Okay. Iguanability is short for Iguanaccountability, which is the best kind of accountability there is. Because it’s deguiltified.
And because of the iguanas.
Iguanas = the [stupid, crappy, annoying] things you don’t feel like doing.
Calling them iguanas makes it weirdly easier to do them. This is all Karen‘s fault for creating the awesome Inowanna Iguana.
Doing this iguanability thing is a reminder that it’s completely normal to avoid stuff you don’t feel like doing and that you are a lovely person despite not wanting to do them.
So we use these posts to get acknowledgment and cheering while working on our iguanas. Like an iguana chicken! And even if we don’t get them done, we know that we are still loved and adored.
My first thing that doesn’t want to be done yet:
A decent HAT for my new program.*
* HAT stands for Havi’s Announcing A Thing — it’s essentially a sales page but I can’t say sales page without having to throw up a little. So I decorate hats instead of writing copy.
I’m doing a three day thing in June about the art of not being intimidated by biggification. Which will be awesome. And will sell out in a day.
If I actually write the page and tell people about it.
Reminding myself why I’m wanting to do it now:
This is the time.
Sure, it’s gotten delayed because of the Canada trip and a small clan of semi-emergencies that have been popping up.
This is something that will be so much fun. And so powerful. And it will set the energy for the new Playground.
Making it easier on myself by:
Permission to do a crappy first run and then hate it.
Dedicating 20 minutes to making initial notes and then putting on some Beastie Boys and dancing around.
Remembering that this whole process is about fun and play.
Resistance coming up says:
“But you have a million things to do! And they’re all more important than this! And you can’t neglect your blah blah blah. And when are you going to do all these other things? And why won’t you look at the bigger picture and realize that there is no point to doing anything because there will always be more work!?!?!“
Me saying to resistance:
“Oh, I see.
You’re feeling worried that I’ll get overworked and I’ll lose sight of taking care of myself. And yet your methodology is based on keeping me paralyzed by telling me about all the things I’m not doing.
Listen, I like that you want us to stay connected to the bigger picture and the bigger purpose. And, you also know that when I think about everything that has to be done, I get overwhelmed and I fall apart.
And then nothing gets done.
So here’s what we’re going to do: I’ll tell you about it when I make my commitment, okay? “
I am not going to put my attention to the million things that want doing. But I will acknowledge that there are a lot of them.
And after I’ve given twenty minutes to this one thing, I’ll ask my First Mate to help me make a list of the other things that are going on, so we can address them at Drunk Pirate Council tomorrow.
And I’ll check in with myself as I go.
My second thing that doesn’t want to be done yet:
Changes to the my other website.
Reminding myself why I’m wanting to do it now:
Because the look and the energy are old and out-dated.
Because I built that site when my relationship to dance and teaching were different.
Because this is what needs to happen next.
Making it easier on myself by:
Committing to make just three changes instead of trying to make all the changes.
Resistance coming up says:
“This is a distraction. Your business is The Fluent Self. All the dance teaching brain training stuff is a side thing. This isn’t where your energy needs to go. Do you want it to be like last time when …?! “
Me saying to resistance:
“Oh, I get it. The we don’t want it to be like last time thing. Right. You’re one of my monsters.
Well, hon. You’re absolutely right that we don’t want it to be like last time. And I don’t think it will be. Lots of things are different about right now.
And one of the things that’s different is my intention. And what I know about myself.
So why don’t we give this a shot and find out more about the relationship between different parts of what I do? We won’t spend all week on this. It’s a small project, and we’ll see how it goes.”
To notice when the stuck shows up.
To remind myself that this is part of a sovereignty practice.
To keep this project small for now, knowing that it can change and grow into something else later. All I’m doing is planting seeds and doing some loving, much-needed maintenance.
Comment zen for the Iguanability stuff:
Okay. This blog is a zero-guilt space. Which means …
No shoulds. No shoes. No service. Okay, maybe service. But definitely no advices.
However, little hoorays are appreciated. As are offers of drinks. Or ritual sacrifices to the Iguana.
And of course you are more than welcome to share your own
chickens iguanas Things That Don’t Want To Be Done Yet and whatever is being processed around that.
