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  #1  
Old 10-06-03, 04:53 PM
waywardclam waywardclam is offline
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Paralysis of the Will - can you all relate?

Copied from http://add.miningco.com/library/weekly/aa021003a.htm :


Paralysis of the Will

Procrasitnation is the choice to not do something, paralysis is the inability to do it.

I received The following email from the mother of a 20 year old with ADHD and Depression:

“My son is 20 years old. He has graduated High School and decided to not continue his education. He works full time but can’t seem to hold a job for longer than six to eight months. Although he will do as I ask him to do, he doesn’t seem to have any inner motivation to get anything done. In between jobs he sits and watches TV, until I tell him to go out and look for a job. Once I do, he gets up and goes out and fills out as many applications as he thinks will appease me. Eventually, he does get a job.

He is also an artist and is very talented. I know that he could make a good living with his art, but he barely practices it. He will draw for a few days, then stop and won’t do it again until I, or his father, get on him for not doing anything.

He doesn’t want to go back to school. Academics were a nightmare for him, but he doesn’t seem to have any “get up and go.” He just doesn’t seem to be able to motivate himself. I don’t think he is really lazy, and he always has good intentions and I think he honestly thinks he will get around to doing what needs to be done.

I just don’t know what to do to help him.”

This email reminded me of a thread on the forum I had read long ago, “Paralysis of the Will.” Before answering the email, I went back and read it again (well almost all of it, it is 355 posts.) I think the information in this thread is helpful to many, certainly the response to it shows a great deal of interest in the subject.

“Paralysis of the Will” is explained in the book You Mean I’m Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy?! “. . .failure to act at all-something like a paralysis of the will. The output function totally stops working. When this happens, the Adder may find himself in a frozen state, unable to take appropriate action. He may watch the softball whiz by as if he were a spectator instead of the player responsible for intercepting it. When it's time to answer someone's question, he may stand back feeling stupid, because he can't think of a response."
(Kelly and Ramundo, You Mean I'm Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy?!)

Although there is not much information available on this topic, it seems to be a major obstacle for many ADDers. SHEF0001KS, on the forum, describes it this way: “block, inertia, stall, or inability”. Some of the examples she provides are:

¨ Bills not paid until somebody calls on the phone or until service is cut off, when the money is in the bank and there is no intent to accept services w/o paying for them.

¨ Income tax returns late or not filed when there is no intent not to pay taxes (most paid during the year by payroll deductions anyway), and when in fact there is a belief in the tax system and what it produces for us.

¨ Similar credit problems when we know pretty much all there is to know about staying out of debt.

¨ Walking into the kitchen with several days' unwished dishes, thinking "Oh, how disgusting," and then leaving the dishes again.

She continues on, “The key is that in all of these scenarios you know what you need to do, you are daily appalled and shamed by your inability to move, but you j.u.s.t c.a.n.'.t m.o.v.e. You want to do it. You know that getting started is the worst part, but you don't pick up even one dish or whatever. You are frozen into immobility (literally and/or figuratively), numbed in the face of a complete lack of understanding of why you cannot even touch some of these projects.”

Based on the response this thread received, this problem is not an isolated situation and it can cause extreme frustration, shame, and low self-esteem. For many, this paralysis began in childhood and has continued well into adulthood. It has created problems in relationships, in work, in education and in life in general. It creates a feeling of isolation and terror.

Although the participants are not medical doctors (most are not) they shared a number of theories on why this happens, believing that understanding may help to overcome and provided tips and suggestions on how to live with, through and in spite of paralysis of will.
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Old 10-06-03, 05:00 PM
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That is totally me. I do manage to get a lot done. But sometimes I find myself sitting on the couch, staring at the TV thinking "I know I want to get up and do something, but I don't know how." I am completely stuck.

I had the same problem when I was in school, trying to do homework. Or now, when I am trying to do a project at work. I get the brain fog. I just can’t turn my brain on to think about what I am doing.
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Old 10-07-03, 09:38 PM
4mygrls 4mygrls is offline
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omg, that's totally me. I'm getting better though. I don't know if it's the straterra or not since i've only been on it for going on two weeks but i am able to get stuff done instead of seeing it and cringing then getting on the computer. today my tollerance has been low. I have 4 kids and two are teenagers. They can clean. Do they?lol. The carpet is in need of a vacuum and a cleaning. The whole house needs to be vacuumed. It's like all of a sudden today the carpet is a mess. My nerves are shot today. Hmm, oh well. sorry, i know my post totally went off track there.
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Old 10-07-03, 11:36 PM
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Wow, "Paralysis of the will" huh? I have written about that SO many times when writing down what i have felt is 'different/wrong' with me. I will certainly bring that up at my dr appointment!!

