June 25, 2014
So who does this: “Dear Self! I’m talking to you! Yeah you! You can go get a Hershey Kiss after you write another page!”
I know there’s a few of you out there (maybe a lot) who actually respond by writing a page. I don’t understand you, but I know you exist. And I know this because there are freaks in the world (Just kidding. Mostly).
I know you exist because any time I (frequently) get lazy and announce my laziness is winning over my desire to work, several of you come along with the suggestion of treating myself to rewards.
I just don’t get that at all. I mean, I understand the reward system. I GET THAT PART. I don’t get your self-restraint. When I tell myself “You can have some Pringles after you write a page!” Myself answers with a muttered chuckled, a F’you swagger to the pantry, and a moment of kicking back on the couch while I have my Pringles and my HGTV. Three hours later, one empty Pringles can, and mid-way through a Property Brothers marathon, I sport a satisfied grin that I won over my Bossy McBoss Pants.
Take that Pants. You can’t boss me around. I’m not even wearing you.
For me to work for treats like a circus elephant jonesing for some peanuts, I would need to hire someone stronger, taller, and faster to hold my treats over my head. But we know how that idea will pan out. If I can’t make myself write for jelly beans, I’m darn sure not going to go through the effort of hiring someone to toss me a Cheerio across the room for every hundred words I get down on the page.
I’ve been with my mind for over thirty years now. I know how it works. It likes to function when people are expecting something out of me. It’s why #1k1hr and writing challenges work so well for me. I guess I’m a performer to the core. My best progress comes when I have binding contract that says I have to get X done by X-date. Forget cookies. I don’t have time for cookies when I have one of those. I’m getting X done and somehow, by the magic powers of exceeding your expectation to come in the place of awesome, I’ll also get Y finished and be half way through Z before X-date.
Thankfully I have one of those book contracts coming down the hopper because I’ve been spinning my wheels so much, I’m starting to get bored with myself. Not enough to work for brownies…but maybe close.