I promise no one here is going to make you feel bad if what you want to happen doesn’t happen in the way you want it to, but we will be supportive so you can regroup.
As Neil Diamond once (horrifyingly) said: chicken ripple ice cream. Goodness.
I need/want to write my own thing-page. I’ve been wanting to do this for months and yet, (almost) nothing. The other day, thanks to Shiva Nata, I realized that I wasn’t writing the page because it was like stepping over a threshold into a new life, and I needed to grieve the loss of the old one, even though it wasn’t right. I did grieve that loss, so now I am not entirely sure why I’m still stuck.
I will do Shiva Nata tomorrow or Friday and then take my notes and write an initial draft of the page. And then I will celebrate. If resistance comes up, I will acknowledge it and give it time to speak after I finish the draft.
*offers a yellow flower to the Inowanna Iguana for all our Iguanas*
.-= elizabeth´s last post … giveaway winners =-.
Realized as I was reading the post that a Monster has been deflecting a rewrite of my resume, and with that rewrite, an application to work at a place I really want to be employed by; I propose to go do that now. (Ending a sentence with a preposition is a no-no, so I made it a proposition instead …)
PS: Dear Monster, thank you for trying to protect us. But we are not so fragile as you think. We will do this, and be fine with it. Love, Vienne
PS. Take care of yourself, Monster. I still need you to tell me when things are really, truly scary, and I would be wise to protect myself. V
I need to assign others tasks on Project X. I’ve resisted doing so because this project is my baby and although I work with fantastically talented and capable people, I’m loathe to part with control, even though it is probable that doing so will make the results of Project X better. So I’m committing to completing the task list for Project X and calmly considering who will be best for each task while comforting myself with the knowledge that I am still the leader of this thing and that my shipmates will not leave me out of the loop and that it’s okay to ask for help.
*Offers drinks… but wait, is that for the Iguanas or for us? Both? I think both. Libations all around! Yay!*
Trying to play Metaphor Mouse with my relationship towards “Practice”. Practicing anything. But Iguana says ‘No.’ to the Metaphor Mouse. So I am lovingly Chickening this Iguana.
(There are so many Creatures in this comment that I feel I’m in an episode of “Frog and Toad have a picnic”.)
“But you have a million things to do! And they’re all more important than this! And you can’t neglect your blah blah blah. And when are you going to do all these other things?”
I experience this way too often… So nice knowing I’m not the only one! 🙂
Also I love (read hate) it when resistance whines at me to do planning and get more clarity when I’m in the middle of working, and then complain that I’m spending too much time planning when I’m in planning mode. It’s like I can’t win. 😛
*Feels like she needs some rituals or something…*
.-= Monique´s last post … We Have Arrived =-.
Hi guys! Happy iguana-ing.
@monique – oh yeah me too. So frustrating! I usually come up with some kind of compromise and make all parties agree. IF I get to play after I work then playing-me can’t distract work me. And IF I need planning time, then hurry-up-me is promised her time.
It’s complicated. 🙂
@R – Ha! Frog and Toad go on an adventure with an iguana, a chicken and Metaphor Mouse. I know the feeling. Menagerie!
@Beth – oh absolutely. Libations all around! Next round is on the iguana.
@Kelly – awesome. Nice realizing of what is needed. Sending love and support for the actual happening-of-it.
@Vivienne – awwww. What a sweet, perfect monster note. And a clear, beautiful ask too. I love it.
@Elizabeth — mmmmm. That makes sense! Nice shivanautical epiphany. Yay. And I like the way you’re going at it. Seems very wise.
So many things that don’t want to be done….. thanks for the reminder that I’m still a lovely person, even when I’m not doing the thing.
Specific things…. like calling my ISP to make the domain name for my new Thing live on the interwebs. Funny how sometimes it’s the little, don’t-seem-like-they’re-scary things that I get stuck on.
And general things… like work. Some days it doesn’t matter what kind of work needs doing I simply don’t want to do it. Any of it.
I think I’ll introduce my iguana to your iguana…. they probably have a lot in common, being iguanas and all.
But first, some Shiva Nata to Dead Milkmen’s appropriately titled “Big Lizard”.
Then whiskey. Care to join me?