Kathi, I totally followed you on your post I often get on the computer to avoid it all too, and switch page to page to page online And I can understand the carpet thing. The carpet HAS been a mess for a long time, but suddenly, one day it is like it MUST be cleaned THAT day. Something must suddenly be done about it. And then I freak out that is must be done.
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Old 10-07-03, 11:52 PM
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I will gladly quible over words here, but only for specific purpose... to end with words that allow the extension of the discussion of the phenomonon in useful ways.

Frozen is not what i am... I am "disengaged." the output is equally zero, but the mechanism and implications are very different!

If motivation is a "strong force to do something" motivation i have in plenty.

I'll stop here for now, asking for others input!
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Old 10-08-03, 06:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Wheel1975
Frozen is not what i am... I am "disengaged." the output is equally zero, but the mechanism and implications are very different! If motivation is a "strong force to do something" motivation i have in plenty.
First off...waywardclam... I saw this name on another post and thought it a funny name...lol... Now that I see who it belongs to..well... I so understand more....


Anyway, this sounds like me also, disengaged.

Paula
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Old 10-08-03, 07:02 AM
Sc@tterBr@in_UK Sc@tterBr@in_UK is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by ferrette1976
That is totally me. I do manage to get a lot done. But sometimes I find myself sitting on the couch, staring at the TV thinking "I know I want to get up and do something, but I don't know how." I am completely stuck
Wow yep that's exactly me! Although in school I often hyperfocussed on some schoolwork (so much so that I spent most of my lessons doing work for other lessons) and also on tests sometimes.

But at home, as soon as I get back from work, I just sit down & freeze and spend most of the night beating myself up over how I can't get anyting done. At least nowadays I give myself a break during PMT (when it's at its worst) but I still can't really relax.

Occasionally I'll get up and start doing something but then I walk away to do something else, and in a short while I find myself sat on that blasted sofa again, I do cook dinner a few times a week which I enjoy, but everything else takes a seat at the back in my household.

I do however often read on the side while sat in front of the TV, although when I've jsut got back from work I'm usually totally zonked out.

Thankfully (thanks to a huge dose of valerian tablets) I've managed to stop smoking 2 months ago, but before that I always had the "excuse" of lighting yet another rollie - these days though I am just sat doing nothing / worrying and being overwhelmed by the things to do, with no "excuse" just the feeling of guilt.

I actually stopped smoking mainly because I thought it might help with the brain fog and because I might manage to be more active, but no such luck so far I'm afraid

My soon-to-be ex husband was "similar" insofar as he had some ADD symptoms, but the memory problem etc. only started when he started taking lots of drugs at 18, and he never cared about getting anything done in the house or worried about doing stuff right/on time - he always got back from work, lit a joint after the other and played/worked on his PC (not work-related, just Internet stuff and his website and chatting to his friends), which he very much enjoyed. I guess in his case there was no will, just the enjoyment of relaxation and having fun being more important to him than anything else
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Old 10-08-03, 08:40 AM
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Old 10-08-03, 08:44 AM
Sc@tterBr@in_UK Sc@tterBr@in_UK is offline
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Thanks BIG. I keep staring at my screen @ work at th emoment so I might as well start writing an intro

Last edited by Sc@tterBr@in_UK; 10-08-03 at 08:57 AM..
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Old 10-08-03, 08:59 AM
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Definitons for our clarity?

Of Motivation, Engagement and Activation, Activation is the failure, not motivation not even Engagement, as it propoerly describes the situation AFTER activation, not before. Therefore things that increase motivation only serve to increase frustration.

I see nothing in the literature regarding increasing activation for people with ADHD.

volition, operative, effectual, ineffectual,

vo·li·tion (v?-l?sh??n)*Pronunciation Key
n.

1. The act or an instance of making a conscious choice or decision.
2. A conscious choice or decision.
3. The power or faculty of choosing; the will.


[French, from Medieval Latin voliti?, voliti?n-, from Latin velle, vol-, to wish. See wel-1 in Indo-European Roots.]vo·li?tion·al adj.
vo·li?tion·al·ly adv.


Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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volition

\Vo*li"tion\, n. [F., fr. L. volo I will, velle to will, be willing. See Voluntary.] 1. The act of willing or choosing; the act of forming a purpose; the exercise of the will.

Volition is the actual exercise of the power the mind has to order the consideration of any idea, or the forbearing to consider it. --Locke.

