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Mental Blocks

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There are times in my life when I am struck with the Aww inspiring thought that I have nothing to say.  My mind is full of things I want to read, do, and say that I sometimes don’t know where to begin.  I get struck with idea after idea and begin to compose a new post only to discover that my mind is blocked from moving forward. I must admit this is a new experience for me.  Never have I found myself so blocked from moving forward that I seemed to be standing still and not progressing.  It seemed like a foreign concept when I first encountered it that I did everything I could to avoid dealing with the task.  This avoidance worked for a few days and then out of the blue I awoke from an odd dream in which I felt an overwhelming desire to read a book. You see, I find it relaxing to read for pleasure.  I find this simple activity provides me with a sense of renewal akin to coming home from a vacation.  It was during this mental respite that I had an Aha moment:  sometimes mental blocks occur in order to help you recharge your batteries. If it has been a while since you took time out of your busy schedules and participated in an activity strictly for the pleasure of it, it is time to step back and do NOTHING!  Now when I say do nothing, I don’t mean for you to play hooky from work or stop caring for your family.  I mean sit back, relax, and give your mind and body some rest.  Take a bath, write in a journal, do a crossword puzzle, learn a new hobby but do not stick to your normal schedule.  Our routines have a way of making our mental faculties operate on autopilot without need for manual intervention. Think about it – have you ever found yourself driving home and your mind wanders for what you think is a few minutes only to realize you are pulling into your driveway with no thought as to how you got there?  Your mind and body took you where you always go.  You followed a set routine.  While this is great for driving home, it isn’t helpful for working on new projects.  This is when it becomes more important than ever to take a break. Stepping back from the project at hand for a few minutes at a time or a few hours on the weekend allows us to reset our brains and bodies by giving them a few minutes of rest.  Now I am not an expert in this area but I write from my own experiences.  There appear to be a few other notable people who agree with the importance of giving yourself time off. “Every person needs to take one day away.  A day in which one consciously separates the past from the future.  Jobs, family, employers, and friends can exist one day without any one of us, and if our egos permit us to confess, they could exist eternally in our absence.  Each person deserves a day away in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for.  Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us.” ― Maya AngelouWouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now “I think people need hope when times are tough. I think they also need escape and adventure and fantasy. Books are like cheap mini vacations.”  ― Michelle M. Pillow A vacation is what you take when you can no longer take what you’ve been taking.  – Earl Wilson The thing I love most about going on vacation is that I get to leave behind any kind of schedule. My entire life is scheduled from morning to night, and when I’m on vacation, there is no schedule.  – Kelly Clarkson  Writer’s block for me was a signal that I needed to take a few minutes to relax and gain some new perspective.  It was a shock to my system because I hardly ever have nothing to say but I still resisted what my body was trying to tell me.  I’m stubborn and I like to be in control.  Neither of these characteristics helped me when I faced my own mind’s resistance.  A few hours of uninterrupted reading for pleasure was the mental vacation I needed to get back to work.  What do you need to defeat your own mental block?  Is it a good book or a new hobby?  Whatever it may be, take a few minutes to indulge this week.  You will feel and operate better because of it. Til next time, “Action expresses priorities” – Mohandas Gandhi    

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