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Taking Life By The Horns


shotsy
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Growing up with the Christian ideal of "let God lead your life and he'll take care of everything," I've become somewhat passive and have kind of expected everything to work out for me. Granted, Christianity doesn't account for all of it: I was able to rely on my intelligence and natural academic abilities to skate through my lower education, and for whatever reason I've tended to avoid confrontation and stepping on people's feet (perhaps because I grew up with a sister who always over-reacted to such things?) All of this has led to a feeling of helplessness at times, like I can't get over my anxiety and just get something done. It's like a writer's block but more relating to completing any sort of mundane task. So now I'm a fifth-year college student still struggling to develop consistent study habits and to keep track of my finances and keep my car clean.

 

Anyway, do you guys have similar experiences? How have you overcome this? Counseling? Self-help books? Just getting a job to help move toward financial independence? Testosterone supplements? (Kidding!)

 

Any advice is welcome!

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Growing up with the Christian ideal of "let God lead your life and he'll take care of everything," I've become somewhat passive and have kind of expected everything to work out for me.

 

I can understand this. As a christian I "relied on God". But this reliance on God meant I never did much for myself. I never went very far on the career ladder because I always thought I would end up in Christian ministry. I am now 32 and am hoping to take some accountancy qualifications when time and money allows.

 

I am not naturally good at making things happen, I must admit. But I'm in the process of trying to find accommodation in a different city 275 miles from where I come from, and I hope that the move will signal a new beginning. I haven't read any self help books as yet, but if there is a good self-help book out there, I may be interested in reading it.

 

I believe in myself a lot more than I did as a Christian. Now that I am in control of my own life, I can make things happen. But I'm still in the beginning stages of this I guess, so I can't offer that much advice as yet....Anyway here's to 2007 being a year where things change for the better!

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Interesting... I was just reading an article talking about how much of our inaction is due to latent fear. And this makes sense. How many times have I failed to make a decision fearing that I'll make the wrong choice? So I'll leave my options open and never accomplish anything at all. If I would sit down and think about it, I'd realize that the consequences of making the wrong choice are so small it's not even worth worrying about.

 

Anyway, here's the article: Overcoming Fear to Reach Your Full Potential

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Growing up with the Christian ideal of "let God lead your life and he'll take care of everything," I've become somewhat passive and have kind of expected everything to work out for me. Granted, Christianity doesn't account for all of it: I was able to rely on my intelligence and natural academic abilities to skate through my lower education, and for whatever reason I've tended to avoid confrontation and stepping on people's feet (perhaps because I grew up with a sister who always over-reacted to such things?) All of this has led to a feeling of helplessness at times, like I can't get over my anxiety and just get something done. It's like a writer's block but more relating to completing any sort of mundane task. So now I'm a fifth-year college student still struggling to develop consistent study habits and to keep track of my finances and keep my car clean.

 

Oh, I know EXACTLY what you mean. I was brought up to think God controlled everything; so I patiently waited for him to tell me what I should pursue in terms of a degree and occupation. Because of that, I missed two years of college (going back this year) and am trying to curb that learned helplessness that's formed with a lifetime of "let God do it!" fundamentalism. I have to focus my willpower and make myself do things.

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I see the world through the eyes of Myers-Briggs personality type. According to its theory, half of humanity finds it easier to just let things happen as opposed to disciplined rule-oriented life. Actually getting things done can take enormous energy. Not that this is going to wash your car and cook your meals. It might help with the idea that there is something the matter with you or that it is a religious hang-over. Keeping options open is what has gotten me to where I am. Adjusting in the moment to a drastic change of direction can be very positive. I still go by intuitive hunches. I used to think these came from God or the holy spirit. Now I know it's just psychological processes. Perhaps seeing things in this way helps you feel in control, which might lead to a feeling of empowerment. I really don't know. I struggle with the very issues you mention.

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I see the world through the eyes of Myers-Briggs personality type. According to its theory, half of humanity finds it easier to just let things happen as opposed to disciplined rule-oriented life. Actually getting things done can take enormous energy. Not that this is going to wash your car and cook your meals. It might help with the idea that there is something the matter with you or that it is a religious hang-over. Keeping options open is what has gotten me to where I am. Adjusting in the moment to a drastic change of direction can be very positive. I still go by intuitive hunches. I used to think these came from God or the holy spirit. Now I know it's just psychological processes. Perhaps seeing things in this way helps you feel in control, which might lead to a feeling of empowerment. I really don't know. I struggle with the very issues you mention.

 

Lemme guess... INFP?

 

Yeah, I know, it does help looking through Myers Briggs, but at the same time I do feel like it's more than just my personality type (INTP) that's holding me back from accomplishing my goals. Sure, P-types are more likely to procrastinate and leave things open-ended, but when does this become destructive?

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I think it is a combination. Less-motivated personality types + fundy belief system = really unproductive!

 

That's my story and I'm sticking to it........

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That's my story and I'm sticking to it........

 

Wow, you sound like a fundy :-)

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I know also what it's like to just let go and think God will hook me up, since all things work for those who believe in God, or somesuch tripe.