Volition is an act of the mind, knowingly exerting that dominion it takes itself to have over any part of the man, by employing it in, or withholding it from, any particular action. --Locke.

2. The result of an act or exercise of choosing or willing; a state of choice.

3. The power of willing or determining; will.

Syn: Will; choice; preference; determination; purpose.

Usage: Volition, Choice. Choice is the familiar, and volition the scientific, term for the same state of the will; viz., an ``elective preference.'' When we have ``made up our minds'' (as we say) to a thing, i. e., have a settled state of choice respecting it, that state is called an immanent volition; when we put forth any particular act of choice, that act is called an emanent, or executive, or imperative, volition. When an immanent, or settled state of, choice, is one which controls or governs a series of actions, we call that state a predominant volition; while we give the name of subordinate volitions to those particular acts of choice which carry into effect the object sought for by the governing or ``predominant volition.'' See Will.




volition

n 1: the capability of conscious choice and decision and intention: "the exercise of their volition we construe as revolt"- George Meredith [syn: will] 2: the act of making a choice; "followed my father of my own choice" [syn: willing]



mo·ti·va·tion (m?'t?-v??sh?n)*Pronunciation Key
n.

1.
a. The act or process of motivating.
b. The state of being motivated.
2. Something that motivates; an inducement or incentive.

mo'ti·va?tion·al adj.
mo'ti·va?tion·al·ly adv.


Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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motivation

Motivate \Mo"ti*vate\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. -vated; p. pr. & vb. n. -vating.] [From Motive, n.] To provide with a motive; to move; impel; induce; incite. -- Mo`ti*va\"tion, n. --William James.




motivation

n : the psychological feature that arouses an organism to action; the reason for the action; "we did not understand his motivation"; "he acted with the best of motives" [syn: motive, need]



en·gage·ment (?n-g?j?m?nt)*Pronunciation Key
n.

1. The act of engaging or the state of being engaged.
2. Betrothal.
3. Something that serves to engage; a pledge.
4. A promise or agreement to be at a particular place at a particular time.
5.
a. Employment, especially for a specified time.
b. A specific, often limited, period of employment.
6. A hostile encounter; a battle.
7. The condition of being in gear.

Synonyms: engagement, appointment, assignation, date, 1rendezvous, tryst
These nouns denote a commitment to appear at a certain time and place: a business engagement; a dental appointment; a secret assignation; a date to play tennis; a rendezvous of agents at the border; a lovers' tryst.




Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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engagement

\En*gage"ment\, n. [Cf. F. engagement.] 1. The act of engaging, pledging, enlisting, occupying, or entering into contest.

2. The state of being engaged, pledged or occupied; specif., a pledge to take some one as husband or wife.

3. That which engages; engrossing occupation; employment of the attention; obligation by pledge, promise, or contract; an enterprise embarked in; as, his engagements prevented his acceptance of any office.

Religion, which is the chief engagement of our league. --Milton.

4. (Mil.) An action; a fight; a battle.

In hot engagement with the Moors. --Dryden.

5. (Mach.) The state of being in gear; as, one part of a clutch is brought into engagement with the other part.

Syn: Vocation; business; employment; occupation; promise; stipulation; betrothal; word; battle; combat; fight; contest; conflict. See Battle.




engagement

n 1: a hostile meeting of opposing military forces in the course of a war; "Grant won a decisive victory in the battle of Chickamauga"; "he lost his romantic ideas about war when he got into a real engagement" [syn: battle, conflict, fight] 2: a meeting arranged in advance; "she asked how to avoid kissing at the end of a date" [syn: date, appointment] 3: a mutual promise to marry [syn: betrothal, troth] 4: the act of giving someone a job [syn: employment, hire, hiring] 5: a job for performers or performing groups that lasts for a limited period of time; "the play had bookings throughout the summer" [syn: booking] 6: contact by fitting together; "the engagement of the clutch"; "the meshing of gears" [syn: mesh, meshing, interlocking] 7: sharing the activities of a group; "the teacher tried to increase his students' engagement in class activities" [syn: participation, involvement] [ant: non-engagement, non-engagement, non-engagement]

ac·ti·vate (?k?t?-v?t')*Pronunciation Key
tr.v. ac·ti·vat·ed, ac·ti·vat·ing, ac·ti·vates

1. To set in motion; make active or more active.
2. To organize or create (a military unit, for example): activate the National Guard.
3. To treat (sewage) with aeration and bacteria to aid decomposition.
4. Chemistry. To accelerate a reaction in, as by heat.
5. Physics. To make (a substance) radioactive.
6. Biology. To convert (certain biological compounds) into biologically active derivatives.

ac'ti·va?tion n.
ac?ti·va'tor n.


Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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activation

n 1: stimulation of activity in an organism or chemical 2: the activity of causing to have energy and be active [syn: energizing, activating] 3: making active and effective (as a bomb) [ant: deactivation]

frus·trate (fr?s?tr?t')*Pronunciation Key
tr.v. frus·trat·ed, frus·trat·ing, frus·trates

1.
a. To prevent from accomplishing a purpose or fulfilling a desire; thwart: A persistent wind frustrated my attempt to rake the lawn.
b. To cause feelings of discouragement or bafflement in.
2. To make ineffectual or invalid; nullify.


[Middle English frustraten, from Latin frstr?r?, frstr?t-, from frstr?, in vain.]frus?trat'er n.
frus?trat'ing·ly adv.


ef·fec·tu·al (?-f?k?ch??-?l)*Pronunciation Key
adj.

Producing or sufficient to produce a desired effect; fully adequate. See Synonyms at effective.


[Middle English effectuel, from Old French, from Late Latin effectu?lis, from Latin effectus, result, effect. See effect.]ef·fec'tu·al?i·ty (-?l??-t?) or ef·fec?tu·al·ness n.
ef·fec?tu·al·ly adv.


Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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effectual

\Ef*fec"tu*al\ (?; 135), a. [See Effect, n.] Producing, or having adequate power or force to produce, an intended effect; adequate; efficient; operative; decisive. --Shak.

Effectual steps for the suppression of the rebellion. --Macaulay.

As these come from a tool in my imac, I believe I, as a licensed user have the right to post these.

op·er·a·tive (?p??r-?-t?v, -?-r?'t?v, ?p?r?-)*Pronunciation Key
adj.

1. Being in effect; having force; operating: “Two major tendencies are operative in the American political system” (Heinz Eulau).
2. Functioning effectively; efficient.
3. Engaged in or concerned with physical or mechanical activity.
4. Of, relating to, or resulting from a surgical operation.
5. Significant; most important; key: The operative word is “low-fat.”


n.

1. A skilled worker, especially in industry.
2.
a. A secret agent; a spy.
b. A private investigator.

op?er·a·tive·ly adv.


Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
[Buy it]


operative

\Op"er*a*tive\, a. [Cf.L. operativus, F. op['e]ratif.] 1. Having the power of acting; hence, exerting force, physical or moral; active in the production of effects; as, an operative motive.

It holds in all operative principles. --South.

2. Producing the appropriate or designed effect; efficacious; as, an operative dose, rule, or penalty.

3. (Surg.) Based upon, or consisting of, an operation or operations; as, operative surgery.




operative

\Op"er*a*tive\, n. A skilled worker; an artisan; esp., one who operates a machine in a mill or manufactory.




operative

adj 1: being in force or having or exerting force; "operative regulations"; "the major tendencies operative in the American political system" [ant: inoperative] 2: of or relating to a surgical operation; "operative surgery" 3: relating to or requiring or amenable to treatment by surgery especially as opposed to medicine; "a surgical appendix"; "a surgical procedure"; "operative dentistry" [syn: surgical] [ant: medical] 4: effective; producing a desired effect; "the operative word" [syn: key] 5: (of e.g. a machine) performing or capable of performing; "in running (or working) order"; "a functional set of brakes" [syn: running(a), functional, working(a)] n 1: a person secretly employed in espionage for a government [syn: secret agent, intelligence officer, intelligence agent] 2: someone who can be employed as a detective to collect information [syn: private detective, PI, private eye, private investigator, sherlock]



in·ef·fec·tu·al (?n'?-f?k?ch??-?l)*Pronunciation Key
adj.

1.
a. Insufficient to produce a desired effect: an ineffectual effort to block the legislation.
b. Useless; worthless: an ineffectual treatment for cancer.
2. Lacking forcefulness or effectiveness; weak: an ineffectual ruler.

in'ef·fec'tu·al?i·ty (-?l??-t?) or in'ef·fec?tu·al·ness n.
in'ef·fec?tu·al·ly adv.


Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
[Buy it]


ineffectual

ineffectual was Word of the Day on November 4, 2000.




ineffectual

\In`ef*fec"tu*al\ (?; 135), a. Not producing the proper effect; without effect; inefficient; weak; useless; futile; unavailing; as, an ineffectual attempt; an ineffectual expedient. --Pope.

