Here’s the model I’ve always had in mind:
If Actualism were a race to VF/AF: investigation is removing track obstacles; enjoying and appreciating is sprinting.
This model can be tricky though, as it may implicitly ingrain a counterproductive sequential logic (“I must remove the obstacles first”), which can give one excuses to hold back, and thus lead to procrastination and paralysis.
After some contemplations while feeling pretty good, I recently realized this may be way better: rather than removing anything beforehand, just move fast and consistently enough; and when you make it to the other side (ie. feeling excellent); from there then figure out how to remove the ties that pull you back. IOW:
Cross the bridge and then burn it from the other side.
Just get lost, and if you hanselandgretelly find a small breadcrumb, gently remove it before it takes you back to bigger ones and eventually to where you came from.
Aside from the sequential advantage, I also realized just how differently feels the thought of “removing” anything to make progress: such an idea while in the grasp of full-on ‘me’ almost always manifests as intellectual lucubrations and imaginations; on the other hand, while feeling great/excellent, such an idea manifests more as commonsense intuition, as in smaller and easier affective decisions, rather than big obstacles to be overcome.
Organic simplicity vs. synthetic complexity, I guess.
What about this as a ‘model’:
It is always now
Time and space don’t move and are eternally still
Within this stillness we move
There is nowhere to go and nothing to do besides enjoy being alive within and as this vast stillness
Hey, BTW, I know all that from me (including the word ‘model’) may have sounded over-intellectuallized (ironically), but it manifested in such a straightforward way at those moments, in a way that also encompassed what you just said, lol.
For instance, even though I wasn’t PCing, it’s easier to sense that intellectual sequentiality making less sense, as in there’s nothing much for ‘me’ to achieve when feeling excellent as cause and effect. It was easier and natural just to make microdecisions and redirect my attention and affective energy to enjoyment and sensuousness whenever I had a small bump.
Life in the real world (ie. when I’m not in a particularly actualist mode) often feels as episodic as a poker game. I’m dealt different cards with different good and bad potentials each time again, but in the end I know it’s just a circular game in which I win some and lose some without any fundamental breakthrough.
As such, the game gets old eventually, just a repetitive routine, and that’s the actualist metacognition that I sometimes perceive as a curse (when I feel kinda hopeless about an end being in sight), but that I know is a blessing deeply (it’s just a voluntary game and one can choose to walk away from the table).
So, a losing streak or a catastrophic outcome in one round often get my ass off the couch, but the awareness of the circular nature of the game can also be a good trigger to do so, albeit not as powerful as it lacks the potential energy to bounce back as powerfully.