Another post hot off the neuronal wires. I either have a lot of time to spare or I’m mis-managing my time so badly, I’m blind to what isn’t getting done. Delusions are like that. One never knows. Nor can one know. So let’s just adopt the hypothesis that I’m actually not blind to the critical things needing attention right now and see where that takes us.
Well, after an 8-hour mental lock-down on my Excel Statistics program last night, I suddenly had this awful realization that the procedural approach I was taking to our data from the clinic may be all wrong. Not a nice thing to feel at 2200 with an early day on the other side of sunrise. As I fell down the rabbit hole of computerized statistics I found myself in that space of Great Doubt: “But how do I really know that the computer’s FTEST (and yes, I have invented a few nice acronyms that describe that test) knows what it’s doing!?”
Short version: by midnight, I had figured out that I don’t and then found the table I had painstakingly formatted had all the wrong values in it. That’s not the worst of it. I had already sent the table off to my colleague in Australia – who was likely sitting at his desk, on a Tuesday morning, wondering why in hell he got involved in this idiot’s project in the first place. What astounded me was that I was so proud of the formatting of the table I had failed to see the values of the correlations could not possibly be what I had typed in… correlations range from -1 to +1… The table was populated with 4’s and 5′ and -3’s… well, you get the picture.
I’m chagrined and embarrassed beyond description.
But there it is. That delusional process which latches onto the form and style of practice without checking into the actual contents or substance. To say that I’m easily seduced by bright, flashy things would be true. I had thought practice made me more likely to take the flash-blindness as a mindful bell to close my eyes and proceed faithfully through the darkness.
What I often forget is to check and double check. And check yet again. What is it now? And now? And yet again now!
So as I go back and check on my data, let me leave you with this little nugget of our findings:
Self-kindness and emotional exhaustion have an inverse relationship. The less kind you are to yourself, the more fatigued you can become (leading to burn out). Harsh self-judgment has the same relationship.
Lower levels of self-kindness are associated with greater personal spiritual incongruence. The less supportive you are of yourself, the greater the divide you feel between your ideal and actual experience of spirituality.
In fact, personal spiritual incongruence was related to all aspects of low self-compassion and high burn out.
Time to go light some incense!