Over the past few months I’ve found myself complaining that I don’t have enough time to think.
There are lots of ideas and opportunities I'd like to explore, but I find it difficult to set time aside to actually explore them. I want to play with these ideas and then rigorously test them, turning each one inside out to decide whether it’s worth pursuing. But - there always seems something urgent to do, or an interesting diversion to take, or let's be real - an interesting Netflix series calling me to have some down-time...
I also find that when I do create time and space to think, I’m doing it alone. Which has two problems: (1) my self-discipline levels are not high — I’m more focussed and inspired when surrounded by like minded people and (2) by ruminating alone, I’m missing sense checking and accountability with others - “is this completely mad? What can you see what I can’t yet see?”. I wasn’t inviting it, or creating opportunities for it.
As a result, I’ve struggled to set time aside to think and I can feel stagnant and drained.
So I complained some more
I really don't like complaining (it feels boring and also draining), but... I found myself complaining about this to Sara, who’s a guest on my About Death podcast. After listening to my complaints, Sara shared that she often had exciting ideas but didn't create space to start exploring them.
Talking about it further, we soon transitioned from talking about the problem of ‘not doing it’, to riffing and exploring one of her ideas. And we got really excited and energised, feeling full of possibility and action.
We were holding a space of constructive challenge, compassionate curiosity and then moving to accountability of “so what will you do next - by when - and what's going to stop you?”
Which then turned into - how great would it be if we got even more like-minded people together to run a focussed session? The more the merrier!
We’re hosting a meet up on June 21st
And that's how the Bring Your Project/Problem meet up came about. There are more details below. If this sounds like something you'd find interesting, please join us.
It's intentionally on a Friday night because:
1. You'll have the weekend to keep thinking about - and start working - on your project/idea/problem. Our assertion is that the types of projects and problems people will be discussing don’t fit neatly into your day job. So it’s likely that you’ll work on them outside of your day job, on nights and weekends.
2. For those who fancy it, we're going to the pub for drinks and food afterwards.
Bring Your Project/Problem meet up
WHEN: 6.15pm - 8.30pm Friday June 21, 2019
WHERE: Spark the Difference offices, China Works, 100 Black Prince Road, Vauxhall, London, SE1 7SJ
What this event is
This is a peer lead session to explore a project or problem that you’ve been avoiding or procrastinating on - your side project, your dream project, an whisper of an idea, your calling - that thing that keeps getting pushed to the back of your mind / bottom of your To Do list. It’s something you’ve been wanting to work on, or start thinking about creating but you haven’t been able to (there’s not enough time or money, there’s too many other priorities; it’s too hard or scary; you don’t know where to start, etc.etc)
Well, in this session, you’ll start exploring that project or problem.
What we'll do together
We’re holding a two hour session to give you space, constructive challenge and accountability to explore that project or problem. Think: reflective journal writing meets peer coaching meets accountability meets good fun.
The event will be run in two parts. In part one, you will share the project or problem you’d like to work on. We’ll work through some exercises together to define the problem and you’ll get feedback and ideas from people about it.
In part two, we’ll run one or two ‘deep dive’ sessions about a project or problem that people volunteer to share with us. The purpose of these deep dive sessions is to generously offer all of our perspectives and encourage deeper clarity and commitment to act. It’s not about offering consultancy services, but sharing insights and experiences in a safe space.
So you can...
The aim is that by the end of the session you will able to:
+ clearly articulate this project and problem to yourself and to others; and
+ have clarity on at least one next step for moving forward on your project or problem.
What you'll need to do
Two things to do before you arrive at the session:
Identify the project or problem you’d like to explore in this session. It’s probably lurking in the back of your mind. Hint: how would you answer, “I’ve always wanted to….” or “I’m curious about…” or “Wouldn’t it be fascinating to explore…”
Write it down. On your phone. On paper. Whatever works for you. Get it out of your head.
We’re kicking off at 6.30pm. Please arrive from 6.15pm for light refreshments and hellos.
For those who fancy it, we’ll be heading to the Zeitgeist London afterwards (49-51 Black Prince Rd, Lambeth, London SE11 6AB) for some food and drinks.
See you soon!
Sam and Sara