Procrastination

Ever had the feeling that you should be doing something productive. Yet somehow you cannot summon the energy to do so?
That is me today.

I should be doing my chores or finishing numerous crochet projects left unfinished. Now Eskom has hit us with load-shedding so here I am, addressing my issues and trying to help others while I mentally motivate myself.  In my defence, I could say that I pulled muscles in my leg and neck but excuses, excuses…

Procrastination is what it is, the act of delaying or postponing something, especially something that requires immediate attention. To procrastinate means that you are slow or late about doing something that should be done but delay doing it until a later time for some reason.

My daughter brutally honest terror that she is, set it out my reasons for procrastination. I had lost my best friend’s Dad on Monday morning, he was an adopted Dad, and it was loss of a Dad twice over.  One Wednesday morning, my colleague passed from cancer and that was a severe blow.  On Wednesday evening, I learned that my best friend is ill. Worse, is that she is overseas and I cannot see her or hug her, nor provide any physical support.  Physically and mentally miserable, I delayed all day, resorting to hide in the comfort of my bed.

Procrastination really cut into the way of progress and sometimes seem impossible. Yet it is not really difficult to stop procrastinating.  In order to overcome procrastination, you need to understand why you are procrastinating. Is it because :

  • You have emotional issues
  • You are unpunctual
  • You have a habit of watching just one last television program
  • You make excuses
  • Your room is untidy and something is not found easily
  • You work on an assignment the night before a deadline
  • You are always on social media
  • You have poor study habits

Procrastination is, in fact, an emotional issue, not a time-management issue.  This could become a real problem for me and I realised that I need to stay motivated, focused and grateful for many things.  Thus I reminded myself to :

  • Be grateful for my blessings
  • Make no excuses
  • Take action by planning ahead
  • Kill the excuses
  • Tackle the little tasks, feel the accomplishment
  • Avoid distractions, the Big Bang Theory can wait
  • Tackle the bigger tasks, reward myself.
  • Have a “Can Do, Will Do NOW” attitude

procrastination-definition-urban-dictionary

One thing is sure, procrastinators waste the most precious asset a human can have, Time.

Reasons why we are prone to procrastinate :

  • Unpleasant task ahead : Is it because the task is unpleasant and you choose rather to do something happy? Perhaps go to the spa? Sadly, the little tasks become huge and seemingly insurmountable. Not accomplishing it brings in shame, guilt and white lies.
  • Lack of Initiative : Fear of missing out is common today as everyone wants to live in the moment and broadcast to social media.
  • Lack of Interest : Subjects boring or tedious? My son find studying Afrikaans tedious.
  • No time : A popular excuse. Something else always seems important besides the task that needs doing. What may seem like a brilliant idea initially becomes a dreaded task, simply because we have relegated it to the backburner. Telling yourself, you do NOT have the time…
  • Too much of an effort : Sometimes ignorance on a subject and the thought of just doing simpler tasks. All too soon that neglected task, becomes an elephant in the room.
  • It’s not important : What may be important to some is unimportant to others. My husband always runs the car until the petrol gauge shows red. Drives me nuts, especially when he takes my car out on the weekends!
  • Distraction : Telling yourself that you’ll do the job early in the morning tomorrow, with a clear mind, when you feel more settled or rested. But when you wake up, you got distracted and did something else.
  • You are what you keep : By surrounding yourself with negative auras of demotivating and unproductive people, it is often a reason as to why it becomes so easy to waste time.

Sometimes fobbing off or neglecting tasks may be caused by a fear of failure as we are wont to strive for perfectionism. Then there are those who procrastinate because of fear of the consequences that comes with accomplishment.  I know a battered woman who was an accomplished storyteller but had a fear that her success at her son’s school would bring recrimination and abuse from her husband.

A colleague’s practice of being constantly unpunctual and her refusal to learn in order to further growth, has lost respect and confidence from her team mates. Similarly, procrastination can be damaging in other ways. That promotion could be elusive, progress would be stymied and precious time could be lost.

Some advice :

  • The time is NOW! Like Nike says, “just do it! Sometimes we need to leave the shore to start the journey.
  • Make a checklist.
  • Start a new routine.
  • Create a habit, a series of repeated acts that become a way of life over time.
  • Set time frames, time parameters help with focus.
  • Create a team, sometimes collaboration with a team works wonder to keep you accountable.
  • Focus.
  • Challenge your mind
  • Be disciplined
  • Unclutter your work space
  • Listen to Ted Talks

As a mother, I constantly find myself singing a song, “do not put off for tomorrow what you can do today”, something I learned from my Dad. Something that I am desperately trying to teach my son whilst trying to help him inculcate good habits.  Tomorrow may just not come.

If you began something five years ago, how much further would you be today?!  Hence the determination to start TODAY is the crucial decision.

Conviction is necessary to be successful.  The belief that you have the ability of accomplishment is very important, it sets the tone for the journey ahead. Allow no room for self-doubt.  Positive affirmations are important. As is Action.  Action brings results, immediate action brings results sooner!

For Michael Owen…
Love Mom.

PS,
Being techno savvy is all well and good.  Its fine to get to Whatsapp, but not for hours on end, neither is Tetris going to build your life. It’s all about you, for you.

