This article, which I got from Clarissa, misses the point once again. Of course it is good to get up and do things, including when you think you do not feel like it or find it difficult to begin. This fact has never been in question. Neither has the idea that you should work on your project every day.
I remember a discussion about mood and work I had in graduate school. It was a beautiful day and I wanted to spend some time outdoors, for the sake of the beauty but also because it would be good for work. The other graduate student said: “But it is nice indoors, as well.” WRONG … you should not repress doing what will be good for you.
I said yes, it is nice indoors, but I am tired and the outdoors will refresh me, which I need in general, but especially because I want to do 2.5 hours of work today. The other graduate student said: “But are you in a state to even think about doing work today?”
She was right if she was talking about taking a day off if you are really not in a state to do work but that was not the situation on that day. This was the first time I had ever heard of making one’s mood an excuse for not working, or having it be a block, and the concept seemed so foreign and also unnecessary.
It is of course true that the difficulty starting work, or bogging down in a project, is painful and the pain and difficulties compound, making things more and more difficult. “Just starting” can sometimes help with this although the “loop” is hard to cut once it has formed. Advice on how to do things is also good for people who do not start because they do not have instructions or know how to generate them.
This is of course not good for trauma. The usual advice, such as “write before you are ‘ready’,” does not work if not being ready means you have insufficient access to self. It is even counterproductive; in my case it means I bog down.
On starting immediately: I still do start immediately and my project is, first, to shed my public role and return to myself, and next, to start excavating the hidden self that used to do and to some extent still does a certain kind of work.