Managing the feeling of being scattered
A feeling of being scattered is pretty common for people seeking to carve out their own path, especially those with the portfolio career who are juggling and balancing a number of client and personal projects simultaneously.
There are usually three elements at play when the scattered feeling kicks in:
– Wanting to be productive
– A desire for some kind of measurement (could be qualitative or quantitative – page views, feedback from a client, number of words written, etc.)
– The need to experiment, to be creative
All these elements connect to feelings of uncertainty, fear, and value.
Looking at these as a triangle you can probably quite easily place your current feeling:
It’s pretty rare to be at the center position where there’s a feeling of creativity, productivity, and a rapid and regular feedback or measurement loop.
To reconnect and realign it can be helpful ask some self-coaching questions.
Here are a few that I’ve found to be useful when the scattered feeling arises:
– Is being scattered tolerable when it’s worth it?
– What if you knew experimenting was worth it? What would you feel?
– What’s important about having measurement? What does that give you?
– What’s a good definition of ‘productive’ for you? (not someone else, not society, but you)
Bottom Line: Maintaining the portfolio is never easy, and the scattered feeling rarely goes away for good, but it’s definitely possible to keep it in check using a few