 

noexcuses.jpg

Image courtesy of pinnacleperformancechampions.org

Other images courtesy of the web

 

 

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46 thoughts on “Procrastination

  1. But there are times that we need some time out to grieve or come to terms with something. The loss of your adopted dad isn’t just a passing event. In itself it can bring back things from your past that need to be looked at further and understood before you can move on, and they can take some time to emotionally deal with. Physically we heal quite fast, but that emotional part of us can take quite some time to understand, come to terms with, and then start out in a new direction.
    There is a lot happening at the moment, give yourself permission to take some time out. It is only when we begin to become ‘stuck’ in that way of being that we need some help…like a daughter to ‘nudge’ us occasionally 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mark… You are too smart. Thank you for taking the time to respond. You are right, there is a lot happening. None pleasant but I’m remind myself to be grateful for my blessings. I AM too hard on myself and I do need to be kinder to myself. Taking said daughter to an interview and buying her celebratory lunch with some girl talk. Thank you Mark for helping me see some light.😊

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So much common sense there. It is an issue I have struggled with for many years. This morning I am trying to finish a major project for university a week before the deadline because we go away tomorrow morning. We are heading off on a long road trip to meet with family and spread my brother’s ashes as per his wishes over three years ago. Sometimes I feel so slow and start to feel overwhelmed. I have the outline for my project and just need to get onto it but distracted by the amount of information out there and then feel I am on the wrong track! I have a whole day to make good. I count my blessings because I now live in the most beautiful part of the world as I watch the sun come up over the white, frost-coated paddocks. Thank you for sharing. Will let you know how I get on.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It must be quite emotional heavy knowing you are on a personal quest for your brother. My condolences to you.
      About the project, slowly does it. Do a few pages. Plop some info into the necessary spots. The framework gets bulk. Stop. Reward yourself with a refreshment and bonding with the view. Then go back. Start again. Know that you will be over soon and feel the spurts of accomplishment.
      Soon you will be able to go on your trip and leave the mental baggage behind.
      Then slowly allow yourself to release the emotions.
      I pray both tour journeys will ease and you have emotional strength in the days ahead. I send a hug. Kavita.

      Like

  3. Pingback: Procrastination – The Militant Negro™

  4. Hi Kavita,
    Another Sunshiny post! Thank you. I always look forward to reading them, even if I don’t always comment.
    One thing I would say is that taking time to grieve or to remember a lost loved one (or longing for a far-away, ill friend to be well) is not wasting time. Nor does it indicate a lack of commitment or poor character. Grief is a fact of our humanity. Grieving takes energy, loads of it. We feel it on all levels–emotionally, physically, spiritually. It is little wonder you wished to stay in bed!
    I am sorry to hear of your losses, a second father and a dear friend in one week. That is so sad. One loss is hard; two is a real blow. Take care! Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hello Ali… Thank you for reading and writing back. I SO appreciate it. I was saying to Mark, I’m too hard on myself. I had to. Yes grief is second nature to me, I have banked so many heartaches. To make matters worse a cousin passed, a beautiful worthy man who had his operation and should have gone back home with his wife. She returned to their home under such sad circumstances. We resolved to travel some 4hours ago for the funeral. Fate had other plans. Finally my body just froze andi spent much time in bed. I could not even read a page of my Nora Roberts book. Come Monday, I’m up and running… Well Mom life. I hear you. Totally. Remind myself to be grateful and live as best as I can… Especially as an example to the kids. Why? We are estranged from the family sadly… Not many people prefer outspoken morally upright Indian women.
      I send a hug Ali.
      Thank you for your kindness.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Ah, Kavita. We women (mothers, especially, perhaps) are so hard on ourselves. It’s how we are wired.
        I feel for you! So many sad losses around you. They take a toll, especially when you care so deeply.
        I hope you can restore your energy and your joy in your garden. It sounds to me like your family is very blessed to have you. All the more reason to look after yourself. Big hugs from afar. Xx

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you for the kind words Ali.
        Sadly I have more work weekdays than weekend days but I am sure you can relate to that. Love this interaction the the reciprocation, life already feels better.
        I send warm hugs from Sunshiny South Africa.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. So sorry to hear of your losses, and illness. We are all guilty of it, but some days we just need a bit of time out and actually do nothing! We are all different. For me, I’m a day by day kinda girl. If nothing gets done today, it will get done tomorrow. I hope you’ve had a nice Monday. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It is only motivation that pulls you through. If you are motivated, your mind will put to rest any excuse that you are trying to put forth. I’m glad you wrote about something we see in plenty in the part of the world I live in.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This is really what I needed😂😂 no jokes. I have 5 pieces that’s technically due this weekend but I have barely put in time and I knew about this for like 6 days. And I realise I’d rather be on twitter than do my work. I’m ruining my own life. Thanks for this. I’ll take a nap and get right to it😂💪

    Liked by 1 person

  8. This is a great post which inspires me to leave procrastination. I’m quite punctual in studies but I avoid doing homeworks by my own which can always be borroed from a friend. So I like prioritise things according to my interests and it hasn’t affected my grades my entire life. So is it a good habit? Or should I try to change?

    Like

  9. That’s some advice, checklist, declutter workspace, focus, time frame, discipline and challenge the mind. Proscratinator is so ME and time to get things sorted slowly but surely. Sorry about the losses in your life and cancer sucks in losing someone dear. I enjoy reading this post, Kav!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, Vish sad all the circumstances. Glad you enjoyed reading though. Am praying that Owen reads and understands what I am saying to HIM as well. One day, I may not be here to remind him. Poor fellow, will end up listening to his Mother’s voice as he reads this. PS, I set it up that all the posts get emailed to him 🙂 How’s is that for smart, wicked?!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks Vish for the support.
        Yesterday, we went to the circus, the first time for all of us. (I hate caged animals…sat far away on the stands from them even though they were tame). Loved, loved quality time with him, he is growing up to be a handsome young man but alas at 17, thinks he knows almost everything 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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