I've Totally Been Having This Problem Lately

[Whining, White Smoke & the Mechanics of Getting Unstuck 43 Folders]1:

First off, even when it’s yourself, nobody likes a whiner. So it’s worthwhile to be mindful about the extent to which your internal monologue is becoming personally insufferable. As with B.O. and a lack of flossing, the chances are good that others have already noticed things about you before you have, so — you know — congratulations on making it to the party.

But, second, and perhaps more importantly, that whining should be telling you something. Whining is the white smoke in your tailpipe that lets you know you’re burning mental oil. It means you’re unconsciously devoting cycles to something that you can’t, won’t, or shouldn’t be spending time thinking about. Otherwise, why would it be bothering you, right? You’d be either extricated or done with it.

Once you pinpoint where that whine’s coming from, that’s the perfect opportunity to decide what the hell the hang-up is. Because if it’s worth whining and fussing about, it’s worth deciding what obstacle (obstruction?) in either the Real World or your own mind is keeping something from happening.

And once that obstacle is identified and out there, ample methods exist for helping you execute in a way that’s sane and sensible. But you can’t complete a task you don’t understand, so grant yourself the personal luxury of unpacking the problem behind the problem.

Put automotively? Obsessively adding a new quart of oil every day not only doesn’t fix your smoke problem: it feeds it. Instead, just use the smoke as a warning that it’s nigh time to trace the cracks in your engine.