Serpentine (v) – “to make or follow a winding course.”
There is the project due at the end of the week. The group has been laboring over it for months. And all that is needed is to put the final touches on it. So we sit down, get to work, and finalize it, right?
If that’s what you actually did, you would be in a group of your own.
What do the rest of us do? We serpentine.
We wind back and forth doing everything but work on the project.
We call an old friend we have been meaning to catch up with for years. We surf through facebook and get lost in the news feed. We start reading online articles about the best way to stay focused and finish that project. We start cleaning and tidying up our office.
We all look for a place to hide. It’s a little trick our primitive brain plays on us.
Putting our work out in the world to be judged is scary. Finalizing the project means we stand behind the work – we are on the hook.
And being on the hook is nerve-racking.
And so we serpentine. Winding back and forth through an array of tasks that are completely unrelated to what’s important.
And we all look for places to hide. Places to find comfort in things where we aren’t the hook.
Until we can figure out how to spot it. And clear out all of the little places to hide in our lives. And push ourselves to focus on what truly matters.
It’s not the easy path – but it is the important one.
Do you serpentine?