Tuesday’s post identified fatigue as one of the enemies that keep us from living “Fully Alive.”
Procrastination is another enemy that seeks to keep us from doing life. If you have ever been frustrated because the things you really want to do never seem to get done this post may be the powder that ignites the fuse to help you finish projects and realize your dreams.
Here are three steps to preventing procrastination from stealing power from your life.
Step 1. Recognize where procrastination comes from! There are three reasons why we procrastinate.
Fear and perfectionism are related. They can often be seen holding hands. I am a fearful, perfectionist procrastinator, so this post is written as much for me as for you. Fear of rejection or criticism causes us to put off important projects and dreams until we can get them perfect.
Get used to the truth. It will never be perfect! And, even if were perfect people would still criticize it!
I like Seth Goden’s advice. Ship it! Do your best and then ship it. Get it out there. You can sharpen it and make it better later.
Laziness is an unwillingness to put forth effort. BUT choosing poor priorities is often perceived as laziness. A person who chooses to watch some inane television show instead working on the book they’ve dreamed of writing is perceived as being lazy.
Choosing to get lost in aimless Internet browsing instead of calling the neighbor you have been meaning to spend time with is a misplaced priority, not laziness. We choose these less important activities because they come without risk and don’t require public scrutiny. Prioritize!
A new twist on an old saying spurs me to prioritize every day.
“Put off until tomorrow what will keep you from doing what you should do today.”
When we procrastinate because we don’t want to expend effort, that”s being lazy. Move! Make it happen!
Step 2. Recognize the damage procrastination causes in life.
Missed opportunity and regret are the damage caused by procrastination. I had a dear friend get sick this year. Although my intentions were good, I thought about it every day, I kept putting it off.
On the day I finally got around to calling, he was too sick to have visitors and within a few days he died. I regret missing the opportunity to tell my friend how much I loved him and how much his friendship meant to me.
Step 3. Resolve to stop procrastinating.
No explanation needed here. No need to over-think the problem. Stop procrastinating and live! Determine that when something worth doing comes to my mind you will immediately find a way to assign a time to get started.
See it through to the finish and then “Ship it.”
Check out this hilarious YouTube clip “Stop it,” by Bob Newhart.[reminder] Let me know about your experience with enemy of procrastination and how you deal with it.[/reminder]