As much as it’s hard to admit to ourselves sometimes, we’re not perfect. There will be those days where we want to do nothing productive with our time. It happens to the best of us. Regardless if you’re working in an office nine-to-five and producing your work in your free time or if you’ve got a few free days before your next shoot there are those times that we will want to take a mental break. There is nothing wrong with that. We’re not robots. As long as it’s not a repeated excuse, everything will be fine.
I believe that it is okay to take breaks from time to time for various reasons (IE: clear your head, reflect, recover, or charge your battery). The reason that you’re using as an excuse not to work is considered resistance. It is preventing you from accomplishing that ever-moving goal in your life. Instead of feeling guilty and allowing a downward spiral of inaction, I propose, we acknowledge what is transpiring and work with the resistance to be ultimately successful. I see similarities with the mantra “keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer.”
This “resistance” I speak of is a term that Steven Pressfield coined in his book The War of Art. Without getting into Pressfield’s head I cannot say my view on how we should handle the resistance is different than his, but I believe it is in a way. To me, he seems to want to pound any resistance we encounter when making our work with a hammer. As soon as it rears it’s ugly head you cut it off. The analogies are a bit extreme but that’s what I visualize.
I’m more relaxed when it comes to handling resistance. First, I want to establish that whatever resistance is preventing you from working, that work is something you love doing. If it it is something you truly love doing you will be drawn to it regardless of what is stopping you. For me there are parts of having a photography business that scare me and when it comes to accomplishing those tasks I try to procrastinate. I am aware of my fault though and I develop ways to work with it. If I’m able to do it, I know anyone else can as well.
The take-away from this post is to not be discouraged if you’re having trouble motivating yourself to complete a task. Do not allow a downward spiral of procrastination to consume you. Take a break to rebuild your resolve and return with a stronger determination. You can accomplish what you need finishing. Everyone and anyone can.