 

To inspire myself, I simply seek out positive things written by like-minded people. Especially the musings of the Atheistic who choose to take a positive look at humanity and posit that we can always improve and reach ever higher - with nothing but our own motivation and will and wisdom. I gravitate towards artists (usually musical) who reflect any of my views, and indulge in their work. I also try to do what I can to try and cast a good reflection on my chosen path in life and even help encourage others towards a better outlook than the standard Abrahamic one offers - my website, linked in my sig, is an example of this, as well as a Lord of the Rings-based fanfic I wrote (with more than a few personal ideological underpinnings ;) )

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Perhaps you don't have compelling enough goals. If you don't have something that makes you want get up in the morning, then of course you aren't going to feel particularly motivated. You don't have to be one of those obsessive, A-personalities to motivate yourself. Just figure out what it is you really want and then ask yourself how you can make it happen.

 

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

by Mark Twain.

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I see the world through the eyes of Myers-Briggs personality type. According to its theory, half of humanity finds it easier to just let things happen as opposed to disciplined rule-oriented life. Actually getting things done can take enormous energy. Not that this is going to wash your car and cook your meals. It might help with the idea that there is something the matter with you or that it is a religious hang-over. Keeping options open is what has gotten me to where I am. Adjusting in the moment to a drastic change of direction can be very positive. I still go by intuitive hunches. I used to think these came from God or the holy spirit. Now I know it's just psychological processes. Perhaps seeing things in this way helps you feel in control, which might lead to a feeling of empowerment. I really don't know. I struggle with the very issues you mention.

 

Lemme guess... INFP?

 

Yeah, I know, it does help looking through Myers Briggs, but at the same time I do feel like it's more than just my personality type (INTP) that's holding me back from accomplishing my goals. Sure, P-types are more likely to procrastinate and leave things open-ended, but when does this become destructive?

 

That's why I slipped in the thing (I highlighted it just now) about this bit of knowledge does not get the daily chores done. Yeah, you guessed right. Congrats on that. Many people guess wrong. I don't think it's religion in my case that keeps me from doing the things that need to be done. And I usually do get the REALLY necessary things done. (Sometimes I change the rules about what is necessary. :thanks: )

 

Like I said, I struggle with the same issues you do. I could make the case that my root problem is depression brought on by dysfunctional family justifying their dysfunction with religion. From that perspective I could blame religion. But I don't believe my problem comes from religious teachings about trusting god.

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I think it is a combination. Less-motivated personality types + fundy belief system = really unproductive!

 

That's my story and I'm sticking to it........

 

More motivated personality types + fundy belief system= super productive for God anyway. That is what my ex and I both were. I am an ENFP btw, and he is an INTJ with 3 masters degrees and just promoted to major in the Army. Having a motivated personality combined with ADD in me amounts to changing directions over and over, and my degree not being finished yet (I am 42).

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I found studying hinduism and buddhism helpful to overcome the massive duality that exists in christianity. I have practiced TM for years, and have found meditation very empowering (hate that word now, but can't think of a better one). Realizing that there is no "other" out there, and that I am physically related to the planet/universe through evolution has helped me find motivation to look inward, meditate, see myself as a part of a whole.

 

Why the hell is this motivating? I guess since (as far as I know) there is only one life to live, I want to enjoy it to the hilt. If there is a soul, I'll find out when the time comes.

 

The alternative for me would be sit back, be a total lazy loser, and lose control of the choices I have in life. I have seen many people get totally lost in drugs, or their jobs, or their kids, and I do not want to be in a position where other people make the most base choices for me. It's like maintaining balance - not letting anything dominate.

 

Am I gonna control my life, or is someone else gonna? I see those who have opted out of making those choices on the street every freakin' day here in SF. Sorta a constant reminder.

 

Just my 2cents. Hope this makes sense.

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I am an ENFP btw, and he is an INTJ

 

How did you ever cope, lanakila? Sounds like a recipe for disaster!

 

Still haven't quite found enough direction. I just think about how the whole of my life is in front of me and it is still a blank slate.

 

can do anything i really want to.

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I am an ENFP btw, and he is an INTJ

 

How did you ever cope, lanakila? Sounds like a recipe for disaster!

 

 

Well, she said he's her ex, so I guess it was a dissaster.

 

Still haven't quite found enough direction. I just think about how the whole of my life is in front of me and it is still a blank slate.

 

can do anything i really want to.

 

Just wanted to say hi. Haven't seen you since that discussion about your boss's wierd behaviour. How's things going? Uh, maybe I should have taken this to pm...

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I'm glad I got out of Christianity in my late teens, I wasn't as religiously developed as most Christians prior to that so I've basically been living the life in a secular manner since my teens still believing in God and all that stuff up until my deconversion. Now I've been doing things for myself a lot more, maybe it's maturity, I don't know, but I've been practicing guitar everyday for 6 months now and practiced to get a good low death growl and have been dedicated to recording and writing things for my death metal band as well as passing all my classes my 1st semester in college.

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