My Master’s Final Project. It doesn’t seem to want to get done. I have a thought about how to do it, and how to approach it, and then this monster starts in on “That isn’t good enough! Are you kidding? That’s the stupidest, lamest thought ever. You’re going to be a laughing stalk. No starting until you have an idea and an approach that’s at least ”
And when that monster gets tired, in comes the cousin of Havi and Monique’s monster telling me that I’m doing the wrong thing, and there are so many other things that I should actually be spending my time and attention on.
Dear Monster Number 1, I know you’re trying to help me and raise the bar and make sure I’m doing my best work. But all your good intentions are just distracting me and making me second guess myself and I have to get this done, there’s a dead line coming up. Please just let me run with my idea, once I have a first draft, then you can tell me what’s wrong with it, and we can have a discussion about what to improve.
Dear Monster Number 2. You’re right that there’s a whole lot of things on my plate right now that I have to take care of, and thank you for making sure I don’t forget things. But that’s also what I have my handy-dandy daytimer for. And I need to concentrate and be fully present for what I’m doing right at this moment. Later, when I’m sitting in front of my daytimer with a pen, you can tell me all about what I need to get done this week. But I can only be effective if you let me concentrate now.
Ah. Thanks, Havi, for the space and your inspiration. I feel much better. Here’s to focus and clarity, and writing letters to monsters.
BRILLIANT. The last word the first monster is supposed to say is “Brilliant” I don’t know why it didn’t appear.
Oh Porcupine Pie!
Ennui, or is it entropy, is in full swing here. I iguana either, but I have a show next weekend that wants some small jewelry type pieces and then a bigger show that wants to know the names of my pieces by May 10. But first, I need to find my Patanol, because whatever bloomed yesterday that is yellow is kicking my butt.
.-= Andi´s last post … Reboot of Doom =-.
“why won’t you look at the bigger picture and realize that there is no point to doing anything because there will always be more work!?!?!”
Our monsters must be passing notes in the back of class 🙂 Hooray for not giving in to that, and good luck decorating your Hat!
I can never have enough reminders that it’s about Sovereignty.
I think there’s a small mess of Iguanas (that is the proper collective noun, according to Google) plodding slow, spiky rings around my Art.
Or perhaps it’s a malignity of goblins, each with their own wicked Monster message:
– If you never start, you’ll never have to worry about having more unfinished art lying around. Or worse, bad art!
– If you don’t paint, you’ll never run out of canvases.
– If you don’t show your art to anyone, no one can throw shoes through it!
– Wouldn’t you rather spend your time on things you know will bring in money? No one will buy these things, anyway.
– There’s other, more important things for you to be doing. Those Facebook games don’t play themselves! Clients have work! Catboxes need cleaning!
– More art made will just mean more to store and move later, after no one buys it!
– Unseen! Invisible! No showing off!
So my poor beleaguered Iguana in the middle of this vicious circle just sits and says Idonwanna, and refuses to splish and splosh in the colors with me. But he’s still going to hoard all the paint, just in case.
I will just have to comfort each frightened little goblin one at a time, though, because I have Ideas clamoring to get past the Iguana and out into the world!
.-= Amy Crook´s last post … Hooray! =-.
Well, there’s my List and then there’s the things I’m actually doing. Many of which needed doing 1st but I didn’t realize it when I made the list. Systems/methodologies… very important for saving work later.
And then there’s investment junk that I am so resistant to that I’m finding alternate money things to deal with that make me feel like I’m making headway with it but I’m not really. Grr.
.-= claire´s last post … Gettin’ My Groove On… (vol. xv) =-.
my iguana is still cleaning/grown up responsible stuff. because i’m off doing my teachery day job all day i only have a little while each night to catch up on all the interwebz good times.
*sigh* i guess i’ll go clean the kitchen, but i’m not gonna like it.
.-= Tami´s last post … Yoga+Music(notquite365) – You Are Free by Cat Power – The Recipe Edition! =-.
You know, this has turned out to be rather an Iguana sort of day for me.
Inowanna work on choosing a dissertation topic any more. And, in a related Iguana, Inowanna have to ask someone, “Will you please be my dissertation advisor?”