The peony root has been much commended, . . . and yet has been by many found ineffectual. --Boyle.

Syn: Inefficient; useless; inefficacious; vain; fruitless; unavailing; futile. See Useless, Inefficacious.




ineffectual

adj 1: not sufficient to produce a desired result; "an ineffectual effort to block the legislation" [ant: effectual] 2: not producing an intended effect; "an ineffective teacher"; "ineffective legislation" [syn: ineffective, uneffective] [ant: effective] 3: producing no result or effect; "a futile effort"; "the therapy was ineffectual"; "an otiose undertaking"; "an unavailing attempt" [syn: futile, otiose, unavailing] 4: lacking in power or forcefulness; "an ineffectual ruler"; "like an unable phoenix in hot ashes" [syn: ineffective, unable]
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Old 10-08-03, 09:01 AM
Wheel1975 Wheel1975 is offline
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dis·en·gage (d?s'?n-g?j?)*Pronunciation Key
v. dis·en·gaged, dis·en·gag·ing, dis·en·gag·es
v. tr.

1. To release from something that holds fast, connects, or entangles. See Synonyms at extricate.
2. To release (oneself) from an engagement, pledge, or obligation.


v. intr.

To free or detach oneself; withdraw.

dis'en·gage?ment n.

de·tach (d?-t?ch?)*Pronunciation Key
tr.v. de·tached, de·tach·ing, de·tach·es

1. To separate or unfasten; disconnect: detach a check from the checkbook; detach burs from one's coat.
2. To remove from association or union with something: detach a calf from its mother; detached herself from the group.
3. To send (troops or ships, for example) on a special mission.


[French détacher, from Old French destachier*: des-, de- + attachier, to attach; see attach.]de·tach'a·bil?i·ty n.
de·tach?a·ble adj.
de·tach?a·bly adv.
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Old 10-08-03, 09:14 AM
waywardclam waywardclam is offline
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Dear God Wheel, how many people with ADD do you really think are going to wade through all that? hehehe
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Old 10-08-03, 09:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sc@tterBr@in_UK

Wow yep that's exactly me! ...

But at home, as soon as I get back from work, I just sit down & freeze and spend most of the night beating myself up over how I can't get anyting done....but I still can't really relax.

Occasionally I'll get up and start doing something but then I walk away to do something else, and in a short while I find myself sat on that blasted sofa again, ....

...these days though I am just sat doing nothing / worrying and being overwhelmed by the things to do, with no "excuse" just the feeling of guilt.
Been there, done that. Still find myself doing it....

Every once in a while, I'll get a wild hair and continue/begin some house project that's been hovering in my mind. Last night I finally washed the outside of my car--I think it had been several months! Forget the inside of it.... That would probably take several hours out of a Saturday!

Yep, DEFINITELY relate to the "paralysis of the will" concept.....
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Old 10-08-03, 10:00 AM
Wheel1975 Wheel1975 is offline
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Selective Activation vs. Motivation

I keep thinking, if i go up to a door, and the lock won't turn, I can try to force it.

1) it might turn
2) it might jam worse
3) i might break the key off in the lock.

none of these approaches addresses Why it wouldn't turn, and all risk making it worse or no better.

On a sail boat the rule is:"If it jams, look up!"

This is the rule because UP is where peripheral vision doesn't see, and therefore is most likely the cause of an otherwise unexplained jam.

Also, sail boats are of such a nature that forcing a thing FREQUENTLY results in both breakage and failure, and severely imperials safety and purpose to no beneficial effect.

So what if we treated ourselves like sail boats when we "freeze" or jam?

Just looked for the kink, and set about to untwist, knott, hang the situation. Rather than "harder" or "smarter" the solution on a boat is usually to back off a small distance, relieve presure rather than increase it, and more gently and more slowly proceed until normality of opperation is demonstrated.

I think our activation goes, quite simply, where it can. If we aren't doing something we wish to, there is a reason that requires gentleness and patience and respect for reality and what we know, not fantasy and what we wish.

Your thoughts?
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Old 10-08-03, 10:35 AM
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I read what you wrote Paul and I have to say some of the things that are so called stalls are just simply out of sight out of mind. I'm always forgetting bills, appointments, etc due to not putting them on a wall or fridge. I just need to see a visual reminder.
Now the other things like walking into a kitchen with 7 days of dishes and then walking back out, I can relate. Its called overwelmness. I have a room that I share with my children (Very small apartment) and the kids have messed it up bad... well mainly my daughter has (Asperger) and I haven't been able to clean even a little due to overwelmness. I freeze.
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