Sunday, October 11, 2009
Popping the Pimple of Procrastination
Procrastination.... have you ever heard yourself say, "I'll get to it later," or "I'll do it tomorrow," or simply ignoring what needs to be done to move you towards your goals, or completing simple tasks at work or home?
Here's the thing. The longer you wait, and put off your task...the worse it gets.
"The greatest amount of wasted time is the time not getting started." ~Dawson Trotman (March 25, 1906 - June 18, 1956) an evangelist and founder of the 'Navigators'
"Psychologists often cite procrastination as a mechanism for coping with the anxiety associated with starting or completing any task or decision." (Wikipedia).
I don't believe that Procrastination is 'laziness'. I believe it is simply a case of too 'big-case-istis.' When you simply view the task or goal at hand as TOO LARGE.
CHUNKING down... is the solution.
Often, when we put off (procrastinate) what needs to be done, it is due to us feeling overwhelmed (and perhaps anxious) of the 'enormity' of the task at hand. Or an illusion of the (perceived BIG) effort level involved.
Have you ever heard the question: "How do you eat an elephant?"
The answer is: "one bite at a time."
Yesterday, I wrote about "The Magic of Momentum" from the angle of an enthusiastic soul bolting from the starting blocks; sometimes, coming to a grinding halt due to lack of awareness of using pace (attempting to start in 4th gear, instead of first, and stalling).
Like a coin that has two sides of the one unit: if jumping out of the starting blocks enthusiastically and 'hitting the wall' is the 'heads', then procrastination is simply the 'tails'. BOTH require CHUNKING your goal or task down into 'bite sized' pieces.
Once you have a list of steps written down you can then take "one step at a time." Which, like getting up out of your chair now and walking "one-step-at-a-time" to your kitchen or water cooler for a drink of water to refresh your creative mind, and back to your desk to write the list, means you create momentum for yourself. It also creates a sense of fulfillment and very quickly compounds into massive action in other areas of your life also.
In addition to creating your list, or perhaps in helping you create it, is making yourself accountable to a friend, a family member, or even a life/business coach who can help you break your goal/task down into easily-achievable pieces.
If perhaps, you are stalling because you can't see the BIG picture yet, or feel like you are in a fog, with dim lights... then...
...Remember, in the words from a great man, "You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step." ~Martin Luther King, Jr.