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Gus Van Horn blog

Reblogged:Lighten Your Load by Doubling It

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About a year ago, I worked my way through Barbara Sher's I Could Do Anything if I Only Knew What It Was. I highly recommend this book and, by way of illustration, will present an example of the kind of advice she gives:

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You can play two games at once. And being involved in a career goal will keep you from feeling empty or desperate. Having a second goal will make you patient too, and you need to be patient now, more than ever. Remember, when it comes to dealing with other people's resistance, timing is important. If Lee had started working on getting back together with Steve and made that her only project, she would have lacked patience and timing. So she pursued her new career as a comedy writer at the same time she pursued Steve. Pursuing her career reminded her that, although her need for love was the most important thing in her life at that time, it wasn't the only thing. Working on both goals at the same time was essential to help her remember who she was.
I like this particular strategy because the book is about achieving very important goals -- the kind that can be derailed by such mental barriers as emotional baggage, defense mechanisms, and mistaken premises -- and demonstrates a way around them. In this case, we see that one can play two major goals off on one another in a productive way.

To say I found the book loaded with insight and useful advice would be a gross understatement. On top of that, I have to advise anyone interested in the book to at least read every chapter, even when you don't think it really applies to your case. Sometimes, those chapters still have ideas that might be useful in other situations, and sometimes you will be surprised to find something that actually does apply. One such chapter helped me understand a kind of error I'd made several times, and the realization hit me like the proverbial bolt from the blue. "Holy crap!" I remember saying.

I am grateful to Barbara Sher for having written this book and recommend it without reservation to anyone wanting insight into how to achieve any major, long-term goal.

-- CAV

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