Reminding myself why I really do want to do it now: There is (sigh) a bit of a deadline. By the time I walk into the oral defense for my preliminary exam next Wednesday, it would really be best if I already had at least the beginnings of a topic in place, and a member of the faculty already ready, willing, and able to be my dissertation advisor.
Making it easier on myself by: Scribbling madly. Lots and lots of freewheeling, playful freewriting to help me come up with good topical ideas. (Topical Brainstorm!) And as for contacting a faculty member to ask,
“Will you go out with me?”“Will you be my dissertation advisor?”…perhaps this is a good time to make use of the buddy system, to find someone who will hold my hand and give me hugs when it all feels too hard and scary.
Resistance coming up says: You’ve been working on this for a week now, and nothing! Just a big vague sloppy mess, is all. Then you had that one idea that you loved, and you sent it to a professor who said, “Well, I don’t know if it will work because of x, y and z, but maybe a different professor would have a different reaction.” And that was your best idea! Oh, this is too hard, you can’t do it, you can’t, you can’t!
Me saying to resistance: Oh, sweetie. I know how scary this is, and I know how much you want it to be settled already. It’s awful, not knowing. Plus, I know that we were always taught, from a very early age, that when you’re smart, things are supposed to come easily, so when you try to do something and it turns out to be really really hard, then either something is very wrong with the Thing, or something is very wrong with You! I want to tell you, though, that it doesn’t really have to be that way. It’s okay when something I’m working on is difficult. I don’t disintegrate just because I’m doing something difficult. It hurts, maybe, at times, but I can dwell in the hurt without having to fall to pieces.
Oh, and another thing: Just because it’s hard doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Honestly. I promise.
My commitment: I will give myself all the kindness and compassion I can. I will tell myself, “Self, you are still you, no matter what happens with this whole PhD thing. Your beautiful, loving, creative selfhood is not dependent on this or any other degree program. Whatever happens, your light can still shine every bit as brightly as you want it to shine!”
— Oh, and Havi, I’d like to tell you how grateful I am to have the safety of this advice-free space! It means a lot, right now. Thank you.
.-= Kathleen Avins´s last post … Liberation =-.
I tackled an iguana today. I had to write an email to my soon-to-be boss and my current bosses to tell them that the Big Huge Website they are thinking will be shiny and new and launched on Aug. 16 will not, in fact, be launched on Aug. 16. And I had to tell them that the reason for the non-launch event is because they are unwilling to make an adequate financial investment in staff and infrastructure to make it happen. And that I am just one person doing the job of four, and something has to give. And that something is this new project. And I had to tell them that I am working on a proposal for alternatives, given the lack of investment. What you get for the money.
I’ve been putting this off for weeks. I have not slept because of this iguana. Ugh.
The email is written, but not sent. I needed to sleep on it, check it in the AM for “tone” and then hit send.
My monsters are telling me I am going to get fired for this–for speaking up and for overpromising and having to reneg on the promise. And for saying no, you cannot take advantage of me anymore. My scariest monster is the one who says speaking up gets me in trouble or killed in some way because that’s what happens and here are at least a dozen examples from this lifetime to prove it. And here are a few from the life before this one.
Not quite sure what to say to my monsters. Except I hear you, and thank you and I have to hit send anyway. And you may be right, but if you are, I will somehow be OK.
And then, after I send the email, I have to start on the second part–the alternatives proposal, which will be the iguana that ate Denver, only to be trumped by the website project itself, which will be the iguana that ate Colorado and half of Wyoming. And maybe a corner of Nebraska for dessert. Oy.
.-= lynn @ human, being´s last post … Working the steps =-.
I’m new to yoga and have committed to a daily meditation practice. Now, over the past 25 years, I’ve committed to daily meditation over and over and over again. When I’ve managed to let myself do it, it’s been fab because it’s reduced stress and made me feel physically better (and with my health history, that’s been A Huge Deal). It’s also always fallen by the wayside within 3-4 days.
Last week, I saw this little video on YouTube about guilt vs self-discipline.
Maybe I was just in the right place to hear it. Whatever was going on, the message sank in: doing something because you feel rubbish about yourself when you don’t do it is no way to build self-discipline; wanting to do it more than you want not to do it… that’s self-discipline. So on a day when I was resistant to doing anything, I suddenly realised that it didn’t matter that it was almost the end of the day – I wanted that meditation more than I wanted to not do it.
