Monday Musings 8 April: Manyana… tomorrow is another day!

As I sit writing down my thoughts for this week’s Monday Musings, the gale force winds and rain are increasing in ferocity, making for a very windy, wild, and adventurous welcome to all the Africa Travel Week delegates. Likely, there’ll be more drama to report by the time this lands, which ties in with my theme of putting things off until tomorrow.

If there’s one thing I’ve learnt, it’s that tomorrow, the power may be off. Besides load shedding, when you live further from the city, the poles that give us power are prone to falling over in a storm. So, it’s always best I crack on instead of procrastinating!

Richard Branson recently shared one of his old report cards, hinting at his dyslexia. Some years ago, my father found one of mine, and without even seeing it, I could tell you that most of my reports said ‘too talkative’. I’ve since joked that when interviewing someone, we should probably take a sneak peek at their report cards. I am not saying we don’t change as we get older, but there tend to be some key identifiers that rear their head from a young age.

So, hands up if you crammed before exams! I often swotted hard the night before, and I started wondering if that trait might be related to my procrastination still today. Procrastination can take many forms, from working on other tasks, cleaning the house, scrolling on social media, watching movies, or socialising. Of course, in many cases, that downtime is, in fact, critical for the creative juices to flow, ultimately enhancing the ‘delayed’ project.

When listening to this podcast for writers, it sounds like procrastination has a lot to do with ‘imposter syndrome’. Savannah Gilbo drills down into the reasons your novel may still be unwritten, or perhaps why a long-held unfinished goal still niggles at you.

Courtesy of author Dr Valerie Young, Gilbo analyses the types of imposter syndrome common to high achievers that easily leads to procrastination, and I think we can all relate to elements of these:

  • Perfectionism – if it isn’t perfect, then there’s a reluctance to let the job go.
  • Natural genius – setting the bar too high too early on, which is also related to perfectionism.
  • Superhuman – unrealistic expectations and feeling overwhelmed, when the project simply requires more time than you have.
  • Soloist – trying to go it alone because you feel asking for help will make you seem incompetent.
  • Expert – putting off starting until you have all the knowledge.

I am going to be more observant when I feel any of these elements show up and the resistance kicking in, and employ some of the following solutions:

  • Refer to the adage, ‘better done than perfect’.
  • Reach out to those with more experience when advice and support are needed.
  • Break the task down into manageable pieces and celebrate the small wins.
  • Identify priorities – daily, weekly, and monthly, and time-block for my most creative and focused periods.
  • Manage expectations regarding the time each task truly requires.

And if you’ve been parking that dream because life keeps getting in the way, then let’s agree not to wait for tomorrow. Instead, let’s take small steps every day to help us get where we need to be.

Mindful Musings

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What the world was musing over this past week

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Feeling queasy?

The exhibition by Dramamine, the motion sickness medication, entitled The Last Barf Bag was a clever campaign courtesy of the unusual ensemble of bags from four collectors, including that of a retired University of Texas at Austin professor.

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Who sang it best?

Beyonce’s cover of Dolly Parton’s iconic song, Jolene, had social media buzzing. Our South African icons, the Ndlovu Youth Choir, brought some flair to the mix. Take a listen…

Photo credit: Ndlovu Youth Choir

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Roaring responsibly

The Minister of Forestry, Fisheries, and the Environment, Barbara Creecy, has approved a new report highlighting guidelines to end captive lion breeding in South Africa. Don’t miss the Roaring Responsibly discussion at World Travel Market Africa on 10 April at 12h30.

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Solar eclipse

Our friends in the USA are no doubt getting their special viewing glasses out as today’s solar eclipse occurs. Unfortunately, we won’t see it from South Africa, but you can watch it live here.