The Chosen Field mantra is “put the toothpaste on the brush.” It originated as I wondered if I could be bothered to clean my teeth. It was late, I was tired, and it’s the type of toothbrush that times a two-minute clean. The only way I got around the indecision was to override my brain by literally putting the toothpaste on the brush. I wasn’t about to waste a dollop of toothpaste, so my teeth got cleaned.
The put the toothpaste on the brush principle can work in any situation. It is especially good during times of indecision, doubt, and “blue” days; when you feel yourself mentally putting something off, simply put the toothpaste on the brush.
Can’t be bothered to get dressed? Take your pyjamas off. Unless you intend to walk around naked all day, you’re going to have to put clothes on. By over-riding your brain ONE time, you’ve instigated forward momentum.
Getting Over The Starting line
Drawing a line, writing a word, pressing a button, are all examples of putting the toothpaste on the brush. It isn’t about constantly pushing yourself into positions of no return, or embarking on journeys of a thousand miles; all you’re trying to do is override your brain for long enough to get over that starting line. While I can’t guarantee that things will improve from there on in, you are at least putting yourself in the best possible position.
From personal experience, once I open up whatever project I’m working on I’ll get into it pretty quickly. That’s my toothpaste on the brush moment. If I sit and wonder if I really want to do anything, or if there’s enough time, then I’ll just sit and flick through TV channels.
Don’t Give Up!
If the mantra doesn’t work for you, before dismissing it completely, please attempt a little self-analysis, and just make sure you should not be seeking medical advice. Your chosen field work should excite you, however challenging it may be. If you suddenly lose interest completely and struggle with daily tasks, it won’t hurt to get checked out by your doctor, or have a look at the following websites where all kinds of excellent support can be found:
CALM – Campaign Against Living Miserably: https://www.thecalmzone.net/