Do Unfinished Projects Keep Us Comfortably Stuck?

This, my 46th year on the planet, is the year of finishing what I’ve started.

During a trip to Kripalu this past winter, I was introduced to oracle card decks, which are like Tarot cards, only they’re used in a more free-form way. I fell in love with this practice and brought it home with me. “Pulling a card” has become part of my morning prayer/meditation/journaling practice. (I even got my husband on board—we often will each pull a card together in the morning.) Usually, I use it as a general message for the day, and sometimes in response to a specific question I’m asking.

Yes, it’s kinda woo-woo, even for me.

I love my card decks because they give me a little nudge toward the intuitive, creative right brain every morning. By default, I tend toward the left side, so I can always use a little less logic and a little more magic in my life.

Speaking of magic, though, I don’t believe the cards supernaturally arrange themselves to hand me the perfect message. (Although I have a friend who believes this, and some spooky shit has happened, like my husband and I both pulling the same card for days in a row, which has made me wonder for a second.)

What I do believe is that there are beautiful gifts of insight when you find meaning in whatever card(s) you happen to pull. You can also use them as journaling prompts if you want to reap the benefits of journaling but are often at a loss for what to write about or where to begin.

So what does all this have to do with finishing projects? On my 45th birthday last week, I pulled three cards from my Earth Magic deck. The question was simply, “What do I need to know now?” Here’s what I got:


It was pretty easy to find meaning in the the Childhood (innocence) and Mountain (strength) cards. Full Moon (completion), not so much. Even after reading the synopsis of what the card represents in the little book, I was at a loss. It doesn’t feel like anything in my life is coming to completion—quite the opposite, in fact! I’m in the middle of half a dozen different projects, and about to begin a family transition with my older son going to a new school after being home schooled for the last two years.

Then I got it—a birthday means a New Year of sorts, and the coming year is going to be about finishing those projects I’ve been stuck in the middle of for varying and frustrating lengths of time.

Why do so many of us start multiple projects and rarely finish them?

Lack of time is always a factor, but I can routinely find an hour to waste on Facebook, for example. Not that it’s inherently bad to spend time on social media, but there’s a big difference between making a deliberate choice to take some downtime and have fun on Facebook versus mindlessly scrolling and clicking, then realizing an hour has passed and you had no conscious intent to spend the hour that way. How many hours a month does this add up to, and what might be accomplished of our real goals and desires with that time?

How about this: time-related realities and excuses aside, do unfinished projects keep us comfortably stagnant within the old habits and comfort zones of our lives?

Do they keep us from moving and growing as much or as fast we could? What if there are new things (or neglected, very old things) we want to learn or do or be, but that all feels too daunting, or scary, or big in some way? Maybe it’s easier to be able to say, “That will have to wait until I finish X and Y and Z.” And is it then easier to keep delaying X and Y and Z’s completion so you never have to step out of your comfort zone to do whatever-it-is?

I suspect living under the specter of perpetually unfinished projects is about more than time constraints, discipline, and organizational skills (although those certainly play a part). Now I’m thinking it’s also tied up with reluctance to own our personal power and use our gifts to the fullest.

What do you think? Let me know in the comments. Meanwhile, I’m off to finish my KonMari decluttering.

© Copyright Camille Williams and Wake Up, Mama! 2016




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