Above is a visual depiction from my book of the process of procrastination. It is a summary of the patterns I frequently see in blocked writers, and based loosely on the Buddhist “Wheel of Samsara,” which depicts the cyclic, self-perpetuating nature of human suffering.
While everyone’s style of procrastination is unique, several common features are included in this wheel. The point of presenting the issue in this way is to highlight how we unwittingly create and maintain behavior that we don’t like, and then feel unhappy and controlled by it.
The more times we go around the wheel, the more we reinforce the pattern. The steps become grooved and automatic, and the wheel eventually spins without our conscious awareness. If this cycle seems familiar to you, you are not alone.
In upcoming posts I will address several different aspects of this cycle and discuss how a writer can stop spinning around on it.
The Buddha is sometimes viewed as kind of a buzz-kill prophet because he declared that all life is suffering, but don’t forget that he also said there was a way to end to the suffering. Same goes for writing blocks.