Beware the Intimate Enemy

On Saturday I shovelled 2 cubic metres of soil from the driveway into the new garden bed and I had to fight my Intimate Enemy every step of the way.

Sally Kempton said, “It’s hard to fight an enemy who has outposts in your head.”

Saturday was a typical Melbourne summers day – drizzly rain that would start and stop, a bit warm and, due to the rain, a little sticky. Not the most pleasant conditions.

Let’s face it, shovelling and wheelbarrowing slightly wet soil is not an easy job either. At every stage my Intimate Enemy was telling me why I should stop, and there we a lot of reasons. Here are some of them:

  • It’s raining, you could get sick
  • You broke your leg and this is a large strain
  • Wait until the weather gets better
  • It would be easier if someone helped you
  • The dog will get mess everywhere
  • You’re tired and need a break
  • You did a lot of physical work yesterday
  • (insert feeble excuse here…)

In case you hadn’t worked it out, my Intimate Enemy is my own brain.

What was even more peculiar is that I could see it happening. So at that time I would just counter the Intimate Enemy with logic.

  • If I don’t do it, it won’t get done.
  • I need to move the dirt to access the garage
  • It will only take a couple of hours and I have nothing else planned to do
  • If I don’t do it now then I will only have to do it later.

Along with logic I used my other secret power. The power of Dory!

That’s right, I was simply repeating to myself “just keep swimming, just keep swimming” as I did each shovel and each barrow load of soil. I knew it was just time and effort that would get me there. With the power of logic and Dory I persisted and finally the job was done.

Do you have an Intimate Enemy with an outpost in your own head?

It is amazing how the biggest barriers to some of the goals we set is ourself.

When your Intimate Enemy attacks, why not try a little bit of logic and Just Keep Swimming!