Less than three years ago, I had determined to be the best Javascript developer in Nigeria! Yes, I was legit planning to crown myself the best person in one of the most difficult programming languages to learn. And so, I ‘carried shoulder up’ after understanding just a few complex subjects in Javascript. I wanted to keep improving myself.

Months later, I had to spend days working together with the Zenith Bank app development team. I saw a bunch of developers working and I could see what they were doing. Bruh! I had to tuck my tail between my legs and respect myself. “How can I possibly beat these guys to be the best developer Nigeria has “, I asked myself.

Comparison! Discouragement! And my will become weaker and weaker each day. One type of personal problem!

Second Type of Personal Problem:

If you’ve known me long enough, you’d know I am bad with returning phone calls, making phone calls, sometimes following up on passive issues. I don’t do this to hurt anyone. I just procrastinate on those things a lot. I am sure it’s not the best way to deal. But I am also happy that I can at least admit that it’s a nasty personality flaw.

A few days ago, I read a quote by James Allen, “A man cannot directly choose his circumstances, but he can choose his thoughts, and so indirectly, yet surely, shape his circumstances.” And that got me researching how best I can overcome this problem.

The Whys.

It turns out finding the answer to the ‘Why?’ question in these scenarios would take me closer to resolution. Why do I want to be the best Javascript developer in Nigeria? Why is it important that I quit the laziness and just return calls? Why is it important to say NO to that meeting request rather than accept and chicken out at the last moment?

Thought Dumping

In his interview with Tim Ferris, Josh Waitzkin, explains that his morning routine includes going to a quiet place where he does some meditating and grabs his journal. In the journal, he thought-dumps for a few minutes.

Thought dumping has immense benefits. You see, Josh Waitzkin wasn’t focusing on input, he was focusing on output. Instead of focusing on ‘let me write a nice piece about my life and how I feel right now’, he was focusing on ‘let me pour out the rawest thoughts from my mind right now’.

I would easily recommend Thought Dumping if you suffer from ‘ailments’ such as the ones I do(did). And  here are steps you can take:

  1. Get a dedicated journal. I would recommend dedicating a book for this. I have heard about other people using their computers for this. I just think writing is better!
  2. Type anything that comes to mind. Like ANYTHING!!!! Sometimes when I do, I realize how random and unattractive some of the things that come out of me are. No, don’t overthink things. Just pour them out on paper.
  3. Do this for about 15 minutes. Or at least try to hit the 15minutes mark- until your mind clears up. It may take longer on days when you have ‘plenty problems’.

In my practice, I notice how returning calls, updating clients on projects, interrogation of my career goals are popular thought outflow. This eventually leads me to carry out actionable plans.

Thought Dumping produces amazing results when it comes to mental clarity. Don’t take my word for it. Try this technique out and let me know your experience by dropping it in the comments section below.