Recently I have found myself with days during the week with nothing to do. Knowing good and well that there are things to be worked on. For some reason, I just couldn't get clarity, momentum, or drive to do them.
The technique came up when I was talking with a friend about not really getting much done. This friend mentioned that they were also in the same boat. It dawned on me that I wasn't giving enough conscious time to thinking about what needed to be taken care of. I was giving 15 seconds of conscious thought to what the next day was going to be. I told this friend - "What if we give 15 minutes of conscious thought to our next day's activities." I made the commitment to do this practice for 40 days, the length of a mandala, to experience the true effects and create a practice that offers me the structure I need.
The first night I tried the technique I sat in my meditation chair and set the timer for 15 minutes. I closed my eyes and started to visualize everything that needed to be done, in chronological order. When I got out of the meditation I wrote down everything on a post-it. The following morning I looked at the post-it and again devoted 10 minutes to consciously thinking about and visualizing the tasks to completion. The technique worked like a charm!!!
The next night I decided to try a slightly different approach, which is what I'm currently using. I sat down in the chair, set the timer for 15 minutes and, grabbed my journal. I took up half the page writing down what my next day was going to look like and what needed to be taken care of. Once I finished the story of my forecasted day, I took a highlighter (not necessary, but my pitta dosha really likes it) and noted what tasks popped up. I then transferred those tasks to a checklist on the second half of the paper at the bottom. With the time left, I visualized the tasks to completion, again adding momentum and willpower to what needed to be done. The next morning, I took the list, set the timer for 10, and visualized it.
Evening Journal & Visualization for 15 Minutes
Morning visualization for 10 Minutes
Accomplish your tasks!
WORD OF CAUTION: I found that doing this exercise right before bed didn't allow my mind to fully disengage and go to sleep. I had to shift this exercise to a couple of hours before going to bed.
One of the neatest things I noticed....
I would write A LOT of task items to be accomplished the next day. And correct, not all of them were accomplished - BUT when I would reflect back on the previous pages, I noticed that I was able to check off items that had been written during previous visualizations and sessions. Some tasks need a little more time in the subconscious to process before working themselves out. I now look at creating a task list like I'm instead planting seeds. Just keep nourishing the garden with a meditation practice, keep your intention aligned with your true Self, your attention on your tasks (don't get distracted by your phone), and take an action. Even if it's a small action, that will create enough momentum to really get you going! The key here is to be easy on yourself and not beat yourself up if you don't check off everything on the list.
This technique has redirected my focus, allowed me to gain more clarity around my projects, and given me motivation and drive to get things done.
I'd love to hear how this technique works for you! Please comment below!
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