From Panama: It has been going for a while now, but I realized about a couple of weeks ago. It seems like a really bad habit, but now I’m not sure if it’s just a habit. I have a lot of interests. I like researching and finding out what I like, but that also happens to be a bad thing since when I find an interest and I decide to pursue it, after little time, I give up on it. I don’t know why, but I always seem to do it. It’s like I lose interest, or whatever motivation I had in the first place. For example, a couple of weeks ago I had decided to write a book. I’ve always loved writing and reading, even when I was younger. Reading is certainly an addiction, while writing fills me with satisfaction. So I started creating the plot and organizing the story, because I wanted to do it perfectly. I started making summaries per chapter so that when I actually start to write, I know what goes on in the chapter. I was so pumped about it. I felt like this time, I was going to do it right. Until a few days ago. The book was just by the half. I stopped logging in my computer. I stopped looking for words. I stopped having interest. I simply stopped wanting to write. And I know that it’s not writers block, because I knew what I had to write, I just didn’t want to. And I’m so annoyed about it, because I was telling myself at the beginning: “Don’t worry, you’ll totally make it through the end this time.” And once again, I’ve failed to complete it. And not just in writing, I also quit tap dancing, piano lessons, TV shows, you name it. And I’m disgusted by this because I want to finish stuff, but then I don’t. I’ve never been diagnosed with depression and anxiety disorders, but I’m pretty certain I have them. I’ve never checked myself because my parents have enough troubles on their own. I have also insulin resistance and tachycardia (they are aware), so I don’t want to trouble them with something as big as depression and anxiety that may just be all up in my head and possibly not be true. I just keep everything inside, and wait until it all goes away. Please help me.
I want to point something out. The email you’ve sent to us had a beginning, middle, and end. You planned something, sat down to do it, and completed it. The key is in finding something that matches your readiness for engagement. The thing you may want to do to get yourself ready for longer and more involved goals is to first pick smaller more manageable goals. Start the process of bringing smaller ideas to fruition and then move to bigger ones.
The other thing is to learn how to break larger goals into smaller ones. What you’ve done with your book idea is fantastic. You have an outline and have begun writing. Longer term goals require a different pace — a sprint is different than a marathon.
Experiment with shorter goals so you can feel like you have achieved something. Here is a psychcentral blog on the subject that might help.
Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.
APA Reference Tomasulo, D. (2018). I Have Trouble Finishing Things. Psych Central.
Retrieved on November 21, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2016/07/18/i-have-troubles-with-finishing-things/
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 18 Jul 2016) Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018 Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.