RUN from temptation and spend a few hours working in a coffee shop instead.
Final note to self: Admit that I am a recovering procrastinator/domestic organiser and repeat the 10 steps until they become habit.
So, Tuesdays and Wednesdays (soon to change) are my ‘work from home’ days. I LOVE working from home. With the help of accountability (my Hubby is reading this too), I hope and pray that I will make the most of this most wonderful blessing!
Now you see why my weekly blog is most likely to make it’s appearance on a Tuesday – a margin of productivity at least 🙂