And during meditation, I copy you and say to my distractions, “Hello, lovelies. You make very good points, and I will be able to give you my full attention when I’ve finished here. Love you.” And it really, really works.
@Kathleen i’m in similar shoes with the final year project of university and asking supervisors and stuff. Lots of luck!!!
I can’t even begin to list off the iguanas sitting in their tank right now… eating crickets… crickets are loud.
I can’t even hear what my resistance is saying; so I commit myself to quiet time tonight. I will take time out to listen.
Havi, Thanks for providing this space for us commenter mice. PLease, have a drink -offers you a glass-.
.-= Rose´s last post … Kitten Conversations: i =-.
This is good timing — today is a very Iguana-d day, after a couple of days where I’ve been sailing through things!
I’m not sure it’s anything more complicated that a straightforward DON’T WANNA, either — and possibly a reaction to those three very packed days and an upcoming weekend away that is going to be fun, but just as tiring.
So… this is me promising myself and my Iguana that I’m going to go take a shower now (didn’t have one before walking the dog this morning & my routine is all off), do 25 minutes on the novel, and then have a break and do something fun. And then after that I’ll see how I’m doing. This may end up being a “just do what you really really have to” day, and if it does, that’s OK.
I’m also going to remind myself that I’ve made this week’s column deadline already, so that’s the only *really* important thing dealt with!
.-= Juliet´s last post … linky linky =-.
I looove this practice!
My thing that doesn’t want to be done yet:
Making myself visible. Creating my-own-thing website and marketing stuff. For real. With my own graphics, and banners, and language, pictures.. The whole deal.
Why does this thing need to be done now?
Because I just took 7 months off to go travel the world and, as much as I wish I didn’t have to depend on money.. Well, the world doesn’t work that way at this point in time (I keep wishing and doing my bit to help things along though!).
Plus, I really really really DO have valuable stuff to share with people, but I cannot do that if they have no clue I am here or what I’m here for.
How can I make it easier on myself?
I like the idea of giving it a first run without judgment. Just go. No thinking. No analyzing. Whatever comes out.
My resistance says:
Umm.. Sure, but you have no idea of how to go about this. Not only that, you don’t know what language your people speak and you could be speaking the wrong people’s language. What if your velvet rope is too exclusive? No one will show up. And then you’ll be broke, and would have wasted all this time. Also, there’s other people who can take care of this type of stuff who know better than you. Why would anyone come to you? You don’t really know what you’re talking about. And there’s SO much stuff to do! There’s no way you can get to all of it, so you’d better just give it up now and stop wasting your time. Plus, you need to make money NOW… You’re pretty close to being broke, and you cannot crash at your sister’s place forever.
Dear resistance, I understand and appreciate that you’re trying to take care of me. But your tactics really don’t help me. They make me lose faith in my own power, and then I feel lost, confused, lonely and depressed. And angry at myself for not doing the things I know I should be doing. And scared because I have no direction.
You see, while you’re trying to help me out and watch out for me, it ends up working against me. And the truth is, this paralysis is scarier than any of the other monsters out there. It turns me against myself.
So.. Can we please please not go down this road again? I’ve been paying attention to you for years and years, but it hasn’t worked. Let’s figure out a way that I can be realistic, without getting so overwhelmed that I stop in my tracks.
I will work on my my-own-thing marketing stuff this week. Seriously. Like, I will dedicate at least 3 hours of work each day to this specific thing. I will keep in the back of my mind that, yes, there’s a ton of other things to do, but I will do my best not to get overwhelmed by just focusing on the next immediate step I can take. Being gentle with myself when I get overwhelmed again, and resistance and fear show up again. Taking deep breaths and taking good care of myself. Remind myself that I have something special to offer, that lots of people would benefit from. Trying not to focus on this imaginary looming deadline for when I need to be “making it”. Remember that it’s just imaginary and self-imposed, and I’m very resourceful and will be able to figure it out. I will survive. In fact, I will thrive!
.-= Melody´s last post … Nutrition: Dandelion Greens and Yam Stew =-.